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Tuesday 01 November 2016
“Islamic state” organization who announced the “Caliphate” on the 29th of June 2014, they realized early that an army of men and young people may not give them a long life, so they started to recognize the diary details of citizens in their controlled areas, and they were certain that the prosperity of living in t shadow of war and bombing and the continue of education, will be nothing but the first step on the road of their early end, so the organization seek by “Sharia men” to mobilize the human reservoir, through expanding the popular base that support and helping them, in the environment that is being eaten by death and poverty, and where the mite of ignorance gnaws the minds of its children –the next prey for the trap of “Caliphate Cubs”
The “Islamic State” in Deir Ezzor province, have worked in the recent months to rely mainly on the children, and in the information documented by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, after research and scrutiny: more than 4000 children were recruited by the organization in its ranks under the name of “Caliphate Cubs”, and in Deir Ezzor province they make about 40% of the total members of the organization and its fighters, while the percentage is deferent in each province, and it may get as high as 60% of members in other province.
This sudden rise in the number of fighters and the children members (where nearly 600 of them were killed) came as a result of a new policy and strategy regarding the “recruitment” adopted by the “Islamic State”. The organization’s first step was modifying the terms of affiliation in their ranks, so they abandoned the terms of “recommendation by 2 Islamic state members, medical examination and physical acceptance”, they also went far beyond that by attracting “handicapped children” some of them are the sons of non-Syrian ISIS members, for example -but not limited to- the “Islamic State” hired Tajik “mute” child for guarding the headquarters of the “Diwan of advocacy and mosques” where his father works.
These were the first steps by the “Islamic state” towards removing the first obstacles out of the road to attract children and recruit them into the ranks of the “Caliphate Cubs”, then they were followed by other steps by the organization to increase the numbers of “child soldiers” recruited within their ranks, so the organization started by convincing the children through the “religious” lessons in the mosques of the province by “Sharia men” the majority of them are of non-Syrian nationalities to civilians, including children, youths and men, as well as to establishing “Sharia courses”, where citizens of an age specified by the organization are forced to attend these “courses”. This plan has been applied extensively, where the Syrian Observatory documented the organization’s opening for “Sharia courses under the name of invasion of villages” in the countryside of Deir Ezzor, in which they subjected the male over the age of 12 to a 40-days “Sharia courses”, they also impose courses for students who attend private schools allowed by regulation, after they closed the schools in the province, under the pretext of “being bombed by warplanes” after warplanes’ targeted some of them.
Also the “Islamic state” distributed fixed points they called “media spots” where they played “video versions of the Islamic State” in various cities and towns of Deir Ezzor province, in addition to the conduct competitions in other points in the squares of towns and villages, during of which gifts and prizes are given to children, the gifts and prizes are usually “weapons made of plastic or combat video games”, also the “Islamic state” took advantage of the increasing poverty among citizens in Deir Ezzor, and the increasing numbers of beggars, in addition to the rise in the number of children searching everywhere for something to eat, even in the waste and garbage inside container, so some of the children found in the “affiliation” to the “Islamic state” the most suitable solution to get rid of this poverty, disease and hunger, the organization worked to attract children suffering similar cases, by providing aid to the “newly” joined children in its ranks, as a way to lure the rest of the children.
The “Islamic State” also depended on families of their members of Syrian and non-Syrian nationals, who are pushing their sons to join the ranks of the organization, where they are subjected to “Sharia and military courses”, and then they are sent to the fighting fronts, in addition to depending on them in other service work, while the “Islamic state” organization send the children members of “Caliphate Cubs” to the camps, of which the organization have created five of them in Deir Ezzor province, and that is to prepare the children-fighter and training them both “militarily and ideologically”, while the organization had recently set up secret-and-mobile-camps away from the warplanes’ reach, and that after the warplanes of the International Coalition previously targeted camps such as camp “Manjam al-Melh, Palm Farm, al-Tebni and Husseiniya”, where tens of the organization’s members were killed, most of them are from the “Caliphate cubs”
In the details documented by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, the “Islamic State” organization is “subjecting children to 20 days of Sharia courses, followed by other 20 days of military course, and then they are sent to other states”. The activists of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights monitored children of the organization working in hostilities, logistical support or even acts of espionage for the organization within the areas of their presence.
This broad polarization of children by the “Islamic state” was accompanied by the process of closing-the-road-of-return to civilian life in the face of the “Caliphate Cubs”. The connection between the children and their parents are cut by “terrorizing their families”, where the families are facing rebuke by members of the organization or even detention if they prevented their children from joining the organization or tried to persuade them to leave the ranks of the organization or to withdraw from the “Sharia and military courses”. Some of the parents prevented their children from going to mosques where the preachers is an “Islamic state” preacher, as well as preventing their children from attending “religious lessons” or going to the media points or workshops of teaching Quran, and not allowing their children to be with members of the organization or watching their video versions or listening to al-Bayan radio of the organization, some of the families went even further than that, by leaving their homes in the province and displacing outside of the “Islamic State’s” controlled areas, or even migrating out of Syria in order protect their children from being engaged in the “Islamic State” and “Caliphate Cubs”.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights documented the first appearance of the children-fighters of “Caliphate Cubs” in Syria on the 25th of January 2015, where the organization have sent to the outskirts of the city of Ayn al-Arab (Kobani) the first battalion of about 140 members most of them are under the age of 18 and of the newly joined organization’s training camps. The Syrian Observatory was able back then to document the deaths of 6 members of them under the age of eighteen, where the first appearance of “Caliphate Cubs” was in the first-and-largest collapse the organization have ever lived in Syria, which was followed by consecutive collapses continuing until today; the organization in which are trying to survive by sending the “recruited” children, men and young Syrians and non-Syrians to various fronts in Syria and Iraq, the last was sending 300 children fighters out of about 500 Syrian fighter in the organization, the Syrian Observatory for human rights have document their death.
Also the Observatory documented back in mid-March 2015 the first opening of Enrollment Office for children fighters in the ranks of the “Caliphate Cubs” in the cities of al-Bokamal and al-Mayadin of “the States of Euphrates and al-Khair”; according to the administrative divisions of the organization, and the organization have done that to attract children after the Syrian–Turkish border were closed, and the entry of members of the organization decreased, as well as to create a new generation that follows them and declares “complete loyalty” to them. Many video versions have included the involvement of children in “slaughtering or shot execution”, or sending messages to the leaders of countries or specific parties, as well as vowing to “open Rome” by the children recruited in the “Caliphate Cubs”, where the first participation in executions was in late March 2015, while about 90 of them have blown themselves up in booby trapped vehicles.