The leader of al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula griped about wives spilling their jihadist husbands’ secrets in a recent video that concluded with the terror group, frustrated about spies and subsequent drone strikes, issuing a blanket ban on cell phones.
The video noted that mobile phones are “considered spies in their own sense,” and senior AQAP member Ibrahim al-Qosi, a former Guantanamo detainee of Sudanese origin, described the problem of loose or careless lips within the terror organization as “very serious.”
Throughout the 36-minute video from AQAP’s al-Malahem Media, accused spies discuss how they gathered information.
AQAP leader Qasim al-Raymi noted the “primary source of information comes from one or two mujahid brothers who feed him the information” without realizing it.
“The spy acquaints himself with them and offers a helping hand, and eventually gains information from them. The spy prays the best of prayers, and reads the Quran in front of them,” he said, noting that fellow Muslims are the problem because “as for the disbelievers, we distance ourselves from them completely.”
“One among the spies says, and this has been revealed to me by the brothers in the intelligence department… he says that the brothers are an open book,” the at-times exasperated 39-year-old Yemeni terror emir added, stressing that “conveying against your brothers is considered treachery.”
Al-Qosi said jihadists need to have the attitude that “a secret with me is a closed house, its keys are lost and doors sealed — preserving secrets is among the completeness of a man’s honor.”
Al-Raymi lamented “brothers who cannot hide a secret even from their wife.”
“Then the woman gets on the phone and spreads information that so and so is in a particular place. Brothers have been killed by such irresponsible actions of a woman. From among the best of our people. Just because of such recklessness. Where is the responsibility?” he said.
Ibrahim Abu Salih, a jihadist for nearly four decades who co-founded al-Qaeda’s Arabian Peninsula branch, noted that “it is upon every mujahid in the path of Allah to preserve the secrets of his fellow brothers and to be cautious not to unknowingly serve the enemy of Allah, enriching them with information that exposes the operations of the mujahidin.”
Al-Raymi called cell phones “a form of a spy agent — an agent that is always with us.”
One accused spy tells the camera that all jihadists have cell phones and are using them to call their wives and talk about their locations.
Abu Salih decried cell phones as “an electronic chip that is ready to guide a missile.”
“Who is the one exposing the secrets of the mujahidin? They are the mujahidin themselves. When you see what is going on in the web forums you will be surprised,” al-Raymi continued. “The transgression against the work of the mujahidin that goes on is unbelievable. They expose mujahidin’s vision and plans, and then go on to open an open debate in a chat room.”
“Our problem today is the exposure of Muslim secrets. That’s it. We are an open book. Our way of thinking is exposed for the enemy to benefit from,” he railed.
The video presented a pie chart of statistics compiled by the terror group over the past nine years detailing which kind of leak caused how many deaths. Saying “do not mention this to anybody, no one else knows” has contributed to the deaths of more than 30 jihadists, AQAP said.
A letter was circulated to AQAP jihadists declaring a “complete prohibition” on mobile phones “and means of communication through the internet.”
“Just as it is completely prohibited to expose work secrets to anyone whatsoever. Whomever disobeys this will face a penalty with regard to the level of his crime,” the statement said. “Whomever uses words in conducting his work, then he should limit his words to what is necessary only.”