The American ISIS defector who has been described as a “gold mine” of intelligence says he followed a young woman to join the militant group, “wasn’t thinking straight,” and immediately regretted his decision. “On the way there I regretted—I wanted to go back,” said Mohamad Jamal Khweis, 26. “I made a bad decision to go with the girl and go to Mosul.” Khweis, who was born in Virginia, smiled and chatted calmly during the recorded interview. “I don’t see them as good Muslims,” he said of the self-declared Islamic State. “I wanted to go back to America.” It’s not yet clear if he will be returned to the U.S. for questioning and prosecution—he is being held by Kurds in Iraq. Khweis was not a senior ISIS member, but officials say he can still provide details on how foreigners are recruited to fight for the militant group. “My message to the American people is the life in Mosul, it’s really, really bad. The people [who] were controlling Mosul don’t represent the religion,” Khweis said.