Thursday, January 29, 2015

Beleaguered Yazidi people look to Israel for help

The beleaguered Yazidi people need help, and they are looking to Israel.

There are less than one million Yazidis worldwide, with the vast majority of them living in northern Iraq. The Yazidi have faced genocidal atrocities at the hands of ISIS, with thousands massacred and over 5,000 kidnapped by the terrorist group.

Lt. Col. Lukman Ibrahim is an officer in the Yazidi militia- an ad hoc group of 12,000 fighters, most of whom have no military experience and training

From Al-Monitor

“What I have seen here, I just can't describe,” he said by phone from a battle zone. “Our people had no choice but to flee. We are not Arabs, nor are we Muslims. We see ourselves as sharing a fate with the Israelis, who went through similar pogroms. Those besieged on the mountain approached me and asked, ‘Maybe our Israeli brethren could lend a hand?’...

The Yazidis have no formal relations with Israel, nor an organized leadership. Yet they need aid, in particular military assistance, and they have chosen to make a public plea for help. “We appeal to the Israeli government and its leader to step in and help this nation, which loves the Jewish people,” said Ibrahim. “We would be most grateful for the establishment of military ties — for instance, the training of fighters and the formation of joint teams. We are well aware of the circumstances the Israelis are in, and of the suffering they have endured at the hands of the Arabs ever since the establishment of their state. We, too, are suffering on account of them.”

Idan Barir, 34, a researcher at the Tel Aviv University Yavetz School of Historical Studies is Israel’s expert on the Yazidi people.

Speaking to Al-Monitor, he stated

“I can think of a range of activities that Israel is experienced in that would not undermine the world order,” “For example, providing military assistance to the Yazidi forces in Sinjar who are crying out for cooperation and aid; setting up a field hospital for medical and psychological treatment of the casualties among the displaced in northern Iraq — not only Yazidis, by the way; sending humanitarian aid to displaced Yazidis in the refugee camps in Iraqi Kurdistan; absorption of a symbolic number of displaced Yazidis in Israel, with preference given to humanitarian, whether medical or mental, cases; incorporation of young Yazidis into military service in Israel; and support of civil initiatives aimed at strengthening and deepening ties between Israelis and Yazidis. It all depends on the decision made by the Israeli government, on its determination and goodwill.”

The  has been no formal response yet from Israel.  

Attorney Zvi Hauser, a  former Cabinet secretary under Netanyahu sympathizes with the plight of the Yazidi, declaring

“The Yazidi narrative is evocative of ours. We, too, went through 2,000 years of existence without sovereignty, in the course of which we faced extermination schemes,” Hauser said. “Israel is a sovereign state, formed by an ethnic minority. It is the national manifestation of an ancient civilization. It would thus be appropriate to examine ways to establish relations and forge an alliance with them, if only to ensure a pluralistic Middle East. This issue has a universal aspect, as well. The development of human civilization is contingent on the diversity and multiplicity of [ethnic] groups and nations. Hence, the extinction of one of these would hurt not only the Yazidis, but also the entire fabric of human life.”

No comments: