A mother watched in horror as her 14-year-old son was summarily tried, sentenced and executed all because of a joke he’d exchanged with a customer at his Aleppo, Syria coffee kiosk.
While in her apartment, Nadia Umm Fuad heard a commotion outside with a neighbor shouting, “they have brought back the kid,” according to The Telegraph.
“I went out on my balcony,” she told The Telegraph’s Richard Spencer. “I said to his father, ‘they are going to shoot your son! Come! Come! Come!’ I was on the stairs when I heard the first shot. I was at the door when I heard the second shot,” she recalled.
“I saw the third shot. I was shouting, ‘That’s haram, forbidden! Stop! Stop! You are killing a child.’ But they just gave me a dirty look and got into their car. As they went, they drove over my son’s arm, as he lay there dying.”
This event — this murder of young Mohammed Katta — took place earlier this month and has created an international outcry exemplifying one truth in the civil war in that country — no one is wearing white hats. There are no good guys, only bad guys to varying degrees.
Who does one trust? A dictatorial regime that murders its citizenry, or murderous jihadists?
The problem arose when a customer demanded a coffee upon the promise to pay for it on another day. Young Mohammed joked good-naturedly: “I wouldn’t give the Prophet Mohammed credit if he came here today.”
The wrong people overheard. The rushed over, grabbed the boy, threw him in a car and drove away. Thirty minutes later they returned.
Young Mohammed was stumbling and clearly beaten and a bag had been placed over his head. And it was then that the twisted logic of the boy’s executioner was proclaimed.
“I heard them say, ‘People of Aleppo and people of Shaar! Anyone who curses God is given three days to repent. Anyone who curses the Prophet is killed immediately’,” Nadia Umm Fuad said.
The Telegraph continues:
The murder of Mohammed, a drummer boy in the revolution’s early protest marches, has shocked even the battle-hardened people of Aleppo. It is easy for some to blame, as they do, the regime for inserting spies behind rebel lines to carry out atrocities to discredit the rebels.
But the killing, to many, only confirms what they already know: that a wild and untamed version of the most militant Islamist credos has entered the conflict. Jabhat al-Nusra, the local affiliate of al-Qaeda, has issued a statement condemning the death and denying responsibility.
As violent as the al-Qaida-backed al-Nusra is, even more violent, fundamentalist factions have splintered off from that group.
Nadia Umm Fuad told Spencer that the city of Aleppo had changed recently. “We didn’t have any problems when the FSA controlled Aleppo,” she said. “There are so many groups now, that we don’t know who is in charge.”
The young boy was never given a chance to offer a defense on his own behalf when he was returned. Prior to being shot, he said nothing.
“I saw my son, and saw him dead, and saw a fountain of blood coming out of him,” his father, Abdulwahab Katta, said. “I too said nothing. I was mute.”
Justice under the Syrian regime is no less brutal. Early in the war they picked up 13-ywear-old Hamza al-Khatib in Deraa, located in Southern Syria. When government troops returned the boy to his parents, he’d been burned, beaten, kneecap smashed, shot three times and his genitals had been removed.
There are no guys in white hats in Syria — just thugs in black hoods.
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