Hanging from my driver’s rear-view
mirror, a photo of Vian Dakhil, the only female Yazidi
representative in the Iraqi parliament. She is a hero to many in the Yazidi community, having brought
global attention to their plight.
I first learned about her last summer when a video of
her went viral. It showed her crying out in Parliament that ISIS was
butchering her people. It was raw and devastating.
Days later, she was in the news again having survived a helicopter
crash, a mission to rescue Yazidis fleeing slaughter.
She has continued to advocate tirelessly for the Yazidi community, who a year on remain in crisis. My translator was pleased to say that when she visited the refugee camp that he’d worked at for an NGO, he’d “almost had the chance to meet her.” “Everyone loves her,” he said, “because everywhere she goes, she identifies as a Yazidi.”
Image and text by Emily Feldman. Iraq, 2015.