ABC News has obtained an exclusive photo of suicide bomber Humam Muhammed al-Balawi, the Jordanian double agent who killed seven CIA operatives and his Jordanian handler in Afghanistan on December 30.
Al-Balawi, a 32-year-old Jordanian doctor, had convinced the Americans that his jihadist postings on the web were only part of his cover identity. He lured 13 CIA operatives and his handler to a meeting at Camp Chapman, an American forward operating base in Afghanistan, by saying he had just met with al Qaeda number two Ayman al-Zawahiri and had information to share.
The photo comes from a Jordanian identification card, seen below. Al Balawi was born in Kuwait in 1977, raised in Jordan and attended medical school in Turkey. He had been arrested by Jordan's intelligence agency, the General Intelligence Directorate, more than a year ago. Believing they had flipped al Balawi and made him a double agent, the Jordanians released him from prison and sent him to Afghanistan to penetrate al Qaeda by pretending to be an aspiring foreign jihadi.
In his early life al-Balawi lived in a refugee camp near Zarqa, Jordan, the same town that spawned infamous insurgent leader Abu Musab al Zarqawi. Al-Balawi studied medicine in Turkey at the expense of the Jordanian government and was a straight-A student, sources said.
Al-Balawi, who worked at a clinic in a Palestinian refugee camp near Zarqa, was extremely active online and in jihadist chat rooms and was arrested several times by the Jordanian authorities.
The Jordanian intelligence officer who handled al-Balawi, Sharif Ali bin Zeid, was a member of the royal family. He was buried with a royal funeral that was attended by the king and queen of Jordan.
While the U.S. and Jordan mourned their deaths, a Web site from al-Balawi's tribe described him today as a hero and said it was the most devastating attack against the CIA in the last 30 years.