Excerpt from the classified report titled “Events of the Christmas Attacks” from the Joint Select Committee on the December 19 Attacks
The following is the transcript of a video posted to multiple social media sites at 3:00 PM Eastern on December 19. It is one of four such videos posted that afternoon. These videos depict similar acts and followed similar scripts. It is likely that they were created and uploaded in or near the following cities: Minot, North Dakota, Fayetteville, North Carolina, Watertown, New York, and Havelock, North Carolina.
Analyst Note – The video opens showing three people seated on folding chairs. They are clad in black with their faces entirely covered by black masks and goggles. It is not possible to tell their sex or age, but based on the dimensions of the chairs, they are probably adults between 150 and 200 centimeters in height. A white cloth with a black picture depicting a crescent moon is hanging behind them. There are no other details of the space they occupy, such as size or decoration, although there is some echo in the audio playback. The floor of the room appears to be bare concrete.
A Caucasian woman with short, brown hair kneels on the floor in front of the seated men. She is wearing an orange jumpsuit. Her hands are behind her back and never come forward during the course of the video, indicating that they are bound in some way.
A voice from off camera speaks:
Voice #1 – Who are you? (Analyst note: Voice #1 is male. He speaks with an accent that suggests he is not a native English speaker and probably learned to speak English in or near New York City.)
The woman lifts her head and looks slightly to the left of the camera.
Woman – My name is Helen Gardner. (Analyst note – Her speech is slow and slightly slurred, indicating impairment.)
Voice #1 – Where do you live, Mrs. Gardner?
Woman – I live at 19421 Meadowood Court in Fayetteville.
Voice #1 – In North Carolina?
Woman, nodding – Yes.
Voice #1 – What does your husband do?
Woman, hesitating – He’s… he’s a soldier.
Voice #1 – What kind of soldier?
Woman, seemingly confused, shaking her head – He jumps out of airplanes.
Voice #1 – Where is he now?
Woman – Afghanistan.
Voice #1 – Your husband is Chief Warrant Officer Richard Gardner?
Woman – Yes.
Voice #1 – He is a member of the 4th Special Forces Group?
The woman is silent.
Voice #1 (Analyst note – Voice gets louder and tone becomes harsh) – Answer me!
The woman is silent and looks back down at the floor.
Voice #2 – Answer! (Analyst note: Voice #2 is male, with a heavy accent, indicating a native Arabic speaker)
The woman remains silent.
Voice #2 – We no need you, we know!
Voice #1 – Your husband is a commando who volunteered to go overseas to kill Muslims. He has gone three times before, and he is doing it now! Because of his actions, you are here. The actions of the imperialist American conquerors have brought this on you. You will pay for your husband’s sins, and for all of the American soldiers who have raped and burned their way through the world!
Analyst Note – The person sitting in the middle chair stands up and steps to stand directly behind the woman. Video shows movement under his face covering, and it is coincident with the addition of Voice #3. Voice #3 begins to recite from the Koran (Sura 9) in Arabic, and his accent indicates a native speaker from Lebanon or western Syria. He reaches down and grabs the woman by the hair. She resists as he pulls her head back, and screams. She begins to thrash, but the man jerks her head further back and his posture suggests that he has put his knee into her back.
Woman – Please! No!
Analyst Note – Her words become unintelligible at this point in the video.
The man holding the woman by the hair reaches behind his back with his free hand and pulls out a large knife. It is approximately 25 to 30 centimeters in length, thick near the handle, but tapering to a point. It appears to be a kitchen knife, but details cannot be made out in the video to find manufacturer’s marks.
The man continues to recite as he draws the knife across the woman’s neck. Her screams gain in intensity and loudness, but stop after several passes of the knife through her neck.
Voice #1 (Analyst Note – Voice #1 is now speaking in Arabic with an Egyptian accent) – By the grace of Allah, master of the world and protector of his people, we will do this to every soldier and his family! We know who you are and we know where your families are! You have raped our women, so we will kill yours! You have enslaved our children, so we will slaughter yours! You have brought this upon yourself, and your torment will be to watch us do this before we take your heads! You cannot hide from us, and you will not see us coming!
The camera focuses in on the man with the knife, who holds up the woman’s head by her hair, then the video ends with music and an image of the crescent moon symbol above links to several social media groups. See Appendix 7.1 for a listing of all sites, groups, and pages.