This reports claims regarding ISIS which evolved since 2003 assuming erstwhile names like ISI,ISIS and now IS:

The former employee at US National Security Agency (NSA), Edward Snowden, has revealed that the British and American intelligence and the Mossad worked together to create the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

This news is being spread by many small time news houses like Gulf Daily News, and Iranian fars news agency who is obviously vociferously against ISIS, All of these reports originate from "fars" Iranian news agency. But I am yet to see any official confirmation from Snowden nor any NSA documents as a proof. Hence is this claim truthful based on the available evidences or how likely is this to be a true claim and can the leaked NSA documents be searched for this?

  • I've slightly changed the question so it is way more answerable. I doubt that we have enough reliable information to answer the former question conclusively.
    – Sklivvz
    Jul 19, 2014 at 13:08
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    Snowden left in June of 2013. ISIS doesn't really appear to have been news until December of that year (and even then only slightly). It may not have even been established until April of 2013. They've really only been big news in the last couple of months, with this Iraq thing. Not saying there couldn't have been a long-term plot, but I seriously doubt Snowden is getting any new documents... Jul 20, 2014 at 7:54
  • 4
    The quote says "British-American" but the question says "USA-Israel".... which are we asking here?
    – Jamiec
    Jul 21, 2014 at 16:23
  • 3
    Snowden only released NSA documents, correct? If the claim were true, it would have almost certainly been conducted by the CIA and/or State Department, not the NSA.
    – ESultanik
    Jul 21, 2014 at 16:45
  • 2
    A dutch civil servant was fired today following her support for this conspiracy theory on twitter: google.com/….
    – Spork
    Aug 13, 2014 at 11:58

2 Answers 2


The report you cite makes reference to an operation called "The Hornet's Nest".

However I was not able to find any reference to an operation by that name.

No mention of a “hornet’s nest” plot can be found in Snowden’s leaked trove of U.S. intelligence documents, and even though Snowden has not publicly refuted the claim, it is safe to assume that the quoted interview never took place.


It appears this rumor was started by irna.ir and made popular by the tehrantimes.com running a front page on the story citing irna.ir as the source.

  • are those documents availaible to scan/
    – user11777
    Jul 22, 2014 at 10:55
  • Another debunking here: snowdenhoax.blogspot.ch
    – Benjol
    Aug 26, 2014 at 11:33

Wikileaks, which is closely associated with Snowden, states that the story is false:

Ground zero for false "Snowden docs show ISIS leader trained by Mossad" story goes back to last month in Algeria http://www.algerie1.com/actualite/snowden-le-chef-de-leiil-al-baghdadi-a-ete-forme-par-le-mossad/

It has also tweeted the following, which would suggest it wouldn't want to deny the story if it were true.

(ISIS, like other anti-Syrian militant groups may have received support from Israel, but released Snowden docs don't show it)

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