According to reports out of Iraq, members of the Islamic terrorist group ISIS lined up and systematically shot dead at least 50 men, women, and children from a Sunni Muslim tribe in a village north of Ramadi on Sunday, November 2. Fox News reported that the latest killings, which were corroborated by government officials in Iraq's Anbar province, brings to at least 150 the number of Sunni tribespeople slaughtered by ISIS thugs in the last two weeks.
The latest attack occurred in the village of Ras al-Maa, north of the provincial capital of Ramadi, where ISIS gunmen rounded up the unarmed tribespeople, which included six women and four children, and shot them one by one, a senior tribesman told the Associated Press. The terrorists also reportedly kidnapped nearly 20 additional individuals.
The Anbar province has been a key target of ISIS as the extremist Islamic group attempts to expand its grip across Iraq and Syria. While some Sunnis supported the ISIS advance late last year when the group launched assaults on Fallujah and Ramadi, since that time Sunni tribesmen have been key in keeping ISIS from fully seizing Ramadi and other villages in the area. AP noted that Sunni tribes have assisted Iraqi special forces in protecting the Haditha Dam in Anbar, which has been in danger of destruction.”
Some observers speculate that the latest round of ISIS executions may be payback for Sunni tribes siding with Iraqi and American forces in the past, as well as an attempt to strike fear into those who may consider joining the resistance against the ISIS advance.
The latest news comes on the heels of reports earlier this week that ISIS thugs had executed up to 600 inmates at a prison outside of Mosul last June. The inmates at the Badoosh prison were reportedly forced to kneel along the edge of a ravine, and then were sprayed with automatic weapons fire.
According to survivor accounts published by CBS News, the ISIS gunmen “herded up to 1,500 inmates onto trucks and drove them to an isolated stretch of desert about two kilometers from the prison, the survivors said. After taking several hundred away in trucks, they forced the Shiites to form one long line along the ravine edge and then count their number in the line before showering them with machine-gun fire.”
A spokesperson for the group Human Rights Watch said that “the gruesome details of ISIS' mass murder of prison inmates make it impossible to deny the depravity of this extremist group. People of every ethnicity and creed should condemn these horrific tactics, and press Iraqi and international authorities to bring those responsible to justice.”
Meanwhile, Fox News has reported that between 20 and 30 former Guantanamo Bay detainees may have joined ISIS and other militant Islamic groups in Iraq and Syria, according to Defense Department officials. “The intelligence offers a mixed picture,” reported Fox, and while the figures are not exact, U.S. officials “are certain at least some of the released detainees are fighting with the Islamic State, or ISIS, on the ground inside Syria. Others are believed to be supporting Al Qaeda or the affiliated al-Nusra Front in Syria.”
“We know that some of the detainees that have come out of Guantanamo have gone back to the fight,” said Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.
Photo of Iraqi policemen on patrol: U.S. military