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Dissent is not tolerated.
Photos of Ocalan loom over town squares and in public offices, much in the way Assad’s portrait dominates areas the government controls.
As U.S. Special Operations troops looked on, Abu Amjad al-Adnan, commander of the Manbij recruits, rallied the soldiers to take the fight to the forces backed by “terrorist Turkey.”
“We have taken prisoners who were trained by the United States, and the Turks have prisoners of ours who were also trained by the United States,” said Abu Amjad, who keeps a photograph of Ocalan as the screen saver on his phone.