We should all read this article in today’s NYT about the women who are involved with ISIS. I have been fascinated by the young, educated, world in front of them british teens who packed up and shipped off to Syria to be brides to suicide bombers — I’ve been wanting to write a play about them, and while I believe that a writer should writer whatever they’re pulled to — I feel like this story is far more complex than I could ever fathom, and I could never truly do their head spaces justice. For one, I was sort of projecting onto these young women a loneliness, a longing to Matter. But this article provides a slightly different glimpse: women who were born / raised in Raqqa, who, not even two years ago, were studying English Lit, swimming in bikinis with their friends. When ISIS took over the city, a lot of them felt like they had no choice but to join the ‘morality police’ and marry fighters, for their own safety and that of their families. A lot them actually fell in love with their husbands. A lot of them wept when their husbands subsequently blew themselves up. A lot were forced to marry yet another soon to be suicide bomber just one month later. Some fled. Some are still trapped in Syria. I like maybe all of America am on a quest to understand ISIS, not just the stereotypes and the assumptions, but what is actually going on in the heads of it’s members. Comprehending how women function in ISIS is PARAMOUNT. Without the women, where are the men? Is the part of them that’s still human and empathetic protected somehow in their women?