ISIS has been terrorizing Syria and other countries in the Middle Eastern religion. They have killed Muslims, Christians, entire ethnic groups, and anyone else who gets in their way. Check out this amazing story of Joanna Palani, a 23-year-old woman brave enough to fight against ISIS for democracy and freedom for women and all humans.
Meet Joanna Palani
Joanna Palani is a 23-year-old college student from Denmark. There is something remarkable about this young woman, however; she left her comfortable life in Denmark to go fight ISIS. Joanna was previously studying politics, so clearly issues happening throughout the world are very important to her.
She put her money where her mouth is, so to speak, and has allegedly killed over 100 insurgents. This has led to Joanna having a $1 million bounty on her head. She left her comfortable home in Copenhagen to go on the front lines of the war against ISIS and has been fighting alongside the Kurdish Peshmerga in both Iraq and Syria.
Joanna understands all too well the struggle of her people, as she herself was once a refugee. Joanna is of Iranian-Kurdish ancestry and her family was displaced during the Gulf War. Following the war in the early 1990s, she was born in a refugee camp in Ramadi, Iraq. Her family eventually moved to Denmark.
Because of the immense struggles she faced early in life, Joanna was taught things early on that other children might never learn. For example, she fired a gun for the first time when she was only nine years old. At eighteen, she dropped out of college and left the comfortable home she had come to know in Copenhagen for war-torn Syria.
Why She Fights
Joanna stated the reason she decided to fight and posted it on Facebook, saying that she was inspired “to fight for women’s rights, for democracy – for the European values I learned as a Danish girl.” After the Arab Spring in 2014, Joanna joined the resistance against the Syrian government and initially, she fought against the Assad regime.
Later, that became a fight against ISIS, specifically in a Syrian town bordering on Turkey called Kobane. She fought alongside the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG). Joanna also fought alongside Peshmerga forces in Iraq and aided in the liberation of Yazidi girls who had been captured and imprisoned by ISIS as sex slaves.