New Details on Afghan CIA Base Suicide Bomber
The New York Times reports the suicide bomber who killed 8 people, including 7 CIA agents at a CIA base in Afghanistan last week was indeed an "intelligence asset" -- of the Jordanian Intelligence Service. He had been arrested in Jordan and flipped, so they thought. Instead, he tricked them.
The bomber had been arrested in Jordan and recruited by that country’s intelligence service — which believed that it had turned him into an ally — and then brought to Afghanistan to infiltrate the Qaeda organization by posing as a foreign jihadi.
But the supposed intelligence asset was actually a double-agent who was given explosives by militants in the frontier region between Afghanistan and Pakistan, which he wore to a meeting last Wednesday at Forward Operating Base Chapman, the C.I.A. base in the southeastern province of Khost.
The Jordanian intelligence officer, Capt. Sharif Ali bin Zeid, brought his recruit to the base, which didn't search him based on the officer's representation he was an intelligence asset.
The Jordian intelligence officer was killed in the blast, along with the 7 CIA agents.
Jordan is saying they don't know who the bomber was, only "“We’ve heard he might be Jordanian, or that he might be Saudi." But others have identified him as Humam Khalil Mohammed, a Jordanian physician.
Apparently, they thought the Doctor could lead them to Ayman al Zawahiri, Al Qaeda’s second in command. The AFP reports:
Western intelligence officials told NBC that al-Balawi reportedly called his Jordanian handler last week to say he needed to meet with the CIA team based in Khost, Afghanistan because he had urgent information about Zawahiri, an Egyptian.
"The bomber allegedly was sent by Ayman Zawahiri himself to conduct the attack and claimed he had information on Zawahiri," Riedel said, adding "that all remains unconfirmed as far as I know."
So he was arrested in Jordan over a year ago. I wonder what for? And if he was a double agent for the whole time, I wonder what information he passed along to al Qaeda during that time, and why al Qaeda decided he was expendable when he was working inside with Jordan and soon to be working with the CIA? Seems a bit counter-productive.
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