“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Amateur Hour at Mossad. Britain Not Amused.

Good old know it all, Bibi Netanyahu, has been down this road before:

In his first term as premier, Netanyahu approved Yatom's plan to poison Hamas head Khaled Meshaal in Amman. The Mossad assassins, posing as Canadians, fumbled the attack and were arrested by Jordan after seeking refuge at the Israeli embassy.

Netanyahu would have had to sign off on this Pink Panther Operation.

To understand the profound stupidity of this operation and potential implications for Israel consider Bibi sitting down with other world leaders talking about the existential threat of Iran to Israel and dragging out his evidence and plans drawn up by Mossad.

Israelis Share Suspicions in Hamas Leader’s Killing

Published: February 17, 2010

JERUSALEM — The initial nods, winks and pats on the back here over the assassination last month of a senior Hamas official in Dubai are turning to puzzlement and concern as mounting evidence, including extensive surveillance videos, points to a remarkably clumsy operation many Israelis deem unworthy of their intelligence service, Mossad.

Officially, Israel has neither confirmed nor denied involvement in the case, as is customary in delicate matters of intelligence and national security. But since the news of the assassination broke last month, Israel has unofficially made the story its own, with newspapers blaring congratulatory headlines and government ministers praising Mossad’s director.

However, then the Dubai police released images showing some of the 17 people suspected of being in the hit squad bumbling about in poor disguises, and Britain became infuriated by the use of faked British travel documents. Now Israelis are wondering whether their once-famed spy service could have been behind such a sloppy job or, in a John Le Carré-like twist, if Israel could have been framed.

On Wednesday, a commentator for the newspaper Haaretz, Amir Oren, wrote a front-page column about the case, calling for the Mossad chief, Meir Dagan, to step down.

“What must have seemed to its perpetrators as a huge success,” he wrote, “is now being overshadowed by enormous question marks.”

Israel wanted the Hamas official, Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, 50, for the capture and killing of two Israeli soldiers in 1989 and for smuggling weapons to Hamas in Gaza. On Jan. 19, he was killed in a Dubai hotel room.

On Monday, the Dubai police named 11 of the 17 people they suspect in the case. Among the names were those of three Irish citizens — of whom the Irish authorities have no record — and six British citizens living in Israel who appear to be victims of identity theft. The police also showed images culled from the ubiquitous closed-circuit TV system showing some of them in false beards, wigs and glasses, in almost comical attempts at disguise.

With the agents’ passport pictures now splashed across newspapers and television screens around the world, Israeli commentators said the agents, whoever they may really be, have been burned. Eitan Haber, a columnist in the daily newspaper Yediot Aharonot and a close aide to Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin in the 1990s, wrote Wednesday, “They cannot even go to the grocery store.”

In a first official reaction, the foreign minister, Avigdor Lieberman, said Wednesday that Israel’s policy of “ambiguity” in such cases was “correct.”

“I don’t know why we are assuming that Israel, or the Mossad, used those passports,” Mr. Lieberman told Army Radio. “Israel never responds, never confirms and never denies.”

Three former senior Mossad officials contacted by a reporter on Wednesday refused to comment at all.

The British authorities said they believed the British passports the Dubai police had collected were “fraudulent.” Prime Minister Gordon Brown called for a full investigation.

The six British citizens living in Israel — who woke up on Tuesday to find their names linked with the assassination — do not resemble the agents’ photographs from the passports bearing their names. Among the Britons was a physiotherapist, a technical writer and a repairman who lives on a kibbutz.

The name of an American-born Israeli was used by another of the suspects, who carried a German passport. That person studies in a religious seminary near Tel Aviv.

Three of the British citizens gave interviews to the news media on Tuesday, expressing their shock and some fear. By Wednesday they appeared to have gone incommunicado and did not answer or return a reporter’s calls.

Mr. Oren, in his front-page column in Haaretz, anticipated a diplomatic crisis over the suspicions that Mossad had counterfeited British passports.

“It is as if Israeli governments had never apologized to London for using British documentation,” he wrote, “as if they had not promised solemnly, when passports of Her Majesty’s subjects were found in a certain phone booth, that this would never happen again.”


If the Israeli government was party to behaviour of this kind it would be a serious violation of trust between nations. If legitimate British passport holders were put at risk it would be a disgrace.

“Given the current speculation, the Israeli government has some explaining to do and the ambassador should be summoned to the Foreign Office to do so in double-quick time.”

Sir Menzies Campbell, the former Liberal Democrat leader.


  1. More from the Telegraph

    The Labour MP Mike Gapes, who is chairman of the foreign affairs select committee, said the cloning of passports raised a “big concern” and agreed that the ambassador should be asked for an explanation, while Hugo Swire MP, chairman of the Conservative Middle East Council, said: “This is not something that can just be swept under the carpet …you cannot conduct foreign policy at this extremely sensitive time by this sort of illegal behaviour.”
    William Hague, the shadow foreign secretary, wrote to David Miliband, the Foreign Secretary, urging him to “establish the facts as rapidly as possible” to “prevent further such abuses from happening”.

    Israel’s foreign minister Avigdor Lieberman said there was “no reason to think it was Mossad” which carried out the alleged hit, but refused to issue a denial.

    He said Israel had a “policy of ambiguity” on intelligence matters, and “never confirms and never denies” involvement in operations.
    He added: “I think Britain recognises that Israel is a responsible country and that our security activity is conducted according to very clear, cautious and responsible rules of the game. Therefore we have no cause for concern.”

    The Serious and Organised Crime Agency, which has a unit based at the British Embassy in Dubai, has begun its own investigation into the identity thefts, and the Prime Minister stressed the importance of protecting the status of the British passport.

  2. Meanwhile, Mahmoud Mahoumadoumi is Not contributing to Global Warming. A situation that's Not expected to change any time soon.

  3. I added another video at the top of other vaunted intelligence.

  4. Hows about some Good News?

    Novozymes, a very large, world class chemical company has announced that it has lowered the cost of enzymes for "cellulosic" ethanol production to $0.50 per gallon of ethanol.

    This is huge news, considering that a couple of years ago we were looking at $5.00, or $6.00 per gallon. This, basically, says that we will have cellulosic ethanol (that's ethanol produced from switch grass, corn cobs, wood chips, etc) being produced for as little as $2.00/gal in 2011.

    This is, literally, a stake in the dirty Saudi/Arabian/Iraqi hearts.

    I wouldn't hyperbolate so much about this, except that Genencor, and Dupont Danisco, the other Major Chemical companies in this field have announced, essentially, the same thing.

    This is Enormous news for my dream of a couple of small ethanol biorefineries in every county.

    Over the course of a few years this puts a definite ceiling on the price the stinking Saudis will be able to charge us for oil, and Exxon can charge us for gasoline.

    It's Huge.

    Almost forgot The Link.

    The comments are, also, very good.

  5. Dr. Drew Reports on Young Obama's Marxist Socialist Perspective as of the Fall of 1980

    Barry a Committed Marxist at Occidental.

    Drew says Obama was a Marxist-Leninist and believed in redistribution of wealth. He was deceiving the public during the election because he was 100% in agreement with his Marxist pals and professors.

    Drew still believes that Obama is a socialist.

  6. Obambi started out as a Marxist. He's rapidly evolving into a politician that wants to get re-elected.

  7. Yeah, stuffing shit down the throat of voters is a sure strategy for re-election.

  8. Ann Coulter about the NIE, Liberals, Bush, Ahmadinejad, Nukes, and whatever Priceless

  9. Admittedly, his strategy needs a little refinement.

    Well, there went the neighborhood. The Pineapple Heads have sobered up, and figured out how to turn the computer on.

    Bedtime for redneks. g'nite.

  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

  11. Rufus is afraid "The Pineapple" will bring up that claim of his prescience wrt to predicting "this recession."
    ...knowing that "Pineapple" knows better.

  12. Per the video -
    At Occi, Barry had fine clothes, and lived in a large, opulent house, courtesy of his Pakistani patron/roommate.

    @ Columbia, not so much.
    Transcripts sure would be enlightening.

  13. Actually, that was from the NewsMax article, I think.
    At Occi, Barry had fine clothes, and lived in a large, opulent house, courtesy of his Pakistani patron/roommate.
    @ Columbia, not so much.
    Transcripts sure would be enlightening.

    Drew saw Obama again at a party Obama and Chandoo gave in June 1981 at the house they shared. Drew went on to become an assistant professor of political science at Williams College.

    In 1981, Obama left Occidental to attend Columbia University. During that year, Obama spent “about three weeks” visiting Chandoo and his family in Karachi, Pakistan, according to the account of Obama spokesman Bill Burton during the campaign.

    Chandoo is now a financial consultant who was formerly a broker at Oppenheimer & Co. He has contributed to Obama’s campaign and helped raise more than $100,000 for him as a bundler.

  14. Drew saw Obama again at a party Obama and Chandoo gave in June 1981 at the house they shared. Drew went on to become an assistant professor of political science at Williams College.

    In 1981, Obama left Occidental to attend Columbia University. During that year, Obama spent “about three weeks” visiting Chandoo and his family in Karachi, Pakistan, according to the account of Obama spokesman Bill Burton during the campaign.

    Chandoo is now a financial consultant who was formerly a broker at Oppenheimer & Co. He has contributed to Obama’s campaign and helped raise more than $100,000 for him as a bundler.


    ..In a similar vein, when he discussed politics with him in 1980, Drew says that in Obama’s view,
    America was definitely the enemy, and American elites were the enemy, and whatever America was doing was definitely wrong and bad.

    He thought that perhaps the Soviet Union was misunderstood, and it was doing a better job for its people than most people realized.”

  15. buddy larsen:

    Yep, killing LORAN was really necessary –saved or created 3 or 4 make-work no-show jobs at Union HQ.
    (snip –bolding mine)

    Obama says he will kill the LORAN-C long-range navigation and timing system, saving the government $190 million over five years.

    Just one year ago, the Bush administration announced it would keep the ground-based LORAN system operational to serve as a backup for the satellite-based global positioning systems, which are becoming ubiquitous in cars, planes and ships.
    Supporters of LORAN say the nation’s increasing reliance on GPS has ironically importance of maintaining LORAN as a backup.

    Having LORAN in reserve makes the GPS satellite system a less attractive target for terrorists, they say.

    GPS systems now are used not only for navigation, but also to provide precise timing for ATM machines, cell phone towers, water plants and other enterprises, and positioning information for the military’s precision-guided weapons. GPS disruptions can be costly to business, unsafe for travelers, and debilitating to the military. Watch Senators talk about cutting defense spending »

    Of the approximately 950 people who commented in the Federal Register about the future of LORAN as the Bush administration’s decision was being made, the vast majority favored saving and improving LORAN, said Bob Lilley, secretary of the International Loran Association.

    The supporters said the system is a near-perfect backup because it provides information similar to that provided by GPS, but has a dissimilar infrastructure. GPS is based on a constellation of at least 25 satellites; LORAN is based on about 25 ground stations in the United States, and others elsewhere. GPS transmits a very faint signal; LORAN has a very strong signal, making it harder to interrupt. GPS is powered by solar panels; LORAN is tied to ground power.
    And while GPS satellites are unprotected, LORAN operates inside controlled perimeters in the United States, the supporters said.

    On defense, the administration’s list suggests it will target expensive weapons systems but does not specify which programs will be cut or how much money will be saved. White House officials said they are letting Defense Secretary Robert Gates take the lead on specific announcements Thursday.
    The list did contend the Pentagon’s new weapons programs are “among the largest, most expensive, and technically difficult that the Department has ever tried to develop. Consequently, they carry a high risk of performance failure, cost increases and schedule delays.”
    (end snip)

    (i think he’s carefully crippling our military power, because he’s a kremlin Jihadi agent, part of some grand bargain between the two powers –the Volga tribe and Islam –BUT –he may not even realize that’s what he is)

  16. "Amateur Hour at Mossad. Britain Not Amused."

    Actually I think Israel did a FINE job...

    Hamas murderer and the world should know that the age of PC is over...

    Hamas, Hezbollah, Iran, Syria have no problems using false passports to murder in other states...

    England has become the center of international terror, allowing terrorists to train, group and organize all in jolly ole england...

    From the suicide bomber that did Mike's Place, Richard Reid (shoe bomber), Christmas Day Bomber, advancing academic boycotts on Israel, FUNDING NGO's in Israel to destroy her & more...

    Good hunting Israel....

    I hope after the press dies down the message will go out clearly...

    If your a terrorist with BLOOD on your hands, you are a target, and your perversion of international laws will not save you....

  17. If this were burlesque, the amateurs managed to fool all the security pros at airports the world over.

    To repeat:

    a) a murderer has been executed

    b) no innocents were killed or maimed

    c) there will be no show trial

    d) there will be no parole, ala the Libyan Lockerbie bomber

    As to the world listening to what XXXXXX has to say, governments will continue to do so when it is thought advantageous - nothing will change.

    As to the rulers of Gaza, they will sleep less well at night and travel more warily.