9/11 Mastermind Khalid Sheikh Mohammed Appears in Newly Released Photos

Two days before the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks, new pictures of the mastermind, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, have surfaced from Guantanamo Bay.

The photos have been circulating on jihadist Web forums, along with pictures of his nephew, Ammar Al Baluchi.

The pictures, taken by representatives of the International Committee of the Red Cross, have been posted on pro-al Qaeda Internet Web forums for the past several days, and were posted Wednesday by Jarret Brachman, a consultant to the U.S. government on counterterrorism and author of "Global Jihadism."

VIDEO: AG Holder: Work Remains on Race Relations
null

Brachman said he found the pictures on the Internet with a colleague he described as a cybersleuth. The pictures were posted on Brachman's blog, jarretbrachman.net. In the pictures Mohammed is wearing flowing white robes, and in one he shows a thin smile. An official with the Red Cross confirmed to ABC News that the pictures were taken by Red Cross members in July and sent to family members of the detainees.

The Red Cross, as part of its Red Cross Messages program, has allowed Guantanamo Bay detainees to receive letters from their family members. In February, detainees were allowed to send pictures to their family members under the program. According to Red Cross spokesman Bernard Barrett, U.S. authorities review the pictures and mail messages before they are sent to family members for any sensitive information.

VIDEO: Former V.P. attacks the Justice Department?s decision to investigate the CIA.
null

It is believed that the pictures were sent by Mohammed's family members to pro-al Qaeda Web sites.

Pictures at Sensitive Time

Brachman told ABC News in an interview that he debated whether to post the pictures on his blog with the 9/11 anniversary approaching. No pictures of the 9/11 mastermind had been seen since he was captured in March 2003 in Pakistan and moved in to the CIA's High Value Detainee Program.

Mohammed after capture in 2003, and in July 2009 (jarretbrachman.net)

Mohammed had only been seen and sketched by courtroom artists in military commission proceedings at Guantanamo Bay. The release of the pictures comes as the Obama administration is deciding how to close the Guantanamo Bay facility with U.S. prosecutors reviewing evidence to determine if they will try Mohammed in a federal court or move forward with revamped military commissions.

Khalid Sheikh Mohammed Photos Surface Just Before 9/11 Anniversary

Brachman said that al Qaeda propaganda usually did not make reference to Mohammed but that these pictures on pro-al Qaeda Web forums could lead to that.

"Al Qaeda had thrown KSM under the bus." Brachman said. "This is a new wave of support. ...This is remembering who he is."

Mohammed's nephew, Ammar al-Baluchi, is seen in one picture (below) holding a book believed to be the Koran.

Al-Baluchi was also detained in the CIA secret prisons. Officials say he was a key aide for his uncle.

Ammar al-Baluchi in a photo believed taken by the Red Cross. (jarretbrachman.net)
-- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8537115. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8537115. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8537115. -- This embed didnt make it to copy for story id = 8537115.
Join the Discussion
You are using an outdated version of Internet Explorer. Please click here to upgrade your browser in order to comment.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
You Might Also Like...
See It, Share It
PHOTO: Firefighters rescue a woman who got stuck in a chimney in Thousand Oaks, Calif.
Ventura County Fire Department
PHOTO: Apple Pay is demonstrated at Apple headquarters on Oct. 16, 2014 in Cupertino, Calif.
Marcio Jose Sanchez/AP Photo
PHOTO: Up in Ash: Mount Sinabung Erupting
Tibt Nangin/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images
PHOTO: Defendant Jodi Arias testifies about killing Travis Alexander in 2008 during her murder trial in Phoenix, Feb. 20, 2013.
Charlie Leight/The Arizona Republic/AP Photo
PHOTO: Kim Kardashian, Kanye West, their daughter North West and Delphine Arnault attend the Givenchy show as part of the Paris Fashion Week Womenswear Spring/Summer 2015, Sept. 28, 2014 in Paris.
Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/French Select/Getty Images