In Calgary, between the soccer practices and the hours at her accounting job and the potlucks with the neighbors, Christianne Boudreau spent every spare minute watching Islamic State videos, her nose pressed up against the computer screen. But Boudreau barely registered any of the bloodshed. Three days earlier, she received word that he had been injured outside Aleppo, but she was convinced that he was dead.
She sat in the basement of her middle-class home in her middle-class suburb, a bare room that once belonged to her eldest son, Damian, and watched men posturing with big guns like teenagers. She was focused on the faces behind the balaclavas, trying to spot her son’s eyes. Sitting alone that evening, nervously puffing on a vaporizer, she couldn’t stop herself from sending a Viber message into the ether.
Skyping from his phone, the man has an English accent, is dressed in battle fatigues and a toque. The man on Skype believes he’s talking to a 15-year-old Canadian girl from Edmonton he met on Twitter only a few days earlier.
He’s coaching her on how to travel to ISIS-controlled territory to become his wife.
“Abu Antar” instructs the girl to deceive her parents by telling them she’s going to a weekend sleepover.
This post is my little attempt at clearing up some of the misconceptions regarding the Arab/American marriages.
Perhaps I should clarify a bit; my husband is not only an Arab, but he’s a bedoin (desert) Arab.
WATCH: Why a Canadian girl is contemplating joining ISIS set up a test in hopes of finding out what young women and especially underage girls communicating online with ISIS recruiters are being told and how they’re being coached to make “hijrah” – or migration to the Islamic State.“It’s very easy for a young girl in Canada to set up a Twitter account, gain this kind of access to fighters overseas and be in direct communication with them very quickly,” said Amarnath Amarasingam, an expert on foreign fighters, and postdoctoral fellow at Dalhousie University.
According to the Institute for Strategic Dialogue – a think tank specializing in geo-strategic, social and security issues in London, UK – there are an estimated 550 western women living in ISIS-controlled territory.