Dear Musa: How To Live When My Friends Are Martyred?

One of the most difficult trials of jihad is losing close friends,” admitted Chechen Islamic State (IS) militant and self-styled Islamist ideologue Musa Abu Yusuf al-Shishani in a recent social-media post.

Musa describes getting to know a fellow militant with a “pleasant disposition” and then bonding with him while “keeping the watch and in battle.”

“He’s prepared to take off his warm clothes and give them to you, and he’ll freeze just so long as you’re warm,” Musa writes. “Or he’ll give you his last Snickers bar and go hungry himself…. And then later you sit together in the makkar [communal housing] and drink tea.”

But the next thing you know that friend is killed, and “you’re in shock.”