Kurdish studies was born as a field of study in imperial Russia, and for much of the twentieth century, the Soviet Union remained the centre of ‘Kurdology’. With the foundation of the International Society Kurdistan (ISK) in Amsterdam in 1960, however, this centre started to move westwards. Officially established as a non-party democratic action group helping the Kurdish nation in its struggle for democratic independence, the ISK’s unwritten aim was to support national struggles as a means to prevent communism, particularly the Soviet Union, from expanding its sphere of influence. Silvio van Rooy, who had been an active collaborator with the Nazi occupying forces in the Netherlands, devoted a decade of his life to what he considered an experiment in psychological warfare to influence the Kurdish intelligentsia, and for this he made every effort to establish a centre for Kurdish studies in the West that could develop a political programme around anti-communist ethno-nationalism. Yet Van Rooy’s involvement with the Kurds was intense, but also passing. In the second half of the 1970s his loyalty to anti-communism took a new turn as he drew close to the Iraqi nationalist Ba’ath regime. The research data employed here has primarily been obtained through archival work. Based on an analysis of these primary documents and augmented by personal recollections, this study thus contextualises the work of the ISK through the political trajectory and views of Silvio van Rooy, the society’s founder and president.