Saturday, November 28, 2015

A sixth mass grave of DA'ESH victims has been found near Sindar

MPs deciding whether to vote for military action against DA'ESH (the so-called "Islamic State") might like to consider the fact that six mass graves, apparently containing the bodies of victims of genocide by DA'ESH fighters, has been found near the village of Sindar in Iraq.

The area was recently recaptured by Kurdish Peshmerga fighters supported by Yazidi fighters and with assistance from US and British air power.

One grave contained the bodies of 78 women aged between 40 and 80, apparently Yazidi women killed by DA'ESH because they were not young and pretty enough to rape and take as sex slaves.

A number of other mass graves have been found. The largest was described today as having been booby trapped, but on the basis of the testimony of witnesses who saw the execution of the victims - mostly young women who had been enslaved by DA'ESH fighters and later escaped - it is believed to contain the bodies of a further 110 Yazidis who were killed because their religion differs from the extreme and perverted form of Islam which DA'ESH follows.

Yes, we need to be careful to avoid repeating the mistakes of the past and minimise the number of new victims we create. But the luckless victims of DA'ESH genocide near Sindar were not killed in retaliation for anything the Western powers did. They were killed because the so-called "Islamic State" intends to kill anyone who does not accept their warped and murderous perversion of Islam.

These people have made a charnel house of every part of Iraq and Syria they conquered. They have beheaded aid workers and journalists as well as those who fought against them. On the basis of their own claims of responsibility they have killed tourists on the beach, blown a passenger airliner out of the sky, and gunned down people eating in restaurants or listening to a rock concert in Paris.

We will not make ourselves safe from these murderous extremists by hiding away from them: we are already on their target list because they hate happiness, freedom, and letting women have education and healthcare, not because of anything we have done to them.

Make no mistake - if DA'ESH could repeat the carnage they recently inflicted on the streets of Paris on the streets of London, Manchester, Carlisle or Whitehaven they would do so. And they are actively plotting to do precisely that.

The United Nations security council has unanimously passed Resolution 2249, which unequivocally condemned the terrorist attacks perpetrated by ISIL — also known as Da’esh — on 26 June in Sousse, on 10 October in Ankara, on 31 October over the Sinaï Peninsula, on 12 November in Beirut and on 13 November in Paris, among others. 

It has condemned in the strongest terms ISIL’s gross, systematic and widespread abuses of human rights, as well as its destruction and looting of cultural heritage.  And the UN security council has called upon Member States with the requisite capacity to take “all necessary measures” to prevent and suppress terrorist acts by DA'ESH.

We have made mistakes in the military inventions we have made in the Middle East in the past. We need to learn from those mistakes and try to avoid repeating them. But taking action against ISIL/DA'ESH is not one.

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