A reporter embedded with the U.S. military in Iraq reports a government official has recounted a new atrocity by al-Qaida: several instances in which terrorists baked a young boy, then invited his family to lunch with the victim as the main course.
The report is from Michael Yon, a Special Forces soldier who returned to Iraq to report on the successes there, inspired, he told radio talk-show host Hugh Hewitt, by a “news cycle that seems to pander toward the terrorists.”
Yon was in Baqubah listening to the statements of an Iraqi official who asked that his name not be reported. Yon said the Iraqi told him al-Qaida arrived in Baqubah and united a number of criminal gangs, leaving death and destruction behind.
“Speaking through an American interpreter, Lt. David Wallach, who is a native Arabic speaker, the Iraqi official related how al-Qaida united these gangs who then became absorbed into ‘al-Qaida.’ They recruited boys born during the years 1991, 92 and 93 who were each given weapons, including pistols, a bicycle and a phone (with phone cards paid) and a salary of $100 per month, all courtesy of al-Qaida. These boys were used for kidnapping, torturing and murdering people,” said Yon’s dispatch, “Bless the Beasts and Children.”
“At first, he said, they would only target Shia, but over time the new al-Qaida directed attacks against Sunni, and then anyone who thought differently. The official reported that on a couple of occasions in Baqubah, al-Qaida invited to lunch families they wanted to convert to their way of thinking. In each instance, the family had a boy, he said, who was about 11 years old,” Yon continued.
“As Lt. David Wallach interpreted the man’s words, I saw Wallach go blank and silent. He stopped interpreting for a moment. I asked Wallach, ‘What did he say?’ Wallach said that at these luncheons, the families were sat down to eat. And then their boy was brought in with his mouth stuffed. The boy had been baked. Al-Qaida served the boy to his family.”
‘Nobody lifted a finger’
In an exchange of e-mails with WND, since Yon was reporting this week from a region with no telephone signal, he confirmed his report.
He was in Buqubah for several reasons.
“One of those reasons was that AP had just reported a massacre as fact which turned out to be fallacy. Secondly, this mass murder I described in ‘Bless the Beasts and Children’ occurred only about 3.5 miles from where I am writing to you tonight. There were reporters here during that time, including from AP, and AP also had a stringer here. (Meaning they had two.) The ‘massacre’ that turned out to be a farce but was reported by AP happened just days before my report of a real massacre, but AP and others simply ignored despite having assets only minutes away,” he said.
“I gave the name of the village, grid coordinates, photos and posted video, and published names of Iraqi and American officials who were very easy to reach. Nobody lifted a finger. This upset a lot of people at home, and rightfully so. I was here with hard evidence – photos, video, grid coordinates and plenty of witnesses, yet flatline from MSM,” he told WND.
But he stayed in the area, asking questions.
“That’s when one Iraqi official mentioned the baking,” Yon said, a report he said later was confirmed for him by other Iraqi sources.
“Perhaps it’s urban legend. I have no idea. But my reporting was spot on. … I quoted someone and offered zero opinion,” Yon, whose work is financed directly by his readers, told WND.
He said while he did not witness this, there have been myriad other atrocities.
“I have not just heard about them, I have seen them,” he told WND.
Yon said in another dispatch he witnessed the excavation of the heads of decapitated children.
“There is no imaginary line of credulity that al-Qaida might cross should it go from beheading children to baking them,” he wrote.
He added: “Al-Qaida: the organization that gleefully bragged about murdering roughly 3,000 people by smashing jets full of civilians into buildings and earth. Al-Qaida in Iraq: who proudly broadcast their penchant for sawing off the heads of living breathing people, and in such a manner as to ensure lots of spurting blood and gurgles of final pain, in some cases with the added flourish of the executioner raising up the severed head and squealing excitedly.”
“People at home might find it incredible, improbable, even impossible. Yet here in combat with al-Qaida, the idea is no more improbable-sounding than someone saying ‘The chicken crossed the road.’ Maybe the chicken crossed the road. Maybe not. The veterans I’ve been talking with here have no difficulty imagining the chicken crossing the road, or al-Qaida roasting kids. Sickening, yes. Improbable, no,” he said.
“One clear indicator of just how bad a terrorist group is, is when battle-hardened soldiers – and writers like me who travel with them – don’t find it hard to believe a story which purports that al-Qaida had baked a child and set his roasted body out as the main course at a lunch for his parents,” he said.
A comment on Yon’s website from “James” suggested the description “barbarians” should apply.
“The moral equivalency argument needs to be crushed. We detain someone without due process and AQI bakes a child and feeds him to his family. Yet many people in the West are saying, ‘We’re no better.'”
‘Report wouldn’t surprise me’
A group with far more knowledge about torture and atrocities than it would prefer is Washington, D.C.-based International Christian Concern.
Policy analyst Jeremy Sewall told WND the report is “pretty extreme.”
But he also said with the documentation of various other tortures, “Your report wouldn’t surprise me.”
“I’m just thinking of a report about two Muslims who approached a Christian boy at work at a mechanic’s shop. They said, ‘Are you a Christian.’ He said, “Yes.’ And they beheaded him on the spot,” Sewall said.
He also cited the recently confirmed report from Turkey, where Muslims martyred three Christians in an attack described as “gruesome.”
In that case, “various body parts were chopped off,” he confirmed. “It was terrible.”
Necati Aydin, Tilman Geske and Ugur Yuksel, (L to R) who were martyred by Muslims in Turkey
As WND reported, Tilman Geske, a German citizen, and two Turkish Christians were martyred – allegedly by five Muslims who met the three victims at a Christian publishing company for a Bible study, according to Voice of the Martyrs.
The report said Geske, 46, Pastor Necati Aydin and Ugur Yuksel were killed with hundreds of stab wounds, and “they were disemboweled and their intestines sliced up in front of their eyes.”