Islamic State jihadists have worked hard to establish the image of murderous extremists who slaughter innocent people and destroy ancient religious temples and shrines. However, various newspapers are reporting, the group appears to be eager to show on social media that they are also domesticated as well as hip in recruiting new followers. Appearing across social media are images of Islam Yaken, a young Egyptian law student who left his affluent family in Cairo to become a soldier for Islamic State with signature sword and slaughterous slogans. At the same time, the ladies of Islamic State are recruiting Western and European women to come and hook up with jihadi in a bizarre version of eHarmony or JDate. JihadDate is a bit different. It promises that, if lucky, you can watch your loved one martyr himself — I kid you not.
Yaken is a product of the best schools in Egypt and lived what seems a Westernized life, which makes his emergence as an extremist all the more unnerving. The “hipster jihadi” was educated at the French Lycée in Heliopolis and speaks English and French as well as Arabic. He then went on to the prestigious Ain Shams University to study law. He was then obsessed with his body and, while a supporter of the Muslim Brotherhood, seemed largely secular in his outlook. After graduating law school, he appears to have taken a turn that none of his friends now understand. The student who once loved Western music and posting about how many calories are consumed by kissing is now trumping the “Caliphate” of Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi and posting gory pictures that Islamic State seems to relish of its victims. In one posting, Yakin showed two heads in a basket and jokingly compared to the heads of sheep that can be ordered for the table in some Egyptian restaurants.
He has been trying to convince his family to come to Raqqa, a city in Syria that the Islamic State has controlled and cleansed according to its view of Islam. When he told her that she could stay in this flat on the Euphrates and eat and drink and study,” he says she responded: “My son, what would happen if the owners of the flat came back? What will you do then?” Yaken then told her “not to worry – they are dead and gone.” A real hunkocidal catch.
Mothers are not the only people being recruited. Islamic State women are trying to recruit Western and European women and girls — apparently at the request of Islamic State men. Notably, these social websites targeting women do not show the signature gore of the Islamic State of hacked off body parts and corpses. That apparently is a turn-off for JihadDate. Instead it describes the paradise for women to be married to Jihadi and to be part of the community of “sisters” within Islamic State. They are told that they are not excepted to be martyrs but mothers. The “Bird of Jannah” explains: “Women are not equal to men. It can never be. Men are the leaders & women are [so] special that Allah has given them entire chapter in the Qur’an.”
One supposed English woman named Umm Layth gushes with delight about how “I will never be able to do justice with words as to how this place makes me feel.” She adds “Allahu Akbar, there’s no way to describe the feeling of sitting with the Akhawat [sisters] waiting on news of whose Husband has attained Shahadah [martyrdom].” The pitches have succeeded. Two teenage girls, 15 and 16, from Austria have gone to Syria for Jihadi marriages as did two 16-year-old British twins.
Just as a tip, girls, homicidal hunks like Yaken appear to prefer decapitating swords as gifts and their favorite subject is the Caliphate followed closely by the slaughtering of non-believers. As for the standard “likes”: beheadings, Shrine desecrations, and martyrdom. As for standard “dislikes”: Shia, human rights, and most art and music. Under the Islamic State’s view of Islam, you very incompatibility with with modern world makes you compatible — if not ideal — for a Mujahideen match up.