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When the Borders Bleed: The Struggle of the Kurds


When the Borders Bleed: The Struggle of the Kurds


Throughout their history, the Kurdish people have been the victims of geopolitics. Entangled by wars in the oil-rich territory where the borders of Iran, Iraq, Syria and Turkey converge; exploited and betrayed first by colonial nations and then by Cold War superpowers, the Kurdish people have most recently endured genocidal campaigns waged against them by Saddam Hussein.

When the Borders Bleed: The Struggle of the Kurds presents a stunning visual essay in one hundred photographs taken in locales ranging from Turkey, Iraq and Israel to Britain and Germany that brings the Kurdish struggle for survival and recognition into sharp, powerfully affecting focus. Throughout the book’s pages, guerrillas train for war, mothers and children are seen living in the bombed-out rubble of their homes, and victims of chemical warfare and expatriates in Europe preserve their culture in the face of sometimes violent xenophobia. With a cogent introduction by Christopher Hitchens, the book also traces the little-known history of the Kurds – a narrative filled with oppression, exploitation, and betrayal – helping us understand the legacy behind the Kurds’ desperate self-reliance that finds expression in the adage: “The Kurds have no friends – no friends but the mountains.”

Published in 1994.

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