His father told him that the Islamic State was wrong, but how did he get the idea that they were right in the first place? Why was whatever training he had in Islam before he met the Islamic State recruiter not sufficient to withstand the recruiter’s Islamic appeal?
“Former teen ISIS soldier: ‘Jihad that all of us must do,'” CNN, November 12, 2014:
(CNN) – ISIS has posted videos and pictures on the internet bragging about its so-called “cubs of the Islamic State.”
While there are no firm numbers on how many children are part of the extremist group, the U.N. said there are confirmed reports of children as young as 12 undergoing military training.
“Yasir,” a 15-year-old former ISIS soldier, described being strapped in an explosive belt on a daily basis and being issued a pistol and an AK-47.
“The belt has fertilizer, explosives, TNT, and it’s pre-packed with shrapnel, and it has a detonator cord on the side,” he said.
Yasir joined the group willingly – both he and his father were with the al Qaeda linked Nusra front and when ISIS took over their area, they swore allegiance. He said said he and another 100 child recruits were isolated from their families for a month, forbidden from seeing or even speaking to them.
They underwent intense religious indoctrination. ISIS embedded their young minds with the radical and violent interpretation of Islam, as well as rigorous, terrifying military training.
“We used to crawl under webbing, there was fire above it, and we would be firing our weapons,” Yasir said. “We would jump through large metal rings as the trainers would be firing at our feet and telling us if you stop you will be shot.”
With his training complete, he was assigned guard duty. His mother begged him to leave.
“I would tell her, ‘This is jihad that all of us must do,'” he said.
Two weeks ago, Yasir’s father decided to defect and tricked his son into coming with him, bringing him to Turkey.
“I was asking him, why are you doing this, what happened?” he said. “My father turned to me and said, ‘They are not on the right religious track.'”…
It would have been helpful for CNN to have explained how. No such luck.