This project explores the role of the Kurds in the war against Islamic State, as well as their participation in the broader Syrian conflict.
The main actors being studied are the People’s Protection Units (YPG) and the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). Following the decline of Islamic State in 2017 and 2018, this research stream is increasingly looking at how the Kurds in northern and eastern Syria are continuing to shape the Syrian civil war.
The project also explores the extent to which academic insurgency theory can account for the actions of the YPG and SDF, working to understand how this is different from the behaviour of other insurgent groups operating in Syria today.
As such, this project is also investigating how rival movements approach politics, respond to military asymmetry, are shaped by territory, and make use of transnational support.
Recent Policy Reports
Holy Mobilisation: The Religious Legitimation behind Iraq’s Counter-ISIS CampaignRead more
The full text can be downloaded here. Following the capture of Mosul and Abu Bakr…ICSR Team
The King’s Programme for Middle East Dialogue Research Papers 2018Read more
As the King’s Programme for Middle East Dialogue concludes for this academic year, ICSR is pleased…ICSR Team
ICSR Event – Michael Kenney Book Launch, November 29thRead more
Where: King’s College London When: Thursday November 29th, 1pm To celebrate Michael Kenney’s new book, The Islamic State…ICSR Team