Thursday, March 22, 2007

Using children as terrorist tools

Yesterday brought this awful bit of news from Iraq:
Insurgents detonated a bomb in a car with two children in it after using the children as decoys to get through a military checkpoint in Baghdad, an American general said Tuesday.

Speaking at a news briefing at the Pentagon, Maj. Gen. Michael Barbaro, deputy director for regional operations at the Joint Staff, said American soldiers had stopped the car at the checkpoint but had allowed it to pass after seeing the two children in the back seat.

“Children in the back seat lower suspicion,” he said, according to a transcript. “We let it move through. They parked the vehicle. The adults run out and detonate it with the children in back.”
The horror of these bombings is bad enough but the thought that children are used to advance these murderous deeds is appalling and sad. However, children are important to certain movements both to indoctrinate for the future and to use for propaganda purposes.

A couple of weeks ago the Hamas television station, al-Aqsa, aired an interview with the young children of Rim al-Riyashi (a.k.a. Reem Riyashi). She was a suicide bomber for Hamas who was responsible for the deaths of four and the injury of many others in January 2004. She was also a mother with two children -- a son, Obedia, and daughter, Doha – aged three years and 18 months at the time of the attack. The interviewer had the children recite the poem, Mama Rim, and asked them how many Jews she killed.

Yesterday al-Aqsa broadcast a music video of an imagined song from one of her children to her. The clip concludes when the child finds the mother’s explosives and vows to follow her. It was aired during children’s programming. You can read about it and see the video here at FP Passport.

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