Women made up a “significant proportion” of those who went to join ISIS from the UK, reports indicate. Now the Times and other UK media are focusing on the “hundreds” of children that might have been born to them.
Western intelligence agencies have generally been silent on all the details they know about more than 5,000 EU citizens who went to join ISIS, including many of the most high profile criminals in ISIS who committed some of its worst abuses. Generally almost nothing was done to stop the flood of people leaving to join in 2013-2014 as thousands went to join the “caliphate,” even after it was known that ISIS was committing genocide, selling slaves and ethnic-cleansing.
What we know. “Some 900 British citizens have left the country to join ISIS over the past seven years,” The Independent notes. Supposedly many of those who left disappeared. “More than 200 those who left are still unaccounted for. There are thought to be around 20 British women and children currently in displacement camps in northern Syria, and potentially more than a dozen still yet to emerge from the last pocket of Isis-held territory.”
Sensationalistic accounts now look at the hundreds of children that may have been born to the women members. The problem is that many details have not been revealed. This may be, in part, due to a desire to not reveal why it is that so many people in a generation growing up in the 2000s came to support a genocidal ideology. It may be about not revealing the full details of what was known about many of the individuals, how they were “radicalized” and the knowledge about their motives, intentions and then wherabouts once they got to Syria and Iraq. Many of these members were tech savvy and continued using social media, even receiving money from abroad, for years, despite the war being waged on ISIS by the 79-member Coalition.
The UK sought to strip citizenship from some ISIS members. “around 120 suspected jihadists and criminals since 2016 who have been stripped of their British nationality and banned from returning to the UK,” The Guardian reports. This is an easy way for the UK to simply wash its hands of the issue. But that still leaves unanswered questions. Why was ISIS once of the disturbingly popular reasons for UK citizens to migrate abroad in the last years. One would hope in a democracy that people educated properly wouldn’t run off to join a genocide. That they did continues to haunt.