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How the AANES and the SDF deal with our male children under their control

The AANES and its military arm the SDF insist that all male children of Islamic State (IS) fighters and their mothers are grave threats to the AANES and the SDF no matter the age of the male child. There is no collection of evidence to indicate that the male child was in fact a trained active member of the “Cubs of the Caliphate” which was Baghdadi’s equivalent Hitler Youth. Male children who were babes in arms when the Islamic State collapsed are defined as a grave threat by the SDF. The strategic plan of the SDF is then to have specific camps which separate the captive women and their children into two groups: 1 the Syrians and the Iraqis who are held at al Hawl camp and 2 the Arab women and children other than Syrians and Iraqis and women and children from the West at al Roj camp. The T&T women and children have then been moved from Al Hol to Al Roj camp and both camps are near to Derik in North eastern Syria but the question remains if any of our children and women are at al Hawl camp. In Hasakah city there is a special prison for women charged with criminal offenses who reside with their children in the prison compound. This prison is backed by the USA. The Al Hawl camp is under attack both within and without by the Islamic State with the constant threat of prison breaks with women from Al Hawl charged with attempting to flee the prison being charged and placed in this women’s prison.

The SDF is then applying Herod’s principle on steroids to the male children of parents or parent of IS. They are the ones who formulated and unleashed the discourse of the grave threat the young male children pose which the government of the day of T&T is peddling in their fear mongering. The SDF formulated the strategy that from 2 years old to eleven plus the male children of the captive women must attend daily centers erected for thought rehabilitation to reintegrate these males into society. Which society? How can you rehabilitate for reintegration into T&T’s social order in North east Syria by operatives who are ignorant of our culture? With repatriation we are then inheriting a flawed product. From 12 to 18 years old they are then moved to thought rectification part 2, then what? They are not citizens of Syria, Iraq whatever this illustrates the faulty position that is not grounded in reality of the present government of T&T. This is our problem which we created in T&T then exported, which we must now accept and shoulder our burden.

The reality today is that the SDF has never constructed the number of rehabilitation centers for the young males of IS, the Cubs of Islamic State” they hold and placed in the largest prison in the world for fighters of Islamic State, the al-Sina’a prison in the Guwieran neighborhood of Hasakah city. These young males are held in a separate part of the prison from the adult male fighters but bunched together in overcrowded cells in an overcrowded prison riddled with Islamic State operatives and cells throughout the prison. This prison is a target for subversion from inside and attack from outside as a prison culture is formulated, dispersed and evolves socializing the inmates both adults and young males. The SDF and the AANES with their failure to build and outfit the planned number of rehabilitation centers for the males in captivity took the decision that all males who attain the age of 12 years old will be sent to al-Sina’a prison which will keep adding fresh meat to the prison grinder where young males who were never inducted into the Cubs of IS will now be socialized into the prison gang of minors of IS in prison. The foot dragging by the present government refusing to accept the reality that this is our problem to be solved by us is actually worsening the problem by its inaction we shall have to grapple with for there is no way to leave them there until they die to solve the politicians problem. There were some 700 young males incarcerated in al-Sina’a prison before the IS attack on the prison that commenced on January 20, 2022. The attack of IS lasted from January 20 to the 26, 2022 with bombing sorties on the prison by coalition aircraft. Inmates broke into the area housing the young males and used them as human shields against the SDF forces engaged with them to win back control of the prison. Islamic State operatives also attacked the neighborhood in which the prison is located and other neighborhoods. To-date the SDF has not revealed if there were any casualties amongst the young males held in the prison.

The SDF grand plan for “the rehabilitation of ISIS’ members children from extremist ideologies and rehabilitate them into civil societies” raises questions of who, how and for integration into what civil societies? How can the SDF rehabilitate children of T&T for integration into T&T civil society? That is the sole responsibility of the Government of T&T with input from the Muslim community of T&T for these are ethnic Muslim children of various class/race groups from T&T. The continued foot dragging of the T&T government will continue to worsen the position the nation finds itself in for as night follows day the women and children are not welcome where they are held and repatriation is a given as the instrument of forced expulsion is on the cards given the increasing tempo of the IS guerrilla insurgency against the SDF in specific areas the SDF controls.

The grand plan of the SDF rehabilitation process of all male children under captivity whose origin was the Islamic State has then collapsed, is in tatters and with the attack on the al-Sina’a prison is dead and buried. To-date two rehabilitation centers have been built one being the al-Houri center at Tel Ma’rouf in the Qamshi countryside for boys 12-18 years old. I have in my possession photos of two T&T boys at this center supplied to me by a German media house who did a documentary on the center and the al Hol camp. The amount of and origin of boys in the al-Houri camp is not made public knowledge by the SDF as is the nature of the curriculum and methodology of rehabilitation and reintegration utilized presently at the thought rectification centre. We have no evidence of the efficacy of the programme with T&T children and what is the end product and with the prospect of forced expulsion of foreign nationals to their countries of origin the longer the government of the day refuses to take responsibility for our children we can expect to have one day unknown products of thought rectification dumped on our doorsteps by the USA. The Islamic State guerrilla insurgency is targeting the camps. The only other center built is the Halat center in Hasakah which is part of a women's prison for those women charged with criminal offenses who were members of IS. This centre handles the thought rectification of 55 children per day who live with their imprisoned mothers i.e. boys 2 to 12 years old but when they turn 12 they will end up in the al-Sina’a prison as there is no facility for them to enter from 12 to 18 years old. This is cruel and unusual punishment. The male children who comprise the 55 children are of non Syrian and Iraqi Arab and western origin, we have yet to determine if any children from T&T are in this facility.

SDF says that the majority of the children of IS members the SDF has in captivity live in two camps with their mothers: the al Hawl camp and the al Roj camp. Hawl camp holds 56, 150 individuals from 15, 250 families which includes 2, 423 families of IS fighters killed or captured on the battlefield from 60 source countries. The Roj camp holds 806 families with 2, 800 individuals with non Syrian and Iraqi Arab women and western women and children who are the surviving family members of IS fighters. Surviving male fighters or support personnel of IS captured by the SDF are in the al-Sina’a prison.

The Hawl camp is under constant assault by IS from inside and outside the camp making it a humanitarian hell hole that is rapidly evolving into a guerrilla theater of operation. The rapidly evolving IS guerrilla insurgency means that the SDF cannot prosecute a counter insurgency war against IS and properly cater for the needs of the women and children held in the camps. The SDF is fast approaching the conjuncture where its primary sponsor the USA will have to load up the women and children and dump them on T&T for the SDF cannot prosecute a joint war against IS and the Assad regime and guard the camps against IS insurgents holding over 58, 000 inmates. Our children and women are then on a daily basis faced with death by humanitarian crisis, war or both. Where is the mercy and compassion for our children who had no say on being taken to IS or being born in the IS. Why must the innocent children be punished for the actions of their parents/parent? Two wrongs cannot make a right! Repatriation Now!

The February 2, 2022 US special forces operation to take out the supposed leader of IS Abu Ibrahm al-Hishimi al-Qurayishi in Idlib province Northeastern Syria speaks to the alarm bells that are going off in the SDF and the US state apparatus in the face of the escalating IS guerrilla insurgency around the camps and prisons holding IS cells and operatives and the areas they are located in primarily because of the IS operatives and followers held in these lock ups. IS is now back in full guerrilla insurgency mode with leadership on the ground commanding the insurgent bands making a central leader irrelevant, a leftover from the day long gone when they commanded a state apparatus. These futile attempts at quelling the insurgency will only ratchet up the tenor of the guerrilla engagement with the SDF, the camps and the prisons. The T&T children and women now face an escalating humanitarian crisis and as collateral damage in a guerrilla insurgency, expendables, human shields for both sides of the war, castaways, deserted by their country of origin.


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