Stretch, grab a late afternoon cup of caffeine and get caught up on the most important news of the day with our Coffee Break newsletter. These are the stories that will fill you in on the world that's spinning outside of your office window - at the moment that you get a chance to take a breath.
Sign up now to save time and stay informed!

ISIS to Jihadists: 'Kidnap the Children' of Western Non-Muslims

The Islamic State told followers to kidnap children of non-believers in a lengthy instructional article on seizing Westerners' wealth and possessions, illustrating the kidnapping directive with a picture of church choir boys.

Jihadists residing in non-Muslim lands, according to the article, should "not hesitate to take the wealth of the harbi kuffar [non-Muslim disbelievers], either by force or through theft and fraud, and ponder the statement of [medieval Sunni theologian] Imam Ibn Taymiyyah concerning the Muslims who enters dar al-harb [land of disbelievers]: 'Likewise, if he kidnaps them or their children, or subdues them in any way, then the lives and wealth of the harbi kuffar are permissible for the Muslims. So if they seize them in a shar’i manner they own them.'”

"Do not forget that their war on the Islamic State is dependant [sic] on wealth, so purify your intentions, place your trust in Allah, and do not seek anyone’s advice with regards to taking their wealth," continues the directive in the latest issue of ISIS' Rumiyah magazine. "Proceed forward with Allah’s blessing, for indeed stealing the kuffar’s wealth weakens them, threatens the security of their economies, strengthens and emboldens the believers, and prepares them for something greater than theft, and this is among the aspects of jihad that have been abandoned in this era except by a group of those who are truthful, and how few they are."

Accompanying the article is an image of a few singers from the King's College Choir in Cambridge, UK, which consists of 16 boys between the ages of 9 and 13 and 14 college undergraduates, with the all-caps caption: "IT IS PERMISSIBLE TO KIDNAP THE CHILDREN OF THE HARBI KUFFAR."

ISIS has used the magazine before to call on jihadists to plunder the wealth of disbelievers and take slaves. An April article in Rumiyah said 20 percent of stolen wealth "should be set aside and given to the Khalifah or to an official representative of the Khalifah for those who are able."

But "whoever kills a kafir – for which he has proof of his killing him" gets to keep all the loot. Or, specifically, "whatever the kafir possesses at the time and place he is killed."

"This includes his clothing, jewelry, all kinds of weapons, gold, silver, currencies, as well as the vehicle he was using, and so forth," ISIS added.

ISIS defined "property" that can be included in these booty-collecting operations to include people: "May Allah, the Most Generous, make the kuffar’s wealth, weapons, women, and children ghanimah [booty] for those who strive for His cause."

This month's 60-page Rumiyah, issued online in various languages including English and French, was published about a week late amid ISIS losing the nine-month battle to hold on to their Iraqi stronghold, Mosul.

Those who are legitimate targets for theft of property or persons, ISIS says in the new issue, are "not only those kuffar who are at war with the Muslims."

"Rather, the harbi kuffar include all those to whom the Muslims have not granted security, either with a dhimmah contract, a covenant of security, or a ceasefire treaty, regardless of whether they are soldiers enlisted in the military, or non-combatants and others from among the common masses of the kuffar," the article states.

In a directive long on quoting of the Quran and Islamic scholars to back up their booty-plunder quests, ISIS reiterates that the jihadist gets to keep 80 percent.

"And it is permissible for the Muslims to commit deception when stealing wealth from harbi kuffar wherever they are and however they are found, and it has not been established through any shar’i evidence nor through any cultural norms that entry visas are contracts or that they entail the granting of security," ISIS continues. "Rather, an entry visa is permission to enter the land, and permission to enter does not entail the granting of security. And a man does not have security in his land while some people of those lands don’t have security from one another, and one party granting security does not entail the other party also granting security."

"...And whoever enters dar al-harb using documents that are forged, or those that are authentic and which establish his religion and personal information, it is permissible for him to kill them and take their wealth if that is easy for him, because this does not represent the granting of security."

A section of the article discusses inciting Muslims "to take the wealth of the kuffar and wage jihad with it."

"Some Muslims today may not like taking the wealth of the kuffar by force and may feel that the wealth they obtain doing other work is better, and this is incorrect," ISIS argues. "...It is a must on every muwahhid to expand the scope of his jihad to include waging war on the kuffar’s wealth – for the war on wealth and economies represents the largest of the arenas of jihad."

It's especially incumbent upon Muslims who can't travel to the shrinking Islamic State to join the jihad, the magazine insists.

"There is no doubt that exhausting the wealth of the kuffar today has a major impact on our war with them," the terror group says, adding a jihadist "uses the wealth of the kuffar to purchase any required weapons and equipment to carry out operations in the enemy’s homeland."