In January 2014, I wrote “Islam’s ban on child combatants.” Sadly, extremist groups continue to use child combatants. Things appear to have taken a tragic turn for the worse. What’s worse than child soldiers? Suicide bombers using babies to sneak bombs past security. According to the BBC:
Female suicide bombers in Nigeria are now carrying babies to avoid detection in their attacks, authorities warn.
An attack in the town of Madagali on 13 January saw two women detonate their devices, killing themselves, two babies, and four others.
They had passed a vigilante checkpoint, mistaken for civilians because they were carrying infants.
Female attackers have been seen before, but officials said the use of babies could signal a “dangerous” trend.
This is terrible on so many levels. Parents and adults are supposed to protect and nurture children – not kill and maim them. And now women with babies or children will be perceived as threats to security and making them more likely to be subject to rough security screening.
Sadly, many Muslim extremists groups use minors as soldiers and for carrying out violent acts.
The Prophet turned away minors from participating in battles. Ibn ʿUmar (may Allāh be pleased with them both) said: “I was presented to the Prophet on the Day of Uḥud when I was fourteen years and he did not permit me. I was presented to him on the Day of Khandaq when I was fifteen years and he accepted me.” Ibn Ḥibbān (4727, ); its source is in al-Bukhārī (2664, 4097) and Muslim (1868 #91).
Employing child soldiers or using babies to deliver bombs completely ignores and defies this Prophetic guidance.
Some countries ban or plan to ban face-veiling and full-body on the grounds that they can and have been used by criminals and terrorists. I wonder if they will now suggest banning women from carrying babies in public since that, too, has been used to spread terror.
UPDATE. My blog software burped so I had to rewrite the contents.