Saturday, November 21, 2015

Careers for women in the Islamic State

The New York Times this morning provides an intimate glimpse into the exciting life of the “Daesh dames”:

Dua had only been working for two months with the Khansaa Brigade, the all-female morality police of the Islamic State, when her friends were brought to the station to be whipped.
The police had hauled in two women she had known since childhood, a mother and her teenage daughter, both distraught. Their abayas, flowing black robes, had been deemed too form-fitting.
 “Their abayas really were very tight. I told her it was their own fault; they had come out wearing the wrong thing,” she said. “They were unhappy with that.”
Dua sat back down and watched as the other officers took the women into a back room to be whipped. When they removed their face-concealing niqabs, her friends were also found to be wearing makeup. It was 20 lashes for the abaya offense, five for the makeup, and another five for not being meek enough when detained.
[...] Within the brigade, women had started using their authority to settle petty quarrels or exact revenge.

Former member of the Khansaa brigade,
dressed for success
Weiteres zum Thema:

For analysis and further particulars:


Another interesting tidbit, from the same very informative article:

To the outside world, the territory controlled by the Islamic State might seem to be a hermetically sealed land governed by the harshest laws of the seventh century. But until relatively recently, the routes into and out of Raqqa were mostly open. Traders would come and go, supplying the Organization’s needs and wants — including cigarettes, which some fighters smoked despite the fact that they were banned for Raqqa residents.

More on the political theatrics of smoking, here:


The Washington Post as well  offers a well-informed inside glimpse into those who make ISIL’s société du spectacle  possible:

What they described resembles a medieval reality show …

More on the matter here:


Der Spiegel likewise got an inside view, thanks to captured ISIL documents provided by Iraq:

The main takeaway is a refutation of those who would dismiss ISIL as basically just a large street-gang, disorganized and devoid of strategy.
Our own view of the organization was presented here:

[More than  once  al-Qaeda,
ISIL is proving  a Rorschach  for the West.]

[Update Nov 2016]

[Update 8 Feb 2017]

[Update 25 April 217]

Arabic version:

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