Fiery red hair, golden high heels, and heavy gold bling in the form of rifle-shaped rings have drawn over 700,000 viewers in the span of two-weeks to singer Helly Luv's latest YouTube video, garnering a new form of support for the Iraqi Kurd's fight against Islamic State jihadists.
Helly Luv, an Iraqi-born, Finnish raised singer of Kurdish descent filmed her latest music video in Al-Khazr, Iraq, alongside the military forces of Iraqi-Kurdistan, known as peshmerga, fighting the group formerly known as ISIS.
"I want to give something to the peshmerga because I consider myself one of them," the artist told AFP Saturday, referring to her grandfather's belonging to the fighting force.
In the music video for her song titled "Revolution," Luv is seen parading in traditional peshmerga garb alongside war-weathered Kurds. Red and black keffiyeh's adorn her neck and bullet-belts sprawl around her waist and diagonally across her chest.
The opening scene of the video zooms in on a peshmerga fighter looking nostalgically at a picture of himself with a young boy, placing it delicately in a helmet, as gunfire surrounds him.
The scene then breaks to a quaint town, "somewhere in Kurdistan," where children are seen prancing happily up steps, locals exchange money for food from a vendor, and elderly men with soft wrinkles and fine smiles sip their morning cup of black coffee peacefully.
The mood takes a turn when the table with its coffee cups starts rattling and an incoming rocket disseminates a deserted building - children start screaming and dead bodies are suddenly seen sprawled on the gravel. The peace is replaced with chaos as the camera shifts its focus to militants resembling Islamic State fighters fast-approaching atop a tank, dressed in black garb, weapons in hand pointed upwards. Gunshot sounds echo throughout as townsmen flee the threat of the incoming militants.
In the midst of those fleeing, Luv is seen countering the wave, marching confidently towards the warriors as messianic music sounds over the shooting. Donning golden heels, heavy eye-shadow peaking through a red-and-white keffiyeh, Luv lifts a banner directly at the tank. It reads: "Stop the Violence."
It is only following this extended opening scene that the music to "Revolution" breaks out with the repetition of the words "united, united we're marching here."
Luv sings and dances atop cars spray-painted with the words "end war." She sings "darkness will never take us," and preaches coexistence with the message "Brothers and sisters we all come from one, different religions we share the same blood," as extras in the videos carry banners of international flags and universal peace signs.
"I call in it ["Revolution"] for Kurdistan and the countries of the world to unite to fight terrorism and injustice," Luv told AFP. "I want to show the world who the peshmerga forces are, and who Daesh [Islamic State] is."
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