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Traitor Movie: The Real Story

Updated on February 9, 2014
Don Cheadle and Guy Pearce in the Movie Traitor
Don Cheadle and Guy Pearce in the Movie Traitor

The Movie Story

Samir Horn (Don Cheadle) is a Sudanese--American Muslim whose father was killed by a car bomb when he was a child. He eventually becomes an arms dealer and is arrested in Yemen while trying to sell bombs.

He escapes from prison together with Omar (Said Taghmaoui) and Samir becomes a member of the Islamic Brotherhood where he puts into lethal use the skills he had learnt as an explosives weapons expert in the U.S Army Special Forces.

Ali Mohamed: The Unknown Story

The real story of Ali Mohamed is not the same as the story in the movie, Traitor, but although the movie is fiction there are some striking similarities with the life of Ali Mohamed and Samir Horn in the movie.

Ali Mohamed is an Egyptian born American citizen who worked for the American CIA, and before then worked in the Egyptian Army until he was discharged in 1984 on suspicions of being an Islamic Fundamentalist. Mohammed is a member of the extremist Egyptian organization, Islamic Jihad, and he is reported to have been given the task of penetrating American Intelligence by the Islamic Jihad leader, Ayman Al-Zawahiri (who is now Al-Qaeda's leader).

No one is sure how successful he was in this bid but he apparently joined the U.S Army where he became a drill Sergent at Fort Bragg and was also hired to teach courses on Arabic Culture at the John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center. According to official records he consistently accomplished tasks given to him and his superiors found him beyond reproach.

The Islamic Brotherhood devises a plot to simultaneously blow up fifty public buses in the United States on Thanksgiving Day and Samir becomes part of the organizing team. Meanwhile it is now revealed to the viewers that Samir is actually working under deep cover for the U.S Government without any official record to that effect in any U.S file or record.

Samir is now faced with a big problem: Maintaining his cover long enough to foil the plot and at the same time to avoid arrest by Roy Clayton (Guy Pearce), an FBI agent who is committed to apprehending Samir at all cost. But at the end of the movie Samir was able to foil the plot and kill the masterminds whom he considered to be the real traitors to Islam.


In 1993 Ali Mohamed traveled to East Africa to survey American embassies for a possible bomb attack by Al-Qaeda. When the American embassies in Kenya and Tanzania were simultaneously destroyed by bombs in 1998, he was arrested by the FBI in Nairobi, Kenya two days later for his involvement.He was extradited to the United States and charged to court where he pleaded guilty to all charges brought against him.

The Terrorist Manual

In 1988 he, he requested for, and was granted a leave from the U.S Army to go to Afghanistan and fight for the Mujaheddin against occupying Russian forces. He returned a month later boasting that he had killed two Russian soldiers.

While still in the United States he helped to train many jihadists in Brooklyn and Jersey City on weekends. In the early 1990's he returned to Afghanistan and trained Al-Qaeda volunteers on unconventional weapons tactics such as kidnappings, assassinations and hijackings-the very same tactics he learned in the U.S Army. Some of his first trainees were reported to include Osama Bin Laden, Ayman al-Zawahiri and other Al-Qaeda top-shots.

It was during this period that he wrote the famous Al-Qaeda's Training Guide from maps and manuals that he had stolen while serving in the U.S Special Forces . This manual contains details on everything about terrorism from how to build a bomb; how to survive harsh weather conditions to how to successfully infiltrate western cities. It is still used around the world today by extremists to train recruits.

The strangest thing about his story is that nobody has reportedly seen or heard from him since 1999. There is no report of the trial proceeding beyond the preliminary stages or even of a conviction, if there was any. There had been rumors circulating that he was cooperating with Intelligence agencies and had been giving them information on how to possibly capture or kill Osama Bin Laden.

But one question that is begging for answer is: How many more Ali Mohamed's are out there in western societies sitting down and just waiting for the right time to strike with their lethal punch?


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