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Apr 05

Bitcoin Drives Revolution and ‘Startup Government’ for Syrian Kurds

“Rojava’s [Syrian Kurdistan] under embargo, so there’s no way to move money in or out. So we have to actually create our own Bitcoin economies. Now we have a technological tool for people to freely organise outside state system. Because it is a currency not controlled by central banks.??? — Amir Taaki

Then Taaki disappeared. In June 2016, Jamie Redman commented: “Recently it has been suggested that Taaki is running with an Anarcho-socialist group called ‘Rojava The Plan’. The organization’s mission is to create a self-sufficient socialist coop with a 1-year goal to finish ’26 projects and advance Rojava’s decentralized economy’.??? The projects include internet and phone systems, organic fertilizer production and 3D printers.

The organization’s crowdfunding page declares: “We like Bitcoin!…. Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are the future of finance and decentralized economy. We are strong supporters of them, and accept them for this project. We hope to big future Bitcoin projects [sic] in Rojava. One of our goals is to heavily promote Bitcoin in Rojava.???

The situation in Rojava was foreshadowed by Taaki’s concept of a Startup Government. This is a self-governing community that uses crypto-technology as its foundation.

A July 14, 2014, article in Motherboard entitled “Dark Wallet’s Developer Envisions ‘Startup Governments’ Run on Bitcoin??? stated: “He [Taaki] gave the example of the Cooperativa Integral Catalana (CIC), which he described as a ‘start-up government’ that wants to provide basic services to its citizens and manage resources in a more efficient, democratic way than the state.??? The CIC website declares: “Bitcoin, cryptography, 3d printers, fabLab, free software, GNU-Linux, GPL, hacking, liquid democracy… More and more people are using technology to create models that subvert the financial, productive and social order in the world in which we live…???