In Syria and Iraq, the Al Qaeda-inspired Islamic State of Iraq and al-Shams (ISIS) is now kidnapping boys as young as 10 years old to “recruit” them for a Shari’a (Islamic law) army whose ultimate goal is to “liberate” Jerusalem.
Some of the boys are joining up voluntarily, according to a report posted on the RT website. But many more are being conscripted against their will, and forced to fight in a jihad (Islamist holy war) they barely understand.
The two terrorists killed last Friday in Gaza in a surgical air strike by Israeli fighter pilots were both members of ISIS who had infiltrated the region. The terrorist group has begun to make its way towards Israel via the Sinai Peninsula in Egypt and Hamas-ruled Gaza. It has already seized control of the sole border crossing between Jordan and Iraq — a victory that prompted the United States to send troops overseas to “advise” officials in the Iraqi army, and quietly assist its ally, Jordan.
The report in RT quoted The Daily Beast, which described the youngest known ISIS fighter, 10-year-old ‘Abdullah,’ fighting with the group in the northern Iraqi city of Mosul.
The report described the young boy – who in this case joined up voluntarily, following his father and brother — as being masked and toting a heavy machine gun that was “about as big as him.”
But equally disturbing was the declaration by a gunman with the boy who told the news outlet, “We believe they will conquer all of Iraq and Persia and that they will liberate Jerusalem.
“They have a dream and their dream is to establish an Islamic state.”
Children in the ISIS bases undergo a 25-day course in which they are taught an extremist form of Islam and Shari’a law in daily classes, as well as the principles of jihad ideology. In addition, they are given field and combat training and are taught to use weapons, ITV reported.
The United Nations has apparently confirmed at least some of the above, noting in its annual report published in May, “children fighting in Syria with ISIS are reportedly paid like adults (35,000 Syrian pounds, approx. $200) and undergo both weapons and jihadist indoctrination training.”
Some of the children are subsequently sent on suicide bombing missions, according to a report published on June 24 by the Human Rights Watch organization.
The ISIS force currently fighting in Iraq is comprised of some 7,000 to 10,000 guerrillas.
About the Author: Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.
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