A Missing Former Canadian Soldier Is 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 their fight against the infamous jihadists.
This article originally appeared on VICE Canada.
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 organisations 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 their 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 confirmed to VICE Canada that Brandon is still alive and on the front lines 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," said a Facebook message on Glossop's public page after weeks of silence on his status.For more on the Islamic State, watch our doc 'VICE Meets Journalist Graeme Wood':
A source close to Glossop said he's stationed on a remote YPG-controlled forward-operating base positioned against ISIS and that Glossop, but "couldn't [specify] 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 December, before shortly returning in January.
Not long before that, Gil Rosenberg, a Canadian and former Israeli Defense Force 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."
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