On 6 November 2021, the following event was hosted jointly by the Peace in Kurdistan Campaign and the Campaign Against Criminalising Communities as part of the International Witness Campaign’s 5 months of events commemorating 20 years of the US-led ‘War on Terror’, as well as part of PIK’s and CAMPACC’s own examination of the evolution of the struggle for and  conception of self-determination.

The Campaign Against Criminalising Communities (CAMPACC) and the Peace in Kurdistan Campaign are pleased to co-host this event on examining the historical development of the global War on Terror from the perspective of the Kurdish freedom movement and the region of Kurdistan. Topics discussed will include the history and evolution of the Kurdish movement, the abuses of anti-terror legislation to justify authoritarian crackdown in Turkey, to the global context within which the War on Terror emerged, following the collapse of ‘real-socialism’ and the crisis of capitalist modernity, the tribulations of anti-colonial nationalism and national liberation struggle, as well as the history of modern intelligence agencies, emerging from the disinformation campaigns of the Allied forces in the Second World War, through their interventions and infringements on self-determination around the globe. The event will feature two speeches from our panellists, each of around 15-20 minutes, after which we will open up the event for questions and discussion with the audience.

Draft papers from each of the speakers, upon which each of their talks were based, are available for download below.

Dr Thomas Jeffrey Miley: https://www.peaceinkurdistancampaign.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/The-War-on-Terror-Twenty-Years-On-CAMPACC-Meeting-October-20212.docx

Professor Felix Padel: https://www.peaceinkurdistancampaign.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/Analysing-the-role-of-Intelligence-Agencies-20-Oct-final-1.docx

The panellists of the event are:

Dr Thomas Jeffrey Miley is a Lecturer in Political Sociology at the University of Cambridge, where his work focuses on comparative nationalisms and self-determination struggles, and the crises of contemporary capitalism. Originally from the United States, he spent years working in and writing on Spain, including on the Basque and Catalan national questions, and the legacy of Franquism. In recent years, he has been involved with social movements in Africa, including working together on the ground with the Mathare Social Justice Centre in Nairobi, and the Kurdish movement, participating in delegations to Rojava and the International Peace Delegation to Imrali. He is the author of numerous works on the Kurdish movement, and co-editor of Your Freedom and Mine: Abdullah Ocalan and the Kurdish Question in Erdogan’s Turkey, along with Dr. Federico Venturini. He serves on the board of the EU-Turkey Civic Commission, and is a patron and member of the steering committee of the Peace in Kurdistan campaign.

Professor Felix Padel is currently a research associate in the Centre for World Environment History at the University of Sussex. He was previously a professor of rural management at the Indian Institute of Health Management Research and has lectured and taught at Jawaharlal Nehru University, as well as other institutions in India and elsewhere. He spent numerous decades living in India and working with the Adivasis, or indigenous peoples of India, including collaborating with them on a number of campaigns against incursions on their land from mining companies and state-backed infrastructure projects, as well as on the state-funded boarding schools used to indoctrinate indigenous children and separate them from their culture. He is the author of a number of books, including Sacrificing People: Invasions of a Tribal Landscape, and Ecology, Economy: Quest for a Socially Informed Connection, and his recent research is working towards developing an anthropology of intelligence agencies.

Mohamed Elmaazi (moderator) studied law at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, and has published with numerous outlets including The Canary, Jacobin, The Dissenter, The Real News Network and Open Democracy. Mohamed’s journalism focuses on civil liberties and human rights as well as US/UK foreign policy. He has worked with CAMPACC and the Peace in Kurdistan campaign for over eight years.