Westerners join Iraqi Christian militia to fight Islamic State




 
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February 15th, 2015  
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Topic: Westerners join Iraqi Christian militia to fight Islamic State


By Isabel Coles DUHOK, Iraq (Reuters) - Saint Michael, the archangel of battle, is tattooed across the back of a U.S. army veteran who recently returned to Iraq and joined a Christian militia fighting Islamic State in what he sees as a biblical war between good and evil. Brett, 28, carries the same thumb-worn pocket Bible he did whilst deployed to Iraq in 2006 a picture of the Virgin Mary tucked inside its pages and his favorite verses highlighted. "Here Im fighting for a people and for a faith, and the enemy is much bigger and more brutal." Thousands of foreigners have flocked to Iraq and Syria in the past two years, mostly to join Islamic State, but a handful of idealistic Westerners are enlisting as well, citing frustration their governments are not doing more to combat the ultra-radical Islamists or prevent the suffering of innocents. The militia they joined is called Dwekh Nawsha meaning self-sacrifice in the ancient Aramaic language spoken by Christ and still used by Assyrian Christians, who consider themselves the indigenous people of Iraq.

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