FYI.

This story is over 5 years old.

News

Ex-Canadian Soldier Alive and Fighting the Islamic State

Brandon Glossop, a veteran of the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry, hopped on a plane in February to join the People's Protection Units in its fight against ISIS.
April 21, 2015, 3:00pm

While Canadian Islamic State members continue to promote their war in Iraq and Syria, one former Canadian soldier with combat experience is reportedly alive and fighting one of the most feared terrorist organization in the world.

Brandon Glossop, a veteran of the Princess Patricia's Canadian Light Infantry based in Alberta, hopped on a plane in February to join the People's Protection Units (YPG) in its fight against ISIS.

Since then, there's been little trace of the professionally trained soldier other than sporadic social media postings and one photo of Glossop popping up on a Sun article from the United Kingdom about a British teen joining the Kurdish rebel group.

Sources close to Glossop and his Facebook page, confirm to VICE Canada that Brandon is still alive and on the frontlines against IS, even taking the Kurdish fighting name "Zinar."

"Our warrior appreciates all the messages he has received from back home and all over the world, and although he cannot reply, it helps him stay strong," says a Facebook message on Glossop's public page after weeks of silence on his status.

A source close to Glossop said he's stationed on a remote YPG controlled Forward Operating Base (FOB) positioned against ISIS and that Glossop, "couldn't say where he was, but that [the YPG] are successfully pushing back ISIS in every town they go to."

Glossop is fighting with the Lions of Rojava: a squad of foreign fighters drafted into the YPG counting British, Canadian, and Americans among its ranks and goes by the saying "SEND TERRORISTS TO HELL and SAVE HUMANITY."

Glossop is only the second former Canadian soldier to join Kurdish forces battling against the Islamic State.

Fellow Afghan war vet Dillon Hillier joined the Peshmerga—the same Iraqi Kurds being trained by Canadian special forces operators—in late November, before shortly returning in January.

Not long before that, Gil Rosenberg, a Canadian and former Israeli Defense Force (IDF) member, is said to have joined the YPG in its brutal siege of Kobane versus the Islamic State and continues to fight in its ranks.

VICE Canada reached out to YPG sources to confirm both Rosenberg and Glossop were alive and fighting with the armed Kurdish force, but have yet to receive a reply.

At the same time as Canadian citizens voluntarily join the war against ISIS, Canada's overall bombing mission on "Daesh" continues with the Harper government extending the official mission in Syria and Iraq a further six months.

In the past, one Department of Foreign Affairs spokesperson warned against volunteer soldiers joining Kurdish armies recommending instead, to "join the Canadian Armed Forces."

Follow Ben Makuch on Twitter.