Brother: Killed jihadist a "naive person, who made a choice for evil"
Jason W. describes his brother Jermaine W., who was killed in Syria, as a good, but naive person who made the wrong choices, in a letter he posted on Facebook. Jason also describes how difficult it is for his family to mourn the loss of their son and brother in the face of those wrong choices.
Jermaine W., 28, left for Syria with his wife and three children last year. His wife is now expecting their fourth child. Jermaine was killed last week Monday. According to NOS, he died in a bombardment in the Syrian city of Raqqa - the capital of the ISIS caliphate. Other Dutch jihadists Abu Luqman al-Muhajir also died in the bombardment, sources told the broadcaster.
In his letter, Jason says thank you for the support and kindness people have shown his family after the news of his brother's death. He writes that they have no reason to believe that Jermaine committed war crimes or crimes against humanity during his stay in the Caliphate, and this gives the family a degree of peace.
"Of course we are well aware of the great moral and emotional ambiguities that surround his death." Jason writes. "He has made some incomprehensible and morally abhorrent choices, deciding to join a group which represents everything which is evil in this world. Let this be entirely clear: we completely and utterly reject the choices that he and his wife made"
Jason writes that the fact that Jermaine's death can not be separated from these wrong choices makes the mourning process ambiguous and complicated. "There is no body, no grave and we do not know where he was killed. We can lay no flowers or engage in the rituals that help us to deal with his death. The moral and emotional ambiguities make the mourning process more complex that it should be."
The family now hopes to be able to get Jermaine's children back from Syria. "These children are the victims of the choices their parents made. They did not chose this, nor do they carry any responsibility. The only thing we can hope for is to embrace them again as soon as possible."
Jason's full letter can be read here.