The widow of one of the Islamic fanatics responsible for last week’s terror rampage in Paris comes across as prim, even drab, as she goes through passport control at the airport here ISTANBUL—On the CCTV footage released by Turkish police.
Hayat Boumeddiene’s tightly drawn headscarf that is white hooded coat is a cultural world out of the scanty bikini she was wearing in an image that showed her on a beach fondly clutching future assassin Amedy Coulibaly. The break snap was taken before 2009, when she started to cover herself up with scarves and veils.
The transfer is startling from sun-worshipper and eager holidaymaker to the buttoned-up moll of an Islamic assassin.
The 26-year-old looks giddily in love cuddling Coulibaly—a display of public affection hardly in keeping with the puritanical strictures of Salafi jihadis.
Her partner that is now-dead also to pursue a lifestyle that clashed with the teachings of Islamic militants. Neither were paragons of religious rectitude. French police arrested Coulibaly on a string of theft and drug offenses before he embarked on the path of jihad and finished up gunning down four Jews at a kosher supermarket in Paris week that is last. In the caliphate for the self-styled Islamic State, where, relating to Turkish authorities, Boumeddiene has found sanctuary and also to whom Coulibaly apparently aligned himself, theft and drug use incur far worse punishments than those meted out because of the unenlightened West—including flogging, amputation, and execution.
Then again Boumeddiene and Coulibaly aren’t unique in having exited rowdy lifestyles that are alternative at variance with Islamic puritanism, embracing instead the simplicity of jihad. A little less than his consort although Coulibaly, it seems, observed the conservative demands. During a 2010 interview with police investigators, asian mail order bride Boumeddienne admitted Coulibaly “wasn’t that is really religious liked to “have fun.”
Some Westerners do indeed appear to have been devout before planing a trip to Syria or aligning themselves with jihadis—although how knowledgeable the really young ones or the obviously disturbed are about their religion remains questionable. A number of the frantic devotion has the ring of hollow religiosity, ritual without content, more cult-like than other things.
Even so, Melanie Smith, a researcher utilizing the International Centre for the research of Radicalization, has argued that numerous of the estimated 200 or more Western girls and women who have gone to Syria to join the militants “tend to be extremely pious while having been IS fan-girls through the duration of the Syrian conflict.”
Aqsa Mahmood, a 20-year-old who was raised in a well-heeled Glasgow suburb and attended a special Scottish girls’ school, fits into that profile. She led an orderly life as a teenager—wasn’t involved in boys, drugs or petty crimes. She seemed normal in most ways until she was groomed and lured online. And, in accordance with her parents, she became more “concerned and upset” by reports associated with the Syrian conflict. “Aqsa, like many young people within our community, was naturally angry and frustrated during the loss in innocent life at the center East,” the parents said at a press conference last summer after their daughter ran off to Syria to be a bride that is jihadi.
Other recruits to your jihadist cause, though, appear to have had a more “secular” glide path, swapping whatever they see since the rootlessness and chaos of these lives for the false clarity and fake simplicity made available from al Qaeda or even the Islamic State (also well known as ISIS).
That appears to be more the explanation for the recruitment of Britain’s Sally Jones—an even more unlikely Salafi candidate than the bikini-wearing Boumeddiene. Jones was 45 yrs . old when recruited and wasn’t even born into a Muslim or a minority family that is immigrant.
Now calling herself Sakinah Hussain or Umm Hussain al-Britani, Jones, a mom-of-two from the rural county of Kent in southeast England, sneaked into Syria in late 2013 after an romance that is online Junaid Hussain, a young hacker-turned-militant from the English city of Birmingham. She is regarded as located in the city of Raqqa, the de facto capital in northern Syria associated with Islamic State. In online exchanges with potential Western recruits, she claims to be experiencing the strict Sharia law for the caliphate, from whence she tweets blood-chilling threats.
Her most vicious micro-missive was within the wake associated with the mass decapitations of 50 Syrian soldiers, in which she declared: “You Christians all need beheading with a nice blunt knife and stuck regarding the railings at Raqqa. Come here I’ll get it done for you personally!” She posts photos of herself posing with an assault that is AK-47 and dressed in black niqab, which covers all of the face and body except the eyes. She and Hussain—he’s 25 years her junior—are now married.
But back in the 1990s she was a member of a smalltime girl punk rock band called Krunch and ended up being wielding a guitar in the place of an automatic rifle.
She was at and out of relationships and dead-end jobs. One video clip shows her wearing a low-cut top and leather mini-skirt that is tight. Neighbors in the town of Chatham have described her to British tabloids as a “nightmare”—an aggressive, anarchic woman who dabbled in witchcraft and drugs and threatened to place spells in it.
A purposeless, ungrounded life sticks out with Boumeddiene, too. Born into the Paris suburb of Villiers-sur-Marne, she spent my youth in a rundown the main town. Her mother was devout and died when Hayat was 6. Her father was not able to cope after his wife’s death and Hayat and some of her six siblings needed to be taken into foster care. Her father visited her rarely and then appears to have broken with her after remarrying, although recently they are said to have reconciled. In care, she needed to frequently be moved between foster homes because she proved troublesome and violent. She met Coulibaly in Juvisy-sur-Orge, southeast of Paris, while being employed as a cashier, a job she later lost as a result of her insistence on wearing the niqab.
One neighbor told French media that Coulibaly was the driving force in their partnership: “She left here with this man. He did everything and then it all came down on the. He had been the mastermind.”
Maybe so, perhaps not. The masterminds that are real to be their jihadi mentors, who knew how exactly to channel the purposelessness and direct the anger. Of her religion, she told detectives this season, “It’s something that calms me down. I’ve had a difficult life and this religion has answered all my questions.”