New Israel intelligence unit spies on Western leftwing groups

Israel, Palestine

Israel, Palestine

Israel’s Military Intelligence has set up a new unit tasked with infiltrating and monitoring Western leftwing organizations that criticize Israel’s policies on the Palestinians. The unit, whose name remains unknown, was reportedly established earlier this year by the research division of Israel’s Military Intelligence Directorate (MID). It has been given the sole task of targeting Western groups that routinely criticize Israeli policies, campaign for economic boycott or divestiture from Israel, and try to bring war crime charges against senior Israeli government officials. Israeli daily newspaper Ha’aretz quotes “senior Israeli officials and [MID] officers” who claim that these worldwide campaigns “delegitimize Israel and question its right to exist”. They also suggest that there are links between organizations lobbying worldwide against Israel’s policies on the Palestinians and “terror groups”. The paper reports that the new unit was set up in the wake of the official Israeli investigation into the bloody events of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla in June of 2010, when Israeli commandos killed eight Turkish and one American citizen in international waters. Rumor has it that Israeli military and intelligence officials were taken aback by the large numbers of volunteers on the flotilla ships —over 600 people in total— which included citizens of most Western countries, including many Americans. The activities of grassroots pro-Palestinian groups in the West, which have been gaining momentum in recent years, were seen by the Israeli government as representing a “dangerous blind spot” in its intelligence collection. This led to the creation of the new unit, which Ha’aretz says is in close and frequent contact with the office of the Prime Minster.

About intelNews
Expert news and commentary on intelligence, espionage, spies and spying, by Dr. Joseph Fitsanakis and Ian Allen.

4 Responses to New Israel intelligence unit spies on Western leftwing groups

  1. Actually I think Israeli intelligence may have been spying on US left wing organizations for awhile.

    In July 2001 I had the honor of being visited by Israeli art students at my office in Seattle, despite the fact that I have never worked for the federal government. I had no idea who they were at the time – though they clearly weren’t artists – the paintings they were trying to sell were terrible. It was only when Fox News reported after 9-11 that Mossad agents were masquerading as Israeli art students I connected the dots.

    I puzzled over the reason for their visit for many years. I now believe it had something to do with long time monitoring and harassment by the FBI for my political activities. I recently learned other activists on the West Coast received visits around the same time I did.

    I write about this in my recent memoir THE MOST REVOLUTIONARY ACT: MEMOIR OF AN AMERICAN REFUGEE ( I currently live in exile in New Zealand.

  2. max says:

    I don’t see the downside here. Is there a website where Israel’s Military Intelligence accepts paypal donations?

  3. snoebay says:

    What makes you think they are not watching you now !

  4. Joshua Engelman says:

    Max, I’m quite familiar with Israeli security, and personally know several Mossad officers, and I have one thing to explain: they do not care about our pesky little “laws.” They will do as the current PM sees as furthering the goals of the state of Israel, regardless of the violations of both local and international laws. I have no particular opinion on whether this is justified, but things are just not that simple.

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