As if last week’s story about ISIS throwing gay men off of tall buildings wasn’t bad enough, this week I have something even more ridiculous for you. For some living on IS controlled land, you don’t even have to be gay, you just have to raise pigeons. That’s right, according to radical Muslims, raising pigeons and other birds is cause for arrest and imprisonment.
Abu Abdullah, a 52-year old farmer, reports that six heavily armed men barged into his home and dragged his oldest son away. The crime? They charged that raising pigeons was taking time away from worshipping Allah and that all guilty would be punished. The fighters put all of the son’s pigeons in bags and burned them, then went around the village and likewise arrested all bird keepers, most aged 16 to 22, destroyed their birds and took them away. IS fighters told Abdullah, “He is not following the real Islam, he must be punished for being a pigeon breeder, this habit is taking him away from worshiping Allah.”
While no one really knows what happened to any of those men, experts suspect that they are being forced to join ISIS as fighters in Syria. Bird breeding and keeping has been popular among the middle and lower classes for many years but recently, the new radicalized Muslims have seen it with suspicion. According to some, it is a capital offense because many breeders feed their birds at the same time they are supposed to be engaging in one of the five daily prayers of devout Islam. There are imams who have issued fatwas against keeping birds of any kind.
“We are helpless and hopeless. I know they will kill him sooner or later,” Abu Abdullah said immediately after his son was taken. “I’m waiting for someone to tell me he was killed, and the only thing I will do is to take his body and bury it.” However, things turned out better than you might expect, Abdullah and his family paid an $1,800 random to ISIS and his son was returned, bloody and beaten, with a warning never to keep birds at home again. Of the rest taken by IS fighters that day, not all were so lucky. Three of the 15 were executed for being heretics and disrespecting Islam.
In Mosul, 13 young boys were executed by IS fighters for daring to watch a soccer match between Iraq and Jordan. IS claims the boys were violating religious law and shot them all dead. The kind of bizarre things that radical Islam finds objectionable seems all over the map. That’s why they’ve earned yet another spot on Horror Show Sunday.