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'Cubs of the Calpihate': 8 Y/O Yazidi Boy Remains Brainwashed, Traumatized by ISIS After Returning Home

( [email protected] ) Nov 11, 2016 10:59 AM EST
Despite physically escaping the clutches of ISIS, hundreds of Yazidi boys remain brainwashed and traumatized by their horrific experiences at training camps, where they were forced to bow to the demands of the black-clad terrorist group.
Over the past two years, ISIS has kidnapped thousands of children and taken them to various training camps across Iraq and Syria, according to the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights. Reuters

Despite physically escaping the clutches of ISIS, hundreds of Yazidi boys remain brainwashed and traumatized by their horrific experiences at training camps, where they were forced to bow to the demands of the black-clad terrorist group.

Fox News shares the heartbreaking story of Zed, an 8-year-old Yazidi boy who was forced into a "caliphate cubs" jihadist training camp after ISIS overran their village near the Yazidi Iraqi town of Sinjar in August 2014.

So powerful was the indoctrination he endured during his time at the training camp that even after returning to his family, now living in Syria, Zed now refuses to return to the faith he once knew.

"We are trying to convert him back to Yazidi," his mother, Seve, told FoxNews.com. "But sometimes he does not agree. When he gets angry, he recites verses from the Koran...He beats his siblings. And he yells we should never have escaped, we should never have come back here."

During his time at the training camp, Zed, like thousands of other boys, was trained to fight the"infidels" using guns and knives, forced to learn the Koran, and taught how to become suicide bombers and human shields.

"They were breaking his teeth every day, his teeth are all broken," his mother said. "They took him to training and were making him use a large weapon for three to four hours a day. Only, he was too small. He couldn't hold the weapon, let alone shoot it. Eventually they brought him back to me. But normally, those children are never coming back."

She revealed that ISIS tore apart her family: They were made to convert to Islam, and then traded at the market for the equivalent of $50. They were moved to Raqqa, where Seve was held as a sex slave. Her young daughters, one with special needs, were forced to watch as she was beaten and raped by ISIS militants.

She told Fox News that while her family is now safe, she fears they will never be whole again.

In February, a study published in the CTC Sentinel found that ISIS employed over 1,5000 children to carry out acts of terrorism in various forms

The cases of 89 children eulogized by ISIS in the past 13 months were documented in the study, which found that most of them died in violent ways: 39% died detonating a vehicle born IED device and 33% were killed as foot soldiers. Some 4% killed themselves while committing mass casualty attacks against civilians, and 6% died as propagandists embedded with brigades.

Today, over 700 children have been rescued or fled ISIS camps, but thousands remain missing.

Reuters shared the story of another little boy, Murad, who spent 20 months in an ISIS camp in Mosul, Iraq. When Murad was given the chance to escape the bloody terrorist group and return to his family, he hesitated.

"My son's brain was changed and most of the kids were saying to their families 'Go, we will stay'," Murad's mother told the outlet. "Until the last moment before we left, my son was saying 'I will not come with you'."

During his time in captivity, Murad was dressed in ISIS garb and taught to kill Christians, Shi'ite Muslims, the peshmerga forces of Iraqi Kurdistan and the Syrian Kurdish YPG militia.

"They were teaching the children how to fight and go to war to battle the infidels," the mother said. "They were assessing them for how well they had learned to fight. Daesh then showed the families videos of killing. Among them they saw their sons also taking part."

Once a happy little boy, Murad now rarely smiles, struggles to maintain eye contact, and fidgets constantly.

Hussein Al-Qaidy, director of the Office of Kidnapped Affairs, which operates under the Kurdish Regional Government's Prime Minister's Office, said that after escaping ISIS captivity, Yazidi children need regular psychological treatment.

"Psychologically, they are hurting. They have been influenced a lot, especially the young boys [ages] four to five," he said. "They forget how to speak Kurdish. Some still insist on praying five times a day. Many no longer have fathers and mothers. This is a difficult thing."

He added, "These children are victims, what happened to them was not their fault."

However, professional and long-term psychological and de-radicalization programs remain out of reach for many Yazidi families.

"Many have been forced to kill, and they are now desensitized to killing," said Dr. Anne Speckhard, adjunct associate professor of psychiatry at Georgetown University School of Medicine and director of the International Center for Violent Extremism.

"They will need programs similar to other forcibly conscripted child soldiers. PTSD and deprogramming-type therapy will be needed intensively at the beginning. They will need to be restored to safety and security to be able to participate in therapy in a meaningful way."

Tags : ISIS, Yazidi, caliphate, Islamic State, terrorism, terrorist group, Mosul