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Female operators in ISIS and MEK, victims of destructive cults

Female operators in ISIS and MEK, victims of destructive cults

The recent report on the “the Most Notorious Wives and Mothers of Daesh” published on Sputnik, should not be taken for granted, neither should it be considered as the problem of Daesh (ISIS). [1] Moreover, the report is supported by several reports previously published by other news outlets, for instance the Guardian’s one on an American woman of ISIS, Hoda Muthana. [2]

The bitter stories of wives and mothers of ISIS fighters have been highlighted following the decline of the terrorist group. Most of these women regret their decision to join ISIS. Muthana describes her experience with Isis as “very mind-blowing”. “I was brainwashed once and my friends are still brainwashed,” she tells the Guardian. [3]
Although the ISIS terror group was mostly collapsed, there are other groups out there who have already trained the most dangerous wives and mothers to commit the most horrific acts. The Mujahedin Khalq Organization (the MKO/ MEK/ PMOI? Cult of Rajavi) is one of the avant-garde movements to mobilize female jihadists. Cult-like structure is the common characteristic of all these groups which causes the most horrible disasters to their victims.

The group has used female fighters from the early years of its establishment in the 1960s. Female members, particularly young girls were the first terrorist operators in the cities of Iran. After the 1979 Iranian revolution and the early break down with the Islamic Republic government, the MEK launched numerous terrorist attacks against the Iranian civilians and authorities. A large number of these violent acts were carried out by female members of the group. Certain terror acts were committed by female suicides. Iran_interlink reports,”On the morning of Friday, 11 December, 1981, an elderly Iranian cleric Abdol Hosein Dastgheib was assassinated by Mojahedin Khalq assassins in the city of Shiraz while he was leaving his house for the Friday prayer. The assassin was a 19 year old female who was later recognized as Gohar Adab Avaz. “The assassination was a unique act of terror practiced by the MEK in which a human being was used as a living weapon. Pretending to be pregnant, she told the victim’s security people that she had a letter for the Grand Ayatollah and was willing to give the letter to him personally, while under her clothing she was wearing a powerful hand-made bomb.” [4]

Zahra Noorbakhsh, is a victim of Mek’s violence. She was interviewed in a documentary titled “The Secrets Behind Auvers-Sur-Oise”. She also recalls MEK’s female terrorists. She recounts the story of her injury and the death of her two-year-old sister in a public transportation bus that was set on fire by the MEK agents: “We were on the bus and there were a lot of people. Four women got on the bus and they had firebombs on them. They threw the firebombs into the middle of the bus. The bus caught fire. When the bus went on fire, we were in the middle of it and everyone run towards the doors to get out. My sister and I were in the middle of the bus and we were engulfed in flames. My sister got completely burnt, she was burnt to death. And I was injured. I immediately took to hospital. I had very bad injuries on my head, my hands and my face.” [5]
“Marjan Malek was recruited as an asylum seeker in the Netherlands, and changed from a non-political person into a soldier for Rajavi”, states Judith Nourink in her book on the MEK, “Misled Martyrs”. “She went to Tehran for an attack on an army barracks. She was caught.” After her arrest and the deradicalization, Marjan Malek turned out to be one of the early founders of Nejat Society. [6]
Female jihadists usually have a tough life inside their organizations too. “I’m really traumatised by my experience,” Muthana told the guardian. [7] Although they may seem to be overconfident fighters for the cause of the group, female members of the MEK are themselves victims of the most horrific abuses.
In November 2018, the Guardian published an investigated report on the MEK. The author of the piece Arron Merat describes the story of the MEK “terrorist cultists” as “wild wild”. About the human rights abuses inside “the Cult of Rajavi” he writes:

“When we spoke recently, Soltani accused Maryam Rajavi of helping Massoud to abuse female MEK members over the years. “[Massoud] Rajavi thought that the only Achilles heel [for female fighters] was the opposite sex,” Soltani told me. “He would say that the only reason you women would leave me is a man. So, I want all of your hearts.”

“Soltani, who was one of three women to speak about sexual abuse inside the MEK in a 2014 documentary aired on Iranian television, alleged that Rajavi had hundreds of “wives” inside the camp.” [8]
Of-course, the testimonies of Soltani was not broadcasted as widely as the stories about”Jihad al-Nikah”that is referred to”sexual Jihad”by the women in the ISIS. There are definitely a lot more untold stories on female members of the cults such as MEK and ISIS. However, with the fall of ISIS the wives and mothers of the group are now in the limelight of the news media while female members of the MEK are still victims of the notorious hierarchy of Rajavi’s cult. They are isolated in Camp Ashraf 3 in Albania, being brainwashed on daily basis and trained for any act of violence in case of necessity. Remember the two young women Neda Hassani and Sedigheh Mojaveri who set themselves on fire in June 2003 to protest the arrest of the cult leader Maryam Rajavi.
Mazda Parsi

[1] Klarenberg, Kit, On the Run, Nowhere to call Home: The Most Notorious Wives and Mothers of Daesh, Sputnik News, May 20th, 2019.
[2] Chulov, Martin& McKernan, Bethan, Hoda Muthana ‘deeply regrets’ joining Isis and wants to return home, The Guardian, February 17th, 2019.
[3] ibid
[4] https://www.nejatngo.org/en/posts/4624
[5] https://www.nejatngo.org/en/posts/6767
[6] Neurink, Judit, Misled Martyrs: How Iranian terrorists became America’s best friends, GigaBoek, January 12, 2009.
[7] Chulov, Martin& McKernan, Bethan, Hoda Muthana ‘deeply regrets’ joining Isis and wants to return home, The Guardian, February 17th, 2019.
[8] Merat, Aron, Terrorists, cultists – or champions of Iranian democracy? The wild wild story of the MEK, The Guardian, November 9th, 2018.

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