February 07, 2014
al-Qaeda in Iraq and Syria's Little Jihad
Increasingly over the past decade, Al-Qaeda and its affiliates and sympathizers have been aiming their outreach and recruitment efforts at pre-teens, and even much younger children. As part of these efforts, Al-Qaeda sheikhs are reaching out directly to Muslim youth. For example, last year, in an audio lecture released by the Al-Qaeda media arm Al-Sahab, emerging Al-Qaeda leader Sheikh Maulana Asim Umar urged even the youngest Muslims to "not stay with [their] parents" and to leave the "luxury" of home and "city life" to wage jihad
But as shocking as this is, the most disturbing of all of these paeans to the jihadi cause and culture of death are the tweeted death photos of children killed fighting, and the praise that accompanies them.
For example, on the tweeted photo of a dead boy it says: "Abu Anas Al-Ansari, 14 years old and one of the youngest mujahideen martyred..." Another tweet of him adds, " May Allah, SWT (glorified and exalted is He), accept and grant him heaven."