The Arabic media has been full of interviews with some of the many Tunisian girls that went to the sex jihad in Syria. The other day Tunisian newspaper Al Sharaouk (“Sunrise) shed light on the horrific experiences of one of these girls.
Her name is Lamia, and she’s 19-years-old. While in Syria, she had sex with jihadis fighting to overthrow the secular Bashar Assad regime. Among other nationalities she recalls having slept with were Pakistanis, Afghanis, Libyans, Tunisians, Iraqis, Saudis, and Somalis, all in the context of the “sex jihad.”
Such a diverse array of jihadis is a reminder of the nature of the “rebellion”: it’s less about indigenous Syrians fighting for freedom and more about international jihadis fighting for Sharia.
According to Al Sharouk reporters, who went to interview Lamia at her home, the young woman began her story by saying that in 2011 she became religious, after watching an Islamic program; among other things, she took to wearing the hijab and came to believe that going out in public was a sin.
Then, “Lamia became convinced that a woman may participate in the jihad to eliminate the enemies of Islam by making her body recreational for the men after each and every raid, so that her body became their possession.”
Back in May, reports of women saying similar things began to appear. For instance, Masrawy published a video interview with one “Aisha,” another Tunisian girl who said she had met a Muslim woman who spoke of the importance of piety, including wearing the hijab and traveling to Syria to help the jihadis “fight and kill infidels” and make Allah’s word supreme, adding that “women who die would do so in the way of Allah and become martyrs and enter paradise.”
At any rate, by the time war broke out in Syria, Lamia’s mind was “dough for the cleric to mold any which way he wanted.” He proceeded to send her to Benghazi, Libya, and from there to Turkey, and then to Aleppo, Syria. There she found many women and young girls residing in an old hospital that had been turned into a campsite.
A man claiming to be the “emir” of the sexual campground met her saying his name was Abu Ayoub, the Tunisian. But, she said, the true leader was a Yemeni, who appeared leading a group of jihadis calling themselves “Omar’s Battalion” (likely named after the second caliph, whose reign saw the conquest of Syria). He was the first to take her.
Lamia confessed that she did not know how many men had sex with her and that all that she remembers is being abused, beaten, and forced to do things “that contradict all sense of human worth.” She also said that she met many Tunisian women including one who died while being tortured for trying to escape. (This, too, has precedents, including at the hands of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.)
Finally, released back to Tunisia, Lamia has been to a doctor finding that she is five months pregnant. Both she and her unborn are carrying the aids virus.
RAYMOND IBRAHIM, a Middle East and Islam specialist, is a Shillman Fellow at the David Horowitz Freedom Center and an Associate Fellow at the Middle East Forum. A widely published author, best known for The Al Qaeda Reader (Doubleday, 2007), he guest lectures at universities, including the National Defense Intelligence College, briefs governmental agencies, such as U.S. Strategic Command and the Defense Intelligence Agency, provides expert testimony for Islam-related lawsuits, and has testified before Congress regarding the conceptual failures that dominate American discourse concerning Islam and the worsening plight of Egypt’s Christian Copts. Among other media, he has appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, C-SPAN, PBS, Reuters, Al-Jazeera, CBN, and NPR.