Blogger may have Helped US Military Identify AP Photographer, Alleged Terrorist Sympathizer Bilal Hussein (Updated)
[Guest post by DRJ]
Bilal Hussein is an Iraqi photographer who works for the AP in Baghdad. Some of his acclaimed photos show al-Qaeda insurgents with weapons aimed at and attacks against American and Iraqi targets. Michelle Malkin has a few of Hussein’s photos here.
Hussein has been in American or Iraqi custody on unspecified charges for approximately 19 months. During that time, the AP lodged complaints aimed at gaining his release. A recent report indicates Hussein will now be charged by the Iraqis (at the request of the American military) because he “was caught in an apartment with known members of al Qaeda– with bomb making material.”
Rusty of The Jawa Report has learned that his blog posts on the AP photographer may have helped the American military identify Hussein:
“UPDATE: Holy crap, The Jawa Report credited with Bilal Hussein prosecution?!?!
A reader, who wishes to remain anonymous, informs me that The Jawa Report had something to do with Bilal Hussein’s prosecution. Apparently Bilal Hussein had been picked up in a raid in which he wasn’t the target. That target was a known al Qaeda operative, Hamid Hamad Motib, and bomb making materials were found in the house.
Hussein was arrested and taken to Abu Ghraib, but no one knew who he was. Just another low-level insurgent, I’m guessing.
He had been sitting in Abu Ghraib for a month, and nobody realized that he was the AP photog who had snapped dozens of staged photos with al Qaeda fighters. The reader was in Abu Ghraib as an investigator working on an unrelated case when he saw Bilal Hussein and recognized him from the extensive coverage we had on The Jawa Report.
He reported it up the chain of command and within days Bilal Hussein was transferred to a different facility, NCIS got involved, and eventually a criminal investigation opened on him. He ends the e-mail with:
“THANKS to you guys…you REALLY ARE making an impact on the [the war on terror] … you can claim credit.”
Hell, I hope so! I’ve communicated with the source before, and he seems legit to me.
The Jawa Report, sticking it to al Qaeda propagandists from the comfort of our living rooms. Any one wish to complain about the “chickenhawk” bloggers now?
It’s stories like these that make it all worth it!”
Update 11/20/2007: Jules Crittenden has a lot more on this story, including links.