A former Jihadist from Denmark who was recruited as a double agent for MI5 and the CIA was responsible for taking down one of the top Al-Qaeda leaders in Yemen by playing matchmaker.
Morten Storm, 38, wrote an autobiography called “Agent Storm: My Life Inside Al-Quaeda and the CIA” in which he describes his life, starting with a rough upbringing in Denmark and going through his years as an Islamic Jihadist in ties with terrorist organization Al-Quaeda. Storm was reportedly a member of a biker gang, and in the late 90s, he decided to convert to Islam. He eventually became indoctrinated and adopted extremist views.
In 2001, Storm moved to Yemen and befriended Al-Quaeda leader Anwar al-Awlaki. Storm claims that he once had the chance to meet Osama Bin Laden and was actively involved with leaders in the extremist movement, but in 2006, after he was stopped from fighting in Somalia, he began to push back against the Jihadi movement and researched contradictions in the Koran that went against what extremists believed.
“Once I had researched the contradictions, I finally realised how misguided I was and what a danger my associates were for the free world,” said Storm, according to the Daily Mail.
Not long after, MI5 and the CIA, as well as Danish intelligence agency PET, recruited Storm to be a double agent, and he began to inform them about operations in Yemen and Somalia. During his time as a double agent, Storm was recruited to help take out his former friend al-Awlaki, and he was able to use a Croatian woman as bait.
In 2009, al-Awlaki told Storm that he wanted a third wife that would be open to living on the run, as his other two wives weren’t taking to the lifestyle. He specifically requested a Western Muslim, and Storm was able to find a 32-year-old blond named Aminah who admired al-Awlaki.
“Aminah can lead us to Awlaki,” Storm reportedly told his bosses at MI5 and the CIA.
Storm was then able to set up a line of communication between the terrorist leader and the eager young Muslim from Croatia, and eventually, in 2010, they were married.
“I don’t know how I will ever pay you back,” Aminah reportedly told Storm.
Aminah’s suitcase was bugged by the CIA, but when she landed at the airport, Al-Qaeda confiscated it, and the CIA wound up cutting him off. After being inactive with the CIA for some time, Storm was eventually contacted by them again in 2011 after al-Awlaki almost pulled off an elaborate terrorist attack. They offered Storm $5 million to take the leader out, and he accepted.
Storm talked to his old friend not long after that, and the terrorist leader requested specific items that he was unable to get in Yemen. The CIA helped get most of the items that he requested, and through a series of trips, including one through a courier, al-Awlaki got the items he requested. One item was a USB stick that he had requested, but the CIA bugged it, and in September of 2011, Hellfire missiles took the terrorist leader out after they figured out his location.
Today, Storm’s autobiography is set to be turned into a blockbuster movie, and while he won’t disclose his current location, he says he was never paid the $5 million the CIA promised him and has all but retired from his life as a double agent. Thankfully, he went from a troubled Jihad to taking out one of the biggest terrorist leaders in history, thus making the world that much safer.
Sources: NY Post, The Sunday Times, Daily Mail