The Life of an al-Qaida Wife
We all know "Married to the Mob"--now it's time for Married to the Jihad. This is a very bizarre article, in the truth is stranger than fiction department, particularly in its depiction of the wives' approval of their children becoming fighters. It consists of interviews with two women, Maha and Zaynab, Canadian mother and daughter married to al Qaeda fighters. The teaser:
They may be rich, cultivated and beautiful; but when the West steps up its 'war on terror', their husbands and sons are in the firing line. Jan McGirk meets some remarkable women.
A couple of tidbits:
Abdurahman and Omar were captured by the Americans and imprisoned at Guantanamo. Abdurahman, who liked to posture around the bazaar, swigging from an imported bottle of tabasco sauce to impress his buddies, has blamed greedy Kabul acquaintances for "selling" him to the Americans for a bounty. Omar, who was only 15 at the time, hunkered down with some fleeing Arab fighters in Khost, eastern Afghanistan, until American troops attacked the hideout. Despite being described by his mother as the most sensitive of the brothers, he is reported to have killed an American medic during the gunfight before taking a bullet himself, in the eye. He was soon whisked off to Guantanamo, where he was not allowed to speak with his incarcerated brother and where he remains under interrogation.
Maha describes how proud she is of her martyr husband, now dead. As to her teenage son:
Abdul Karim was also cornered and besieged that day. Described by his mother as a dreamy boy with a taste for Harry Potter and Matrix DVDs, he had been exploring the fields surrounding their new hide-out with a 16-year-old Arab friend, looking for hazards. They had left their weapons behind so as not to arouse the locals' suspicions, only to be ambushed by Pakistani soldiers lying in wait.
Abdul Karim was struck by a bullet that ripped through his spleen, liver and kidney and nicked his spinal cord. He later told his sister Zaynab that no water or first aid was offered to the bleeding boys for at least three hours, while Cobra helicopters attacked his father and comrades in the house. Pakistan army sources say the ensuing battle raged for 12 hours, and left nine foreign fighters dead. They showed Abdul Karim a photograph of his father's charred corpse while he lay recovering in a military cot. Now being held incognito in a basement somewhere near Islamabad, he is paralysed from the waist down.
Maha and Zaynab say it took them five months to find Abdul.
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