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Intelligence What do we know, need to know, and how do we get there?

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Old 03-24-2010   #81
davidbfpo
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Default Collection of pointers

Here are two UK reports on the expulsion of an Israeli diplomat in London:

Quote:
Britain's relations with Israel sank to new low as Mossad's top agent was expelled from the country over the use of 12 forged British passports in the murder of a Hamas leader in Dubai.
Link:http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...tolerable.html

The BBC: http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/8582518.stm

Found elsewhere is an ex-CIA station chief, on Al-Jazeera:
Quote:
...they are working from an old paradigm which simply is no longer relevant...The point is that in this day and time, with ubiquitous surveillance cameras, the ability to comprehensively analyse patterns of cell phone and credit card use, computerised records of travel documents which can be shared in the blink of an eye, the growing use of biometrics and machine-readable passports, and the ability of governments to share vast amounts of travel and security-related information almost instantaneously, it is virtually impossible for clandestine operatives not to leave behind a vast electronic trail which, if and when there is reason to examine it in detail, will amount to a huge body of evidence.
Tactical and strategic points made; link:http://english.aljazeera.net/focus/2...732842915.html
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Old 03-29-2010   #82
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schmedlap View Post
Here is the news regarding Iran's recent capture of the leader of Jundullah.

Now, imagine the outcry if the following changes were made to that quote...

When considering the prudence of (alleged?) Israeli assassinations, I think it is worth pausing for a moment to understand why Israel thinks that it needs to resort to assassination. It's not like they're going to get much help from their neighbors. I don't hear a lot of cries of anger from Dubai or Kyrgyzstan over military aircraft forcing a jet to land in Iran.

Israel has in fact forced a civilian aviation plane to land in the past to take of a passenger. Dont want to do the same thing over and over, it gets to be boring.
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Old 03-29-2010   #83
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I think there is another fact to be looked at here...

I imagine most would agree that the bad guys dont think/act rationally.

A Mcdonalds as a symbol for the USA, or recently a German bakery in India

So, after the event, it is known that Germans, French, Australians etc. Killed the bad guy...

If by some small chance there was a crazy in the ranks of extremists (Could very well be ;-) then there could have been a very good chance that somewhere in the world a German, French or australian tourist could have been made to pay the price.

Of the top of my head, i cannot remember a US passport being used... and there are plenty of older US passports in circulation, and pretty easy to fake..

Now, what nation could mount an operation like this... AND be so reliant on the USA that they would not dare using a US passport?

Anyway, whoever did it took into account and ignored the possibility of retribution against the citizens of the passports used....

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Old 03-29-2010   #84
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Default The point was to make a brazen and obvious operation.

Ohh yes the PA was involved in this as well. The whole operation was intended to make a statement to multiple actors. "Yes, we did it though we won't tell you that and yes we did it in the daylight. This is how we treat our enemies and we are not afraid to show our real faces".
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Old 04-02-2010   #85
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Ohh yes the PA was involved in this as well. The whole operation was intended to make a statement to multiple actors. "Yes, we did it though we won't tell you that and yes we did it in the daylight. This is how we treat our enemies and we are not afraid to show our real faces".
I think that you're right that was the intended messaging.

I'm not sure--in part because of the post-facto efficiency of the Dubai police --that the message has come to be entirely understood that way in the region.
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Old 04-02-2010   #86
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Default Dubai...the new Lebanon?

There was a time when Lebanon was the refuge of choice for the more shady types. Has Dubai now captured that niche market? I only ask because the killing of Ramzan Kadyrov's main rival for power in Chechnya Sulim Yamadaev didn't cause as much of a furore (obviously because MOSSAD/Israel wasn't intimated). Given that the "fugitive" leader of Russia's Chechen unit (the Vostok Battalion) was staying in Dubai (which has a notable community there) can it be reasonably postulated that Dubai now occupies an important "safehaven" for certain groups (thereby replacing Lebanon as the prefered "offshore" destination)?
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Old 06-12-2010   #87
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Default Israeli wanted over Dubai killing 'held in Poland'

A surprising development: BBC link http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asi...c/10302022.stm and The Daily Telegraph http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worl...i-killing.html
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Old 06-12-2010   #88
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I can't believe anyone of them was dumb enough to travel abroad.
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Old 06-27-2010   #89
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Default another possible casualty

'Mossad Chief to leave post'
Jerusalem Post
06/26/2010 00:21

Quote:
Mossad Chief Meir Dagan is to leave his post in three months, Channel 2 news reported on Friday.

According to the report, Dagan, who has been head of the Mossad for the last eight years, requested to work another year in the role, but was refused.

...

The decision not to renew Dagan's appointment is likely related to the fallout from the recent attempt to assassinate Hamas commander Mahmoud al Mabhouh in Dubai.

...
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Old 06-27-2010   #90
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
I can't believe anyone of them was dumb enough to travel abroad.
Agreed.
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Old 06-27-2010   #91
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Originally Posted by Fuchs View Post
I can't believe anyone of them was dumb enough to travel abroad.
Mossad isn't a large agency, and you can't replace clandestine operatives quickly. I doubt it is possible for all those identified with the Dubai operation to cancel all international travel for an indefinite period without seriously degrading the organization's effectiveness.

Sloppy tradecraft appears to have played a role here too.
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Old 08-06-2010   #92
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Default T'is a strange world

Bearing in mind the past. From the BBC:
Quote:
A Polish appeals court has upheld a decision to hand over to Germany an alleged Israeli agent wanted over the murder of a Hamas commander in Dubai.
Link:http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-europe-10883014
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Old 10-15-2010   #93
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Default Follow Up

In Global Hunt for Hit Men, Tantalizing Trail Goes Cold, by Chip Cummins and Alistair MacDonald. The Wall Street Journal, 8 October 2010.
Quote:
It has been more than eight months since the murder of top Hamas official Mahmoud al-Mabhouh, whose body was found in a Dubai hotel room Jan. 20. Quick work by Dubai police and a diplomatic furor over the use of dozens of forged passports in the case fed early optimism that at least some of the 30-plus suspects would be found. But a string of apparent dead ends has frustrated international investigators, lengthening the odds that anyone will be caught or that definitive proof of Mossad involvement will emerge.

And despite an initial burst of tough talk from various governments, some international investigators are concerned that politics may be hampering cooperation from some governments that support Israel.
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Old 10-20-2010   #94
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Default Help me understand this please...

If the US send drones into Pakistan to assassinate Taliban leaders without the permission of the Pakistan government and carries out a unilateral strike into the Sudan (around 1996) and thats OK but if the Israelis take out a sworn enemy in Dubai and it becomes a major international incident.

So what is the message here?

A so-called surgical strike by a missile (which may take out the target and his whole family) is fine but a bunch of assassins using forged passports and leaving no collateral is unacceptable?

What is the essential difference between the button pusher sitting on some Air Force base in the US and the Israeli trigger man in some hotel room in Dubai?

BTW I support both the US and Israeli actions... just can't see why the Israelis are being hung out to dry on this.

Last edited by JMA; 10-20-2010 at 09:56 AM.
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Old 10-20-2010   #95
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Originally Posted by JMA View Post
If the US send drones into Pakistan to assassinate Taliban leaders without the permission of the Pakistan government and carries out a unilateral strike into the Sudan (around 1996) and thats OK but if the Israelis take out a sworn enemy in Dubai and it becomes a major international incident.

So what is the message here?

A so-called surgical strike by a missile (which may take out the target and his whole family) is fine but a bunch of assassins using forged passports and leaving no collateral is unacceptable?

What is the essential difference between the button pusher sitting on some Air Force base in the US and the Israeli trigger man in some hotel room in Dubai?

BTW I support both the US and Israeli actions... just can't see why the Israelis are being hung out to dry on this.
I surmise that its not so much what they did as how (using fake Foriegn passports and thereby implicating, had investigators not been on the ball, a whole host of countires and/or their citizens potentially landing all concerned in the proverbial manure which in these delicate times would have reverbarations far outwieghing their actual import). Frankly, I too was impressed by the balls on them there Israelis.

Last edited by Tukhachevskii; 10-20-2010 at 09:59 AM. Reason: added underlined qualifier, must be JMM's influence!
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Old 10-20-2010   #96
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JMA part post:
Quote:
If the US send drones into Pakistan to assassinate Taliban leaders without the permission of the Pakistan government.
There is a thread on drones - mainly to do with Pakistan and IIRC this point has appeared there. Whatever the Pakistani state says they have give consent, as has been made clear in repeated reports and statements. After all the drones are based at a Pakistani air force base and many suspect that ISI can provide the intelligence that enables a drone strike.

Your wider point why is one state a pariah (no caveats) and another criticised is a good one. Some of the difference is political, some is legal (JMM's field) and IMHO the rest is imagery, wrong word, PR. Dubai had CCTV footage and it was swiftly made available, to run as a global story; drone hits in the FATA may get some footage, but it is not a global story. Especially when Mossad's cloak of skill is deftly removed.
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Old 10-20-2010   #97
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Originally Posted by JMA View Post
What is the essential difference between the button pusher sitting on some Air Force base in the US and the Israeli trigger man in some hotel room in Dubai?
To be clear, the assassination of al-Mabhouh was to appear a natural death. So in the literal sense there was no trigger man. I donít know if you were using the term euphemistically or not, but it raises another point.

Drone strikes in FATA are, or at least were, a covert operation; that is the sponsorship of the action was cloaked. The Dubai assassination was a clandestine operation in that it sought to cloak the action itself - make it look like a natural death.

However, I do not know the implications, if any, of this distinction.

By essential difference do you mean on the moral level? If so, I would suggest that counter-terrorism is an amoral endeavor.
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Old 10-20-2010   #98
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Default Legal distinctions

under traditional international law and international humanitarian law.

Under traditional international law, intervention by a nation-state within the territory of another nation-state, without the consent of that state or outside of the exceptions permitted by the Laws of War (LOAC; e.g., hot pursuit or belligerent combatant presence), is a violation of international law; for which, the violated nation-state has remedies ranging from a diplomatic protest to nuclear retaliation.

Under traditional international law, an individual person damaged by such an intervention has no individual rights vs the intervening nation. However, the violated nation-state can, among its other possible remedies, send the intervening nation-state a bill for damages to its nationals. Thus, under traditional international law, the mere fact that an intervention violates traditional international law does not make that intervention a "war crime". That depends on other laws (e.g., international humanitarian law - see next) which may or may be found applicable by the various beholders.

Under international humanitarian law (including treaty, convention and "customary"), which varies greatly as accepted from country to country, individuals are recognized as subjects of international rights. This is a very fluid area of the law which has few definitive answers that are valid and accepted across the international spectrum.

Regards

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Old 10-20-2010   #99
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To be clear, the assassination of al-Mabhouh was to appear a natural death. So in the literal sense there was no trigger man. I donít know if you were using the term euphemistically or not, but it raises another point.
Yes, I should have put the trigger man in inverted commas. OK so it was the "pillow" man. I am just a little surprised Dubai police are looking for 35 people by name. One, why so many needed in the team, and two, how have they been so easily identified? Its all a little bit strange.

Quote:
Drone strikes in FATA are, or at least were, a covert operation; that is the sponsorship of the action was cloaked. The Dubai assassination was a clandestine operation in that it sought to cloak the action itself - make it look like a natural death.
Actually its worse for the US (not that I mind to be honest) with the guy sitting on some US Air Force base who pushes the button which fires the weapon which takes out the bad guy, his whole family and anyone else close by. At least the Israeli's only held Mahmoud's head into the pillow and counted to 100. No collateral damage.

Quote:
However, I do not know the implications, if any, of this distinction.

By essential difference do you mean on the moral level? If so, I would suggest that counter-terrorism is an amoral endeavor.
No a legal level. I gave up the moral argument as a twenty year old when I saw examples of the end justifying the means committed in the name of freedom. The Israeli's use of the Old Testament (eye for an eye...) is probably the way to go IMHO.

I suggest that the US is honour bound to come out and state that Dubai was at fault to allow Mahmoud al-Mabhouh to visit Dubai as he would be likely to attract the kind of attention which would be bad PR for Dubai and embarrass the hell out of there security services in the process.
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Old 10-21-2010   #100
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JMA View Post
Yes, I should have put the trigger man in inverted commas. OK so it was the "pillow" man. I am just a little surprised Dubai police are looking for 35 people by name. One, why so many needed in the team, and two, how have they been so easily identified? Its all a little bit strange.
Bob Baer had an article that basically broke down how labor intensive operations like this would be, and how modern surveillance technology has tipped the scales against it. On the identification end of things, with the digital footprints people leave these days, it is amazing what can be done Ė privacy is essentially dead.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JMA View Post
I suggest that the US is honour bound to come out and state that Dubai was at fault to allow Mahmoud al-Mabhouh to visit Dubai as he would be likely to attract the kind of attention which would be bad PR for Dubai and embarrass the hell out of there security services in the process.
The United States should not concern itself with an eye-sticking fight between two tribes of little strategic importance.

Further why would Israel want to punish Dubai? Israelís economy is dependent on money laundering and the sale of diamonds & weapons; and as such it requires places like Dubai as a safe haven for shady financial dealings.
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