This article appears in the August 31, 2001 issue of Executive Intelligence Review.
Israeli Spies: ‘Mega Was Not
an Agent; Mega Was the Boss’
by Jeffrey Steinberg
For a brief period of time in early 1997, the Central Intelligence Agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the National Security Agency engaged in a frantic mole hunt for an Israeli spy, believed to be operating inside the highest levels of the Clinton Administration national security establishment. By the time the mole hunt was made public–in a May 7, 1997 Washington Post leak–the hunt had been abruptly ended, and for all intents and purposes, the story disappeared from the news within a matter of days.
According to the Post account, in January 1997, the National Security Agency (NSA) had intercepted a phone conversation between an Israeli official at the embassy in Washington, and Danny Yatom, the head of the Mossad, Israel’s foreign intelligence service. The official sought permission from the spy boss to “go to Mega” in order to obtain a copy of a confidential letter that had been sent by then-U.S. Secretary of State Warren Christopher to Palestinian Authority President Yasser Arafat, concerning U.S. assurances about a recently negotiated agreement for an Israeli military withdrawal from the Hebron area in the West Bank. Yatom, according to the NSA intercept, rejected the request, admonishing his agent, “This is not something we use Mega for.”
The idea that the Israeli government was running another spy operation inside the U.S. national security establishment created a tremendous stir. The Washington Post, in its May 7, 1997 leak, had reported, “One official with knowledge of the FBI investigation into the identity of Mega cautioned that much remained unknown. But the official said that if it turned out that a senior U.S. official was passing sensitive information to Israeli authorities, it could prove more serious than the espionage case involving Jonathan Jay Pollard, a former Navy analyst who was convicted in 1986 of selling U.S. military intelligence documents to Israel.”
To this day, the Pollard affair is a hot-button issue inside the U.S. intelligence community. At the time of Pollard’s arrest in November 1985, it was known that the Navy analyst had been “tasked” to obtain specific U.S. military intelligence secrets, by someone much higher up in the U.S. intelligence community. To this day, the hunt for “Mr. X,” Pollard’s inside controller, continues. In 1986, EIR had revealed the existence of not merely a “Mr. X,” but an “X Committee,” made up of nearly a dozen top-level Pentagon and National Security Council officials, all suspected of having been part of the Pollard spy network.
Given the seriousness of the Mega security breach, the abrupt shutdown of the mole hunt naturally prompted some wild speculation about the circumstances under which the search for Mega was abandoned. In March 1999, British author Gordon Thomas released a book, Gideon’s Spies, which alleged that Israel had blackmailed the Clinton Administration, with the threat to release tapped telephone conversations between the President and Monica Lewinsky, to force Washington to abandon the Mega hunt. Indeed, in her testimony before independent counsel Kenneth Starr, Lewinsky had reported that the President had warned her, on March 29, 1997, at the height of the Mega hunt, that he suspected the White House telephones were being tapped by agents of an unnamed foreign country.
Years later, it was revealed that the White House communications system had been overhauled and modernized during the early Clinton era, and one of the main outside contractors involved in the project was an Israeli firm, Amdocs. According to a May 2000 story in Insight magazine, Amdocs employees would have had nearly unfettered access to White House telephone lines and other super-sensitive communications equipment. However, the nature of the request from the Mossad man in Washington to Yatom—to obtain a confidential State Department document—rules out the possibility that Mega was an electronic eavesdropping source.
Even though the Mega hunt was formally called off, still in some U.S. intelligence quarters, the effort to unearth the suspected Israeli spy cell apparently continued. In September 2000, a CIA team of counterintelligence specialists arrived in Israel, after U.S. Ambassador Martin Indyk had his security clearances temporarily lifted. Ostensibly, Indyk had breached security guidelines by bringing classified U.S. government documents to his residence in Tel Aviv. But it later was revealed that the CIA probe was triggered by an August 2000 unauthorized meeting between Indyk and the former head of the Mossad, Ephraim Halevy, which the ambassador had never reported back to Washington.
If there were anyone in the Clinton Administration’s political hierarchy who was a prime candidate to be the Israeli spy Mega, it was Indyk. A British-born Australian citizen, Indyk had been Australia’s top Mideast security official in the late 1970s, as deputy director of current Mideast intelligence at the Australian Office of National Assessments, the equivalent of the U.S. National Security Council. But, Indyk abruptly quit the post after just ten months, prompting speculation that he had come under suspicion of spying for Israel (he had lived in Israel while completing his dissertation on “The Power of the Weak: The Ability of Israel and Egypt to Resist the Policies of their Super-Power Patrons”). According to British journalist Kevin Dowling, Indyk next surfaced in Israel, as a “media consultant” to Israel’s Likud Prime Ministers, Menachem Begin and Yitzhak Shamir.
In 1982, Indyk came to America, ostensibly on a six-month sabbatical from his duties with the Office of the Israeli Prime Minister. Based out of Cornell University, Indyk formed a research department for the America-Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), the “official” Israeli lobby in the United States. Within a year, AIPAC had ponied up $100,000 to Indyk to hive off the research unit as the Washington Institute for Near East Policy (WINEP). Pro-Israel luminaries in Washington, including former Vice President Walter Mondale, former Secretaries of State George Shultz and Alexander Haig, and former United Nations Ambassador Jeane Kirkpatrick, were among the initiating members of WINEP’s advisory board, according to Dowling’s Sept. 27, 2000 account of the Indyk counterintelligence probe.
Indyk’s “six-month sabbatical” never ended, but it was not until 1987 that the Australian got his first green card, permitting him to work in the United States. Indyk was made a U.S. citizen on Jan. 12, 1993—just eight days before he was appointed to the incoming Clinton Administration’s National Security Council (NSC) staff as Senior Director for Near East and South Asian Affairs. Indyk had already been an informal Mideast policy adviser to President George H.W. Bush, at the initiative of Dennis Ross, Bush’s Assistant Secretary of State, previously a deputy to Indyk at WINEP. At the time of the Mega hunt, Indyk had Ross’ old job as Assistant Secretary of State for the Near East.
Another prime suspect in the Mega mole hunt was Leon Fuerth, Vice President Albert Gore’s national security adviser, and another well-known pro-Likud fanatic. The Washington Post, in a 1998 profile of Fuerth, reported that he was suspected by U.S. intelligence officials of passing sensitive U.S. policy information to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (Likud), a passionate, personal enemy of President Clinton, who was suspected of activating the Mega spy operation.
Also on the Mega list of suspects inside the Clinton national security apparatus was Richard Clarke, the National Security Council “counterterrorism czar,” who was fired from the State Department and brought onto the Bush Administration NSC in 1992, after he was accused by the State Department’s Inspector General of concealing illegal Israeli arms sales to China.
The Purloined Letter Principle
While all of the above-mentioned Bush- and Clinton-era national security operatives may have been, indeed, secretly, or not-so-secretly passing critical American policy papers and classified documents to the Likud faction in Israel; and, while then-Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu and his Mossad mandarins may have been attempting to blackmail the President, there is a much simpler answer to the Mega puzzle: Mega was not a deep mole inside the White House. Mega was a far more visible, far more powerful entity, known among its several dozen members as “the Mega Group.”
The existence of the Mega Group came to light, almost exactly a year after the Washington Post revealed that the mole hunt was under way. Yet, the story of the Mega Group, which appeared in the Wall Street Journal on May 4, 1998, made no mention of espionage, and did not mention the Mossad, the CIA, or Monica Lewinsky, even in passing. Despite that, the Mega Group precisely fits the story of the illusive mole hunt, in a manner that has profound policy implications to this day, as President George W. Bush struggles to avoid an outbreak of war in the Middle East, which would have devastating consequences for the entire planet.
Under the innocent headline, “Titans of Industry Join Forces To Work for Jewish Philanthropy,” Wall Street Journal staff reporter Lisa Miller reported on an April 1998 gathering of some 20 Jewish billionaires, at the Manhattan apartment of hedge-fund manager Michael Steinhardt. That gathering involved some of the most powerful names in the Jewish lobby in America, starting with Edgar Bronfman, the chairman of the World Jewish Congress. Others included: Charles Bronfman, Edgar’s brother and a top executive of the family’s flagship Seagrams Corp.; Leslie Wexler of Limited, Inc.; Charles Schusterman, chairman of Samson Investment Co. of Tulsa, Oklahoma; Harvey “Bud” Meyerhoff, a fabulously wealthy and powerful Baltimore real estate magnate; Laurence Tisch, chairman of Loews Corp.; Max Fisher, the Detroit oil magnate and Republican Party powerhouse; bagel magnate Max Lender; and Leonard Abramson, the founder of U.S. Healthcare.
According to the Journal account, the Mega Group was founded in 1991 by Wexler and Charles Bronfman, to add greater clout to the Israeli lobby, by establishing an informal, but all-powerful policymaking group, able to deploy billions of dollars in “charitable” funds for the maximum effect on U.S. policy toward Israel, the Mideast, and other issues of paramount importance to the Jewish megabillionaires. The Mega Group convenes twice a year, for two-day sessions, where, behind closed doors, the members make life-and-death decisions, affecting U.S. policy. Membership is by invitation only; the meetings are secret (the Wall Street Journal story was the only coverage to ever appear in the U.S. media about the existence of the Mega Group, before the publication of this EIR account); and the members each kick in $30,000 in annual dues, to cover “operating expenses” for the twice-yearly sessions.
Charles Bronfman reflected the Mega Group’s propensity for secrecy, when he told the Journal’s Lisa Miller, “From the beginning we didn’t want to be seen as a threat to anybody. And that still pertains. We don’t want to be seen as the Sanhedrin,” a reference to the highest court of the ancient Jews. “We don’t want to be looked at crooked.” Charles’ far more sinister and slick brother, Edgar, tried to dismiss the activities of the Mega Group, telling Miller, “We want to make it cool to be Jewish.”
Not So Cool
But then, a March 13, 2001 dispatch by the Jewish Telegraph Agency revealed that the Mega Group is more than a loose bunch of Jewish billionaires out to do good. The JTA reported that newly installed Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon was about to launch a two-pronged propaganda offensive inside the United States, aimed at winning American support for his plans to overturn the Mideast peace process. First, the JTA revealed, the Sharon government announced that it was hiring two U.S. public relations firms—Rubenstein Associates and Morris, Carrick and Guma—to peddle the Israeli government “spin” inside the U.S. media and in policymaking circles in New York and Washington.
The JTA wire continued, “More controversially, a handful of Jewish mega-donors has created a think-tank they hope will generate long-term strategies for presenting Israel in a favorable light.”
The new think-tank, Emet (the Hebrew word for “truth”), JTA reported, is the collective brain-child of Leonard Abramson, Edgar Bronfman, and Michael Steinhardt—three of the leading Mega Group members (JTA made no mention of Mega). The Mega Group is expected to kick in $7 million to launch the new organization, with the Israeli Foreign Ministry also pledged to pony up $1 million in startup cash. But, lest there be any confusion about who’s in charge at Emet, JTA revealed that “the group consulted with [Malcolm] Hoelein, [Abe] Foxman and other Jewish activists—and only then notified Israel’s Foreign Ministry, Foxman said.” Hoelein, the executive vice president of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, is a fanatical backer of the Sharon war-drive, a view he shared with the just-retired president of the group, Ronald Lauder, a big Sharon financial backer who met with Sharon in September 2000—just before the latter staged his provocation at the Islamic holy sites on the Temple Mount/al-Haram al-Sharif in Jerusalem, triggering the ongoing violence.
The Emet project has been criticized inside Israel, by Foreign Ministry officials and peace activists alike. As JTA reported, “Some Foreign Ministry officials grumbled that American Jews were poaching on their turf. Not surprisingly, they would prefer that any extra money be funneled to the ministry’s efforts…. Israel’s left appeared concerned that hawkish American Jews will use Emet to push a hard-line approach to the peace process.” Steinhardt, Bronfman, and Abramson refused to talk about the project. But the enthusiastic endorsement for Emet from Morton Klein, president of the hawkish Zionist Organization of America, is strong confirmation that the outfit will peddle Sharon’s war line. As EIR reported recently, Klein led a delegation of right-wing Zionists and evangelical Christians in a White House meeting, where they threatened a Presidential representative with a cutoff of support, if Bush attempted to interfere in Sharon’s war schemes (see Anton Chaitkin, “Temple Mount Fanatics Seek To Blackmail Bush,” EIR Aug. 24, 2001).
The Power of Money
The Mega Group story came full circle on May 5, 2001, with the publication of a story in an obscure Israeli online publication, Media Monitors Network, by writer Israel Shamir. Shamir noted, with no lack of irony, the meeting of the Mega Group, which had taken place the previous day at the Manhattan mansion of Edgar Bronfman.
Shamir first described a meeting he had recently had with a Vermont-based psychoanalyst, the nephew of Israel’s first Prime Minister, David Ben-Gurion. The nephew prided himself on the fact that his closest friends were Palestinians, and that he rejected the idea of a Jewish “tribal” identity, preferring to view all human beings as brethren.
Shamir observed, “That is the last thing the bosses want. I would not be amazed if they discussed it yesterday, when they met in the Edgar Bronfman mansion in Manhattan. The head of the World Jewish Congress hosted a meeting of the 50 richest and most powerful Jews of the U.S. and Canada. There was no press coverage, no limelight, just a few lines in the newspapers…. They agreed to launch a PR program under the Orwellian codename of ‘Truth’ with the purpose of influencing American public opinion regarding Israeli policies.”
Shamir continued, “The megabucks call themselves ‘Mega group.’ This name appeared in the media a couple of years ago, as a name for the secret Israeli mole in the upper reaches of the U.S. establishment. It came up in an overheard phone conversation, later denied by the Israeli embassy in Washington, D.C. The newshounds and spook watchers got it wrong. ‘Mega’ was not an agent, Mega was the boss.”
With some bitterness, Shamir wrote, “Megabucks influence us, even more than they influence the U.S. Our politicians are as weak and corrupt as America’s and they are easier to swing. Even relative small-timers can cause eruption and bloodshed, like the California bingo-parlor owner [Irving] Moskowitz, who pushed our ex-prime minister Netanyahu to open the tunnel under the Haram al Sharif…. The Megabucks can buy Israel with their spare change. If they wish, we would have peace in Palestine today. But they are not interested in Israel per se…. Megabucks care for themselves, and they need Israel in order to keep the American Jews together, supporting them. That is why they do not mind bloodshed in Palestine, and even a bloody regional war does not scare them.”
Shamir concluded: “In my opinion, Megabucks, rather than forces of Caballa, move the events in the Middle East. It is not magic, just money—but a lot of money. They do not rule America or Israel, but they exercise a lot of influence. Fifty multibillionaires united in one framework present a very real force in the world.”
Of course, Shamir does not have the picture precisely right. The Bronfman-centered Mega Group is but one component of an insane and desperate element within the transatlantic financial establishment that is now pressing for a “Clash of Civilizations,” as a means of responding to the collapse of their global financial empire, and the threat of a new set of Eurasia-centered cooperative arrangements among nations supplanting their power. But, as far as the Mega puzzle is concerned, Shamir has solved the mystery.
No wonder Mossad boss Yatom scolded his Washington-based underling with the warning, “This is not something we use Mega for.”
Let’s hope that he is negotiating with the authorities to disclose the identity of Mega.
As some background, here is a snip from Giraldi’s June 08 article, “The Spy Who Loves Us. Pay no mind to the Mossad agent on the line”:
“The arrest revived suspicions that Israeli agents might still be operating inside the U.S., most particularly “Mega,” whose cover name was revealed in an NSA-intercepted conversation between two Israeli intelligence officers. “Mega” was clearly at the policymaker level, as Kadish and Pollard frequently sought files by name or number. Someone more senior in Washington appeared to be directing the Israeli handlers toward sensitive information. Whoever “Mega” was, he is still at large.”
Scott Horton interviewed Giraldi at the time. I wrote up a transcript a while ago, but never published it. Here you go:
Scott Horton: Do me a favor, Phil, I was ten years old at the time. I barely know a thing about it, tell me and the audience about Jonathan Pollard and the giant spying case in the 1980s.
Phil Giraldi: Well, Jonathan Pollard was an Israeli spy, he spied for at least three years for them, he was receiving money. His motivation apparently was somewhat loyalty to Israel in a kind of generic way, but it was mostly money that he was interested in.
And he worked for the Defense Department and he was able to steal apparently an entire room full of highly sensitive documents, many of which related to security of communication systems and things like this, and capabilities of satellites and the kind of information that is of top-level interest to any intelligence service.
So he stole a whole room full of this type of classified information, gave it to Israel, and Seymour Hersh among others believes that a lot of this information wound up in Russia, where the Israelis exchanged it for Russian permission to let some Russian Jews leave the country. So this information wound up presumably in the US’s principal enemy, so this was not a benign activity that wound up just in Israel to benefit the Israelis. It went far beyond that.
Scott Horton: Well now there’s something that I do remember from 1986 – that the Soviet Union were the bad guys and had a bunch of nuclear missiles pointed at us.
Phil Giraldi: Yeah, that’s the point. The defenders of Pollard often say that he really did nothing wrong, he was helping an ally; he was giving them information they needed for their defense and so on and so forth. That’s nonsense, and the reason why Pollard has not been released from prison is the fact that everyone on the inside knows very well that Pollard gave them tons of information that had nothing to do with Israel, nothing to do with the Middle East, and in fact the information went on to the Russians, and benefited the Russians in their confrontation with us.
Scott Horton: Right, now just recently – a month and a half ago or so, it came out that there was another Israeli spy, actually an American citizen who was spying for Israel named Ben-Ami Kadish and, just from what I read in Newsweek, I think this sort of shed brand new light on the Jonathan Pollard case from 1986. How’s that?
Phil Giraldi: Yes, it does indeed shed new light on it because when Pollard was caught and convicted, the Israelis privately agreed with the US government that they had been spying, and that they wouldn’t do it anymore, and they basically said that this was a rogue operation.
Well it turns out that it wasn’t a rogue operation, because there was another rogue out there, and also the NSA has intercepted communications that the Israelis had yet another more senior spy whom they referred to as MEGA – and there’s been a lot of speculation as to who MEGA is. MEGA obviously is still out there.
Scott Horton: I want to hear some speculation as to who MEGA is!
Phil Giraldi: I don’t think I’d better do that (laughs) – I know a few names that are being thrown around, I mean, even Henry Kissinger has been named as a possible MEGA, but there are a couple more that are quite plausible when one thinks about it, but I’d rather not name names.
Scott Horton: Geez. I’m trying to remember, because I know that James Bamford has talked about, or brought up, an old Washington Post story from 1997 or something like that where they talk about, whoever this guy MEGA was, he was in a position where he knew not just the file numbers, but even the super-duper top secret titles of intelligence reports and so forth, that he must be a very senior level person to have this kind of intelligence clearance, is that right?
Phil Giraldi: Yeah, that’s the theory, because apparently both Pollard and Kadish were directed to request and steal specific intelligence reports or assessments, and they had the names, they had the numbers, and these names and numbers – because of the sensitivity of the reports – could only have come from someone who was at the very top level of the US government.
Scott Horton: At the very top level? So this would be, maybe not necessarily cabinet level, but say, someone like the head of counter-terrorism or something like that?
Phil Giraldi: I would say, yeah – you’re looking basically at maybe the one or two or three top people in something like the FBI, something like the NSA, but more likely, the evidence seems to indicate that MEGA was a political player, so that would actually more likely be someone at the cabinet level, or somebody equivalent to that. So the speculation would be that it is someone maybe in the National Security Council structure – someone like that.
Scott Horton: Yeah, I guess that’s what I was trying to get at with the counter-terrorism thing – somebody who is an executive agent, not necessarily a Secretary or something, but pretty high up – and I think one of the other qualifications for this MEGA is that they’ve had this level of clearance in multiple administrations, right?
Phil Giraldi: Yeah, the individual involved would have – so it seems – would have been in place during both Republican and Democratic administrations.
Scott Horton: Alright. Interesting stuff!
Phil Giraldi: That narrows down the speculation as to who it might be…
Scott Horton: That’s got to be less than a dozen people on your list though, right?
Phil Giraldi: Try about six!
Scott Horton: Try about six… half a dozen on Phil’s short list there. Well I’m sure that there’s a grand jury investigating this right now, right?
Phil Giraldi: Of course.
Scott Horton: (laughs) OK. Sorry. I’m sure that’s actually not the case. Now this guy Ben-Ami Kadish apparently gave the Israelis information on F15s and I think even on nuclear weaponry – is that right?
Phil Giraldi: Yeah, my understanding is he gave them avionics information on F15s and F16s and also there was information that dealt with nuclear weapons and delivery systems.
Scott Horton: Now, this is an old case, sort of a cold case. This guy is an old man, he’s not going to be prosecuted for treason?
Phil Giraldi: Well, I would like to see him prosecuted for treason, but it is not likely. I’m quite surprised that they let him out on bail, and this is a case of treason if there ever was one, but he is out on bail. I would think that there is considerable risk of his fleeing to Israel, from which he would not be extradited. So, I’m quite confused by the signal that the US courts are sending on this.
Scott Horton: (Some snippage) Now, we’ve got to get to the neoconservatives, because, I don’t think it has been alleged, for at least a long, long time, that our household-name favorite neocons like Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle, Douglas Feith, are actually Israeli spies, but are clearly such Israeli partisans that their foreign policy seems to be all centered around the Clean Break plan that David Wurmser and Douglas Feith and Richard Perle wrote up for Benjamin Netanyahu in 1996, and they’ve been described as agents of influence for Israel – what do you say about that?
Phil Giraldi: Well, first of all let me point out that all those people you’ve named have in fact been investigated, under suspicion of passing classified information to Israel, so it’s not just pure speculation that these people would on occasion have indicated or demonstrated a willingness to go beyond what are the normal restraints to assist the Israelis as they see it. Whether they are agents of influence for Israel or not is a matter of semantics I think. These people are all deeply in love with Israel and have strong and continuing relationships, and very often business relationships.
Doug Feith as you know and Richard Perle both have had business interests in Israel that have enriched them greatly. So that’s one side of it. But the point is that the neocons have been engaging in this con-job forever, which is essentially that, the way the see the world, Israel and the US are united and are virtually one entity, and everybody else is basically a shade of grey or a shade of black.
I have tried to reconstruct the org charts from way-back-when to see who was on the National Security Council during those administrations in an attempt to identify who is on Giraldi’s short list for MEGA but didn’t have much luck.
Who is MEGA?
By the way, I know that times are tough economically, but Antiwar.com really should employ an intern to transcribe all/many of Scott Horton’s interviews exist in print as well as audio. Scott is such an insanely great interviewer, and he gets such great interviews, and the long-format fleshes out such important detail. Unfortunately most of it disappears into the ether because Google can’t (yet) search audio. For example, consider yesterday’s Eric Margolis interview where Scott asks Eric to repeat his claims that the CIA sponsored and supported the Uighur terrorist movement. This is directly relevant to the third category of Sibel’s Gallery of Rogues. If / when I get a chance I’ll transcribe the relevant parts of this Margolis interview, and his previous interviews with Scott about the same issue – and I’ll connect some dots – but this stuff is too important to be dependent on my availability / state of mind or whatever.
The Spy Who Loves Us
Pay no mind to the Mossad agent on the line.
After Israeli spy Jonathan Pollard was sentenced to life in prison in 1986, the U.S. negotiated an understanding with Israel—a “gentlemen’s agreement” —stipulating that neither nation would thenceforth conduct espionage operations in the other’s territory without consent. But the agreement was a sham from the beginning. The Israeli government didn’t even honor its commitments in the aftermath of the Pollard case, failing to return the estimated 360 cubic feet of stolen information to enable the U.S. to conduct a damage assessment. The United States, for its part, continued to recruit and run agents inside Israel throughout the 1980s and 1990s. And it was known within the intelligence and counterintelligence communities that Israel did the same in the United States. David Szady, the FBI’s assistant director for counterintelligence, was so dismayed by the level of Israeli spying in the late ’90s that he called in the head of the Israeli Embassy’s Central Institute for Intelligence and Special Activities (Mossad) office and told him, “Knock it off.”
Pollard’s name was in the news again on April 22, when former U.S. Army weapons engineer Ben-Ami Kadish was arrested for passing secrets to Israel. Kadish had been an agent run by Yosef Yagur, who directed Pollard. Yagur, under cover as a science attaché at the Israeli Consulate General in New York, fled the U.S. in 1985 after Pollard was arrested, but remained in touch with Kadish.
The arrest revived suspicions that Israeli agents might still be operating inside the U.S., most particularly “Mega,” whose cover name was revealed in an NSA-intercepted conversation between two Israeli intelligence officers. “Mega” was clearly at the policymaker level, as Kadish and Pollard frequently sought files by name or number. Someone more senior in Washington appeared to be directing the Israeli handlers toward sensitive information. Whoever “Mega” was, he is still at large.
Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Arieh Mekel sought to play down the allegations, noting, “Since 1985 there have been clear orders from prime ministers not to conduct these kinds of activities.” The media obediently reported the disclaimer under headlines such as Agence France Presse’s: “Israel says no spying on US since 1985.” But the spokesman had not said that. He referred to “these kinds of activities,” possibly meaning the recruitment of American Jews to work as Israeli intelligence agents. Mekel’s half-hearted denial was a step removed from the Israeli government’s reaction to the 2004 investigation of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, when then Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and Foreign Ministry spokesman Mark Regev insisted that Israel “does not spy on the United States of America.”
It’s possible that Israel has largely demurred from recruiting American Jews as spies, but Tel Aviv’s intelligence operations in the U.S. have undeniably continued. The magnitude of Israeli espionage is certainly known to some senior government officials and is hidden in classified files. But even evidence available in public records attests to widespread infiltration.
Spy operations run by a case officer directly involving a controlled agent are only one of many tasks delegated to an intelligence service. Other responsibilities might include tapping into communications networks, directing agents of influence in the foreign government who can enable favorable policy decisions, running covert actions that feed misleading information to the media, and arranging technology transfers that frequently rely on companies that are either fronts or co-operating with the intelligence service to obtain secret military or commercial information. Even if Israel has stopped recruiting American Jews—and that is by no means certain—it nevertheless continues to carry out many core intelligence operations in the United States.
Israel has little need to run agents of influence here as its intelligence officers, diplomats, and politicians already have unfettered access to policymakers. It has been reported that the Pentagon under Paul Wolfowitz and Doug Feith—both of whom have been investigated for passing classified information to Israel—took few steps to monitor Israeli visitors. Likewise, the Israeli Embassy has excellent access to the media. When it wants to plant propaganda or place stories intended to shape opinion in a direction favorable to Israel, the Mossad generally looks to the British press. Rupert Murdoch’s Times group of newspapers and the Daily Telegraph, formerly owned by Conrad Black, have featured many articles that clearly originated with Israeli government sources. Such pieces are often picked up and replayed in the United States.
Virtually every U.S. government body concerned with security has confirmed that Israeli espionage takes place, though it is frequently not exposed because FBI officers know that investigating these crimes is frustrating and does no favors for their careers. But Israel always features prominently in the annual FBI report called “Foreign Economic Collection and Industrial Espionage.” The 2005 report states, “Israel has an active program to gather proprietary information within the United States. These collection activities are primarily directed at obtaining information on military systems and advanced computing applications that can be used in Israel’s sizable armaments industry.” It adds that Israel recruits spies, uses electronic methods, and carries out computer intrusion to gain the information.
The focus on U.S. military secrets is not limited to information needed for the defense of Israel, as was argued when Pollard was arrested. Some of the information he stole was of such value that many high-ranking intelligence officers believe the Soviet Union agreed to the release of tens of thousands of Russian Jews for resettlement in Israel in exchange. In early 1996, the Office of Naval Investigations concluded that Israel had transferred sensitive military technology to China. In 2000, the Israeli government attempted to sell China the sophisticated Phalcon early warning aircraft, which was based on U.S.-licensed technology. A 2005 FBI report noted that the thefts eroded U.S. military advantage, enabling foreign powers to obtain hugely expensive technologies that had taken years to develop.
In 1996, ten years after the agreement that concluded the Pollard affair, the Pentagon’s Defense Investigative Service warned defense contractors that Israel had “espionage intentions and capabilities” here and was aggressively trying to steal military and intelligence secrets. It also cited a security threat posed by individuals who have “strong ethnic ties” to Israel, stating that “Placing Israeli nationals in key industries … is a technique utilized with great success.” The memo cited illegal transfer of proprietary information from an Illinois optics firm in 1986, after the Pollard arrest, as well as the theft of test equipment for a radar system in the mid-1980s. A storm of outrage from the Anti-Defamation League led to the Pentagon’s withdrawal of the memo, an apology that predictably blamed the language on “a low-ranking individual,” and a promise that no similar warning would be written again.
But the issue of Israeli spying would not go away. Soon after, the General Accounting Office, the investigative arm of Congress, completed an examination of espionage directed against American defense and security industries. The report described how Israeli citizens residing in the U.S. had stolen sensitive technology to manufacture artillery gun tubes, obtained classified plans for a reconnaissance system, and passed sensitive aerospace designs to unauthorized users. An Israeli company was caught monitoring a Department of Defense telecommunications system to obtain classified information, while other Israeli entities targeted avionics, missile telemetry, aircraft communications, software systems, and advanced materials and coatings used in missile re-entry. Independently, a Defense Department source confirmed the GAO report, citing “dozens of other spy cases within the U.S. Defense industry.” The GAO concluded that Israel “conducts the most aggressive espionage operation against the United States of any U.S. ally.”
In early 2001, several federal government agencies noticed a series of intrusive approaches by Israelis who were ostensibly selling paintings. In June, the Drug Enforcement Administration made a compilation of the activities of the so-called “art students” in a classified report, which was later leaked. The report documents 125 specific attempts by Israelis to gain entry to government offices, residences of government employees, and even Defense Department facilities between January and June 2001. The Israelis “targeted and penetrated military bases” and were observed trying to enter federal buildings from back doors and parking garages. One detained Israeli was caught wandering around the federal building in Dallas with a detailed floor plan in hand. Many of those arrested were found to have backgrounds in “military intelligence, electronic surveillance intercept, or explosive ordnance units.”
Now, there may have been an Israeli student subculture in the U.S. selling cheap reproductions. But it is also clear that the art-student mechanism was used by intelligence officers to provide cover for espionage. The students were organized in cells of eight to ten members that traveled in vans, which provide concealment for electronic equipment. Several of the students were able to afford expensive airline tickets to hop from plane to plane, two of them flying in one day from Hamburg to Miami, then to Chicago, and finally winding up in Toronto on tickets that cost $15,000 each. In Miami and Chicago, they visited two government officials to try to sell their art. Another student had in his possession deposit slips for $180,000. Six students used cellphones provided by a former Israeli vice consul. Many claimed to be registered at either the University of Jerusalem or the Bezalel Academy of Arts in Jerusalem, but not a single name could be connected to the student body list of Bezalel, and there is no University of Jerusalem.
It is plausible that the art students who were actually intelligence officers might have been seeking entry to DEA facilities to gain access to confidential databases. If the broader Israeli espionage effort was focused on Arabs in the United States, such information would be invaluable. The DEA report concluded cautiously that the Israelis “might well be engaged in organized intelligence gathering.” Of the 140 art students arrested, most were deported for immigration violations. Some were just let go.
And then there are the movers. Urban Moving Systems of Weehawken, New Jersey was largely staffed by Israelis, many of whom had recently been discharged from the Israeli Defense Forces. As has been widely reported, three movers were photographed celebrating in Liberty State Park against the backdrop of the first collapsing World Trade Center tower. The celebration came 16 minutes after the first plane struck, when no one knew that there had been a terrorist attack and the episode was assumed to be a horrible accident. The owner of the moving company, Dominik Suter, was questioned once by the FBI before fleeing to Israel. He has since refused to answer questions.
Whether the movers and the art students had jointly pieced together enough information to provide a preview of 9/11 remains hidden in intelligence files in Tel Aviv, but the proximity of both groups to 15 of the hijackers in Hollywood, Florida and to five others in northern New Jersey is suggestive.
Speculation about 9/11 aside, it is certain that Urban Moving was involved in an intelligence-collection operation against Arabs living in the United States, possibly involving electronic surveillance of phone calls and other communications. When they were arrested, the five Israelis working for Urban Moving had multiple passports and nearly $5,000 in cash. They were held for 71 days, failed a number of polygraph exams, and were finally allowed to return to Israel after Tel Aviv admitted that they were Mossad and apologized.
Between 55 and 95 other Israelis were also arrested in the weeks following 9/11, and a number were reported to be active-duty military personnel. The FBI came under intense pressure from several congressmen and various pro-Israel groups to release the detainees. The order to free them came from Judge Michael Mukasey, now the U.S. attorney general. An FBI investigator noted, “Leads were not fully investigated” due to pressure from “higher echelons.” According to one source, the White House may have made the final decision to terminate the inquiry. Though the investigation could have gone much farther, the FBI identified two of the Weehawken movers as Israeli intelligence officers and confirmed that Urban Moving was a front for Mossad to “spy on local Arabs.” One CIA officer involved in the investigation concluded, “The Israelis likely had a huge spy operation.”
In May 2004, there were two incidents involving Israelis in moving vans in proximity to U.S. nuclear facilities. One occurred in Tennessee near the Nuclear Fuel Services plant, which reprocesses nuclear waste from hospitals. The van was pursued by the local sheriff for three miles after refusing to pull over. The two fleeing Israelis, who threw a bottle containing an accelerant, had in their possession Israeli military ID’s and false U.S. documents. In the second incident, two movers in a van tried to enter the Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base in Georgia, which is home to eight Trident nuclear submarines, but were arrested when dogs detected drugs inside their vehicle. The men had military ID’s and false documents. There was no follow-up by the FBI even though both incidents were reported to federal authorities.
There have also been reports of intensive targeting of U.S. government facilities overseas. In late 2001, State Department security noted a series of incidents at diplomatic missions and military bases, all involving Israelis. It described many of the incidents as “bizarre.” In one instance, French police arrested several Israelis at 2 a.m. after they were observed taking numerous photos of the U.S. embassy in Paris. As it was dark, their behavior was unusual to say the least—or perhaps not since it was revealed that the Israelis were using infrared film to detect communications equipment in the embassy.
In August 2004, the media discovered an FBI investigation, begun in 1999, involving Pentagon intelligence analyst Larry Franklin. He had openly met Israeli Embassy intelligence officer Naor Gilon as well as two AIPAC officials, director Steve Rosen and chief analyst Keith Weissman. He pleaded guilty in October 2005 to revealing classified information and is now serving a 12-year prison sentence. Rosen and Weissman are currently on trial. If the prosecution is correct, Franklin passed classified information relating to Iran to both AIPAC employees, who in turn provided the information to the Israeli Embassy. The defense has argued that such exchanges are routine in Washington, particularly between close allies such as Israel and the U.S., but that is a dubious reading of events. Passing classified information and documents is not the same as casual political conversation over a cup of coffee. If Israel had stopped spying on the United States, Gilon should have refused to receive the information provided by Franklin. He might even have gone through official channels to report Franklin’s activity. He did neither. Nor did Rosen and Weissman object when they received information that they knew to be classified. Instead, they passed it on to the Israelis.
In June 2006, it was revealed that the Pentagon had begun to deny security clearances to American Jews who had family in Israel. Israelis seeking security approval to work for American defense contractors were also finding it increasingly difficult to obtain clearances. A Pentagon administrative judge overruled an appeal by one of the Israelis, stating, “The Israeli government is actively engaged in military and industrial espionage in the United States. An Israeli citizen working in the US who has access to proprietary information is likely to be a target of such espionage.”
Israel conducts much of its high-tech spying through its corporate presence in the United States. It is heavily embedded in the telecommunications industry, which permits access to the exchange of information. The Whitewater investigation revealed that President Bill Clinton warned Monica Lewinsky that their phone-sex conversations might have been recorded by a foreign government. That foreign government would have been Israel, where government and business work hand-in-hand in the high-tech sector, and many former government officials and military officers hold senior management positions. The corporations, in return, receive large contracts with the Israeli government and the Israel Defense Forces.
Two Israeli companies in particular—Amdocs and Comverse Infosys, both of which are headquartered in Israel—do significant business in the United States. Amdocs, which has contracts with the 25 largest telephone companies in the U.S. that together handle 90 percent of all calls made, logs all calls that go out and come in on the system. It does not record the conversations themselves, but the records provide patterns, referred to as “traffic analysis,” that can provide intelligence leads. In 1999, the National Security Agency warned that records of calls made in the United States were winding up in Israel. Amdocs also has an apparent relationship with some of the art students who were arrested in 2001. Several were provided with bond money by an Amdocs executive.
Comverse Infosys provides wiretapping equipment to law enforcement throughout the United States and also has large contracts with the Israeli government, which reimburses up to 50 percent of the company’s research and development costs. Because equipment used to tap phones for law enforcement is integrated into the networks that phone companies operate, it cannot be detected. Phone calls are intercepted, recorded, stored, and transmitted to investigators by Comverse, which claims that it has to be “hands on” with its equipment to maintain the system. Many experts believe that it is relatively easy to create a so-called “back door” that permits the recording to be sent to a second party, unknown to the authorized law-enforcement recipient. And Comverse equipment has never been inspected by FBI or NSA experts to determine whether the information it collects can be leaked, reportedly because senior government managers block such inquiries.
According to a Fox News investigative report, which was later deleted from Fox’s website under pressure from various pro-Israel groups, DEA and FBI sources say that even to suggest that Israel might be spying using Comverse “is considered career suicide.”
A number of criminal investigations using Comverse equipment have apparently come to dead ends when the targets abruptly change their telecommunications methods, suggesting at a minimum that Comverse employees might be leaking sensitive information to Israeli organized crime.
The chickens occasionally come home to roost. In 2002, Israeli espionage might have been directed against the U.S. Congress, which has so assidiously ignored Tel Aviv’s spying. Congressman Bob Ney, currently in prison for corruption, arranged a noncompetitive bid for the Israeli telecommunications company Foxcom Wireless to install equipment to improve cellphone reception in the Capitol and House office buildings. Foxcom, based in Jerusalem, has been linked to imprisoned lobbyist Jack Abramoff. Telecommunications security experts note that equipment that can be used to enhance or improve a signal can also be used to redirect the phone conversation to another location for recording and analysis. The possibility that someone in the Israeli Embassy might be listening to congressmen’s private phone conversations is intriguing to say the least.
Some might argue that collecting intelligence is a function of government and that espionage, even between friends, will always take place. But the intensity and persistence of Israeli spying against the United States is particularly disturbing since Israel relies so heavily on American political and military support. Other allies like Britain, France, and Germany undoubtedly have spies in Washington, but there is a line that they do not cross.
Given the stakes involved, it would be reasonable for the United States to quietly offer Israel’s leaders a choice. They can continue to receive billions of dollars in aid, or they can persist in spying against their greatest benefactor. They should not be permitted to do both.
How Zionists Spy On American
Citizens Around The Clock
Blackmail-Worthy American Leadership Become Slaves Of Ariel Sharon
Rahm Emanuel – Israeli Spy
2008 11 19
By Wayne Madsen | rense.com
John O’Neill and another FBI agent who still works for the bureau discovered that Emanuel was heavily involved in the decision to place Lewinsky close to Clinton. O’Neill retired after being set up in a smear operation involving a temporarily stolen briefcase in 2001, accepted the top security position for Kroll Associates at the WTC, and was killed in the 9/11 attack. Clinton reportedly had knowledge of Israeli intelligence penetration of White House communications systems, and Lewinsky, in sworn testimony before the Office of Independent Counsel, stated:
He suspected that a foreign embassy was tapping his telephones, and he proposed cover stories. If ever questioned, she should say that the two of them were just friends. If anyone ever asked about their phone sex, she should say that they knew their calls were being monitored all along, and the phone sex was just a put-on.
It is now known that the ‘foreign embassy’ was that of Israel. WMR has learned from US intelligence sources that Emanuel was discovered to be part of a political intelligence and blackmail operation directed against Clinton by Israel. We have also learned that the FBI investigation of Emanuel is part of a file code-named Mega, a reference to a top-level Mossad agent in the Reagan administration, who was said to have run a number of Israeli agents, including US Navy spy Jonathan Pollard.
Article from: http://www.rense.com/general84/rerr.htm
Rahm Emanuel: Ardent Zionist called Obama’s ‘Svengali’
By Victor Thorn | americanfreepress.net
More sinister than Karl Rove and potentially deadlier than Dick “Darth Vader” Cheney, his name is Rahm Emanuel, and he was recently appointed chief of staff in the president-elect’s White House. This first official act should send waves of alarm through people because Barack Obama promised change, but what we’re getting is the exact same cabal that brought us 9-11 and endless war in the Middle East.
Initial media reports described Emanuel as a vulgar, Chicago-based enforcer who had an aggressive, in-your- face, pit-bull style. Others painted him as a partisan Washington insider with strong ties to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).Although these labels seem harsh, the reality is far worse.
Rahm Emanuel, nicknamed “Rahmbo,” is a pro- Israel Orthodox Jew who was educated in a Talmudic yeshiva and served as a volunteer in the Israeli Defense Force (IDF). He is a dual citizen of Israel, which his office refused to deny when AFP inquired. Israel is the only nation where Americans can apply for and obtain citizenship without automatically renouncing U.S. citizenship.
Some Americans are unilaterally proclaimed citizens of other countries, as when an American GI marries a French girl and becomes an automatic citizen of France. But if the GI applied for and obtained French citizenship, he would lose his American citizenship. It is impossible to be a 100 percent loyal American and have an ounce of loyalty to another country; there is no #101 percent and the interests of Israel and the United States are not always synonymous.
Those familiar with the 9-11 terrorist attacks know that the IDF was instrumental in training the Dancing Israelis who—from a rooftop in Weehawken, N. J.—had the foreknowledge to videotape both WTC towers being struck by kamikaze jetliners, then celebrate afterward.
Mentored by members of Chicago’s corrupt party machine like convicted Congressman Dan Rostenkowski, Emanuel gravitated to Washington in 1991 after becoming Bill Clinton’s campaign finance committee director. His star rose even higher when he served as one of the primary NAFTA architects and pushed strict anti-gun legislation. After leaving his post as a policy aide for the Clintons, he used his influence as an investment banker to rake in millions during the late 1990s. With this money, Emanuel won a congressional seat in 2002, became the fourth ranking House Democrat by 2006, and is now the most powerful member of Obama’s executive office team.
Family History of Violence
What truly makes Emanuel dangerous is that his Israeli-born father Benjamin was an integral member of the Zionist terror group known as Irgun during the 1940s. Along with another notorious terror outfit—the Stern Gang—Irgun bombed Jerusalem’s King David Hotel in 1946 where 96 people were killed; while also instigating the 1948 Deir Yassin Massacre.
Rahm Emanuel is the son of a terrorist who directly plotted the assassination of Count Bernadotte, a Swedish diplomat and United Nations envoy who tried to broker peace in Palestine. But Irgun didn’t seek treaties. It instead sought racial cleansing and genocide. According to Elisabeth Bumiller in The New York Times, Benjamin Emanuel passed secret codes to Shin Bet bomber and future Prime Minister Menachem Begin. These very same Jewish terrorists eventually became the recognized Israeli government in 1948, as well as predecessors to Benjamin Netanyahu’s right-wing Likud Party.
Rahm Emanuel likes to brag about his role in discovering Barack Obama. “Six years ago, people on the North Side of Chicago took a bet on a young kid,” reporter D.H. Williams writes of their symbiotic relationship.
“Rahm and Barack have a deep history together in Chicago politics. Emanuel has been instrumental in the rise of Barack Obama from neophyte senator to the next president of the United States. Getting virtually no media attention, Rahm Emanuel has been by Obama’s side during most of the last two years on the campaign trail.”
If Karl Rove was George W. Bush’s architect, the same can be said of the Emanuel connection. When Obama bowed and groveled at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) convention on June 4, 2008, it was Emanuel who escorted him to meet the executive board afterward.
Emanuel has been the operative who, according to the Chicago Tribune, “remade the Democratic Party in his own image.” Illinois Rep. Ray LaHood (R) seconded this notion. “He legitimately can be called the golden boy of the Democratic Party today. He recruited the right candidates, found the money and funded them, and provided issues for them. Rahm did what no one else could do.”
Worst of all, Emanuel is a rampant warmonger who takes his cues from the neo-cons. In his book The Plan: Big Ideas for America, he wrote, “We need to expand the U.S. Army by 100,000 more troops.”
What will America’s next target be under an Obama presidency? Sources close to Emanuel say that he has a “Zionist obsession with Iran.”
To get a final idea of what we’re dealing with, consider this quote from U.S. war journalist Pat Dollard:
Letme tell you right now, no exaggeration. Rahm Emanuel is the devil. He is . . . a Goebbels, a Mengele, a perfect Cromwell who would, without the
faintest evidence of hesitation washing across his face for even a millisecond, order and even personally execute each and every human being he or Obama perceived to be an enemy of the regime. And if you ever personally offended him, and he had the opportunity to kill you, he would probably do it by starting with your children as you were made to watch. He is a bad guy.
Some researchers have gone so far as to claim that Emanuel was the notorious “Mega” spy deep inside the Clinton administration who passed top-secret documents about Iran on to the Israeli government, causing a great deal of chaos among the various intelligence agencies. Be very wary of this man. Like the “Prince of Darkness” Richard Perle and Michael Chertoff before him (both of whom hold dual U.S.-Israeli citizenships), it may well be proven that his loyalties rest more with a fabricated little state in the Middle East than they do with us.
Victor Thorn is a hard-hitting researcher, journalist and the author of
many books on 9-11 and the New World Order. These include 9-11 Evil:
The Israeli Role in 9-11 and Phantom Flight 93.