My father who was holding news to his family that would change everything. News that would never allow them to see life the same as innocent and pure anymore. My father who was a Peshmerga was notified by his commander that Saddam's regime was declaring their stage in the Anfal campaign against the bahdinian villages. My father who had told his dad what he was holding quickly caused confusion and heartache. While in the Village of Wermalê my family had to pack everything and head for the mountains. They knew that once they were in the close presence of the mountains they would be safe. My father and his sister had to carry their younger siblings with nothing but a donkey to carry their necessities.
Those dark nights of traveling within the mountains to hiding during the daytime became a clear routine for my family who did everything to hide from the regime that was placed within the lands of Kurdistan. They stayed in the mountains until they reached what was known as the borders or the mountain that separated Bashur (South Kurdistan) and Bakur (North Kurdistan). The relief that my family felt to feel a sign of safety became diminished after the borders were closed by the government that occupied North Kurdistan. Imagine being in between Saddam's regime trying to eradicate the Kurds and the government who would not let the Kurds into safety. My fathers side of the family along with many others stayed on the border waiting for them to open. However, once they were opened they were stripped of anything they had brought with them such as money, gold, or guns. They were stripped of their safety net and brought into a piece of Kurdistan where they did not know what would happen or where they were going. Those Dark nights in the mountains became rememberable, the days that were considered normal before the genocide was declared, and the life that my family once had was slowly disappearing. I will never truly know the emotional impact that these days and nights had on my family and the people of Kurdistan, but I hope writing about it will allow me to learn more.
As villages were destroyed, individuals went missing, and mass graves were created all because we the people of Kurdistan were seen as different. We were seen as fighters of our future and not allowing the future be told for us. We were seen as strong leaders who dreamed of independence and declared the rights of Kurdistan to be present. We were seen in the eyes of Mullah Mustafa Barzani, Qazi Muhammad and all the other leaders that came before. The regime wanted us gone and the mountains for themselves. He created mansions and houses in the mountains like they were his own. However, the mountains will always know their rightful owners. The mountains will always know who treated them as their friends. We declared these mountains as a soul part of Kurdistan. Those dark nights hiding from the regime in the mountains became a strategy that is still used today. Those dark nights were not scary nights but nights that were secured and protected by the Peshmerga and the mountains of Kurdistan.
He tried to eradicate us, but he didn't know we were seeds growing on these mountains.