The Sociology of Kurds Post – the 12th of March Uprising in 2004

Translated by : Delil Saado

This research will focus on the psychological and social changes which have occurred on Kurdish society post – the 12th of March Uprising .

Introduction :

States were formed which have never existed before in region aftermath the collapse of Ottoman Empire, in the early  20th century with different names which are still being searched for its  meanings by a lot of people . If anything is indicated, it indicates the weirdness of these nomenclatures for peoples of region; it is a costume  that has been made from abroad through the project of forming areas of power . One of these states was Syrian republic which has been formed through the resistance of all its peoples as one . At first, it was a patriotic state including all parts which were forming Syria as a whole, but this formation did not go on for so long where it has lived lots of successive coups till, it has reached its current form in which it has overcome the patriotic state to become an unilateral nation-state; one flag, one people, one language, and one party .Its attempts have started to create a typical and similar individuals by implementing the fusion policy in one crucible under the name of ” the citizen of state”, and it has considered that the one who is different is a bitter enemy against its alleged unity . 

One of the polices of these states is to give the utmost importance  to the center, and some of its main surrounding provinces in which they have made metropolises which have become people’s destination ; the one who would look for a work to manage for his/her living, and he/she would offer his toil away with the lowest prices, or the one who would commit a crime to hide in it, or the one who would have a problem in his surroundings, or he/she could be disgraced and dismissed from his/her society, and he/she would be able to have a shelter in those cities which are rapidly  growing in its density . In addition, the development of the education centers, since it is a place for resolving its bureaucratic problems which leads to the creation of a fragile and a loose social structure of relations among the social fabric, where this makes it easier for the state to exploit it much worse and greater . 

The Negligence of Parties, Is it a Blessing or a Curse ?

Many argue that the negligence of state for the parties is a curse where the depriving from work and the means of comfortably and education, so he/she is being obliged to spend much greater costs of their energy to resolve a simple problem ; in fact, it is a curse, if we will have a look from a narrow and a close perspective, but it is a blessing, if we will analyze it from a long-term and a strategic perspective .

Let’s apply this situation on the north and northeast society of Syria and we will handle the Kurdish Society, in particular, so that our research framework will be more precise .

The Kurdish Society Pre – the 12th of March Uprising 2004

Because of the existence of the Kurdish society on the edges of a neglected nation- state and ,in spite of, the depriving of all its natural rights ; beginning from the freedom of choice a name for its children from its own language to the learning process of its mother tongue, from controlling its rich economical resources  and looting it to the prevention of speaking its language at state’s institutions, and forget even about its political and national demands . but, the state could not control and dominate the Kurdish Society completely ; it has maintained its pride, its social cohesive situation to some extent and has lived with its traditions and customs, by extension, with its own community values. The center was not its main destination: on the contrary, he/she was preserving his/her home, honor and land except at the maximum necessities . The center was Damascus which is considered very far away city for him/her and the intelligence institutions of state could not be able to organize its self within that cohesive fabric that is why the dealers with these institutions were few as well as people were knowing about them ; that someone is dealing with the government, they were called in simple words he/she is ” an agent of intelligence “, and they were probably outcasts in their society.

Newroz celebrations was  a witness to the common conscience  of that people ; in spite of, the risks to celebrate it , no one has ever hesitated to celebrate this Eid, there was no clear differences and no class differentiation , there was no destitution that could lead the poor people to search at landfills for their living and there was no exaggerated richness to buy off others . The Ethics was considered as  a social contract which organizes the relation of the individual with his/her family and society which has never known these lows and legislations of state, therefore, reconciliation was dominated if any kind of problems could occur and there were no winner side or looser in that reconciliation , it was always satisfying for both sides of the problem . But, it was kind of shame to go to the states courts that is why the least problems were being sent to those courts . The court’s decisions most of the times were for the benefit of one of the parties . In addition, the strong social relations from relatives to neighbor.

The Kurdish Society Post- the Uprising of 12th of March

The 12th of  March Uprising was spontaneous, casual, and unorganized but it was not without reasons ; after the Baath Party had  become a ruling party, it started implementing the denial policy against the region through maintaining of the unfair decrees, beginning with the statistic in 1962 which have been approved by the separation government and has led a big number of Kurdish people without Syrian ID and they were called a “foreigners” and “whose nationality undeclared”, in addition, the implementation of Arabization project which have been presented on phases by Mohammed Talab Hilal before taking control of the reign of the country that has aimed through this project to the demographic change by building settlements for those who have been damaged from the project of Euphrates Dam and housing them in Kurdish villages under the name of land rehabilitation  . They have started taking and distributing a fertile lands from the region to those have been called “submerged people” and a big part of region’s people has been left without portion . Plus, preventing them from their natural rights like any people who live on their historical land . Along with these reasons, there are a close reasons which has to do with the shifts and changes are generally going on in the Middle East : the intervention of America directly in Iraq has created hopes and the notion of salvation from dictatorships for the oppressed people in which subjective internal dynamics alone could not be able to make change and moving forward towards building more democratic Regime . On the other side, congestion and envy has generated among  a significant part of people, all these reasons together and according to a saying ” the pressure generates an explosion ” an incidents of the 12th  of March Uprising have started and as it is known that its ignition flame has started from the Stadium . But, it expanded rapidly to turn into a great uprising in record time : it  began from the farthest northeastern , from Derik city like wildfire to the farthest northwestern of Afrin city and the compass started to move towards the south where the Capital is, so it was a common reflect resulting from the common  conscience and moral one which you could consider it as the first episode of the Peoples Spring and the incidents of this uprising approved the fact that despite of an unfair policies have been done by the state , this society was still coherence that is why we could call like this gathering a society because it has a feature of a common conscience and moral one and the most of Regimes fears is this feature in which the Regime has realized the risks which are being posed due to this cohesion .

The international, regional, and even Kurdish conditions were not ready for such uprising, so the Regime has took advantage of these circumstances to hit the Uprising and then the society with an iron hand . It has strongly implemented the policy of dividing and ruling and it has changed the struggle from the Kurdish – state struggle to Kurdish – Arab struggle in which playing on string of Arabism and discrimination and it has presented its self as a representative of the majority under the slogan ” who would attack the state , it would be considered as an attack on the Arab- Nation”, while the recent incidents ; post – the uprising’s incidents in 2011 have clearly shown its connection to it : the state’s connections to Arabism ; the most people affected in the recent years were Arab people ,therefore, it has never ever represented the Arab- Nation which has been called by their name .

Methods Followed by Regime after Suppressing the Uprising to Disperse and Dismantle the Society

The state has used many methods to be able to infiltrate to the core of the society and in order to reach this purpose, the cohesion and the power of the society must be dismantled: taking the society out of its meaning and moving it to a numeral  group of individuals without any common conscience or moral one connecting them together . The Regime has tried to build this kind of individual through throwing lots of participants to prisons, and even those who did not participate . Plus, in prisons by imposing Martial Low and prolonging the duration of interrogation and investigation as well as a brutal torture which has been practiced on prisoners and personal insults, the purpose of all these acts was breaking the individual’s will and destructing  his/her self-honor and forcing him to accept all what Regime wants . The self-honor of a human is his/her first moral deterrent, if his/her self-honor destruct, the Regime will be able to invest and use him/her the way it wants .

The state’s policy concerning arresting some people was not only meant for them, but also for the purpose of  scaring and discipline who are out of prisons . 

As for its planned and programmed  policies on those people out of the prisons ; the society , it was in many forms :

Imposing the starvation policy so that it would be able to ” discipline “, impose the surrender, then submission and total disobedience .

According to that plan , it has started the declaration of supporting decrees and one of these decrees was the one related to real estate the decree No. 49 ; the possession low and through that decree no one of the population of the border areas; the outskirts areas  could sell or buy the real estate and they could not register it in their name . But, that low has been implemented on the Kurdish Society in the actual practice ; it means that the Kurdish; he/she has the right to a property and lands but , he/she cannot buy it , so it came to the Regime refusing even the right of repairing or doing any changes on their house till it is absolutely necessary . The declaration of an unfair economic lows, particularly, in agriculture field and the fact that it is  considered agricultural area, consequently, it is the lifeblood for them . The state has not only withhold any kind of support in this field, but also, it has set up lows of preventing the cultivation of the spaces it is needed under the name of agricultural cycle, until it came to control even in their livelihoods by controlling over every single thing . In addition, the farmers and peasants were not allowed to sell their products to whoever they want : they were necessarily obliged to sell their products to the Treasury of the State which was taking it with the lowest prices and what made the situation even worse , was the exposure of the region to the seasons of drought . 

The aim of all these unfair procedures against the Kurdish society was imposing and forcing the majority of the Kurdish people to immigrate to the center and the provinces around it, so that it would be able to control them and forcing them to do all kinds of works to limit their dignity and that was one of the intelligence vows to this people ” we will make of your youth waiters and valets in restaurants and of your girls servants and maids in the houses of the people of  Damascus and Aleppo” they stated . So, it has used most of the methods which are leading to the destructing of the self-honor which is the first moral deterrent , to make a human like an easy prey to be hunted, consequently, easy to be used. The society has been changed to the extent that even its own people could no longer recognize that new reality and the intelligence had started for the first time in the history of this people to form an expanded net of people linked to it .The society has been dismantled and decayed and it went out of its being as a society after these incidents . According to the academic definition of the society term ; scattered and dismantled society is easy to be exploited, looted and controlled over all its vital joints . That is what was being left by the 12th  of March Uprising . So that , most of the Kurdish people have started to say ” we wish if it were not “.

It was a revolution, rebellion, and disobedience at the wrong time: because the international, the regional, and Kurdish conditions were not ready to support it and get it to the possible result, therefore, its results has negatively reflected on the social reality, in particular. 

The state has been given a pretext interference directly and grossly in the structure of the society and dismantling it in terms of social relations and of all aspects. The majority of the youth were hanging over at the corners of streets, homeless, and using drags were considered as a result of the practices of intelligence and as a part of that implemented policy in this region; it was premeditated .  

The incidents of the Uprising of 12th March affected negatively on all categories and segments of society, but  in terms of results, its effects on the youth generation was more greater and more stressful ; he/she became ashamed of being Kurdish, of his/her legacy, and his/her language where his/her measurement of development compared to what extent he/she imitates the people of Damascus and their  accent . The Kurdish Society has probably lived for the first time and to this extent the deadly inferiority complex of the peoples . The situation has got worse because of the Chaos which was and still has its effects on many peoples and societies, including the Kurdish Society .

The Influence  of Chaos Situation on the Kurdish Society 

Chaos phase or what has been called “Creative Chaos” started in the early of the current century which I have already explored in the previous study and it has affected and it is still affecting on societies and peoples gradually and the effect of this situation has obviously emerged in the Kurdish Society after the incidents of the12th of March Uprising and one of its results was the spread of many concepts which was never existed before in the heart of the Kurdish Society and its entitY, especially, among that category which the Regime was taking care of through its curricula to be a good serrated to work on the rotation of his system without obstacles and that way it would secure its processes for longer time . One of these concepts is the Liberalism which was not known in our political and social center . It has become common among that category whom claims education, and through these categories it has started leaking this concept into the society as if it is a new and advanced concepts that would reach our societies to the civilization. These outdated concepts are considered one of the causes of Chaos .

The slogan of “Not Belong” or “No Belonging”  one of the most slogans spread, especially, among the youth category and this is one of connotations of Chaos where the void has resulted from the destruction of values which has led an individual into the cycle of useless search and limitless confusion ;he/she does not know what he/she wants or wishes.

This slogan has been promoted which will serve the authority : the authorities wish generations with these characteristics , so that it would control the internal dynamics of the society and paralyze it . So, its spread was not randomly, especially , that we Easterners are  generally driven by dependency and we have not got a choice , the dependency has mauled our bodies . How could the dependent individual turn into not belong in an overnight time and his/her will has already been taken away . So, it was well considered to create irresponsible generations and completely disconnected of its values and social and cultural legacy ,therefore, it is disconnected of its reality . As for the one who is not a belonging individual thinks that by his/her adaptation of this concept would be the way out of this complex situation . The one who is not belonging is a selfish individual and disconnected from his/her social entity and who finds his /her personal comfort at evading from the growing problems around him/her .


Nation – State looks at the coherent society and  the one has the common conscience feature suspiciously, with doubt, and full of fears where the state is afraid of, therefore, it tries by all prohibited means and terrorizing to destroy this fortress-type and building a distorted personality far from freedom, justice, and democratic values. A personality which is biting the body of the society and its entity because of his/her excessive selfishness where he/she does not care about the society values as much as he/she cares of satisfying  his/her greedy ego by the violation all the ways and means and has created a big confusion between the end and the mean in which the mean itself becomes the end , a good example in this regard, the money is basically mean in the human life, but it has turned into aim and end of life . this is the secret of the spread of corruption unprecedentedly in our societies, so the corruption phenomenon has a close relationship with the curricula and policies of the Regime which have aimed for dismantling and fragmentation of the society and that is what the Kurdish society  has become after the incidents of 12th March Uprising where the society  structure probably has negatively changed . We can consider that it was going towards  the rock bottom unless the incidents of People’s Spring in 2011 . It was as if a sign of stop , to begin the phase we can describe it ” returning to the real self “.