A Danish man claims that he helped the CIA track radical American cleric Anwar al-Awlaki until the al-Qaeda figure was killed in a U.S. drone strike in September 2011, Brian Ross of ABC News reports.Muslim convert Morten Storm provided letters, emails, audio recordings and videos to the Danish newspaper Jyllands-Posten that he says prove that he became a double agent for the Danish intelligence service (PET) and later was paid $250,000 by the CIA to find al-Awlaki a wife.
Storm, 36, said that he gave al-Awlaki — a New Mexico-born cleric who called for jihad against Americans — a bugged USB stick that tracked the al-Qaeda propagandist until an American drone strike killed him in Yemen in September 2011.
The CIA declined to comment to ABC News.
Storm said he was a radical Islamist in the UK in the mid-2000s before being turned by PET in 2006. He claims that he befriended al-Awlaki after travelling to Yemen several times and eventually the cleric would ask Storm, through encrypted USB messages, to buy things like clothes and perfume for his wife.
Storm provided the Danish newspaper with “proposal” videos and e-mails that seem to corroborate that he found al-Awlaki his third wife, a 32-year-old Croatian named Aminah who now works for “Inspire” — the al-Qaeda on-line magazine in which al-Awlaki’s writings appeared.
Bruce Riedel, a former CIA officer, told ABC News that Storm’s story “is consistent with how you would infiltrate a terrorist group like al Qaeda” because Storm is “the perfect kind of infiltrator, perfect kind of plant inside of al Qaeda.”
The PET denied playing a part in al-Awlaki’s death, but Storm’s story has caused some public anger in Denmark among citizens who are concerned that their government participated in an illegal assassination given that al-Awlaki was a U.S. citizen.
In February the ACLU filed a suit against the Obama administration to force the government to explain the legal basis for the strikes that killed al-Awlaki, his 16-year-old son, and Samir Khan (all U.S. citizens).
Here is the “proposal” video that Storm gave Jyllands-Posten:
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