Seven minute video from Raqqah, the fourth in a series, with children training to perform sniper tasks. The dialogue is spoken by a ten year old in English and Arabic along with an appearance from another child who explains he left Sinjar for Raqqah. (tangentcode Jan 2017) (tangentcode March 2015)
The video may be disturbing in the twenty first century but the practice of using children as soldiers in besieged cities was not uncommon in World War Two and is common place in conflicts in Africa today. What this does signal, as it did in 1945, is the total absorption of the human condition in war.
The fight in Raqqah is an idealogical ‘last stand’ as much as it is a fight for a dusty old city in Northern Syria. Raqqa itself is not a strategic position but more a jewel in the (insane) crown of the Baghdadi doctrine. This is shown in the way the Baghdadi speech is over laid in the final scenes of the video like a voice from the ether.