Whenever I sit down to research for my blog, I try to tell myself “Don’t write about ISIS, don’t write about ISIS” but it always seems inevitable. The extremist terrorist group has the full spotlight of the Middle East and is growing and growing by the day.
So what did I find this week?
Recruitment. The group has called all Muslims to come and fight for the Caliph, or an Islamic homeland and to rid the world of infidels. Many Muslims are answering this call and are making there way to Syria and Iraq. But with the end goal of ISIS being “ridding the world of infidels”, Western powers are trying to stop these people from making there way to the Middle East.
The most recent case being a group of three girls from Denver, Colorado. The three girls, ages 15,15 and 17, were reported missing when their schools had called their parents to inform them that they had not showed up for school. After being notified, the father noticed that the girls’ passports were gone along with $2000. The FBI flagged the girls’ passports and they were detained in Germany. Their final destination? Syria. After scouring over the girls’ recent online activity, it was found that the girls had been planning the trip for months and had frequented ISIS message boards about how to get into Syria.
The girls are not the only people that are going through extreme measures to join the fight. The Soufan Group did a report in June on ISIS and they found around 12,000 fighters for ISIS, from 81 countries in Syria alone. They found out of these 12,000 fighters, 2,500 were from Western nations.
ISIS is using the soldiers from Western countries in order to recruit others from the area. Andre Poulin, originally from Canada, made the trip to join the fight with ISIS. Poulin is known for a particular ISIS propaganda video where he talks about his life before joining the group and why he decided to join. When touching on his life in Canada, he talks about how he was a normal Canadian, liked watching hockey, liked fishing and had a normal job with a family. Then he goes on to talk about how Canadian tax dollars are used to fight against ISIS and how that is reason enough to pick up and come join the fight. The video takes a turn when Poulin is shown running through a battle and is killed in an explosion. Words appear on the screen, calling Poulin a martyr and stating that he is now living a better life.
Videos like these are what make people join. ISIS relies very heavily on Twitter and Facebook to get these videos out and talk and recruit young Muslims to join their organization. What can we do to combat this? How can we stop this recruitment and how do we stop people from joining this cause?