This is the first part of the two-volume manuscript entitled al-Harb `ala al-Islam: Qissat Fadil Harun posted on the website Shabakat Ansar al-Mujahidin on 26 February 2009. It is authored by Fadil Harun (also known as Fazul `Abdallah Muhammad) who was an al-Qa`ida operative until he was killed on 7 June 2011. He was the lead planner of the 1998 East Africa bombings that targeted U.S. embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam, following which he claims to have been appointed al-Qa`ida’s “Confidential Secretary” (amin sirr al-qa`ida). The manuscript is a mix of diary and autobiography; he decided to post it online to serve as a “history of the jihadis in my time as I witnessed it,” and in particular “about al-Qa`ida…to make clear to everyone the sincerity and uprightness of al-Qa`ida’s path with respect to jihad and other religious, worldly and political issues.” Based on content analysis of the manuscript, it is likely that the bulk of the writing of the first volume was undertaken between 2003 and late 2004, when he was hiding from Kenyan authorities, following his involvement in the 2002 Mombasa attacks that targeted the Israeli owned Paradise Hotel and fired at, but narrowly missed an Israeli airplane that was taking off. Harun began writing the second volume on 26 February 2007, and continued to record events until 2 January 2009, most likely while he was based in East Africa.
The Arabic manuscript is hereby released with the publication of this report. The CTC does not have an English translation of the manuscript and Nelly Lahoud’s report is based on her reading of the original Arabic. If the CTC received an English translation from a government agency in the future, it would make it available on its website.