- Had Mossad, Israel's secret intelligence organization,
succeeded, it would have been the perfect crime - the crime of the century.
The plan was breathtaking in concept: to assassinate the American ambassador
to Lebanon, in Lebanon, with American weapons, intended for Israeliís
defense only. Everything about it would point to Lebanon as the culprit.
- But fate intervened, and things went wrong. The tires
on Ambassador John Gunther Deanís limousine automatically reinflated
when they were shot out in 1979 (see November 2002 Washington Report, p.
15). The light tank shell simply bounced off the car's armor. And, horror
of horrors, Lebanese intelligence had retrieved the empty shell casing
on which was written, 'Made in the United States of America.'
- Mossad's specialty was dirty tricks, even if (or perhaps
because) it was not very good as an intelligence organization. Its modus
operandi had always been the same: pull off a dirty trick but make it appear
somebody else had done it. An early example was the Lavon Affair, named
for Pinhas Lavon, Israelís minister of defense back in 1953. This
Mossad operation persuaded some Jewish men in Egypt to burn U.S. Information
Service libraries on the assumption that Egyptian President Jamal Abdul
Nasser would be blamed. But one of the incendiary devices went off prematurely,
and the young spies were caught. Some of them were executed. This provoked
a scandal in Israel, and in the ensuing investigation it eventually turned
out that Lavonís signature authorizing the operation had been forged
at the behest of Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion. A dirty trick within
a dirty trick!
- Then came the June 8, 1967 attack on the USS Liberty,
killing 34 Americans and wounding 171. Perpetrated by the Israeli air force
and navy, this was not a Mossad operation, but it was suffused by the same
spirit of stealth and trickery. During the Arab-Israeli war of 1967, unmarked
Israeli jets raked the all-but-unarmed spy ship Liberty, steaming slowly
off Egyptís Sinai Peninsula, with napalm and machine gunfire.
- The Liberty was flying a large American flag, and the
ship's designation, in English, was clearly visible on a cloudless day.
But Israel said it thought it was attacking an Egyptian transport ship.
Israel pleaded 'a tragic accident' and still pleads that miserable lie
- Now, thanks to Ambassador John Gunther Dean, the full
taste of Mossad's evil will be available at former President Jimmy Carter's
Presidential Library in Atlanta, Georgia. A part of the National Archives,
the Carter Center will contain 42 files on Dean's service as ambassador
to Lebanon. The overwhelming majority of the material is unclassified and
thus readily available to researchers, scholars and journalists.
- The Dean papers - which include documents, messages,
reports and telegrams - constitute hard evidence on the stultifying influence
of the Israeli lobby as Dean tried to get answers from the Department of
State on the Israeli assassination failure. Nobody was willing to talk
with him because the subject was just too 'sensitive.'
- The papers include documentation of efforts by the Palestinians
to help the U.S. with the American hostages in Iran. They demonstrate that,
unlike today, the United States administration considered the Palestine
Liberation Organization (PLO) ìvalid interlocutorsî in the
search for a negotiated settlement of the Palestine-Israel conflict. In
fact, PLO leader Yasser Arafat and an assistant made a special visit to
Iran, where they succeeded in gaining the immediate freedom of several
of the American diplomatic hostages. Arafat performed a real favor for
the United States for which he never received any thanksóperhaps
because, once again, it would have been too 'sensitive.'
- By June 2004, all other papers in Dean's possession will
be housed in the National Archives. Among the information they will contain
will be the role of certain congressmen with respect to nuclear proliferation.
Some of the American legislators struck Dean as motivated more by fear
of Pakistan obtaining ìthe Islamic bombî than they were by
defending U.S. policy of preventing the proliferation of arms.
- Andrew I. Killgore, a retired foreign service officer
and former U.S. ambassador to Qatar, is publisher of the Washington Report.