The Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) is one of the most formidable terrorist organizations the world has ever seen in recent times.
They are extremely well armed and the wealthiest terrorist group in history.
ISIS’ aim is apparently that of establishing a caliphate, i.e. a politico religious Islamic state. And while plenty of foreigners have flocked to Syria to fight alongside ISIS, many are returning home now.
That is indeed good news, but the reasons for their return are pretty amusing.
Here are some:
Areeb Majeed, an Indian ISIS fighter came back because he wasn’t being paid enough.
Flavien Moreau came back because he missed smoking, forbidden by ISIS.
A 25-year-old was tracked down by his mother and brought home from Syria.
But not all have been lucky enough to come back. According to the French newspaper Le Figaro there has been a series of letters from French soldiers fighting with the ISIS bemoaning their fate.
Their reasons of misery they quote are as follows:
“I’ve basically done nothing except hand out clothes and food,” wrote one, who wanted to return from Aleppo, Syria.
“I also help clean weapons and transport dead bodies from the front. Winter’s arrived here. It’s begun to get really hard,” he lamented on.
Another wrote: “I’m fed up. They make me do the dishes.”
“I’m fed up. My iPod doesn’t work anymore here. I have to come back,” was another miserable plea.
Perhaps the crown goes to: “They want to send me to the front, but I don’t know how to fight.”
There seem to be some disconnect here. Something isn’t right. Where is the spirit that lured all these people oversees to fight alongside the bloodthirsty ISIS?
It seems the spirit vanished as soon as they came in contact with the reality of it all.
The romanticism of an “ideal welfare state" where all is just and fair crumbles in a a battlefield where atrocities like rape and plunder are the norm of the day. What’s more, from all the instances quoted above, it is quite apparent that the recruits were never really taken into the fold of "brotherhood" and felt isolated.
The terrorist organization has been wreaking havoc across the world – killing people, taking over entire cities, promising more death and destruction.
However, perhaps more frightening than their atrocities is the number of youngsters and foreigners joining the ranks of ISIS in recent times.
In some cases, young minds are being traumatized into believing that ISIS is fighting for a righteous cause; in others, they are joining voluntarily, believing in the cause of the organization.
According to FBI Director James Comey, "These homegrown violent extremists are troubled souls who are seeking meaning in some misguided way, and so they come across the propaganda, and they become radicalized on their own, sort of independent study, and they're also able to equip themselves with training, again, through the Internet. And then engage in jihad after emerging from their basement."
Seeing the cases of these disappointed souls coming back, or yearning to, show how the promises the ISIS makes these impressionable youth are far from their reality.
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