Inside the Jihad: My Life with Al Qaeda: A Spy's Story

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For the first time, a first person account of life inside the jihad...

Between 1994 and 2000, Omar Nasiri worked as a secret agent for Europe's top foreign intelligence services - including France's DGSE (Direction Générale de la Sécurité Extérieure), and Britain's MI5 and MI6. From the netherworld of Islamist cells in Belgium, to the training camps of Afghanistan, to the radical mosques of London, he risked his life to defeat the emerging ...

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Overview

For the first time, a first person account of life inside the jihad...

Between 1994 and 2000, Omar Nasiri worked as a secret agent for Europe's top foreign intelligence services - including France's DGSE (Direction Générale de la Sécurité Extérieure), and Britain's MI5 and MI6. From the netherworld of Islamist cells in Belgium, to the training camps of Afghanistan, to the radical mosques of London, he risked his life to defeat the emerging global network that the West would come to know as Al Qaeda.

Now, for the first time, Nasiri shares the story of his life-a life balanced precariously between the world of Islamic jihadists and the spies who pursue them. As an Arab and a Muslim, he was able to infiltrate the rigidly controlled Afghan training camps, where he encountered men who would later be known as the most-wanted terrorists on earth: Ibn al-Sheikh al-Libi, Abu Zubayda, and Abu Khabab al-Masri. Sent back to Europe with instructions to form a sleeper cell, Nasiri became a conduit for messages going back and forth between Al Qaeda's top recruiter in Pakistan and London's radical cleric Abu Qatada.

A gripping and provocative insider's account of both Islamist terror networks and the intelligence services that spy on them, Inside the Jihad offers a completely original perspective on the ongoing battle against Al Qaeda.

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Editorial Reviews

Peter L. Bergen
Inside the Jihad is the astonishing, well-told story of Omar Nasiri (a pseudonym), who penetrated al-Qaeda's training camps in Afghanistan in the mid-1990s as a spy for France's intelligence services. Nasiri never met Osama bin Laden, nor did he hear anything about specific plots against the United States, but he was able to gather a wealth of knowledge about the terrorist training going on in Afghanistan.
— The Washington Post
Middle East Quarterly
A good read . . . the real value of Nasiri's memoir lies in the insight into the minds of young, mostly European Muslims.
The New York Times
Inside the Jihad reads like a John le Carre novel. It is replete with tales of phony passports, envelopes stuffed with cash and cloak-and-daggar meetings . . . Mr. Nasiri's account of the camps is detailed and chilling.
CNN.com
It is a fascinating story of a man who says he betrayed his brothers to the police and then had contact with senior al Qaeda leaders at a terror training camp in Afghanistan -- all the while spying for French, British and German intelligence.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780465023882
  • Publisher: Basic Books
  • Publication date: 11/20/2006
  • Pages: 368
  • Product dimensions: 6.50 (w) x 9.30 (h) x 1.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Omar Nasiri (not his real name) was born in Morocco and currently resides in Germany with his wife.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 21, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    Bold and Brassy

    This book is the first non-fiction page turner I have read in a long time. The only one that might write a bad review on this might be a Muslim who couldn't take pride in another Muslims plight against the radical elements. Although Basic Books, the publisher, could have done a little better job of editing, it is a really great read.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2008

    A reviewer

    Excellent read. Found it very hard to put down. A must read for those that want to get to know their enemy.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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