ISIS savages’ greatest fear is being killed by a woman, which means they don’t get their 72 virgins.
Vocativ “I would be very happy to kill ISIS,” says Col. Rangeen Majeed, her hair tied back in a neat bun. The 32-year-old sniper is just one of the women who make up an all-female unit of the Kurdish Peshmerga army fighting alongside men on the front lines against ISIS in northern Iraq. “The other day in Kirkuk,” she says, “I begged them for the sniper rifle so that I could kill some of them.”
Although the women of the Peshmerga’s all-female units remain segregated from their male counterparts, they still undergo the intensive training. They’re taught how to properly defend themselves, use AK-47s and wield rocket-propelled grenades. “I’m not afraid of ISIS,” says Chelan Shakwan, a 24-year-old who carries out assault rifle missions. “I’m ready to sacrifice myself and my brothers for my country.” Shakwan’s sentiments are shared by her colleagues, some of whom also describe themselves as housewives and mothers.
Says Lt. Ismael Hameed Muhamed, the managing director of the brigade who will be taking the women into battle, “Women are tougher than the men sometimes.”