He led a secret double life as the blogger Mosul Eye, documenting Islamic State’s atrocities for the world. Now in Europe on Tuesday, Dec. 5, 2017, Omar Mohammed no longer wants to remain anonymous. (AP Photo)
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He would wander the streets of occupied Mosul by day, chatting with shopkeepers and Daesh (ISIS) fighters, visiting friends who worked at the hospital, swapping scraps of information. He grew out his hair and his beard and wore the shortened trousers required by the extremists. Mosul Eye is Omar Mohammad, historian, scholar, blogger.Mosul Eye became one of the outside world's main sources of news about Daesh fighters, their atrocities and their transformation of the city into a grotesque shadow of itself.The most sensitive details initially came from two old friends: a doctor and a high school dropout who had joined a Daesh intelligence unit.Mohammad's information sometimes included photos of the fighters and commanders, complete with biographies surreptitiously pieced together during the course of his normal life – that of an out-of-work scholar living at home.Heedless of people picnicking nearby, Mohammad lit a cigarette – banned by Daesh.Once there, Mosul Eye kept at it: via WhatsApp and Viber, from Facebook messages and long conversations with friends and relatives who had contacts within Daesh.
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