Reports out of London are saying that an ISIS suicide bomber who attack an Iraqi Army base was a former Guantanamo Bay prisoner. The bombers name was Ronald Fiddler who converted to Islam and changed his name to Jamal al-Harith. Harith was detained in Gitmo at the request of the British Government in 2001.
The British government accused Harith of having ties to Osama Bin Laden and was held at Guantanamo Bay without being charged for two years. Jamal claimed that British agents “were complicit in his mistreatment.” The Telegraph reported he received 1 million pounds in compensation and released from Guantanamo in 2004.
According to reports, Harith joined ISIS in 2014 and there is a lot of concern in London that taxpayer pounds went directly to the Islamic State. Earlier this week ISIS released video and a picture of Harith sitting in a 4×4 claiming he caused serious casualties in an attack.
In a statement former Prime Minister Blair who detained and released Harith said:
“It is correct that Jamal al-Harith was released from Guantanamo Bay at the request of the British Government in 2004,” the statement said. “He was not paid compensation by my Government. The compensation was agreed in 2010 by the Conservative Government.”
“The fact is that this was always a very difficult situation where any Government would have to balance proper concern for civil liberties with desire to protect our security, and we were likely to be attacked whatever course we took,”
The officials who were responsible for compensating Harith have not issued a statement. The Home secretary for England only explanation for Harith being allowed to travel to Syria was “it was an intelligence matter.”
The attack came as the Iraqi Army continues its push to liberate Mosul the last concentrated area that ISIS has control of in Iraq. An offensive has started to retake the rest of the city and CNN reported that Iraqi forces did retake a strategic airport.
At least in Iraq ISIS appears to be on the run. The Iraqi Army has worked hard to attempt to regain security in their country. What is shocking is that British tax money may have supported ISIS. It’s ashamed that this incident happened which is why it’s important for government officials to follow law and procedure when taking someone into custody. If they did Harith would still be in Gitmo and those victims of his attack would still be alive.