Finally read the story of Capt. Harith al-Sudani, a member of the Falcon Intelligence Cell, #Iraq’s counterterrorism intelligence unit, who infiltrated #IS and saved countless lives before he was discovered and murdered. https://t.co/uNggtOvFtY pic.twitter.com/sMbuiCcP6Q— Kyle Orton (@KyleWOrton) August 14, 2018
A captain from Iraq’s Falcon Intelligence Cell was in one of the world’s most dangerous undercover operations where he managed to go into the highest ranks of the Islamic State.
He saved hundreds of lives but lost his own.
In 2016, double agent Captain Harith al-Sudani joined the operation and within a few months he reached the higher ranks of the terrorist group. He posed himself as a jihadi and his job was to transport bombs to specific targets before detonating them.
But in reality, he transferred the sensitive information to a secret branch of Iraq’s national intelligence agency.
The spy tricked members of the Islamic State by replacing the original bomb with a smaller device and then after the explosion of the bomb, people who appeared to be wounded would walk on the scene and lie down on their positions.
Leaders of the terrorist group would believe that people had actually died and that their plan had been successful but in truth hundreds of lives had been saved.
In the sixteen months of playing a spy, al-Sudani foiled 30 planned vehicle-bomb attacks and 18 suicide bombers.
The agent would pick up bomb vehicles and then alert the Falcons who would follow him and lead him to a safe place to deactivate the bomb. The group would then stage fake explosions to give an impression to the terrorist group that their plan had been successful.
While successfully going on the path he had chosen there were times when the Islamic State commanders sensed something was wrong.
RIP Captain Harith al-Sudani. He was executed by ISIS in January 2017 after being caught as an Iraqi spy pretending to be a Radical Muslim Jihadist. He saved many innocent lives. We all saw the leaked video a... https://t.co/NAIy2v03CW— DaVe W LeE (@davewflee) August 27, 2018
The first time it happened was when an ISIS commander told him to lookout for possible targets to carry out explosions in Mosul. While he was on the mission, he sneaked out and went to his home to meet his family.
His handler reportedly tracked his location through GPS and called him to inquire where he was. Al-Sudani naturally had to lie and said he was in the neighborhood searching for targets. However, the lie didn’t set in well and the commander immediately told him he was lying.
After a few months, al-Sudani was told he had been chosen to be a part of a large attack which would take place in different cities across the world on the New Year’s Eve.
However, this time it was the spy who was tricked.
It was a usual task for al-Sudani who set off on the explosive-laden vehicle and informed Falcons about his next task. Unfortunately, this time the plan was not going as the agent had planned.
As he was making his way to the decided location, he got a call from his handler who asked where he was. He once again lied and said he might have missed a turn and told his comrades at Falcon that they would have to change their meeting point – one which was near the target.
Al-Sudani reached the destination and succeeded in deactivating the bomb. However, what he didn’t know was that Islamic State commanders had placed a device in the truck with which they were able to hear his entire conversation with his teammates.
Even after learning that al-Sudani was a spy; the terrorist group members didn’t confront him and placed him on another mission.
But this was his last.
He reached the targeted farmhouse went inside but never came out. A raid was conducted by Iraq’s security forces at the farmhouse but there was no sign of al-Sudani there.
After a few months, the terrorist group released a propaganda video that showed four men in orange jumpsuits whose faces were covered being executed. It is believed al-Sudani was one of the four men.
Only al-Sudani’s father, Abid Al-Sudani, and his brother, Munaf, knew of his secret life. His wife, Raghad Chaloob, and three children were completely unaware of his acts.
“I regret that he didn’t tell me. I guess he knew I would be worried if I knew the truth. No one wants her son to grow up without a father,” said Chaloob.
The father said they have received numerous messages of condolences and while people praised his son’s bravery the family is still struggling in a lot of ways. They don’t have a dead body and they are unable to get a death certificate made. This means that they can’t get all the benefits that the family of a deceased serviceman receives.
“I have a wound on my heart. He lived and died for his country. The nation should cherish him the way I do,” said the grieving father.
Banner/Thumbnail Credits: AHMAD AL-MSALAM/AFP/Getty Images