Shamima Begum doesn’t feel any real remorse for her involvement in the ISIS. She simply cares about herself.
Last week, ISIS bride Shamima Begum was interviewed by Sky News about her involvement in ISIS. She said, “I don’t regret it [joining the caliphate], but when I saw underground oppression, it really hit me.”
Well, if she doesn’t regret it, then seeing oppression couldn’t have really hit her that hard.
But Begum’s lack of remorse goes further than this. In an interview with The Telegraph on Sunday, Begum was asked what she thought about the enslavement and rape of Yazidi women by ISIS fighters, she replied, “Shia do the same in Iraq.”
Let’s dissect Begum’s logic here: “If other people do it, then it’s okay.”
We are talking about the systematic rapes and torture of an already persecuted religious minority whose only “crime” is not being Muslim. ISIS persecution of Yazidis has involved cutting open pregnant women and raping their babies to death, as well as gang rape, and other unspeakable forms of torture.
Yet, all that Begum has to say is, “Shia do the same in Iraq.” Impressive. If one group commits genocide, then it’s perfectly acceptable for others to do the same, right?
Just one week later, Begum now says that she regrets joining ISIS because she “didn’t realize” the things they were doing. This is despite the fact that Begum says she was unfazed by seeing human heads in garbage cans. She’s really not doing a good job of making a case for herself.
Yet, there are already people defending Begum’s “right” to have a second chance. Those who take this position have even gone so far as to describe Begum as a victim of “grooming.”
ISIS propaganda videos show fighters beheading people. Even if it were true that Begum was “groomed” to an extent, and that she was presented with some of the “benefits” of being an ISIS bride (i.e having a husband, family, and house), it is highly unlikely that Begum was unaware of the violence that ISIS perpetrates.
That ISIS might provide some material benefits to jihadi brides is in no way an excuse to join a genocidal death cult. If Shamima showed no remorse for her actions just one week ago, why, then should we believe her when she says that she feels remorse now?
Where Do We Go From Here?
The internationally recognized Rome Statute of Crimes Against Humanity recognizes the following crimes as crimes against humanity:
- Deportation or forcible transfer of population
- Imprisonment or other severe deprivation of physical liberty in violation of fundamental rules of international law
- Rape, sexual slavery, enforced prostitution, forced pregnancy, enforced sterilization, or any other form of sexual violence of comparable gravity
- Persecution against an identifiable group or collectivity on political, racial, national, ethnic, cultural, religious, gender as defined in paragraph 3, or other grounds that are recognized as impermissible under international law, in connection with any act referred to in this paragraph or any crime within the jurisdiction of the Court.
- Enforced disappearance of persons
- The crime of apartheid
- Other inhumane acts of similar character intentionally causing great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health
ISIS committed what is officially recognized by the UN as a genocide against the Yazidis. This genocide involved murder, torture, rape and sexual slavery, extermination, and persecution against an identifiable group, all of which are recognized as crimes against humanity.
Let’s look back to Shamima Begum’s response when asked about her thoughts on the enslavement of Yazidis. “Shia do the same in Iraq.”
Nonchalant, isn’t she?
It’s quite hard to doubt that Begum probably, in some way or another, helped to facilitate the genocide. Begum very likely could’ve been one of the ISIS brides who helped her husband rape Yazidis by tying them to beds, and not allowing them to breastfeed their children. In fact, many Yazidi women have testified that the wives were “worse” than the men.
This is not even to mention ISIS’s crimes against Shias, Copts, Assyrians, LGBT people, and Sunni Muslims who dare to challenge them.
Shamima Begum must be brought to the international criminal court.
Much work must also be done to locate possible victims of Begum in Iraq.
As for the possibility of “rehabilitating” Begum, no one who, just one week ago, said they were unfazed by capitated human heads, or is nonchalant about sex slavery, is likely able to be rehabilitated. If any country attempts to give Begum a chance to live anywhere outside of a prison, there is the possibility of her either committing a terror attack against locals, or tracking down former Yazidi captives to harass them, as some ISIS fighters have done.
As she is very obviously doing right now, Begum could put on a false appearance to rehabilitation specialists to appear as though she has changed.
No one in the world with a brain stem should take Shamima Begum seriously when she says that she didn’t see what ISIS was doing, or that she now regrets her involvement in the ISIS.