Mole penetration of AQAP incident of 2012
Date May 8, 2012 (discovered)
Attack type Bombing (foiled)
Deaths 0
Injured 0
Suspected perpetrators Ibrahim Hassan al-Asiri

In 2012 a Saudi Arabian citizen was trained and equipped to use a underwear bomb to bring down an airliner.[1] News of the plot broke on May 8, 2012. Initial reports credited the CIA with apprehending the bomber, and reported, Peter King a US legislator who sits on the Homeland Security Committee asserted "We don't have to worry about him anymore".[2] Later reports asserted the bomber was a mole, who merely pretended to be a terrorist, willing to serve as a suicide bomber, who reported to his counter-terrorism handlers immediately after he had been trained and equipped, so the newest generation of underwear bombs could be analyzed for their weaknesses.

Although King claimed, "This was indeed a major accomplishment for the CIA. This is intelligence at its best," later reports asserted the operation had been managed by other nation's counter-security officials.[1][2]

May 8th reports noted that news of the bomb plot came a day after news that senior al Qaeda leader Fahd al-Quso had been killed in Yemen by a missile fired from an unmanned drone.[2]

Ibrahim al-Asiri, believed to be the chief bomb-maker for Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, is reported to have built this bomb.[1] He is credited with two earlier bombs built to evade detection. In 2009 his brother Abdullah al-Asiri hid a bomb made by Ibrahim up his anus, which wounded Saudi Arabia's deputy minister of the Interior. He is credited with constructing the "underwear bomb" said to have built the bomb used by Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab. Security officials are concerned that the recent bomb has been improved relative to the earlier versions.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Daniel Klaidman, Christopher Dickey (2012-05-14). "Ibrahim al-Asiri: The Body Bomb Menace". Daily Beast. Retrieved 2012-05-14.  mirror
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 "CIA foils Qaida plot to blow up plane". Times of India. 2012-05-09. Retrieved 2012-05-14. "The Central Intelligence Agency, working closely with foreign partners, thwarted a plot by the Yemeni branch of al-Qaida to smuggle an experimental bomb aboard an airliner bound for the US, intelligence officials said."  mirror
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