Information has just been released that a 12-year-old German-Iraqi boy suspected of having links to extremist group Islamic State attempted to blow up a bomb at this Christmas market in the western town of Ludwigshafen, German on November 24.
The boy was homegrown, apparently being born in Ludwigshafe in 2004. According to reports a yet unknown ISIS member "strongly radicalized" the young boy and taught him how to make bombs. The boy put his lessons into effect by making a "nail-bomb," placing it in a back pack and then then leaving it at a crowded spot in the market. The boy attempted to set the bomb off but the detonator malfunctioned and the bomb was found by one of the market's visitors. After the police were called and the bomb squad defused the bomb, police identified and arrested the boy, who is now in a youth detention center. The area's Federal Public Prosecutor has taken over investigations on the charge of a serious act of violent subversion although he has made no public comment as of yet.
ISIS child bombers have become a new trend this year and shows that ISIS is changing the way it conducts operations. In march of this year, after American commando's killed a top Islamic State commander named Haji Imam, ISIS retaliated by using a child suicide bomber to blow up a weekly soccer match held in a stadium in the Babil province of the town of Iskandariyah, Iraq. The bomber detonated his belt just as trophies were being handed out so that the crowd would be denser.
The bombing killed 41 and injured 105, although ISIS inflated the numbers to 60 dead. ISIS released a statement the next day that said: "Our knight immersed into their crowds until he detonated his belt, turning them into scattered parts"
In august of this year another 12-year-old ISIS suicide bomber killed 51 people and injured over 100 at a Kurdish wedding in Gaziantep, Turkey. Sadly the child was placed with other children when he detonated his bomb killing 22 children, all under the age of 14.
Only 24 hours later, in the Iraqi city of Kirkuk, a 14-year-old suicide bomber was captured seconds before he was able to set off a bomb vest concealed under a huge Barcelona football shirt, so large on him it reached down to his knees. The boy was attempting to run into and blow up a Shia mosque, which had already had two separate suicide attacks over the previous weekend.
According to reports, the boy had been displaced from the ISIS-held city of Mosul, Iraq's second largest, by recent military operations in the area. "The boy claimed during interrogation that he had been kidnapped by masked men who put the explosives on him and sent him to the area," said Kirkuk intelligence official Brigadier Chato Fadhil Humadi. Investigators also believe the boy had been drugged before being sent on the suicide mission.
The belt was later detonated safely after the suspect was led away.
The use of child soldiers by ISIS is not unusual, ISIS has been proud to show them off calling them the "cubs of the caliphate". Even releasing a video of a ISIS child execution squad made up of 10-12 year olds from area's like Egypt, Turkey, Tunisia, Uzbekistan and even from Briton.
The jihadists have a history of using children as weapons, however, sending them to their death strapped with explosives and putting them on frontlines in Iraq and Syria. Yet this has largely been a problem that the west has turned a blind eye to mainly because it didn't effect them, but no more. ISIS has learned to adapt and is now showing the world that it is able to carry out the same type of sinister operations in European countries like Germany. A report released earlier this year by Combating Terrorism Centre at West Point university in the US revealed 89 children died fighting for the Islamic State last year and that the use of child suicide bombers were suspected to increase.