Report: Israel Hacked ISIS Computers, Trump Leaked It to the Russians

This Is the Latest of Several Conflicting Reports Related to the Laptop Ban

The most recent in a series of seemingly endless conflicting stories regarding how the US got it in their heads to ban laptops on airplanes, reports now say that Israel made this discovery by hacking into the computers of a group of ISIS bomb-makers, and that this was what Trump ended up leaking to the Russians.

Other reports on the Trump “leak” related to the laptop bomb plot had suggested it was a spy which has planted into ISIS territory in a specific city, and that spy was initially reported as Israeli, though it was later suggested he was actually Jordanian.

Yet that too was a change in the narrative surrounding the laptop plot, as way back in March, US officials were suggesting that the bomb threat was from al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), not ISIS, and that they’d uncovered the plot in the course of a January raid in Yemen.

The Yemen version of events likely was an attempt by US officials to justify a botched January raid, as since then officials, including President Trump, have publicly affirmed that the plot was an ISIS plot. The question then becomes whether it was a spy that infiltrated ISIS, as presented in previous reports, or a hacking operation.

If it was an Israeli hacking operation, as is now being reported, it makes even less sense for “leaking” that fact to Russia to have been a big deal, as it means there was no physically infiltrated spy to be accidentally outed by the intelligence sharing, and indeed no one would’ve known at all, outside of Russian officials, had the “leak” not become such a cause celebre among former officials looking to make it into an issue.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.