Time exclusive: Khaled Sheikh Mohammed beheaded Daniel Pearl

According to U.S. officials. And guess what:

The officials tell TIME that KSM confessed under CIA interrogation that he personally committed the murder. Moreover, when he faces a military tribunal at Guantanamo, perhaps as soon as next year, the U.S. plans to charge him not only with the 9/11 plot, but also with direct responsibility for Pearl’s death.

How can they try him for it, though? Information obtained by coercive interrogation is always unreliable.


One former U.S. national security official tells TIME there is no doubt that KSM personally wielded the knife that killed the Wall Street Journal reporter…

The FBI deduced KSM’s role only after analyzing a video of the crime, in which only the perpetrator’s hands are visible. That video was released by Islamic militants soon after Pearl’s murder and then widely shown on Arab television and the Internet. Eventually, the FBI obtained its own version of the original video, as well as the camera used to photograph the murder.

Once KSM was taken into custody in March 2003, a comparison of the hands shown in the video and KSM’s own hands, along with other evidence, confirmed the FBI’s suspicions. Then, under interrogation, KSM confessed, national security officials told TIME, admitting without remorse that he personally severed Pearl’s head and telling interrogators he had to switch knives after the first one “got dull.”

Remember: “torture” never works. Except when it does.

Even Hillary knows that.

Speaking of which, Dhiren Barot pleaded guilty to terrorism charges today in London. According to the Counterterrorism Blog, “Barot planned ‘the Gas Limos Project’ to explode three limousines ‘packed’ with gas cylinders and explosives in underground car parks in the UK as part of a wider bombing campaign there, which would include the use of a radioactive bomb.” So who’s Dhiren Barot? Quote:

In the recently published report by the September 11 commission, Barot is identified under another name—Issa al-Britani, a veteran Al Qaeda operative who was dispatched by September 11 mastermind Khalid Shaikh Mohammed to case economic and “Jewish” targets in New York City in early 2001.

Even more intriguing, Barot, as al-Britani, is mentioned in an obscure footnote elsewhere in the report as having been dispatched by Khalid Shaikh Mohammed to fly to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, in late 1999 or early 2000 to meet with Hambali, the notorious Asian terrorist who heads Jemaah Islamiah, an Al Qaeda affiliate dedicated to overthrowing the governments of Southeast Asia and replacing them with a pan-Islamic state.

How do we know so much about him? Well, in part because Khaled Sheikh Mohammed told us:

After his arrest and preliminary interrogation, Dhiren Barot, who reportedly embraced Islam in 1992, has been projected in some reports as a leading Al Qaeda operative of the UK and in some others as the head of Al Qaeda set-up in the UK.It has also been stated that Barot alias Bilal is none other than al-Britani mentioned by KSM during his interrogation. and that he had been visiting the tribal areas near the Pakistan-Afghanistan border as well as J&K.

See also this Fox report from 2004.

Word came down this morning that the Red Cross has been to see him lately.

I sure hope he’s okay.