Wow: Khorasani was the suicide bomber...
My mind is blown by this emerging story: Jordanian intelligence recruits a prominent jihadist writer to go to Afghanistan in order to track down Al-Qaeda's leadership, only for him to strap a bomb to his body, taking out his Jordanian handler (...a member of the royal family to boot) and several other CIA officers.
The jihadist writer is someone that many jihad-watchers have followed over the years: Abu Dujanah al-Khorasani. The Jordanian intelligence officer, Ali bin Zeid, was a few years older than me at school; I remember him as a nice guy.
For espionage buffs, this story is plain incredible. This is the sort of revealing drama that should compel certain reporters and columnists to become slightly less willing to believe the Agency's PR, about itself and about the Jordanians. I'm looking at you, Ignatius.
If all the facts here are true, then this is huge. Huge. This story's immediate effect is to give the jihadists a massive morale boost. They will mythologize this story into a recruiting tool that encourages more and more young men who sympathize with the jihadists to surmount their instinctual fear of the nebulous intelligence services of the Middle East, and to challenge the autocracies that supposedly keep a lid on jihadism. Khorasani has left a lot of hero-worship material, much of it very smart at manipulating emotions. Now, he himself is the hero in the eyes of jihadist wanna-bes. Many will seek to emulate him, or even outdo him.
Events like these allow us to appreciate how dangerous, and talented, the enemy is. Dropping one's guard, or becoming disdainful of the amount of fight left in the jihadists, can lead to many future instances where we are left standing, with our mouths agape, at the audacity and horror the jihadists are capable of.