Kids Forced to Kill
Terror network's despicable use of children to commit crimes is an affront to parents everywhere
If anyone still needed persuading about how truly evil radical Islamic terrorists are — they need only look at the group’s inexcusable use of children to carry out their murderous agenda.
Case in point: A 12-year-old ISIS fighter detonated his suicide vest this past Saturday at a Kurdish wedding in the town of Gaziantep, Turkey, in an attack that killed 51 people — including at least 22 children under age 14.
These “cubs” are groomed and trained — physically and psychologically — to kill as many enemies of radical Islamic ideology as possible.
One person who witnessed the wedding attack told The Daily Mail, “The celebrations were coming to an end and there was a big explosion among people dancing. There was blood and body parts everywhere.”
Another guest said, “It was carried out like an atrocity. We want to end these massacres. We are in pain, especially the women and children.”
On Sunday, security personnel in Kirkuk had to strip an explosive belt off a child who was suspected in a suicide bombing attempt in the Turkish city, according to CNN. Video shows authorities restraining a very upset boy while they cut the belt from his waist. Kurdistan 24, a news station based out of Irbil, Iraq, aired the boy’s dramatic capture.
Authorities said they believe the 15-year-old came to Kirkuk a week ago from Mosul, the biggest ISIS stronghold outside Syria, CNN reported.
Called “cubs of the caliphate” by the radical terrorists who control them, these children are groomed and trained — physically and psychologically — to kill as many “enemies” as possible.
Americans cannot even imagine using children to carry out mass murder at a joyous event such as a wedding — but neither can we imagine an ideology so brutal, so horrific, and so devoid of compassion and other human qualities.
“I know very well that the type of people we are dealing with — during their mind preparation, they lose completely their human conscience,” Dr. Tawfik Hamid, a psychologist, former Islamic extremist, and author of “Inside Jihad: How Radical Islam Works; Why It Should Terrify Us; How to Defeat It,” told LifeZette.
“They will literally do anything in order to do what they consider to be the will of Allah, and to cause pain to the infidel,” Hamid continued. “They don’t need money or land or gold — their only aim is to give their enemies the maximum level of pain. This is what we can expect of them.”
So how exactly does the tragic trajectory of a child terrorist begin?
“The way in which children make their way to ISIS is varied, and there’s no one story,” Brian Nussbaum, assistant professor in the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Policy at SUNY Albany in New York, said.
- ISIS and other radical Islamic groups have specifically recruited children through free schooling campaigns that include weapons training. They've also given them risky and dangerous tasks, including suicide bombing missions.
“Some are abducted or otherwise coerced into working with the organization. Some are orphaned and have no place else to go for food or survival. Some are recruited with their families’ permission or even blessing — and still others are sent by their families from overseas to contribute to ISIS’ broader project.”
He added, “It would be easier if there were a single causal story that could be addressed — but it is a complex web.”
Terrorists sometimes dangle what would normally be a beneficial gift — such as attending free schools — in front of families order to gather innocent children in one setting. Once recruited, abducted, or gifted by a family, training begins.
Mia Bloom, a Georgia State University communications professor and co-author of “Small Arms: Children and Terrorism,” wrote in Foreign Affairs that ISIS teaches children how to approach and enter a dwelling — and how to move from room to room.
“They learn how to subdue and remove an occupant to use as a potential hostage,” Bloom wrote. “The children are trained as snipers and taught how to ambush a moving vehicle. A video released on July 4 showed children executing 25 Syrian soldiers, and in a 22-minute video released from the Speicher massacre in Tikrit [in Iraq], children were among the executioners.”
“Islamic terrorists will literally do anything in order to do what they consider to be the will of Allah and to cause pain to the infidel,” said one expert.
Terrorists take advantage of normal developmental changes in children.
“The children themselves become so enthusiastic about dying for God — many of them are motivated by having these women in Paradise,” said Hamid. “You take a 14-year-old boy who has just hit puberty and he dreams about having sex. Terrorists use this very effectively.”
Child fighters have long been effective weapons of war.
“The use of children in war is sadly neither new nor that unusual,” said Nussbaum. “From the use of child soldiers by Iran during the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s, to the wide-scale use of child soldiers in conflicts in West and Central Africa in the 1990s, this is more common than our immediate revulsion at the thought might suggest.”
Bloom puts some numbers to the efforts by terrorists to use innocent children. “In June 2015, the United Nations reported that 271 boys and seven girls were recruited by groups affiliated with the Free Syrian Army, Kurdish People’s Protection Units, ISIS, and al-Nusra Front,” she noted in Foreign Affairs. “In 77 percent of these cases, children were armed or used in combat. Almost one-fifth of them were under the age of 15.”
Hamid emphasized the skewed mentality of radical terrorists who cannot be deterred by threat of capture or even their own deaths. “If they [the terrorists] die they will go to Paradise — this is a second victory for them, after the destruction of their enemies. If they are captured by the West, they will be treated with human rights — another win for them,” he said.