While Christians are treated as second-class citizens in ISIS territory, those who pay the Jizya (tax for non-Muslims) are at least able to keep their lives. (By the way, such a tax is mandated by the Koran. Anyone claiming ISIS isn’t Islamic should keep that in mind.)
For those who want to keep their lives, the options are to pay the tax and live an oppressed life, or leave.
The option to leave is now being restricted; Christians remaining in Raqqa now are, in essence, being held hostage. And as The Daily Caller reports, it’s for a very disturbing strategic reason.
The Islamic State has barred Christians from leaving its de facto capital of Raqqa in an apparent move to use them as human shields as the terrorist group’s enemies in Syria begin to surround the city.
Activist-journalist group Raqqa Is Being Silently Slaughtered (RBSS) reported via social media Tuesday that ISIS officials are forcibly preventing the city’s few remaining Christians and Armenians from leaving, just as Syrian government forces and various other U.S.-backed militias continue to retake territory from the terrorist group.
“The suffering of Christians began with ISIS control of Raqqa,” said RBSS on its website. “ISIS looks at Christians as infidels loyal to the West more than their loyalty to their homeland which they live.”
ISIS has consistently resorted to increasingly desperate measures as they have been pushed back by Iraqi Security Forces (ISF), various Kurdish groups and U.S.-backed Syrian militias, among others. In Iraq, ISF and Kurdish Peshmerga (backed by the U.S.) are a week into an operation to retake the northern Iraqi city of Mosul, a city of millions and a key ISIS staging point. On the Syrian front, President Bashar al-Assad’s forces, bolstered by Russian air support have seized the ancient Roman ruins of Palmyra, which became a noted ISIS staging area for both operations and propaganda videos.
While rolling back ISIS territory is a positive sign, there is little doubt that the order to keep Christians in Raqqa will lead to no good for an already beleaguered people.
It looks like they took a page out of the Hamas playbook and made it even sicker.