A series of Facebook posts, quickly removed by the social media platformâ€™s administrators, apparently offered two female sex slaves for sale at a price of $8,000 each.
â€œTo all the bros thinking about buying sexÂ slaves, this one is $8,000,â€ said the first post sourced to an Islamic State fighter who calls himself Abu Assad Almani. TheÂ Washington PostÂ describes the girl in the accompanying photo as â€œyoung, perhaps 18, with olive skin and dark bangs that droop onto her face.â€
Almani soon posted another photo, a woman who had â€œa pale young face with weepy red eyes,â€ and said, â€œAnotherÂ sabiyah,Â also about $8,000. Yay, or nay?â€Â SabiyahÂ means â€œslave.â€
TheÂ Washington PostÂ notes it is â€œunclear whether the accountâ€™s owner was doing the selling himself or commenting about women being sold by other fighters.â€
In any case, Almani hung around to exchange comments with readers of his posts, discussing whether $8,000 was a good price for the women â€” he argued the prices were set by â€œsupply and demandâ€ â€” and even fielding some criticism for posting pictures of unveiled sex slaves.
These posts are grimly consistent with reports that the Islamic State isÂ running out of money and turning to the slave trade as a new income stream, complete with official regulations for how sex slaves should be handled.
TheÂ PostÂ reports those rules include â€œwhether itâ€™s possible to have sex with prepubescent prisoners â€” yes, the Islamic Stateâ€™s legal experts say â€” and how severely a slave can be beaten.â€
Using social media to facilitate the slave trade is evidently a new twist, although probably inevitable, given the Islamic Stateâ€™s fascination with the Internet as a marketing and recruiting tool.
There is no question the Islamic State has an extensive inventory of slaves â€” nearly two thousand Yazidis alone, according to some estimates â€” and their plight will only worsen as conditions within the Islamic State deteriorate. The accounts given by women who escaped ISIS captivity are already horrific.