I just got back from a week in the north of Iraq, in Kurdistan. I was there together with freelance journalist Pelle Vamstad and Younes Mohammad a great fixer from Erbil https://www.facebook.com/younesagha?fref=ufi
We have been trying to document what is happening in this area now, at this present moment. It is not always easy for a westerner to understand the full history of this place, but one thing is for sure, people are having a hard time in many parts.
From a personal point of view it is interesting to see how your personal perspective change once you go to areas like this. You evaluate what is important and not. Sometimes you find your self stressed out because you are out of milk back home. Being here change that.
We been to two different parts of the extreme long front line that the peshmerga solider are guarding. On a place about 15 km from Mosul we arrived at some villages that just been retakend by the Peshmerga from IS or Dash, as they are called here. The ground was full of rubble and part of the dry landscape was still burning. It will be a long time before any people will be living here again. The roads are full of mines placed there by Dash and still the situation is uncertain.
The other frontline we visit had some but few volunteer fighters from Europe. There to fight Dash. When I ask them why do you go here. I got the answer “everybody can do something and giving a thumb up on Facebook isn’t enough to fight IS”. “If you can’t see what IS is doing and take action you are on the wrong side, few things are black and white in life, but this fight is”.