February 20, 2011

Why the Mood of the South of Kurdistan’s Youth is in a State of Revolution - By Mufid Abdulla

When considering detailed accounts of the 17th February demonstrations in the city of Sulaymaniah, it becomes more and more evident that the average age range of most of the participants is between 15 to 25 years old. We must therefore ask ourselves why the youth of Kurdistan is in a revolutionary state of mind. When Kurdistan was liberated in 1991, almost 20 years ago, this future generation has since grown up in conditions of poverty; resulting in increasing anger and frustration. A far greater proportion of children are now reaching adulthood and are suffering, albeit in different ways, from the early stages of their lives to adulthood.

Primary school, or what is also known as infant school, has become the main core of the livelihood of a child’s education. There are some schools in the city of Sulaymaniah in which there are three different schools having lessons in one day. So we are talking about 9 hours teaching for three different schools in one building. These kids are literally having at least three hours education per day compared to any developed country where it is compulsory that children should have at least 6 hours a day of learning several subjects.

When they move on to secondary and preparatory school, the conditions are slightly better but not a major difference as these schools still follow the old syllabus of education. The combination of this old style of teaching together with bad schooling has fostered a generation based on anger and alienation. Since the average life expectation of Kurdistan is almost 60 years, the population of the youth has outstripped the old generation.

For those young people who have the opportunity to attend university, there is no outcome of job security and a stable salary to contribute to the adoption of a permanent family structure. We have the largest population of graduates without jobs. These factors require revolutionary changes and such great changes always bring social upheaval. This is what we are witnessing at present.
The future of our youth under the new KRG is grey, and will continue to be very grey. For a country which is dominated by youth we need a dynamic economy to satisfy their demands. We need a model of economy which will bring hope and gainful employment. To date the KRG have failed to do so; that is the reason for the youth’s rebellious state of mind which is creating a revolution. My heart is bleeding for the several youths who have been killed and injured in that demonstration on the 17th February. Nothing can justify this. It reminds me of the young Sardasht Osman and Soran Mama Ham who were both killed in cold blood. These young men were full of hope and joy only asking for their fair share in their lives of the integral aspects of a democratic society.

The KDP leadership needs to urgently come up with resolute answers to this country’s demands for change.


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