If our moral superiors — John Kerry, David Cameron, Pope Francis, all the rest — weren’t around to remind us that it ain’t so, we might get the crazy idea that the Islamic State had something to do with…Islam.
“Life and Death Inside An ISIS Prison,” by Mike Giglio and Munzer al-Awad, BuzzFeed, January 28, 2016:
TEL ABYAD, Syria — The jihadis had scrawled a warning above the stairs that descended to their underground prison: Forbidden to enter.
At the bottom, a dusty chair sat in darkness behind a heavy desk. An ISIS guard once kept watch there, but now the prison was empty. The only sound was dripping water, and the only relics of the terror inflicted on the captives were the messages on the walls. One had met new arrivals at the desk: Death comes to you. God is great….
The largest room in the basement was reserved for those who were sentenced to be beheaded. Qur’ans were stacked atop a radiator — prisoners were told to read them as they awaited their fates. There was another directive graffitied outside the door: Do not approach.
The prisoners were kept in small rooms down the hall. They scratched and penciled cryptic phrases onto the concrete walls. Ask forgiveness from God, read one. Said another: God also has mercy.
Some had written their names. A few kept tallies of their time there — one stopped at 46 days. Others left only phone numbers. The digits appeared on wall after wall….
Each day in the prison began when the jihadis stirred the dozen or so men in his small room awake. Often they beat the prisoners, and then they made them pray. There were courses on ISIS’s fanatical version of Islam. The prisoners were fed just once a day, a small meal in the evenings. They knew there were other men in different rooms suffering the same fate. “When we were being beaten, they heard us, and when they were being beaten, we heard them,” he said….
Finishing his tea in Turkey, the former vegetable vendor remembered that it was about a month into his time at the prison when his father’s name was called, leaving him to worry in the cell, hoping in vain that his father would return.
Days later, a jihadi pulled him out too. The jihadi said that his father had been told to work with ISIS and refused. He was led into the room the prisoners feared, given a Qur’an to read, and killed….