“We’re sure ISIS will follow through”

As many people have pointed out here, and far more have pointed out elsewhere, the report that ISIS had ordered all girls/women aged 11 to 46 to undergo female genital mutilation may be a hoax. (Some have said it simply is a hoax, but that’s not clear yet.)

But at least it’s not purely a Western media hoax. Al Arabiya is taking it seriously. Yesterday it reported the same story I got from the BBC:

Staff Writer, Al Arabiya News
Thursday, 24 July 2014
The al-Qaeda-Inspired Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has ordered all girls and women between the ages of 11 and 46 in and around Iraq’s northern city of Mosul to undergo female genital mutilation, the United Nations said on Thursday.

“It is a fatwa (or religious edict) of ISIS, we learnt this this morning,” said Jacqueline Badcock, the number two U.N. official in Iraq.

“This is something very new for Iraq, particularly in this area, and is of grave concern and does need to be addressed,” she said, according to Reuters.

“This is not the will of Iraqi people, or the women of Iraq in these vulnerable areas covered by the terrorists,” she added.

No one was immediately available for comment from Islamic State which has led an offensive through northern and western Iraq.

So, not confirmed, but not disconfirmed, either.

Today it reports that an Iraqi NGO thinks it will happen.

An Iraqi human rights organization said Friday that the al-Qaeda-inspired Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) will likely implement a religious edict (Fatwa) that all females aged 11-46 in and around the northern city of Mosul undergo genital mutilation (FGM).

“We’re sure ISIS will follow through with what they’ve announced,” William Warda, head of media relations at Hammurabi Human Rights Organization, told Al Arabiya News

Women working for ISIS may be used to check whether or not females are genitally mutilated, said Warda, a leading member of the Assyrian Democratic Movement.

At the end, it tells us there has been no official word either way:

Meanwhile, ISIS has not officially confirmed or denied the report.

Are we all fully confident that ISIS won’t do that? Do we think their human sympathies and kindness will prevent them?


  1. colnago80 says

    Thley have already driven thousands of Christians out of Mosul under threat of execution if they don’t convert to Islam. Given the fact that these guys are batshit crazy, I find nothing incredible about this report.

  2. unity says

    No it’s not a Western media hoax but the sole “confirmation” is coming from an Assyrian Christian group with a clear, if understandable, vested interest in exaggerating the situation in the hope that the US and others will take direct military action against ISIS.

    It’s possible that ISIS forces on the ground have put up FGM as a threat to displace the Assyrian Christian population but the idea of ISIS requiring all women, married and unmarried, to submit to FGM would be completely unprecedented in Islamic history.

    We’re in a propaganda war here.

  3. kevinalexander says

    No doubt there will be many ‘religiously devout’ men lining up for the job of street inspectors.

  4. jesse says

    Ophelia I think someone’s getting played.

    “Staff Writer” — raises red flags. That usually translates to “intern rewrote wire story.” I looked at the text, it’s rather too similar to the earlier story. This is a rewrite job, and it means al-Arabiya didn’t make their own calls to confirm. That may sound like a reporter’s nitpick, but it makes a difference. Because it means that another likely-inaccurate report gets circulated without anyone checking. I haven’t looked as to whether the Arab-language media has independently confirmed this yet tho. Al-Jazeera doesn’t seem to have picked it up, I found one other reference in the Arabic-language Al-Hayat (the London-based newspaper not the ISIS media outlet) but there was no word from ISIS and the Al-Hayat story was another rewrite. (in Arabic, but a rewrite nonetheless, Google Translate’s foibles notwithstanding).

    There’s just too many reasons to think this is horseshit. Your outline is a bit like when Christians say “Atheists want to outlaw Christmas.” If you asked an NGO — say, the Baptist convention whether they think that will happen of course they say yes. That doesn’t make the story true.

    I already threw out some stuff as to why this seems hoax-y in the previous thread.

  5. unity says

    The trouble is, it’s possible both to be in a propaganda war, and to be dealing with exceptionally brutal murderous sadistic people.

    True, but ISIS has a political objective now that’s it’s declared a Caliphate and that’s a restraining factor here, at least insofar as their dealing with other Muslims are concerned.

  6. freemage says

    My big concern is that this is going to be used as a “See, we’re not so bad as all that” propaganda boost by ISIS. That is, they’ll eventually demonstrate that no such fatwa was issued, and then use the bogus story as a way of discrediting real horror stories about suffering under their regime.

  7. johnthedrunkard says

    I wouldn’t put anything past the capacity of Sunni/Wahabbi groups.
    Why 11-46?
    I don’t know about the end date, someone may dig up a hadith that give an official pull date for women. But 11 is definitely odd. If they were invoking the authority of Mr PBUH, shouldn’t they go for 9 instead? And in those zones of Islamic peace and prosperity where genital butchery is sanctioned, don’t they usually attack the girls even younger.?

  8. Smokey Dusty says

    It could be that different bits of ISIS are saying different things. The purists might say one thing, the media savvy and political another.

    ISIS has had this happen before. The Sunni tribes rebelled and kicked them out because they were enforcing rigid Islamism that offended local customs. They fell out with Bin Laden because he wanted a softly-softly approach.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *