'Sniper of Kobani' is a short-style documentary about the life of a resistance fighter in Syria as he battles ISIS on the front lines. The film is a part of a series of short documentaries curated by the Atlantic. The film starts off with a man dressed in a ghillie suit walking down a bombed-out neighborhood. There's not a single building that hasn't been destroyed by the war.
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He quietly walks into a shop where a barber will cut his hair taking off his gear and setting down his rifle close by. The barber tries to strike up a conversation and asks the obvious question, "did you come here for the war?" The man replies yes but when asked if he has killed any Islamic State fighters he is silent, not wanting to make himself any more of a target for the terror group.
The film follows the sniper during a normal day and cuts away from the barbershop. There are bombs going off, whole towns are reduced to rubble and in this rubble is where he spends most of his time. Each day he seeks out a place to hide, carefully choosing the spot to give him the best vantage point with a small hole to shoot through. There he waits, propping himself up with any pillows or blankets he can find nearby.
He explains how snipers are best if they work alone, he has no unit or commander, he simply wages his own war on the front one kills at a time. He always checks the bodies of the IS fighters he kills, often he says they are just young children but if given the chance they would have killed him.
He cleans his rifle and explains how he knows about the calculations required to make a long shot such as distance, wind speed and speed of the target but he has no instruments to carry them out so instead he relies on instinct to make the shot.
The sniper did not reveal how many confirmed kills he has but he is excellent at what he does and rarely misses. The film shows the bodies of men he has killed on the battlefield from his perch. The man doesn't glorify the violence, he even says he is haunted by it, but he saw an atrocity being done to his people when the Islamic State invaded and began murdering civilians, selling women in sex slavery and beheading anyone they chose.
This is what motivates him, he wants a better future for the children and the Islamic State must be stopped. So on he goes, kill after kill without recognition or fame, only with a single vision of a future where the countries next generation can grow up without the horrors inflicted on them by the Islamic State.
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