Schoolgirl jihadists: Society rejected

Even if you are a parent of an extremely rebellious teenager it would be very difficult to understand why hundreds of young women and girls are leaving their homes in the West to join Islamic fighters in the Middle East.

Why, after all, would a young person in a position to enjoy all of the opportunities offered by our society prefer to live in a culture where beheading and crucifixion are normal, where women are kept in a medieval darkness and denied basic rights their great-grandmothers regarded as everyday?

The Guardian reported yesterday that girls as young as 14 are going to Syria to marry jihadis, bear their children, and join communities of fighters, with a small number taking up arms.

Every society has a number of disenchanted people, people offended by some if its values or inequities but a rejection on this tremendous scale, even if it is only by a few hundred immature women, is a profound challenge. Their rejection of our world seems so very extreme that they, like it or not, ask questions that deserve an answer.


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