Bomber says he lured CIA operatives with misleading intel

An al-Qaeda suicide bomber who killed seven CIA operatives in Afghanistan has claimed that he lured American and Jordanian intelligence officers into a trap by offering them doctored information about terrorist targets as well as videotapes of senior leaders of his group.

In a posthumous video message posted on an extremist website, Jordanian physician and double agent Humam Khalil Abu-Mulal al-Balawi claimed that he intended to kidnap only a single Jordanian intelligence officer, but then stumbled on an unexpected opportunity to attack a large group of Americans and their Jordanian allies at once.

“It wasn’t planned this way,” Balawi says in a 44-minute undated videotape released on Sunday by as-Sahab, the media arm of al-Qaeda.

He attributes the change to “the stupidity of Jordanian intelligence and the stupidity of American intelligence” services that invited him to Afghanistan to help set up a strike against al-Qaeda targets.

The video was apparently filmed shortly before the 32-year-old al-Balawi blew himself up at a CIA facility on December 30 in Afghanistan’s eastern province of Khost where he’d been invited to reveal information on al-Qaeda No 2 Ayman al-Zawahri. The attack killed nine people, including seven Americans. It was the deadliest attack on the US intelligence agency’s staff in a quarter-century.

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