A Culinary Guide to the Kurdish Front Line
This story originally appeared on July 5, 2016. “You must stay for lunch.” “Well we should really get going, we still have hours of driving.” “It doesn’t matter, you need to eat, so you will stay with us.” When you finish interviewing anybody in Iraqi Kurdistan — but in particular soldiers — there’s always that... Read more
Iraq’s Largest Kurdish Faction Excludes Women From the Front Line
A mortar round exploded close to her position. She was hit on the head and on the left leg. It was the end of 2003, the enemy was Saddam Hussein and Chinor Sabir fought alongside dozens of other peshmerga women to liberate Iraqi Kurdistan from the regime’s troops. For... Read more
We Went Into the Mountains Where Turkey Bombs the PKK
It was 4.00 a.m. and Nabi Hassan was asleep when the first bomb exploded. The jet engines screaming overhead left no doubt as to what had happened — the Turkish air force was targeting his village. Hassan immediately put his clothes on and ran outside. The house of Ayshe... Read more
Video — Kurdish Troops Go on the Attack Near Zaghar
The war along the Kurdish front line has, for the most part, settled into a stalemate. It’s been this way for months. Kurdish peshmerga face off with Islamic State and exchange sniper shots, machine gun fire and mortar rounds. But it’s not like that everywhere. On Sept. 11, Kurdish... Read more
We Witnessed Kurdish Troops Take the Offensive
As the sun rose in the early morning hours of Friday, Sept. 11, hundreds of Kurdish fighting vehicles started their engines. Humvees, tanks and even cherry pickers formed a long line and began moving out. Their destination — Islamic State-held territory. Islamic State, the Sunni extremist group that controls... Read more
‘Lady Jihad’ Lured Her Family Into Terror
Maria Giulia Sergio had a dream. The 27-year-old Italian woman wanted to move to Syria and join Islamic State. She believed in the jihad and praised Sharia law. She wanted the Caliphate to expand as far as Rome and wished death to infidels. But to get there, she first... Read more
Private Surveillance Drones Take Flight Over Iraq
It was a clear day in mid-March when a drone flew over the disputed city of Sinjar in northern Iraq, photographing Islamic State’s fighting positions. When the drone landed after its 13-minute flight, a small crowd of Kurdish Peshmerga soldiers cheered and smiled. They were puzzled by this odd... Read more

Benedetta Argentieri

I am a freelance journalist focusing on national security, military issues and social conflicts. I recently covered the Iraqi and Syrian conflict from a female perspective. In 2013, I co-directed "Capulcu Voices From Gezi," a documentary on the Istanbul protests of that summer.

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