Images posted on Twitter purport to show letters written by British school children praising Al Qaeda’s Syria affiliate the Nusra Front.
According to the research organizations Site Intelligence Group and the Middle East Media Research Institute, someone claiming to be a U.K.-based Koran teacher posted pictures on Twitter of the students’ letters heaping praise on the terrorists, referring to them as “heroes” and “role models.”
According to the Daily Mail, the teacher boasted to her 500 followers about the content of the letters, which her pupils were forced to write in both English and Arabic and open each of the notes with “To our brothers in…”
She followed up the initial tweet with another one saying, “Please encourage these lil enthusiastic daughters of this ummah…they eagerly awaiting a response…” before adding how particularly fond she was of one of the letters.
Her favorite letter has a green hilly scene drawn in crayon with a black ISIS flag flying high above them and reads: “I am so happy to write to my brothers of the mujahideen in Syria. I think of you all like heroes.”
It then goes on to praise “brave” jihadis and question why many people, including her mother, believe the jihadists are bad.
The child concludes that “it doesn’t matter” and she still loves them all “more than the whole world altogether.”
Although it is not known at which school they were written, British newspaper The Sun reported that the letters are believed to have been written at an after-school Koran class and are thought to have been penned under the persuasion of the unidentified class teacher.
Terrorism expert Hannah Stuart warned the teacher could be tricking the families of the kids, who may not share her views.
One child wrote to the fighters, “You will always be remembered in our hearts for your bravery when you stood up for Islam while the rest of us do not.”
“I wish I could be there fighting for Islam,” the child added.
Another child referred to the jihadists as “diamonds among stones” and the twisted letter was signed with a red finger-painted hand print.
The reported teacher posted the letters – apparently penned by little girls – using the now deactivated Twitter user name @irhabiyya_18, which in Arabic means “terrorist_18.”
Keeping her identity hidden by choosing not to display her own photograph in her profile picture, the unknown woman uses her social media account to promote jihad and has in the past posted praise for Islamic militants.
Her Twitter page hints at close contact with fighters and features sickening images of beheading victims.
Haras Rafiq, head of the counter-extremism Quilliam Foundation told the Daily Mail, “She is clearly brainwashing youngsters. These kids are vulnerable.”