Friday, December 12, 2014

Can you take non-Muslim women and children captive? Yes, says ISIS.

Can you have sex with them, even prepubescent girls? Yes, according to the Islamic terrorist group. Can you sell them or give them as gifts to others? The answer is yes, once again. People in Mosul - the Iraqi city now under control of the group calling itself the Islamic State - got these and other messages loud and clear after sunset prayers Friday, when armed men handed out a color-printed pamphlet "Questions and Answers on Taking Captives and Slaves." The document was first printed in October or November 2014, then later posted on an ISIS website. It has gotten more publicity recently because of the Middle East Media Research Institute, an independent Washington-based nonprofit whose advisory board includes former National Security Agency Director Michael V. Hayden, onetime CIA Director James Woolsey and ex-U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. The idea that ISIS is kidnapping, selling and raping women and children is hardly surprising. Many such accounts have surfaced since the group began its often brutal run through Syria and Iraq, including chilling stories from members of the Yazidi religious minority. And these are on top of other horrific allegations, such as the killings and mistreatment of innocent civilians simply because they didn't subscribe to ISIS' extreme take on Sharia law. And that's the thing about ISIS: Its militants have justified their actions - like the beheadings of journalists and aid workers - in God's name. Even then, it is rare to see its rationale laid out as plainly as "Questions and Answers on Taking Captives and Slaves." In the Middle East Media Research Institute's English translation of that Q&A, for instance, it is explained that capturing women is permissible if they are "unbelieving" - i.e. not Muslim. Much of the pamphlet talks about ISIS' policy on having sexual intercourse with a female slave, something that the group cites the Quran to justify. Armed men distributed this pamphlet Friday to worshipers in Mosul, outlining what\'s permissible to do with non-Muslim captives. "If she is a virgin, (her slave owner) can have intercourse with her immediately," ISIS explains, according to the MEMRI translation. "However, if she isn't, her uterus must be purified." There are other rules as well, like that two men who co-own a captive can't both have sex with her and that a man can't have intercourse with his wife's slave. As to girls: "It is permissible to have intercourse with the female slave who hasn't reached puberty if she is fit for intercourse," the document reads, according to MEMRI. "However if she is not fit for intercourse, then it is enough to enjoy her without intercourse." The Q&A is clear that, young and old, the captors have full control of their captives. As such, the ISIS document claims, "It is permissible to buy, sell or give as a gift female captives and slaves, for they are merely property." It is permissible to have intercourse with the female slave who hasn't reached puberty if she is fit for intercourse. This document marks the most detailed, albeit not first, justification for enslaving nonbelievers, as defined by ISIS. Time and again, the group cites the Quran and its view of Sharia law.

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