What Begin and Reagan Didn't Want You to Know Secret CIA Documents on Mossad CounterSpy, May-June 1982 pp. 34-54
Preface: Israel and 9/11
The secret CIA and State Department documents printed here have come a long way. They were discovered by the Iranian students who took over the U.S. Embassy in Tehran on November 4, 1979. Some were complete, others which had gone through a shredding machine were painstakingly pieced together.
These documents, made available to CounterSpy by journalists Randy Goodman, Terri Taylor and William Worthy, are only a fraction of a 13 volume paperback set (complete with commentary) readily available for sale in Iran. The three journalists picked up a set at an airport on their way to Shiraz. In late November 1981 they had completed their assignment for CBS and flew home. The FBI and Customs officials seized their luggage and confiscated the documents — with the active assistance of Lufthansa (West German) Airlines.
But a second set of the books — sent by another route — was overlooked by customs and reached the U.S. intact. (Some of the volumes were supplied to the Washington Post which analyzed them in a series running from January 31 to February 6, 1982.)
The 13 volumes of documents are a goldmine. They expose covert CIA operations in Iran (an attempt to recruit former Prime Minister Bani Sadr, for example), reveal the CIA's use of corporate covers, and detail former Prime Minister Mehdi Bazargan's attempts to establish ties with U.S. intelligence.
The documents supplied to CounterSpy deal with the triangle of U.S.-Israeli-Iranian relations. A careful reading of the documents illustrates that the Washington Post's analysis was narrowly focussed on the "U.S. angle." Other disclosures were simply glossed over — systematic Israeli suppression of domestic dissent, for example, or Mossad (Israel's CIA) and Israeli military intelligence support for repressive regimes in Africa, Asia and Latin America, and even Mossad's "psycholgical warfare projects."
The main document reprinted here is an in-depth CIA analysis of Israeli intelligence, written in March 1979 and classified secret. Other documents [not included in this online version] are cables between the State Department and the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, most of them discussing U.S.-Israeli-Iranian relations (documenting the close collaboration between Mossad and the Shah's intelligence agency SAVAK).
- Mossad — Secret Intelligence Service
- Shin Beth — Counterespionage and Internal Security Service
- Military Intelligence
- Research and Political Planning Center
- The National Police
- Key officials
- Comments on principal sources
See the Glossary for Haganah, Herut, Histadrut, IDF, ILP and other terms and acronyms.
[Photos not available.]
- Soviet Agent Israel Beer (photo)
- Organization of Israeli Intelligence and Security Services, 1977 (chart)
- Organization of Mossad, 1977 (chart)
- Elishu Ben Shaul Cohen's transmitter on display in Damascus, 1965 (photo)
- Johann Wolfgang Lotz illustrates the use of a transmitter during his trial in Cairo, July-August 1965 (photo)
- Organization of Shin Beth, 1977 (chart)
- Organization of Military Intelligence, 1977 (chart)
- Organization of Naval Intelligence, 1974 (chart)
- Organization of Israeli National Police, 1977 (chart)
- Israeli National Police headquarters, Jerusalem, November 1972 (photo)
- Israeli Border Guard post under construction at Kefar Rosenwald (Zarit), June 1970 (photo)
Intelligence and Security
Israel's principal intelligence and security authority is the Va'adat Rashei Hasherlim (the Committee of the Heads of the Services), generally know as the Va'adat. It coordinates the operations and activities of its members. Mossad Letafkidim Meyouchadim (the Secret Intelligence Service) or Mossad, its common name, has the primary responsibility for foreign operations and is subordinate to the Prime Minister. Sherut Bitachon Kiali (Counterespionage and Internal Security), popularly known as Shin Beth, is responsible for security and is directly subordinate to the Prime Minister. Agaf Modiin (Military Intelligence) has the main responsiblity for strategic militrary intelligence and communications intelligence and is under the command of the Chief of Staff of the Israeli Defense Forces. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs provides support in research and political planning to the Israel intelligence community. The Ministry of Interior assists the National Police with police investigations and the maintenance of border security.
1. Background and development of services
In 1948, when the British Mandate ended, the Jewish population of Palestine established the State of Israel. Among the agencies of government to emerge was the intelligence and security unit known as the Information Service (Sherut Yedioth — popularly known as Shay). This organization, which was the intelligence arm of the Zionists' underground resistance force, the Haganah, during the years of the British Mandate, had begun to engage in operations on a worldwide scale with the founding of the Jewish Agency in 1929 at the Zionist Congress in Zurich, Switzerland. At that time, the Jewish Agency was composed of both Zionists and non-Zionists, including a strong American participation. The Jewish Agency, which was created to aid and support distressed Jews and to sustain the Palestine Jewish community, has been effectively under Zionist control over the years. It has also served as a cover for Shay, which extended its covert operations into Western Europe and the United States.
From 1923 to 1948, Shay's objectives were to promote the establishment of an independent State of Israel; infiltrate Mandatory installations in order to apprise Zionist leadership of British attitudes and proposed actions; collect political intelligence that could be used in Zionist propaganda; penetrate Arab and anti-Zionist factions in Palestine and peripheral nations; monitor and control all extremist groups — left and right — among Jewish communities in Palestine and abroad; provide security for the arms smuggling and illegal immigration programs of the Haganah; and finally collect information on Nazi Germany to guarantee the security of the Jewish underground and escape channels throughout Europe before, during, and after World War II.
Shay consisted of the following components: Political Intelligence (Machlakit Medinit); Counterespionage and Internal Security (Sherut Bitachon Klali); Military Intelligence (Sherut Modiin); Police Branch of Military Intelligence (Sherut Modiin Shel MateArtzi); and Naval Intelligence and Security (Sherut Modiin ve Betachon Kohoi Ha Yam). These services worked independently on behalf of the different ministries to which they were individually responsible. This intelligence and security community was competitive and frequently acted on its own, a product of the general postwar chaos which required the accomplishment of many urgent tasks wherever and whenever they might arise. In some of the West European capitals all services were represented and competed for the same agents and sources.
By April 1951, the Prime Minister and cabinet, seriously alarmed by the atmosphere of mutual jealousy and mistrust prevalent among the services at the increasing cost of their uncoordinated efforts in the field, decided to reorganize completely the basic structure of Israel's intelligence and security community. The dynamic force behind the plan was the late Reuven Shiloah, who reorganized the services according to functions and responsibilities and established a mechanism to coordinate their activities. Shiloah was chairman of this authority, the Committee of the Heads of Services (Va'adat Rashei Hasheruiim, called Va'adat). He integrated the Naval Intelligence and Security Service and the embryonic air intelligence unit into Military Intelligence (Agaf Modiin). The Political Intelligence Service was made independent of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and reorganized as the Secret Intelligence Service (Mossad Letafkidim Meyouchadim or Mossad). The Ministry of Foreign Affairs retained Research Division (Machleket Hackeker). Shin Beth remained intact except for internal changes. The Special Tasks Division in the Investigation Department of the police became a part of the new apparatus. Shiloah's reorganization of the intelligence and security structure produced an efficient and well-coordinated community.
The Israeli intelligence and security services retained this structure relatively unchanged throughout the Arab-Israel War in October-November 1956, the Six-Day War in June 1967 and the Yom Kippur War in Octobeer 1973. During the early and mid-1960s, hovever, the Israeli Government had considered changes in the structure and duties of the components of the intelligence and security community. Despite Shiloah's earlier reorganization, much of what happened in the Israeli services at this time depended on the personal relationships between Ben Gurion and the directors and chiefs. In early 1963, just before his retirement, Ben Gurion appointed a committee to review the situation. He was concerned that the intelligence and security establishment which by virtue of his serving both as Prime Minister and Minister of Defense, usually functioned satisfactorily, might deteriorate when he left office. He also was reported to be dissatisfied with the lack of clarity in the community's chain of command and functions and ordered the committee to define the subordination and tasks of these bodies.
In July 1963 the committee submitted its report to a new Prime Minister, the late Levi Eshkol. The committee stated that, while the functions of Prime Minister and Minister of Defense did not necessarily have to be concentrated in the hands of one person, the Prime Minister must know about all the activities of the national intelligence and security services and be given objective intelligence evaluations balanced and based on different viewpoints from more than one source. To accomplish these aims the committee recommended that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Research Division be strengthened so that it would be capable of presenting independent political evaluations, both on Middle East issues and other political subjects. By upgrading the Research Division, the committee believed that a certain balance would be created for security and political evaluations, which were handled almost solely by the Military Intelligence Production Department. The committee also observed that the existence of Mossad, which controls secret foreign information gathering assets, facilitated to some extent the possible formulation of another independent evaluation unit. The committee also regarded as a matter of vital importance the appointment of a special adviser, subordinate only to the Prime Minister. He would be a person of high caliber who would aid the Prime Minister in keeping in touch with and monitoring the activities of the intelligence and security services. The committee's principal recommendations were not implemented at the time except for the extablishment of the adviser position and the shift of responsibility for Shin Beth from the Minister of Defense to the Prime Minister. There was a brief interlude from September 1965 to July 1966 when Isser Harel, the former Chairman of the Va'adat and Director of Mossad, served as a special adviser to Prime Minister Eshkol on intelligence and security matters. Harel resigned as a result of internal policy disputes within the community and he was not replaced at the time.
Following the alleged "intelligence failure" in the Yom Kippur War, the Israeli Governement established the Agranat Commission in November 1973 to investigate matters relating to the hostilities and the performance of the intelligence and security services. The commission in its Partial Report in April 1974 proposed reactivating and strengthening the post of special adviser to the Prime Minister on intelligence and security matters. The commission also recommended changes in the intelligence and security forces through the establishement of a reseach and evaluation unit in Mossad and the elevation of the Research Division in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The object of this modification was to avoid relying exclusively on Military Intelligence for major estimates and assessments. The commission also emphasized the need for better operational coordination in the field of collection between the services but it opposed the coordination of their finished intelligence judgments. A full or final commission report, if there ever was one, was never made public.
From 1974 to 1976 the recommendations of the Partial Report of The Agranat Commission were implemented. The Prime Minister appointed Reserve General Rehavam Zeevi as his intelligence adviser, a postion that was purely advisory and carried no executive authority. Zeevi assumed this new job in addition to serving as the Prime Minister's adviser on counterterrorism. Zeevi was also to be the Prime Minister's liaison with the Director of Military Intelligence and was also to keep the Prime Minister alerted to differences of views among the intelligence and security services. In October 1976, however, Zeevi resigned from this post and was replaced by Brigadier (Ret.) Yehoshafat Harkabi, a former Director of Military Intelligence. The Research and Political Planning Center of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs came into operation in January 1975. Changes in the Military Intelligence structure were being carried out. A new research and evaluation unit for assessing information was established within Mossad. New appointees had taken over in most of the intelligence and security components. In June 1977 the Israeli Government established a Ministerial Committee on Security Affairs.
2. Objectives and structure
The principal targets of the Israeli intelligence and security services are: (1) the Arab states — their capabilities and intentions toward Israel, their relations with the USSR and other powers, their official installations and representatives throughout the world, their leaders, internal and inter-Arab politics, morale, military preparedness and other order of battle; (2) collection of information on secret US policy or decisions, if any, concerning Israel; (3) collection of scientific intelligence in the US and other developed countries; (4) determination of government policy toward Israel in the USSR and East European nations and the problem of Jewish emigration from these areas; (5) close monitoring of anti-Zionist activity throughout the world; and (6) collection of political, and economic intelligence in other areas of interest to them, such as Africa. The Israeli services also make special efforts to counter Arab propaganda and to neutralize anti-Zionist activity. Within recent years the Israelis have devoted much operational activity to combating Arab terrorism, which has grown over the years from isolated cross-border raids by Palestinian Fedayeen to daring and deadly attacks, often international in scope, on Israeli personnel and property. The Israelis also have undertaken widescale covert political, economic and paramilitary action programs — particularly in Africa.
Authorization for foreign intelligence and internal security organizations, while not defined by specific charter, is in Israeli legislation. Paragraph 29 of the Basic Law states: "The Government is authorized to carry out on behalf of the State, in accordance with any law any act whose implementation is not lawfully entrusted to any other authority." This implies that the government is entrusted with the management of intelligence and state security affairs since no other authority is empowered to act in this sphere by any other law. Attempts have been made over the years by officials within the government and the community to have an act passed defining the status of foreign intelligence and security organizations and their operations, but nothing has come of these efforts.
Internal security, on the other hand, is more clearly defined in law. The Defense (Emergency) Regulations of 1945 (established during the British Mandate), the Military Law of 21 June 1955 and the Penal Revision (State Security) Law of 31 July 1957, the Israeli equivalent of the British Official Secrets Act, all are concerned with internal security. The Emergency Regulations of 1945 gave the military administration the power to arrest and deport troublesome elements and to designate certain locations as "closed areas," thus requiring local inhabitants to possess travel permits to transit such places. While the regulations originally applied to both Jews and Arabs in Palestine, they are now used largely to monitor the Arab community in Israel. Administration of the regulations was transferred from the military to the police in 1966. Internal security organs reportedly increased their agent activity to meet this responsibility.
Israeli laws require severe punishment ranging from the death penalty or life imprisonment for treason or assistance to the "enemy," to terms of incarceration from three to 15 years for espionage, contact with foreign agents, aiding and abetting a crime against state security and unauthorized disclosure of information by a public servant. There is no statute of limitations regarding the unauthoized disclosure of classified information.
The central body in Israel's intelligence and security community is the Va'adat, which has as its primary function the coordination of all intelligence and secrurity activities at home and abroad. The Va'adat consists of the Director of Mossad, the Director of Military Intelligence, the Director of Shin Beth, the Inspector General of Police, the Director General of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, the Director of Research and Political Planning Center of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, and the political, military, intelligence and antiterrorist advisers of the Prime Minister. The Head of the Special Tasks Division in the Investigations Department of the Police also occasionally attends the meetings with, or in place of, the Inspector General of Police. Meetings must be held biweekly but may be held more frequently. At these meetings each director usually provides a briefing on the key activitiies of his service during the preceding two weeks. The Director of Mossad chairs Va'adat and in this capacity is directly responsible to the Prime Minister. The members of Va'adat are quasi-equal in status and the term memune referring to the Director of Mossad as chairman is designed to denote a concept of preeminence among equals. In actuality, however, the Director of Military Intelligence now overshadows the Director of Mossad in power and importance. This development resulted from the continuing Israeli reliance on military preparedness for national survival.
Mossad is charged with the collection of foreign intelligence and the conduct of covert action programs outside Israel.
Shin Beth is responsible for counterintelligence and internal security. It functions as the governmental authority on personnel security matters. It is also responsible for the personal safety of the Prime Minister and other high ranking Israeli officials. Shin Beth is in charge of physical security for ports, airports and key military/industrial installations in Israel and for Israeli missions and El Al operations outside Israel. Shin Beth does not have the power of arrest, this function being performed by the Special Tasks Division of the Investigations Department of the Police, which works in close collaboration with Shin Beth in Israel. Within the Administered Territories, which are controlled by the Israeli Defense Forces, Shin Beth applies to the military to undertake arrests and searches. A special component under the Inspector General of Police is the Border Guard, whose mission is that of guarding the cease-fire lines against Arab infiltration and of detecting and running down Fedayeen terrorists. In recent years Border guard units have been used increasingly to control and suppress riots and demonstrations in the West Bank area.
Military Intelligence, in additon to its responsibility for strategic and tactical intelligence, prepares the national intelligence estimates and evaluates all information dealing with the Arabs. It also is responsible for developing and protecting communication codes and ciphers for all the services and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and for communications intelligence.
The Research and Political Planning Center, which was formerly the Research Division of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, analyzes raw intelligence from various sources for officials on the policy making level.
Other Israeli governement organizations that provide support to the intelligence and security community are the Ministries of Finance (Customs and Excise, Investment and Securities) and Tourism, the national airline, El Al, and the national shipping line, Zim. Unofficial Zionist organizations based in Israel and Jewish communities throughout the world also give aid to Israeli operations when needed.
There are between 1,500 and 2,000 personnel in Mossad, of whom about 500 are officers. Shin Beth has about 1,000 members of whom some 550 hold officer rank. In Military Intelligence there are about 7,000 personnel, of whom 450 are officers, the others being enlisted personnel and civilian clerks. The number of officials in the Research and Political Planning Center of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs ranges between 75 and 100. The police number about 12,000 and the Border Guards around 6,000.
Since the financing of the intelligence and security services is a closely held secret, it is very difficult to get accurate information on the total amounts expended for these purposes. The funds are concealed in the defense budget, and known to the Prime Minister, the Minister of Defense, one or two of their top assistants, the Minster of Finance, the State Comptroller and his Defense Services Inspectorate. The Comptroller deals directly with the directors of the services, who request funds at the beginning of the fiscal year in April. The estimates of expenses by the directors, who have established reputations for honesty and integrity are usually acceptable as a starting point for budget negotiaions. The Ministry of Finance however, does require a 10-year projection of expended financial needs (an impossible task which is not taken seriously). The Comptroller holds a series of meetings with the various service directors and their staffs, reviewing their programs in detail. These sessions continue throughout May and result in a careful redefinition of the entire intelligence and secrurity effort and its cost. By October, the determination of specific budget needs is completed, based on the program analysis completed in May. This is then submitted for higher approval and the planning and budgeting cycle is, upon budget approval, completed just in time to begin again.
Much of the administrative support for the services is handled by the Ministry for Defense. Various types of cover are provided for and funded by the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF). There is close professional cooperation between the civilian intelligence and security services and military intelligence. These services, like all government offices, are subject to inspection by the State Comptroller's office. An Assistant Director-General is in charge of inspecting the defense and security services, the Ministry for Foreign affairs, and the police. The annual inspection covers bookkeeping, financial management and handling of administration. The Comptroller is required to see that the services are operating economically, efficiently and with irreproachable morality.
Israeli governmental offices and departments are continuously borrowing money, personnel, equipment and material from one another and salaries are paid by the office to which the individual is assigned. An intelligence officer or a Ministry for Foreign Affairs official stationed in New York and assigned to the Jewish Agency is paid salary and allowances by the Agency but loses neither seniority nor retirement status while serving in that capacity.
3. Political Aspects
3a. Relationship Between the Government and the Services
The intellligence and security community enjoys a strong position in the government, and their affairs are well integrated into more general operations. Members of the generation which worked for the establishment of the state were companions of longstanding and joint veterans of such enterprises as illegal immigration and arms-running. Many of the current leaders came up through the ranks of the military in a series of wars with the Arabs and entered politics through affiliation with one of the major political parties. All of them had some experience in clandestine matters and have been personally convinced by stern lessons of the value of good intelligence and security.
The intelligence and security services receive excellent support from the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. Many senior diplomats are former intelligence officers and therefore conversant with intelligence problems and operations. With their experienced observations and manifold talents, they serve as valuable auxiliaries to their covert colleagues, whose diplomatic cover is diligently sustained by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. Furthermore, almost every Israeli diplomat abroad has good foreign language and area knowledge or some specialization which enables him to pursue a much broader social life, with its resultant contacts, than is the case in most foreign services. In many instances, embassy officers, including chiefs of diplomatic missions, were former citizens of the countries to which they are accredited. Information developed by Israeli diplomats is made available to the intelligence and security community for immediate use of operational intelligence or inclusion in archives. As a final boon to covert intelligence personnel, the vigor and variety of a normal Israeli diplomat's life outside his installation usually renders detection of intelligence officers by the host country extremely difficult. The same kind of effective support regarding operations is given by the Ministry of Defense and the Jewish Agency.
The Israeli intelligence and security services play an important role throughout the government and private sector. Many leaders in both the civil service and industry have at some time in their careers been directly or indirectly involved with the intelligence community. Service assignments are not regarded as the end of a career, as persons with intelligence and security backgrounds frequently are selected for other jobs in the government. Thus the services are supplemented by persons who know and continue to relate their missions to intelligence and security responsibilities, in senior posts in both the public and private sectors. Officially, the services are nonpolitical and members of the community are not encouraged to enroll in any party or engage in political activity. The Defense and Foreign Affairs Committee of Knesset is normally the government's point of discussion for the review and resolution of sensitive policies and activities. The Director of Mossad and the Director of Shin Beth are often present at sessions which are of concern to them.
3b. Relationship Between the Services and the Populace
The current state of relations between the services and the populace is good as a result of the present position of the services as protectors of the Israeli state and people in the forefront of the struggle against Arab terrorists and military forces. Most Israelis are acutely aware of this situation and therefore support the services and their operations. The historical development of Israel and the long continuing struggle against the Arabs have contributed to this harmonious atmosphere.
At times in the past as a result of political rivalries and disagreements on the kind of order that was to prevail in Israel, there have been occasional verbal and journalistic attacks against the services as instruments of a police state. In several instances, service representatives had to appear in closed court sessions to defend the intelligence and security community against accusations of kidnapping, brutality and illegality. Although debates in the Knesset occasionally have reflected probably illegal practices or procedures by the services, the intelligence and security community is completely loyal and if the government requested the execution of a certain task, legal and illegal, it would be accomplished.
Confidence in the intelligence and security community also received a boost after the Six-Day War in 1967. The part played by Military Intelligence, Shin Beth and the police in contributing to the victory and controlling the newly-occupied Arab areas taken by Israel was followed by a plethora of praise in all Israeli media. The so-called "intelligence failure" in the Yom Kippur War in 1973, however, weakened popular trust in the services. The subsequent work of the Agranat Commission, undertaken to evaluate the community and its shortcomings and to improve cooperation among its members, contributed to a partial renewal of public confidence. The continuing battle by the services against terorism has also kept Israelis loyal to the community. The Entebbe raid in July 1976, which resulted in the rescue of hijacked Israeli hostages, was one action in recent years which fired the public imagination and served as an example of a well-coordinated and well-executed Israeli operation. This raid and its success buoyed up the moral of the Israelis as nothing else has in recent years and certainly showed the intelligence and security community in a good light.
4. Professional Standards
The directors and senior staff members of the intelligence and security community conform to the highest professional standards of integrity and honesty and impose these standards on the lower echelons. There is relatively little difference between the basic salary of a new employee and the staff member who enjoys a top position. The insignificant disparity has resulted in the granting of compensatory amenities and privileges such as expense accounts, purchasing of foreign goods that enter the country through devious tax-free channels, and "protektsia", a magic word in Israel, which means that one can get items, housing or privileges at low cost through influential governmental connections. This is common practice throughout the government establishment, however. Because the intelligence and security services, especially Shin Beth, maintain a very tight cover within their own community, information on personnel, budgets and accounts is closely held by a few top people in the government and not subjected to widespread bureaucratic perusal and control. The higher echelons scrutinize the expenditure of funds by the lower ranks, and if financial dishonesty is discovered, the guilty individual receives very severe treatment.
Israel's intelligence and security services are among the best in the world. Their expert personnel and sophisticated techniques have made them highly effective, and they have demonstrated outstanding ability to organize, screen and evaluate information obtained from recruited agents, Jewish communities, and other sources throughout the world. Israel's intelligence capabilities give it a significant advantage over the Arab states — an advantage which was an important factor in the 1967 war.
Those members of the intelligence and security community who were identified with the Information Service and other components of the Haganah, before and during World War II, developed a high standard of efficiency and level of competence. The organizations succeded in recruiting a core of capable and highly-educated individuals from Europe and the Middle East whose equal has been difficult to find, let alone attract, since the founding of the state. The corps of the "old guard," for example, is fluent in four or five languages, an accomplishment which alone raises their general average of efficiency. The younger generation has been given intensive training, including study abroad, to assist them in gaining these qualifications. It is not uncommon for students to engage in clandestine operations while pursuing their course of studies.
Israeli signal intelligence successes against the Arabs in the past were of such high order that the Israelis had less need than at present for good agent operations against the enemy. Part of this success was due to poor Arab communications security. The Israelis now face some problems since Arab communications security is gradually improving. The Yom Kippur War intelligence failure is an example of inadequacies in their communications intelligence capability at that time. In recent years, as well, there also have been indications that Israeli intelligence on the Arabs, other that communications intelligence, has been somewhat inadequate in quality and their agent operations lacking in success.
One of the principal weaknesses of Israeli's intelligence and security system appears to be that the production of most finished intelligence and the preparation of national estimates is done by Military Intelligence rather than by an independent service. Inherent in such an organizational arrangement is the danger that the armed services will not be objective in observing and reporting foreign developments and in making national intelligence estimates — a major problem in the Yom Kippur War — and their vested interest in military operations will influence intelligence assessments. The Agranat Commission has recognized this problem and recommended changes.
The physical security of the civilian and military intelligence and security headuarters in Tel Aviv is reported to be excellent. Two services — Mossad and Military Intelligence — were formerly located within a general army compound in the heart of the city. The buildings were protected by high wire fences and military guards. Military Intelligence remains in this location but Mossad now occupies a wing of a multistory commercial office building across the street from the compound. Shin Beth, which was formerly located in a rundown building in Jaffa, occupied new quarters just north of Tel Aviv in June 1970. This new building, which was designed for their use, is fenced in and contains a technical laboratory as well as regular offices. Guards control the entrance and badges bearing a photograph of the employee are worn within the compound.
There is an elaborate protected government "guest house" for the training and accommodation of visiting foreign intelligence officers, foreign dignitaries and sensitive agents.
There are a little over 1,000 persons working as staff officers for Mossad and Shin Beth, all of whom have been given a long, thorough security check. If there is the slightest doubt raised against an individual, the application is rejected. Personnel with leftist backgrounds generally are not trusted by leading members of the intellligence and security services. This attitude did not always apply to former members of European Communist parties, some of whom were eminently qualified for clandestine service, especially if they had renounced their Communist ideology and affiliated with the Israeli Labor Party. This exemption, however, has not applied since the exposure of several high-level espionage cases in governmental and political circles in the late 1950s and early 1960s. The cases of Aharon Cohen, a MAPAM party expert on the Middle East, and Israel Beer (Figure 1), a Defence Ministry contract employee and IDF Reserve lieutenant colonel, who spied for the USSR, and Dr. Kurt Sitte, a Gentile professor of physics at Haifa Technion, who worked for the Czech Service, caused Shin Beth to reconsider its own security procedures while stimulating considerable doubt about the reliability of recanted Marxists. The services have devised internal security systems to expose ideological weaklings by more thorough periodic security checks. The Israelis believe such individuals constitute a possible long-term security threat. Israeli citizens are subjected to stringent registration requirements and must carry identification papers. Within the intelligence and security community great pains are taken not to reveal the identities of personnel even to the average Israeli employed in the government at large. Compartmentation is strictly maintained between services with only designated individuals, usually members of the "hardcore," crossing lines. Intelligence and security personnel widely use and frequently change pseudonyms. The national practice of Hebraicizing European or Yiddish birth names also makes the identification of some Israelis difficult. Visiting foreign officials and agents never use the same car twice when meeting clandestinely with Israeli officers within the country. Certain unlisted official and personal telephone numbers are known only to relatively few people. This type of professional demeanor at home provides excellent daily training for intelligence and security personnel before receiving foreign assignments.
Classified information may not be discussed over the telephone. Despite their relatively high standards of security, however, Israeli officials reportedly are occasionally careless in observing this restriction. They also have "an old boy network" much like the British. Israelis in the "network" are willing to discuss classified subjects whether or not there is a need to know. The Israelis also have problems dealing with overseas Jewry whose support they need but whose security is questionable because of the possibility of divided loyalty.
Installations and storage containers must conform to rigorous security standards. Classification terms Top Secret, Secret, Confidential and Restricted (comparable to For Official Use Only) are used. Top Secret and Secret documents are transmitted by courier only in double envelopes and two receipts are required — one for the package, and one for the contents. These documents are logged in and out by date, document number, title or subject, and the office accepting responsibility for them. At least three periodic inventories are held each year. A registry produces a computer printout four times a year listing all Top Secret material for which each unit is responsible. Electrical communication is handled entirely by teleprinter and other communication security devices. A record is made of documents to be destroyed and security officers must witness the destruction of all Top Secret and Secret material.
All personnel requiring a clearance must complete a personal history statement and undergo a routine investigation. For higher clearances the investigations could include the applicant's entire family and a full field investigation. New immigrants from the USSR and East European countries are normally denied access to classified information for a minimum of four or five years. This ruling is not always possible to enforce because of "protektsia." Within the IDF security risks are reported to Shin Beth and are closely supervised by the unit security officer, who is required to make periodic reports on the individual's activities. To stimulate and evaluate the security consciousness of the IDF cadre, Field Security personnel circulate among the troops and attempt to elicit military information.
4d. Morale and Disciplinary Methods
Mossad and Shin Beth are components of the Israeli civil service structure and applicants must pass a civil service examination. Those in their twenties with a university degree are preferred, although other individuals who have especially desirable qualifications are accepted. The intelligence and security services, in direct competion with the Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the rapidly expanding business community, are at a disadvantage. Most young Israelis do not like the anonymity of the secret service and prefer the more remunerative pay scales of the business world.
Intelligence and security personnel who do not or cannot subscribe to the circumscribed life limited by security restrictions and operational considerations are either dropped or, if their actions should jeopardize the service or the state, are severely punished. To boost the morale of staff intelligence officers, the services in the early 1960s sought and secured from the Knesset a 30 percent annual bonus for their personnel to compensate for the risks and the anonymity involved (Figure 2).
B. Mossad — Secret Intelligence Service
Mossad is responsible for foreign intelligence collection, political action and counterterrorism. In carrying out its mission to collect positive intelligence, the principal function of Mossad is to conduct agent operations against the Arab nations and their official representatives and installations throughout the world, particularly in Western Europe and the United States, where the national interests of the Arabs in the Near East conflict with Israeli interest. Mossad collects information on the disposition, morale, armaments, equipment and state of leadership of every Arab Army that could be called into action in the case of another round of fighting; and all the information that illuminates Arab internal politics and relationships among the principal Arab leaders and the diplomatic activity of all countries in the Arab world. Mossad monitors Arab commercial activity, particularly in the field of arms purchases in the West, and attempts to counteract Arab recruiting of military, economic and political experts. In this case the principal desire is to recruit these persons as intelligence agents, or failing that, either to dissuade them from aiding the Arabs or to discover their precise functions. Mossad also is charged with inciting disturbances calculated to create mutual distrust among the Arabs and to draw Western sympathy away from the Arab cause, and monitoring and counteracting Arab propaganda and detecting and countering Arab terrorism. In the area of counterterrorism, at times the Israelis have carried the fight to Arab terrorists by taking executive action against them, especially in parts of the Near East and Western Europe. In particular, the fact that Lebanon has a mixed Christian, Druze and Moslem populationn has made that country attractive for intelligence projects. The Israelis have covert assets and run operations in their northern neighbor. In the past they have mounted paramilitary and executive action operations against Palestinian terrorist leaders, personnel and installations in Lebanon. They have also provided support to Christian rightists in the Lebanese civil war.
In addition to running operations against the Arabs, Mossad collects political, economic and scientific intelligence in both the Eastern and Western worlds for the protection of the State of Israel, Zionism and Jews generally. Their collection efforts are especially concentrated in the Soviet Union and the United States, as well as at the United Nations, where policy decisions could have repercussions on Israel and Zionist goals.
Objectives in Western countries are equally important to the Israeli intelligence service. Mossad collects intelligence regarding Western, Vatican, and UN policies toward the Near East, promotes arms deals for the benefit of the IDF, and acquires data for use in silencing anti-Israel factions in the West.
Mossad has eight departments: (1) Operational Planning and Coordination; (2) Collection; (3) Political Action and Liaison; (4) Manpower, Finance, Logistics and Security; (5) Training; (6) Research; (7) Technical Operations; and (8) Technology (Figure 3).
The Operational Planning and Coordination Department is concerned with the management of Mossad resources and responsible for interdirectorate operational and administrative coordination within the organization and interservice liaison within the Israeli intelligence and security community. This department also deals with requirements and the development of overall collection plans.
The Collection Department is responsible for foreign covert operations and the processing and production of reporting from clandestine sources. This component is the largest unit in Mossad. The department has offices abroad under Israeli diplomatic and nonofficial cover and is active mainly in Europe, where it concentrates on Arab targets through third-country operations.
The Political Action and Liaison Directorate is in charge of political action and relations with friendly foreign services. This component also maintains contact with those nations and political groups with whom Israel does not have normal diplomatic relations (that is, African countries, Lebanon and/or Lebanese Christian rightist factions and Indonesia).
There is also a Psychological Warfare or Special Operations Division, probably in the Political Action and Liasion Directorate, which runs highly sensitive covert action operations against Arab terrorists and ex-Nazis, and sabotage, paramilitary and psychological warfare projects, such as character assassination and black propaganda.
In the absence of the Director of Mossad, the Director of the Operational Planning and Coordination Department now becomes acting Director, whereas in past years the Director of the Collection Department acted for the Director of Mossad. With the drive for greater and improved coordination within the intelligence and security community, the Director of the Operational Planning and Coordination Department has apparently taken precedence over the Director of the Collection Department.
In headquarters, the department directors direct the various area, functional, administrative, and financial controllers. The area departments under the control of the Collection and Special Political Action and Liaison Departments are: (1) Central America, (2) South America, (3) Eastern Europe including the USSR, (4) Africa, (5) Asia and Oceania, (6) the Mediterranean and Near East areas, (7) Europe, and (8) North America. Under each controller there are branches or desks which are responsible for one or more countries.
Positive intelligence and counterintelligence reports are sent back to Mossad headquarters in Tel Aviv, evaluated by the Research Department, and disseminated to various government offices. Intelligence reports on the Arabs are forwarded by Mossad to the Research Department of the DMI while counterespionage reports are sent through Mossad to Shin Beth, where they are given special processing by counterintelligence investigative departments.
Mossad controls Israeli foreign intelligence activities except for operations launched from Israel against military objectives in peripheral areas of surrounding Arab countries, which are under the jurisdiction of DMI. Mossad operations abroad fall into two principal categories: those in the Near East, as a first line of defense, and those elsewhere. The Israelis have designated Egypt as the main target area for establishing intelligence networks. In 1970 the Israelis estimated that about 50 percent of their operational effort was directed against Egypt. The next priority is Syria. Much of this activity against the Arabs in the Near East is based on deep cover operations by Israeli illegals or the recruitment of Arabs in third countries followed by their dispatch or normal rotation back home to an Arab area. Two good examples of Israeli deep cover illegal operations are the Cohen and Lotz cases.
Elishu Ben Shaul Cohen was an Egyptian-born Jew who was involved in Israeli sabotage operations against American and British installations in Egypt in 1952. Cohen succeeded in escaping detection, when most members of the ring were arrested by the Egyptians, and went to Israel. Eventually, Mossad recruited Cohen for an illegal operation designed to develop intelligence networks and acquire political and military information in Syria. He received intensive training, adopted the identity of the late Kamil Amin Thabet, a Syrian-born merchant, and emigrated to Argentina, where he became an active member of the Arab emigre community. Cohen eventually went to Syria, where he was assisted by two Arabs who had previously been recruited by the Israelis. From 1961 until 1965 Cohen was active as an illegal in Damascus, where he succeeded in making numerous contacts with political and military personalities in the Syrian establishment. He made occasional trips to Europe and Israel for extensive debriefings. Eventually, in January 1965, the Syrians did detect and locate Cohen while he was in the act of transmitting information to Tel Aviv. One cause of his downfall was that he was using hand morse radio equipment and had been on the air for an hour when he was caught (Figure 4). A Syrian court tried Cohen and found him guilty of espionage. He was publicly hanged in Damascus in May 1965.
Johann Wolfgang Lotz (also known as Zeev Gur Arieh), was an officer in Military Intelligence. In 1959 during a Va'adat meeting, Mossad announced its need for a man to be a new illegal resident agent in Cairo under cover as a former Nazi officer. Lotz accepted the assignment, which was directed primarily against special weapons activity by German scientists in Egypt. He received intensive training in Israel, went to Germany and surfaced as an East German refugee and former African Corps officer. Although Lotz had a wife in Israel, he eventually married a German woman to develop his legend. In 1961 he went to Cairo, where he opened a riding academy. Through his activities Lotz made a variety of contacts in the German community in the Egyptian capital and in time made the acquaintance of a number of prominent and well-placed Egyptians. He made a number of trips from Egypt to Western Europe for debriefings. Finally, in 1964 Lotz began to mail threatening letters to selected German experts in Egypt. In February 1965, he was arrested by the Egyptians, who tried and imprisoned him. Eventually he was released and returned to Israel in 1968. The Israelis have stated that the operation cost them about $250,000. They have also admitted that errors by Lotz in handling his communications and his use in executive action operations may have led to his downfall. During his captivity Lotz was also forced to reveal the whole operation (Figure 5).
Mossad stations outside of the Arab areas in the Near East are generally under diplomatic cover within the embassies and consulates of Israel. There are stations in the United States, most of the European capitals, Turkey, Iran and strategic centers in Latin America, Africa and the Far East. Operations range from formal liaison exchanges with host services through unilateral projects to special executive actions directed against Arab terrorists. There are also smaller stations, which run mostly unilateral operations and handle local liaison on such matters as Arab terrorists.
The Collection Directorate and the Political Action and Liaison Directorate are separate components of Mossad and are carefully compartmented at headquarters. Collection and Political Action and Liaison maintain separate permanent staffs outside Israel in larger stations. There are thus either two Mossad stations or two compartmented components in each station in some countries — one for unilateral clandestine collection and one for liaison. For example, at present in Paris the Israelis have an Embassy, Consulate-General and Ministry of Defense Mission. Under embassy cover, Mossad has a Collection Directorate regional controller and a Political Action and Liaison Directorate regional controller in the French capital, which has more or less over the years remained the fulcrum of Israeli intelligence activity on the continent of Europe.
In Switzerland the Israelis have an Embassy in Bern and a Consulate-General in Zurich which provide cover for Collection Department officers involved in unilateral operations. These Israeli diplomatic installations also maintain close relations with the Swiss on a local level in regard to overt functions such as physical security for Israeli official and commercial installations in the country and the protection of staff members and visiting Israelis. There is also close collaboration between the Israelis and Swiss on scientific and technical matters pertaining to intelligence and security operations. Swiss officials have made frequent trips to Israel. There is a continual flow of Israelis to and through Switzerland. These visits, however, are usually arranged through the Political Action and Liaison regional controller at the Embassy in Paris directly with the Swiss and not through the officials in the Israeli Embassy in Bern, although the latter are kept informed.
In Spain, on the other hand, there is no known offical or semiofficial Israeli installation. There have been contacts, however between Political Action and Liaison Directorate officials of Mossad and the Spanish service for some time. The original meeting apparently occured in Paris in the late 1960s, since then there have been contacts in Madrid and Paris. There is a possiblity that Mossad may also have a clandestine Collection Department station in Spain. In January 1973, Baruch Asher Cohen, a Mossad officer, was assassinated in Madrid by Arabs.
Special operations are mounted on an ad hoc basis. Headquarters directs the effort from Israel and employs Mossad officers and agents on special temporary duty. In July 1973, an Israeli assassination squad of 16 was involved in the murder of a Moroccan Arab in Lillehammer, Norway. Norwegian authorities captured, tried and imprisoned six of the group, the rest escaped. It became clear in the course of the trial that the squad, which was composed of Israelis, who were Mossad officers, and European Jews, who were recruited for the mission, did much of its preparatory work in Paris and entered Norway on a specific assignment — the elimination of Arab terrorists. After the murder, two of the squad sought refuge with an Israeli Embassy security officer. The Norwegians declared the officer personna non grata [sic], although he apparently was not privy to the operation.
3. Administrative practices
The Israeli Prime Minister appoints the Director of Mossad. The Prime Minister does not need the approval of the cabinet or the Knesset for this appointment.
Chiefs of station and their staffs are Mossad career officers but they function abroad on behalf of all the intelligence and security services. If a member of Shin Beth or the IDF is considered the most qualified individual in the community to do a particular foreign job, he still belongs to his parent organization, but he is assigned to, and subject to the control of Mossad as long as he remains outside the borders of Israel. This rule does not apply, however, to military attaches (army, air, navy) who remain subordinate to the Director of Military Intelligence.
Mossad does not have a logical career progression program. The organization promotes case officers who have been succcessful in the field to top managerial jobs. The results of this arrangement are mixed as some of the successful operators are often not necessarily the best managers or administrators.
The Mossad training cycle encompasses a Basic Operations course for recruits and lower ranking personnel, and [sic] Operations course and a Field Operations course. All new officer candidates are required to take the four-month Basic Operations course before actually entering on duty. The entire training cycle takes almost two years and is generally given to classes of 12. Most of the training takes place in the Tel Aviv area. The instructors in these Mossad courses are teachers on permanent assignment, intelligence officers on temporary tours of duty, and headquarters personnel, including the Director of Mossad and department directors, who give occasional lectures on their specialties.
The three services run a joint advanced school in Jersalem that offers specialized courses of two to three months' duration on world political affairs, Israel's political and economic objectives, new technical operational aids, and the latest information on foreign intelligence services. All officers who are midway in their careers are required to attend this advanced school upon their return from a foreign assignment. As many as 40 to 50 students are reported to have been enrolled in a single running of this course. The faculty is composed of representatives of the three services and is directly subordinate to the Director of Mossad. The Prime Minister or some other high official has addressed graduating classes.
Some younger Mossad officers, who may be weak in certain fields of higher education or languages, are sent to universities abroad, where their pursuit of an advanced degree simultaneously serves as cover for their extracurricular operational activities. One of the established goals of the intelligence and security services is that each officer be fluent in Arabic. A nine-month, intensive Arabic language course is given annually in the Tel Aviv area to students from each service. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also sends two or three officials to each course. Mossad officers who are going into Arab operations take the same Arabic language training as Shin Beth officers. As further training, these Mossad officers work in the Administered Territories for two years to sharpen their language skills before being posted abroad. During this period they usually serve in the Sinai and often run Bedouin agents into Egypt in conjunction with Military Intelligence.
All Mossad officers are trained in the use of small arms and required to fire them at regular intervals.
3b. Funds and Salaries
The Director of Mossad is a civil service Class 1 officer. He receives generous expense and entertainment allowances. There are reported to be several Class 2 and Class 3 officers in Mossad as well. The monthly take home pay of a ranking Mossad officer, after taxes but including bonuses and cost-of-living and family allowances, is about [unclear: 'IL4,000'?] per month (US$460). They also receive expense and entertainment allowances and are provided with a car and gasoline allowance as well. Higher academic degrees place intelligence officers in a higher pay bracket, thus a directorate director with an advanced degree makes the same as the Director. A middle-ranking officer with allowances for a large number of dependents would receive more than his seniors. In general, higher-grade civil service salaries are roughly comparable to those of higher-ranking military officers. The rather insignificant differential between grades is compensated by fairly impressive perquisites, especially in the senior ranks. Officers abroad are given generous cost-of-living allowances that conform to the allotments of the regular Foreign Affairs officers. For cover purposes these are paid by the Foreign Affairs Ministry. If, however, an intelligence officer needs a larger apartment or house for representation, operational purposes, or family requirements, his service quietly pays the difference.
Officers and their families usually travel tourist class on Israeli carriers whenever possible but the absence of a firm rule permits them to travel on any air or steamship line at their discretion. Clerical employees travel tourist class.
Each station abroad is granted funds for operational and entertainment expenses. Responsible individuals do not entertain any more than is necessary but when they do, it is done lavishly. Efforts to extend hospitality unstintingly are made at headquarters in Israel when favored agents or ranking foreign intellligence officers are guests.
4. Methods of Operation
Mossad over the years has enjoyed some rapport with highly-placed persons and government offices in every country of importance to Israel. Within Jewish communities in almost every country of the world, there are Zionists and other sympathizers, who render strong support to the Israeli intelligence effort. Surch contacts are carefully nurtured and serve as channels for information, deception material, propaganda and other purposes. Mossad directs clandestine operations throughout Europe, including the USSR and East European countries; North and South America; the Near East; Africa; and the Far East, including South East Asia. Mossad activities are generally conducted through Israeli official and semiofficial establishments, deep cover enterprises in the form of firms and organizations, some especially created for, or adaptable to, a specific objective, and penetrations effected within non-Zionist national and international Jewish organizations.
The function of intelligence officers under cover of diplomatic establishments is to arrange information exchanges with officials of local services, manage communications, serve as accommodation addresses and funding channels, and direct agents toward targets of interest. Official organizations used for cover are Israeli Purchasing Missions and Israeli Government Tourist, El Al and Zim offices, Israeli constrution firms, industrial groups and international trade organizations also provide nonofficial cover. Individuals working under deep or illegal cover are normally charged with penetrating objectives that require a long-range, more subtle approach, or with activities in which the Israeli Government can never admit complicity.
Many Israelis have come from Arab countries where they were born and educated and appear more Arab than Israeli in speech, demeanor, and attitude. By forging passports and identity documents of Arab and western countries and providing sound background legends and cover, Mossad has successfully sent into Egypt and other Arab countries Israelis disguised and documented as Arabs or citizens of European countries.
There are numerous persons in Israel who have a thorough area and language knowledge of any area of interest to the intelligence services. These area experts can render extremely valuable assistance in analyzing intelligence information and formulating country requirements, thus contributing to the total operational potential since they enable Israeli intelligence officers to estimate rapidly the efficiency and reliability of their agents and informants. These persons are also useful for their ability to pass completely for a citizen of the nation in question. The Israeli talent for counterfeiting or forging passports and documents ably supports the agent's authenticity.
The Israeli intelligence service depends heavily on the various Jewish communities and organizations abroad for recruiting agents and eliciting general information. The aggressively ideological nature of Zionism, which emphasizes that all Jews belong to Israel and must return to Israel, had had its drawbacks in enlisting support for intelligence operations, however, since there is considerable opposition to Zionism among Jews througout the world. Aware of this fact, Israeli intelligence representatives usually operate discreetly within Jewish communities and are under instructions to handle their missions with utmost tact to avoid embarrassment to Israel. They also attempt to penetrate anti-Zionist elements in order to neutralize the opposition. Despite such precautions, the Israelis frequently experience setbacks and there have been several cases where attempted recruitments of Americans of the Jewish faith have been rejected and reported to US authorities.
Israel's program for accelerating its technological, scientfic and military development as rapidly as possible has been enhanced by exploiting scientific exchange programs. Mossad plays a key role in this endeavor. In addition to the large-scale acquisition of published scientific papers and technical journals from all over the world through overt channels, the Israelis devote a considerable portion of their covert operations to obtaining scientific and technical intelligence. This had included attempts to penetrate certain classified defense projects in the United States and othe Western nations.
The United Nations is a major target for Mossad penetration because it is a major sponsor of international exchanges in all fields and because of its importance in settling disputes between Israel and the Arab states. Israeli agents operate at the UN under diplomatic and journalistic cover.
Mossad recruitment, training and control of agents varies widely, depending upon the target area of operation and the desk in headquarters. While there is a certain amount of standardization in the handling of operations, Israeli intelligence officers appear to have considerable freedom in running operations. There is no hard rule requiring specific headquarters approval prior to the recruitment of an agent except in the case of Communist countries. Name traces are requested of headquarter's voluminous files but this is not a consistent routine. Contemplated operations against the USSR and the East European countries, however, are approached very cautiously, and entail a great deal of headquarters planning and control and a special branch composed of area experts is responsible for authorizing and directing this activity. Mossad is especially interested in early warning regarding such developments as the dispatch of Soviet military units from the USSR to the Near East. There also exists within, or affiliated with, Mossad a small unit whose sole objective is to remind the Soviets through propaganda and contacts about the Jewish question at any point throuout the world. All sorts of people, even Cyrus Eaton, have been stimulated to raise the subject. Israeli efforts must at times be effective because the Soviets often attack the Israeli service in their propaganda with detailed revelations of Israeli plots against allegedly innocent Soviet citizens.
The Israelis select their agents almost exclusively from persons of Jewish origin. However, there are security hazards involved in cases of divided allegiance between dedication to the Zionist State of Israel and loyalty to a homeland. The recruitment of Gentiles is comparatively rare.
Many Arabs, especially walk-ins, have directly or indirectly helped the services, usually as a result of monetary inducements, but the Israelis do not consider these Arabs good sources of reliable information. More often, they recruit Palestinians over whom they may have more control because of bank assets frozen in Israel since the war in 1948. In certain cases these bank assets have been released for intelligence services rendered.
The Israelis are prepared to capitalize on nearly every kind of agent motivation. A substantial effort is made to appeal to Jewish racial or religious proclivities, pro-Zionism, dislike of anti-Semitism, anti-Soviet feelings (if applicable) and humanitarian instincts. Blackmail is also used. Other recruiting techniques include the proffer of money, business opportunities, or release from prison. Among the Arabs, money has been especially effective. Appeals have also been made successfully to other Arab vulnerabilities such as jealousy, rivalry, fear and political dissension.
The Israelis have used false-flag recruitment pitches extensively and successfully. In several cases they approached citizens of Western European nations under the cover of a national NATO intellegence organization for operations in Arab target countries.
While intelligence officers in the field recognize the importance of security, they tend to be careless. Although otherwise well trained, Israeli intelligence officers occasionally have been lax in their use of the telephone abroad. Also, they often have given away a considerable amount of information by confiding in agents and contacts with whom they have had only a slight relationship. Nonetheless, they periodically recall the basic principles of their profession, and for awhile complicate the lives of their agents with a welter of security regulations that they themselves eventually transgress. Occasionally a rendezvous arranged between an officer and an agent is countersurveilled by two or more officers, both to spot possible surveillance of the meeting and to protect the officer. In the recruiting process, the officer generally uses a fictitious name, executes a secrecy agreement with the prospective agent, and provides him with a pseudonym or alias. Whenever money or other gratuity is given to an agent, an attempt is made to secure a signed receipt in the agent's handwriting.
Although an agent occasionally may be sent to Israel for special training, this course of action is neither easy nor inexpensive to accomplish. Therefore, the intelligence officer himself is usually responsible for training the agent in the fundamentals of tradecraft, security measures, and the use of radio and code communications. If the exigencies of the situation demand special training, the Israelis rent an apartment for this purpose in places like Paris and New York. Agents who have been so trained were taught to mix and use secret ink, conceal documents and letters on the person, deliver information to secure hiding places, and to communicate ortherwise with the case officer and/or headquarters.
The methods of communication vary greatly depending on locations and circumstances. Personal meetings between the agent and his case officer are arranged by secret writing, open mail, or oral message by couriers. The cities or towns to be used have code names and the meeting places are at specified times with alternative times and places. In case of emergency, the agent can alert the intelligence officer by use of a prearranged open code in cables or letters, or if time permits, by secret writing or courier.
The Israelis place considerable emphasis on personal relationships with their agents. They have been known to be exceedingly generous in granting personal concessions and monetary assistance to keep their agents happy. One such individual, a journalist in Paris who recruited French officials and elicited information from witting and unwitting informants in the French political world, was paid the equivalent of US$1,000 per month. After years of steady employment and a succession of Israeli case officers, his services were gently but peremptorily terminated. Severance pay was calculated at the rate of one month's salary for each year of service to assuage any hard feelings. On the other hand, the Israelis can be absolutely ruthlesss to both the intelligence officer and the agent if the latter's disaffection or treachery should threaten a sensitive operation or endanger the security of the state. There are several cases of Jews in Europe who, while or after working for the Israeli service, trafficked with the Egyptians for substantial sums of money. These Jews were enticed into traveling to Israel or abducted, tried in camera, and given stiff prison terms of 10 to 14 years.
Mossad headquarters controls the acquisition, flow and dissemination of reports in a rigid manner, which contrasts with the considerable freedom allowed in running operations. An Israeli intelligence officer abroad must accept all information reported by an agent and may not change a single word. The intelligence officer receives detailed, prepared questions from headquarters and is allowed little leeway in terms of what he submits. In a meeting with an agent, many of whom are low-level, the intelligence officer debriefs him on the basis of headquarters questions. The intelligence officer must then forward all the agent says, even overt information. The intelligence officer may if he wishes add his own remarks to the report.
Mossad headquarters does not disseminate agents reports to all customer agencies. The overwhelming bulk of the reports goes to one specific analytical unit, for example, usually reports on Arab affairs are sent to Military Intelligence, counterintelligence reports to Shin Beth. However, an exceptional agent report is disseminated to Israeli policymakers. The Mossad intelligence officer abroad does not show copies of his reports to the Israeli Ambassador but sends them only to Mossad headquarters in Tel Aviv.
The Israeli services have a very keen interest in the use and development of technical equipment. As far back as 1947-1948, the Information Service conducted technical surveillance operations against Arab and British delegates to the UN. Mossad with assistance from Shin Beth has provided technical training to the Turkish and Ghanian security and intelligence services. Exchanges of technical equipment and information have also been carried out with the Japanese intelligence and security services. Mossad receives support in external technical operations from Shin Beth and Military Intelligence. The technical capabilities of the Israeli services are adequate for normal demands. Moreover, the very close coordination existing between the services and the industrial concerns of the country ensure that technical equipment to support continuing audio operations is supplied and developed as needed. The existence of a limited research program, coupled with high Israeli competence in technical matters, indicates that the Israelis intend to remain abreast of advances in audiosurveillance and countermeasures.
4a. Relationship with Other Services
Mossad has good relationships with Shin Beth, Military Intelligence, the Research and Political Planning Center of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, and the Special Tasks Division of the police. Successes like the Entebbe raid are illustrative of well-coordinatated planning and execution — a testimonial to good relations among the services.
The Agranat Commission advocated greater coordination between the services and revived the post of intelligence adviser to monitor interdirectorate disuputes. The exchanges between Mossad and the other services through the coordinating mechanism of the Va'adat and the use of ad hoc committees, however, continue to ensure coordination and cooperation between the services.
4b. Liaison with Foreign Services
Mossad has liaison relationships with many of intelligence and security services throughout the world. With a few exceptions, the Directorate of Foreign Liaison and Politcal Action is responsible for relations with most foreign organizations. In most instances the point of contact is abroad in foreign capitals, although some foreign services insist on liaison in Israel.
At present Mossad, in coordination with Shin Beth, maintains liaison with foreign intelligence and security services through membersihp in the Kilowatt group, an organization which is concerned with Arab terrorism, and is comprised of West Germany, Belgium, Italy, the United Kingdom, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Switzerland, Denmark, France, Canada, Ireland, Sweden, Norway and Israel. The Israelis also have informal connections regarding terrorism with other European nations, including Spain, Portugal and Austria.
The Israelis have over the years made efforts to break the Arab ring encircling Israel by involvement with non-Arab Moslem nations in the Near East. A formal trilateral liaison called the Trident organization was established by Mosssad with Turkey's National Security Service (TNSS) and Iran's National Organization for Intelligence and Security (SAVAK) in late 1958. Since the original agreement there has been an addition to Mossad's bilateral relationship with each service. The Trident organization involves continuing intelligence exchange plus semiannual meetings at the chief of service level.
The general terms of the original agreement with the Turks, aside from legitimizing Israeli liaison with Turkey, stated that Mossad would furnish information on the activity of Soviet agents in Turkey and those working against Turkey thoughout the Middle East. In return, the Turks agreed to supply Israel with information on the political intentions of the Arab countries which could affect the security of Israel, and the activity and identification of UAR agents working against Israel. The Israeli service has also given the Turks counterespionage and technical training.
The main purpose of the Israeli relationship with Iran was the development of a pro-Israel and anti-Arab policy on the part of Iranian officials. Mossad has engaged in joint operations with SAVAK over the years since the late 1950s. Mossad aided SAVAK activities and supported the Kurds in Iraq. The Israelis also regularly transmitted to the Iranians intelligence reports on Egypt's activities in the Arab countries, trends and developments in Iraq, and Communist activities affecting Iran.
Israeli liaison in Africa has varied considerably from country to country, depending on the exigencies of the situration. Israeli intelligence activities in Africa have usually been carried out under the cover of military and police training, arms sales to national military forces, and aid and development programs. The Arab nations, in conjunction with the Organization of African Unity, have brought great pressure to bear on most African nations to break all formal ties with Israel. Despite the break in diplomatic relations between Israel and many of the African nations, the Israelis still maintain good intelligence liaison with certain African services. The Israelis also have relations with the Kenyan Service. In Central Africa the Israelis are still active in Zaire. In West Africa the Israelis trained the Liberian Security Service and police. They also helped establish the Ghanian Military Intelligence Service. In southern Africa the Israelis have a relationship with the South African Intelligence and security services.
The Israelis have been very active in Latin America over the years. One of the greatest intelligence coups, the capture of Adolph Eichmann, the former Nazi leader, occurred in Argentina. Recently, much of their liaison activity in Latin America has centered on training and antiterrorist operations. The Israeli Consulate in Rio de Janeiro, for example, provides cover for a Mossad regional station responsible for Brazil, Argentina, Chile, and Uruguay. Officers from this post have gone to Buenos Aires to give training to the Argentines. In the course of these contacts the Israelis recommended greater involvement in joint antiterrorist operations. The Israelis also maintain liaison with security services of Mexico, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, and Panama, the Dominican Republic, Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru. Caracas is the Regional Center for north and western Latin America and Central America.
The Israelis have operated for sometime in East Asia. They have provided intelligence training to the Government of the Republic of China and maintain liaison with it. The Israelis also have relations with the Japanese, Thai, Indonesian, and South Korean services, especially on terrorist matters. The major Mossad regional center in East Asia is in Singapore. The Israeli station chief there frequently travels thoughout the neighboring nations. Indonesia as a Moslem nation does not have formal diplomatic ties with Israel. The Mossad-Indonesian relationship, therefore, is very discreet. The Mossad representative in Singapore is accredited to the Indonesian service. There are also Mossad officers in Jakarta under commercial cover. The primary reason for the Indonesian liaison is to gain aid in counterterrorist efforts. The Isaelis, on the other hand, are not only engaging in antiterrorist operations but also have an opportunity to collect information and engage in political action in another Moslem power.
C. Shin Beth — Counterespionage and Internal Security Service
Shin Beth has the responsibility in Israel for counterespionage and internal security and the service is basically internally oriented. Shin Beth is primarily responsible for collecting information on foreign intelligence organizations, both hostile and friendly, and their activities; protecting the security of Israeli officials and installations abroad, and investigating all forms of subversion directed by either internal or external forces, including sabotage and terrorism in Israel and abroad. Shin Beth evaluates all information developed, collates it with other material routinely and overtly available from both Israeli and foreign sources, and submits evaluated reports to the appropriate government agencies for action. Shin Beth operates to combat two main adversaries: the Arabs and the Soviet and Eastern European intelligence and security services.
Shin Beth at one time engaged in positive intelligence operations and immigration affairs in the Balkan countries, particularly in Romania, Bulgaria, Yugoslavia, and in Hungary, but no longer does. Shin Beth is the government's authority on personnel and physical security matters, is responsible for the personal security of the President, the Prime Minister and the Minister of Defense.
Shin Beth does not have the power of arrest, which is the right only of the Special Tasks Division of the Investigations Department of the Israeli Police, a national force with headquarters in Jerusalem. When an arrest is desired, Shin Beth submits a detailed report on the case plus a request for an arrest warrant to the Ministry of Justice. The Legal Department transmits the request to the Special Tasks Division, which issues the warrant and makes the arrest. When more expeditious handling is justified, Shin Beth directly notifies the Special Tasks Division, which is empowered to take the suspect into temporary custody pending receipt of the warrant. On occasion a Shin Beth officer will sit in court with the prosecution staff as a special consultant.
Shinn Beth is organized into eight operational and functional departments. (1) Arab Affairs; (2) Non-Arab Affairs; (3) Protective Security; (4) Operational Support; (5) Technology; (6) Interrogation and Legal Counsel; (7) Coordination and Planning; and (8) Administration. Regional departments in the field are located in the Gaza/Sinai area with headquarters in Ashqelon; the Northern area with headquarters in Haifa; and the West Bank area with headquarters in Jerusalem. A unit within Shin Beth national headquarters in Tel Aviv serves as the fourth regional department. These regional departments are broken down into subdivisions identical to but smaller than those of the parent organization (Figure 6).
The Arab Affairs Department is responsible for counterespionage, antiterrorist operations, control of political subversion, research and the maintenance of a counterintelligence index on Arabs. The components handling these activities are organized into offensive and defensive sections. This department operates through field offices controlled by regional officers. These officers report to the regional commanders but rely on the Arab Affairs Department for guidance and support, which includes aid in counterespionage, countersabotage and surveillance as well as research and records support. The overall headquarters function is that of determining doctrine, systematizing work and supervising.
The Non-Arab Department handles counterintelligence operations dealing with all other countries, countersubversion (one component dealing with Communist subversion, the other with non-Communist New Left subversion), foreign liaison and research. Each unit dealing with these activities has offensive and defensive sections. The Non-Arab Department investigates and counters espionage activity by foreign powers, both hostile and friendly, by all known methods, including the penetration of their intelligence services and diplomatic installations in Israel. Operations against foreign missions within Israel were formerly conducted by Military Intelligence, but with the evolution towards greater centralization and professional specialization since the reorganization of 1951, this function has been the responsibility of Shin Beth.
The Non-Arab Affairs Department engages in the penetration of extremist political parties such as MAKI (the Communist Party of Israel); RAKAH (the new Communist List), a largely Arab-supported splinter group; SIAH (the New Israel Left); and anti-Zionist and extreme rightist organizations. The Department also investigates counterfeiting, blackmarketing, the smuggling of money and goods in and out of the country, and violations of the economic control laws. It is responsible for tapping telephone lines and intercepting domestic and diplomatic telephone conversations.
The Non-Arab Affairs Department is responsible for foreign liaison and handles all correspondence by Shin Beth with other foreign intelligence and security services. The interrogation of immigrants from the USSR and Eastern European nations is also undertaken by this department.
The Protective Security Department is responsible for the protection of Israeli Government buildings and embassies, El Al and Zim installations and craft, defense industries and scientific establishments, and leading personalities. This department is also charged with the security of all important industrial plants, especially those of actual or potential military value, and is engaged in the prevention of leakage of industrial secrets such as patents, processes, statistics, etc. It also carries on liaison with security officers throughout the Israeli Government. Although guards and security officers are paid by the instituions to which they are assigned, their recruitment, training, and control is a Shin Beth responsibility. The Protective Security Department controls the security of internal communications and the secrecy of information. A small unit within the department, for example, handles all matters concerning espionage with the Office of Mail and Telegraph Censorship.
The Protective Security Deparment directs Shin Beth security activities overseas including the protection of Israeli personnel, diplomatic and transport offices, facilities and equipment. Although Mossad has responsibility for unilateral operations and liaison on intelligence matters and Military Intelligence controls the attache system and military liaison, Shin Beth handles protective security and liaison with local security services abroad to safeguard Israeli personnel and property. For instance, there is a regional Protective Security office in Paris which is concerned primarily with El Al and Zim security.
The Operational Support Department is responsible for assisting the operational departments with surveillance, observation, airport security, censorship, listening devices, special tasks and counteraudio support. This department has tactical components, which aid in counterintelligence operations, VIP protection and telephone taps. The Department provides support in running a highly developed intercept operation from a switchboard installed in Shin Beth offices. This enables the service to avoid having to make taps either across pairs in a local box or even in the telephone centrals under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Communications Telephone Services; and also avoids any possible compromise by leftist employees of the Telephone Services.
The Technology Department lends support to the operating departments in electronics, mechanics, and chemistry. It provides technical support to operations in the following areas: audio and visual surveillance, communications, photography, surreptitious entry, telephone taps, mail censorship, security devices, etc.
The Interrogation and Legal Counsel Department handles all counterintelligence and security interrogations for Shin Beth operating departments not handed over to the Special Tasks Division of the police. This department makes selective use of the polygraph. It also checks the reliability of Mossad sources, fabricators, and suspect double agents. Personnel in this component travel to the field as required to give polygraph tests and conduct interrogations. The department also assists in preparing cases for trial and provides other legal assistance to operating departments as needed.
The Coordination and Planning Department has responsibility for coordination of counterintelligence and security methodology, training, security recruitment and the central registry. This department maintains the Shin Beth card files, with the exception of those on Arabs. In addition to ordinary carding procedures, there is an entry on every individual in the country who has a police record. This enables all government offices to make a quick check on the police record of present or potential employees through Shin Beth. All tracing procedures are channeled into this department, from name checks through neighborhood investigations. This registry uses a military computer. The registry on Arabs is not yet computerized because of the difficulty with Arabic names.
The Administration Department performs the usual functions of personnel management, finance, supply, transport, communications, and security.
A policy body within Shin Beth is called the Directorate of the Service. It normally meets once a month. Membership consists of department directors (including the regional directors), all of whom are of equal rank.
3. Administrative practices
The Director of Shin Beth is appointed by the Prime Minister who may seek advice for the appointment but needs no approval from either the cabinet or the Knesset.
Shin Beth is responsible for the security of all civilian intelligence and security personnel. Furthermore, it also recruits and selects personnel, according to specific requirements based on loyalty to the state, education, capability and potential, and subject to the approval of the individual civilian service. The military is somewhat more autonomous in regard to security procedures relating to their personnel because military security components handle most of their cases. Shin Beth, however, sets the policies and standards for military security controls.
Among the 500 officers in Shin Beth are some 100 individuals who have been selected, screened, and trained to serve as security officers throughout the governmental structure. These officers are stationed in the Prime Minister' s office, intelligence and security components including Mossad, scientific institutes, El Al installations, and foreign service posts.
Most career employees, a few of whom are women, have broad educational backgrounds and experience. About one-third of Shin Beth officers are assigned abroad early in their careers as security officers where they come under the operational and administrative control of Mossad. Upon return to Israel from foreign assignment, Shin Beth officers revert to the internal security service. Because senior Mossad and Shin Beth officers are given identical training in a combined advanced operational school, their modus operandi is similar.
There is a certain amount of personnel exchange among the services. Shin Beth may accept an army major or colonel on temporary assignment or recruit a retiring officer on a permanent basis. All recruits are subject to a thorough background security investigation culminating in a physical examination, polygraph tests, and psychiatric screening. Security checks on native born Israelis are relatively easy to do, for the young Israeli, whose life is well documented, rarely enjoys the luxury of privacy. Police files, school records, university professors, army records, youth movements, political affiliations, voting records, family history, political persuasions, and friends are scrutinized. If the applicant is foreign born, detailed immigration records may reveal pertinent information which can be cross-checked. Loyalty to Israel is the principal criterion. If the subject was a Zionist from early youth, he belongs to a special category; if he has never belonged to the leftist parties, MARAM, MAKI and RAKAH, or to Herut, a rightist party, his employement opportunities are considerably enhanced. It is almost impossible for a Jew to disguise his past when he is once in the hands of the authorities since there are in Israel many thoroughly reliable persons from every country which has or had a Jewish community, who can be consulted for information on potential recruits.
The Director of Shin Beth is a civil service Class I officer. He has an expense and entertainment allowance. There is a rather insignificant differential between grades which is compensated by fairly impressive perquisites, including living quarters, transportation and travel, especially in the senior ranks.
4. Methods of Operation
Shin Beth operations within Israel can be broken down into the four following categories: against foreigners in general, against Arabs, against Communists, and against Israelis. There appears to be little difference in the application of techniques, but a greater [sic] deal in intensity, much of which is directed against the Arabs.
The activities and opinions of diplomats both witin and outside their diplomatic establishments in Israel are of primary interest to Shin Beth. Generally, the Israeli Government tends to regard diplomats as being there to ferret information rather than to promote cordial relations.
The degree of suspicion and intensity of operations against diplomats is conditioned by the prevailing relations between countries and their long-term diplomatic objectives. Shin Beth operations with the police and Military Intelligence are well coordinated. The Israeli police work very closely with Shin Beth in guarding foreign installations such as embassies and consulates, and in surveilling diplomats, foreign journalists, and tourists of special interest. Police officers maintain a 24-hour watch in front of all embassies, legations, consulates, and ambassadorial residences. They record the comings and goings of foreign personnel, especially diplomatic officers who appear after regular office hours or on weekends. They also record the license numbers of vehicles in which the officers arrive and depart. Diplomatic license plates differ in color from civilian plates and carry a numerical prefix which identifies the country represented.
The security of the border areas and the occupied territories is mainly the responsibility of Military Intelligence, the Border guard and Shin Beth. Through the use of informants, who may be local Arabs or Oriental Jews posing as Arabs, Shin Beth has penetrated subversive Arab elements including communist cells and Arab nationalist groups. They have also picked up local Arab espionage agents on their way back to neighboring countries and doubled them in coordination with Military Intelligence. Shin Beth is continually active in the fight against terrorism.
Aside from the Arab target, Shin Beth is primarily concerned with the subversive elements of the left. MAKI and RAKAH owe their allegiance to the USSR but being legal parties, they have had representatives in the Knesset. Shin Beth has thoroughly penetrated the cells of the Communist apparatus, following its activities through informants, surveillance, and technical operations. Shin Beth agents attend many international Communist front meetings.
Since all foreigners, regardless of nationality or religion, including Jews, are considered potential threats to the State of Israel, Shin Beth employs a large number of informants among local Israelis who are in contact with foreigners by reason of their employment or activities. In this category are bartenders, hotel clerks, telephone operators, secretaries, taxi drivers, caterers, maids, prostitutes, chauffeurs, and waiters. It also includes trade unionists, scientists, and others in the educational field.
There is an Israeli law that authorizes the police and the security services to pick up and detain for questioning any Israeli citizen who is in contact with foreigners without official persmission or obvious reason such as employment or business. Since diplomats are subject to surveillance, Shin Beth soon becomes aware of their contacts with Israeli citizens. When a pattern develops, and suspicion is aroused, attempts are made to develop further information using wire tapping and other technical aids. It is not uncommon for representatives of Shin Beth to call on the Israeli and attempt to enlist his cooperation. If the individual refuses, the penal Revision Law (State Security) is cited to him and he is threatened with dire consequences. This usually evokes compliance. The Isaeli security authorities also seek evidence of illicit love affairs which can be used as leverage to enlist cooperation. In one instance, Shin Beth tried to penetrate the US Consulate General in Jerusalem through a clerical employee who was having an affair with a Jerusalem girl. They rigged a fake abortion case against the employee in an unsuccessful effort to recruit him. Before this attempt at blackmail, they had tried to get the Israeli girl to elicit information from her boyfriend.
Two other important targets in Israel are the US Embassy in Tel Aviv and the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO) with headquarters in Jerusalem. There have been two or three crude efforts to recruit Marine guards for monetary reward. In the cases affecting UNTSO personnel, the operations involved intimidation and blackmail.
In 1954, a hidden microphone planted by the Israelis was discovered in the Office of the US Ambassador in Tel Aviv. In 1956, telephone taps were found connected to two telephones in the residence of the US military attache. In 1960, a microphone was discovered behind the wall plaster in what had been the office of the Operations Officer in the Jordan Israel Mixed Armistice Commission Office.
Recently, the Director of the Shin Beth, in testimony before a judicial committee of the Knesset, stated that Shin Beth makes entries and taps telephones in Israel with some frequency. Reportedly, the only concern of the committee members was with the disposition by Shin Beth of acquired information which did not bear on national security. It is noted that these activities have no basis in law and are conducted on the authority of the Director of Shin Beth alone.
The Israelis have shown themselves to be most adept at surveillance and surreptitious entry operations. Men and women frequently are used together on surveillance teams in order to allay suspicion. If a person under surveillance stops to use a public telephone, the surveillance team reports the situation to the control center which immediately notifies the telephone tapping unit and an attempt is made to intercept the call. The conversation or pertinent information is then related to the team on street. Shin Beth personnel are experts at entering private quarters where they go through visitors' luggage and personal papers. Special portable camera equipment is used for this purpose and the results are processed in the Shin Beth laboratory. Shin beth technicians have concealed radio transmitters in phonograph cases, in the false bottoms of coffee cans, and in the bottoms of portable cooking stoves which can be used as stoves without removing the communication equipment.
D. Military Intelligence
Military intelligence is charged with the collection, production and dissemination of military, geographic and economic intelligence, especially on the Arab nations, and security in the Defense Forces and Administered Territories. This component is an element of the Israeli Ministry of Defense and a part of the Defense Forces General Staff. The Director of Military Intelligence (DMT) is a member of Va'adat. Although Air Force and Navy Intelligence officers are subordinate to their respective commanders, they are members of the DMI's staff and attend his staff meetings.
Military Intelligence headquarters consist of the following departments: (1) Production; (2) the Intelligence Corps; (3) Foreign Relations; and (4) Field Security and Military Censorship. The DMI also directs Field Security Units, Territorial Command Combat Intelligence and Air Force and Navy Intelligence through coordination with their respective area commanders (Figure 7).
The Production Department is responsible for preparing the national intelligence estimates (versions of which appear as the Middle East Review or Survey for distribution to friendly liaison services). This department also produces daily finished intelligence reports and daily bulletins, which contains [sic] raw or partially analyzed information. Estimates are now prepared by Military Intelligence, Mossad and the Research and Planning Center of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs. The Production Department has about 40 percent (approximately 2,800) of the personnel of Military Intelligence. About 600, of whom 150 are officers and analysts, are involved in intelligence production. The number of analysts, however, varies as specialists are coopted by the department for special studies in technical and economic matters. This department is under the command of a deputy director of Military Intelligence.
The Production Department is divided into the following units (1) Geographical (or Regional) Division; (2) Functional (or Technical) Division and (3) Documentation (or Registry and Records) Division. The Geographical Division evaluates information and compiles target studies on the Arab countries. It is divided into three area desks: the Western, consisting of Egypt, Sudan and Libya; the Eastern, consisting of Iraq, Syria and Lebanon, and the Southern, consisting of Jordan and the Arabian Peninsula. Every effort is made in this division to create the narrowest type of specialist — a man who can devote himself to his material for over a period of years. For example, in the middle 1960s the Jordanian Desk Chief had held his job for 15 years and probably knew more about the Jordanian military than most Jordanian Army officers.
The Functional Division is broken down into substantive units which deal with such subjects as Near Eastern economics, inter-Arab relations, Palestinian affairs and international activities in the Near East. The division produces intelligence on technical and economic matters, including weapons and electronics and production, and area developments. The unit draws heavily on the knowledge of the IDF technical services. There is close cooperation between the geographical and functional divisions in producing accurate and timely intelligence. The existence of a desk concerned with international activities in the Near East, including Soviet affairs, indicates that the functional division deals with the policies of other nations as they affect the area.
The Documentation Division actually employs over half of the personnel in the Production Department. All reports are sent first to this component, which keeps a permanent record copy and numbers, cards, indexes and cross-references documents as necessary. It then forwards copies to appropriate offices. The Documentation Division reportedly has now installed computers to aid in the dissemination and research support process. The registry component of this unit services the entire Military Intelligence establishment. This Division is the repository for all Military Intelligence reports and publication and is responsible for the dissemination of finished intelligence and also supervises the intelligence operations center, which operates 24 hours a day. This center is the terminal for all direct access field communications and presumably is designed to provide rapid review and dissemination of information in a crisis situation.
The Intelligence corps is responsible for overt and covert collection operations, including all signal intelligence activities for the Israeli intelligence community, and for operational support functions. The Corps is subordinate to the DMI and is under the command of the Chief intelligence Officer. This unit consists of a large headquarters staff which supervises subordinate operational field elements. Although it has no authority over area command assets, the Corps may levy requirements on these field elements. The Corps supervises the use of technical devices in operations. All requirements levied on the Corps must be validated by the Deputy Director of Military Intelligence.
The Corps is broken down into the following divisions: (1) Collection, responsible for signals intelligence, agent operations, overt sources and long distance obeservation units; (2) General Headquarters which is in charge of the military intelligence school, the Technical Development Institute, communications and cartography; (3) Training; (4) Organization, Logistics and Personnel; and (5) Research and Development.
The signals branch of the collection Division, which includes communications and electronic intelligence and landline operations, collects communications intelligence for the entire intelligence and security community. The actual collection operation is performed by the IDF Signal Corps. The Israeli Air Force also participates and maintains liaison with other service components on electronic warfare. The Israelis have been very successful in their COMINT and ELINT operations against the Arabs. During the Six-Day War in 1967 the Israelis succeeded in intercepting, breaking and disseminating a tremendous volume of Arab traffic quickly and accurately, including a high level conversation between the late President Gamal Abd-Nasser of the UAR and King Hussein of Jordan. Over the years the Israelis have mounted cross-border operations and tapped Arab landline communications for extended periods. The Israelis have also on occasion boobytrapped the landlines.
The Agents Branch is in charge of all agent operations run by Military Intelligence. The Branch is not permitted to run agent operations abroad but it has sole jurisdiction over agent operations across the borders of Israel into neighboring states. The Agents Branch has executive authority over Shin Beth operations which are run against the intelligence service of a neighboring Arab State. Egypt and Syria are the prime operational targets. The Interrogation Unit of the Agents Branch controls POW interrogation teams which are especially trained and prepared to accompany any major IDF military operation beyond the ceasefire lines. These teams are keystones in Military Intelligence tactical operations. Interrogators use a variety of deception techniques in questioning prisoners. Although prisoners are usually treated well, interrogators may give the initial impression that other prisoners have been mistreated or even executed for failure to cooperate. Arabic-speaking IDF interrogators sometimes pose as Arab officers and circulate among prisoners to elicit information. These techniques usually produce a large quantity of information from captured enemy personnel.
The Open Sources Division collects and collates all material from overt sources. This component, however, does not evaluate the information.
The Long Distance Observation Units are primarily concerned with visual sightings of Arab activity along the borders and armistice lines. These units also provide support to agent cross-border operations and leads to signal intelligence units based on observations of Arab movements across the borders.
The General Headquarters Division runs the Military Intelligence School and the Technical Development Institute and is in charge of communications and cartography. DMI has the largest technical capability of any of the Israeli intelligence services. It has a highly competent RD&E component which produces equipment needed for military intelligence operations. Because it is the largest, and at one time the only, engineering shop in the Israeli intelligence community, it takes on some projects from other services.
The Communications Branch handles all matters involving wireless communication for agent operations. Officials in this branch train agent operators, draw up signal plans, and maintain radio contact with agents in place. From time to time this branch also provides support for Mossad and Shin Beth.
The Cartographic Branch has responsibility for map production and works in close cooperation with the Director of the Survey Department in the Ministry of Labor. There are approximately 300 personnel assigned to the Map Survey Office (Survey of Israel). Offices are located near the intersection of Lincoln and Yehuda Halevi streets in Tel Aviv.
The Training Division is responsible for the intelligence doctrine taught in the Military Intelligence School and in troop units. It has evidently absorbed the training responsibilities of Field Security and Combat Intelligence units. The Military Intelligence School curriculum includes combat intelligence, strategic intelligence and "special studies." The school may provide some training for personnel of other Israeli intelligence and security services.
The Organization, Logistics and Personnel Division is responsible for administrative tasks. The head of this division functions as the DMI's designee on all logistical and personnel matters. The division consists of three components: Logistics, Personnel and Finance.
The Research and Development Division is primarily concerned with computer operations and programming in support of Military Intelligence production, operations and requirements.
The Foreign Relations Department is responsible for liaison between the IDF and foreign military organizations and for Israeli Defense Attache affairs. This department is reportedly divided into two companies: the Foreign Intelligence Liaison Division and the Attaches' Division. The Foreign Intelligence Liaison Division conducts liaison with representatives of foreign intelligence services which have agreements with Military Intelligence. This division also has control over visits by officers and training of troops from foreign countries in Israel. Foreign Intelligence Liaison is also the official point of contact for all foreign defense attaches in Israel. Activities such as visits to installations, exchanges of routine information, briefing sessions, etc. must first be cleared with Field Security and submitted to the DMI for a policy decision, if necessary. Attaches accredited or otherwise working in Israel on intelligence matters can expect to receive select information concerning other Near East and foreign nations within perimeters set by the DMI, thus an attache seeking information on specific questions of Israeli capabilities and materials would receive the data through this division. It is considered a "violation" of IDF "unwritten" policy for foreign military personnel in Israel to collect this type of information in any other way. In the past, Military Intelligence has provided much information on technical equipment supplied to other Middle East nations by the Soviet Bloc. This was especially true in the wake of the Arab-Israeli War in 1967, when the Israelis captured vast quantities of Soviet material from the Arabs. It is believed that Foreign Intelligence Liaison may be divided into at least two components: General Intelligence and Technical Intelligence.
Within or attached to the Foreign Intelligence Liaison division is a Secret Liaison unit which handles all operations outside the normal charter of activities previously described. This unit may be involved either directly or indirectly in bilateral intelligence operations conducted by Military Intelligence with other services. Thus when a special relationship between a foreign military establishment and the IDF is arranged, this unit supplies the officers and controls the activities. This unit was involved in the excellent liaison relationship which at one time existed with France. Further, if Mossad decides that an Israeli military officer is in the best position to carry out a specific foreign operation, this unit will handle the matter. Operations controlled from this office in all cases are coordinated with Mossad.
The Foreign Relations Department directs the activities of Israeli ministry of Defense Missions and Defense Attaches abroad through the Attaches' Division. Ministry of Defense Missions and Israeli Defense Attaches are located in Washington, New York City, London, Paris, Bonn, Rome, The Hague, Ankara, Teheran, Bangkok, Buenos Aires, Tokyo, Brasilia and Caracas. Several of these attaches are also accredited to adjacent countries. The true role of most defense missions and attache posts is to sell Israeli defense industry products and purchase defense equipment for the IDF. There are few posts which are actually attache offices in the traditional sense, the principal ones being in Washington, London, and Paris. Israeli defense attaches abroad advise their respective ambassadors, report on host country military matters, keep abreast of all research and development in the host country and in general, represent the IDF abroad. Attaches also do operational support work for Mossad. Israeli military missions have been sent to some countries for training and support purposes, but those missions have not been officially accredited to the country concerned.
The Field Security and Military Censorship Department is responsible for counterintelligence within the IDF, and conducts physical and personnel security investigations. Field Security is also responsible for security clearances of all personnel assigned to Military Intelligence. This Department conducts daily liaison with Shin Beth, which is responsible for IDF reserve personnel on inactive status and has final responsibility in counterintelligence and security cases. In the middle 1960s the Security Department included a Personnel Security Division to assign personnel, supervise and coordinate clearances and conduct surveillance. A Counterintelligence Division had the responsibility of ensuring security regarding communications, documents and installations. An Education and Training Division was responsible for troop security indoctrination. A computerized document checking office was set up in the early 1960s to control distribution and disposal of all Top Secret documents originating within the IDF. The field Security Department coordinates and monitors the activities of Field Security units attached to the IDF territorial commands to maintain order. Each territorial commander is responsible for security in his area and uses Field Security units to preserve law and order. Israel is divided into Northern, Central and Southern commands plus the Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and Haifa districts. Both Tel Aviv District and the Central Command, also located there, are separate from IDF General Headquarters which is located in Tel Aviv. The Gaza Strip, although not contiguous to the Central Command, has been placed under that Command because pacification and antiterrorist operations in the past few years have succeeded in bringing relative stability to the area. Sinai is under the Southern Command, which has two Field Security units. In the mid-1960s the Northern Command has three Field Security units.
Field Security officers serve in the territorial commands where they direct the activities of various Field Security units and serve as points of contact for the Commands Security Departments and the territorial commanders. Field Security units are responsible for implementing and supervising security directives, including instructions, guidance and inspections. In the Administered Territories, Field Security units cooperate with Shin Beth and the Border Guard to preserve security, combat terrorism and run counterintelligence operations. At brigade level in the three area commands, Field Security has military intelligence majors serving as security officers (and known as such) under the command of the Operations Section (G-3). Security officers at battalion and company level are "coopted" from the infantry but are known as security officers only to unit commanders on the battalion level. At the company level, security personnel are sergeants.
The Military Censorship Office within the Field Security and Military Censorship Department is responsible for all censorship. In addition this component, by law, has extremely wide powers in dealing with the Israeli press and other mass media. In practice, the IDF has found it advisable to operate on a gentleman's agreement basis and depend largely on the good intentions of editors and the like to refrain from publishing stories about Israeli military secrets. This office operates on behalf of the entire IDF. Directors of Military Intelligence in the past have referred to Military Censorship as part of the "ballast" that they would prefer to see in the Chief of Staff's own office. The Chief of the Censorship Office is a member of the "Committee of Three" which acts as a Board of Appeal and final arbiter in all matters relating to censorship. The two other members are a representative of the press and a representative of the public at large. The last named must be agreed upon by both other parties. In effect all information is broken down into three categories: (1) items that are permitted without question, (2) items that are not permitted under any circumstances, and (3) items that must be cleared before publication. Blank spaces are found only infrequently in the press owing to a regulation which forbids this practice; for example, an entire page must be reset if a single item must be withdrawn from publication. All IDF publications and press releases must be coordinated with and approved by the Censorship Office. All information media, foreign and domestic, must submit any item having a security or significant political implication to the Censorship Office prior to its release. Most press organizations have a teletype link with the IDF to expedite this process; others must handcarry their items to the office. In the mid-1960s, this office was staffed largely by female soldiers.
The Censorship Office is in charge of monitoring outgoing communications from Israel to ensure that no information of military value is transmitted. If the monitor hears a discussion involving matters of military importance, he will cut off the conversation. On one occasion a monitor reportedly listened in on a private conversation and reported gleefully to his colleagues in the room what he heard. The monitor was fired on the spot. Monitoring activity concentrates largely on international telephone calls from foreign media personnel in Israel to their home offices abroad.
The Public Relations Office of Military Censorship has responsiblity for all IDF press releases and all official contacts with the public. The Office handles relations with the press and the public in coordination with the Censorship Office. The Office also hosts foreign defense attaches in Israel in conjunction with the Foreign Intelligence Liaison Division. As in the case of the Censorship Office, Directors of Military Intelligence would prefer to see the Public Relations Office directly under the command of the Chief of Staff.
The intelligence process within Military Intelligence operates largely by means of three regularly scheduled meetings of the key intelligence officers. First, there is a meeting twice a week or every three days at which the Director of the Production Department holds a briefing for the DMI and other top officers. Depending on the nature of the intelligence discussed, other production officers may also be present. On the basis of this meeting, the DMI issues instructions for action or levies requirements for information to the assembled staff officers. One half day after each of these biweekly meetings, the directors of Production and the Intelligence Corps meet to work out detailed planning and tactics on what each should do to follow up the DMI's broad directives. Immediately after this, the director of the Intelligence Corps gathers together his own division chiefs and gives them guidelines for carrying out their immediate responsibilities. The liaison officer assigned to Mossad sits in on this meeting.
The DMI is always given finished intelligence. Individual items are summarized in not more than half a page and broken down into three paragraphs: (1) the facts; (2) comments; and (3) evaluation. These are put together on a "reading board" for selected top Israeli Government officials with appropriate marginal comments from the DMI. There are in addition daily, weekly, and monthly intelligence summaries which are designed to provide a continuing insight into the development of events or trends of interest to the government. These summaries, together with spot reports on separate items, fulfill much of the DMI's responsiblities as the Prime Minister's staff officer for intelligence. The Production Department may also generate special research or "think" pieces. Special reports are also written in response to requirements levied by Israeli agencies other than military intelligence.
One of the DMI's most important functions is to present the annual intelligence estimate during the latter part of December. While a precis is drawn up beforehand, the presentation is oral and is attended by senior government officials headed by the Prime Minister. The DMI uses the weekly summaries to a great extent in preparing his material. At the end of his formal remarks, the DMI opens the floor to questions. The minutes of the meeting are then put into finished form and circulated to key government officers on a need-to-know basis.
The DMI's major aid in doing his job is a progress report drawn up every three months by each of his department directors. He also reads raw intelligence reports from time to time for the purpose of getting the actual flavor of information presented to him in the special item reports or to evaluate the usefulness or nature of agent operations.
Although the DMI has an elaborate computer capability to assist in collating information, there is a need for more effective automatic data-processing equipment for the storage and retrieval of information.
The DMI assigns intelligence officers to the three Area Commands, where they are attached to the various intelligence staffs down to brigade level. Territorial commanders direct the collection of intelligence in their geographical areas and for some distance across the border. The Northern Command is responsible for operations against Lebanon and Syria while the Central Command controls operations against Jordan, Egypt and perhaps Saudi Arabia. Information is collected through border observation, reconnaissance patrols and cross-border operations.
Air Force and Navy Intelligence are small, highly specialized units concentrating on items of immediate concern to only the Air Force and Navy commands. The Directors of Air Force and Navy Intelligence attend the staff meetings of the DMI. Officers from each of these services are detailed to attend the regular meetings of the Research Department in order to coordinate reporting responsibility. Officers from both services are also permanently assigned to the Collection Department to coordinate requirements which are of particular concern to them.
2a. Air Force Intelligence
Israeli Air Force Intelligence is a relatively small but efficient organization. Its main functions are to conduct intelligence operations necessary to support air activities and to coordinate with the DMI regarding its collection efforts. Air Force intelligence is concerned almost exclusively with Arab air order of battle and the collection of Arab serial target data. This information is largely collected by aerial reconnaissance and SIGINT, with supplementary information provided by agent reports and prisoner interrogations in hot war situations. The IDF relies heavily on photoreconnaissance for order of battle information. The Air Force has two photointerpretation facilities, but probably does not have more than 20 imagery interpreters. In 1970, all Air Force Intelligence facilities were permanent, although the Israelis planned to acquire several mobile facilities. While Air Force Intelligence does not produce estimates, it does prepare intelligence studies on air order of battle, threats and capabilies. The Air Force administers its own attaches abroad.
Air force procedures for handling imagery intelligence are highly centralized yet flexible. Israeli photoreconnaissance capabilities, however, are limited. Photgraphic coverage is not possible below 7,000 feet, and camera systems are not capable of revealing, for example, whether SAM (surface to air missile) sites are occupied. Additionally, Air Force photolaboratory quality control is almost nonexistent. Air Force Intelligence, despite its high standards, did not have enough imagery interpreters at the time of the Yom Kippur War and the overall skill level of those few was rather low.
2b. Naval Intelligence
Naval Intelligence is a small, centralized service of approximately 110 people operating in support of Navy units. Most of the personnel are located in the Navy headquarters building in Tel Aviv. The service deals mostly with naval order of battle, foreign capabilities and seaborne threats. Naval Intelligence operates as a semiautonomous unit of Military Intelligence and is not obliged to provide personnel at the national intelligence level. Naval Intelligence personnel are not subordinate to the DMI except to give consultative assistance in naval matters. In the table of organization, the Director of Naval Intelligence falls under the Officer Commanding the Navy for operational and reporting matters and supports the top navy commands. The service is patterned after the Military Intelligence structure but is geared for the requirements and scope of navy functions and missions. The organization has a deputy director and Collection, Targeting, Production (Research) and Security Departments. It assigns officers to the naval bases at Haifa, Ashdod, Elat, Sharm el Shaykh and a commando unit based in southern Sinai. There is also a Protocol Department, which deals with foreign naval attaches in Israel, and a small organization and administration department (Figure 8).
The Collection Department, with about 17 personnel, is one of the smaller components in the Naval Intelligence structure. It has few integral operational resources and support for most of its collection efforts must come from or be coordinated through the DMI. Exceptions to this arrangement are Collection Department control of Israeli naval attache activities abroad, small boat coastal operations, COMINT, ELINT and aerial reconnaissance in cooperation with Air Force Intelligence, and a merchant marine program. The post-World War II Israeli endeavor in clandestine arms procurement and illegal immigration developed important commercial and shipping contacts, some of which may still be handled by or at least coordinated with Naval Intelligence.
The Targeting Department, with about 20 personnel, is divided into two divisions: Syria/Lebanon and Egypt/North Africa. These divisions are responsible for (1) preparing coastal studies for naval gunfire missions; (2) preparing beach studies for amphibious assualts; (3) preparing special target studies to support commando operations; and (4) preparing and maintaining target folder [sic] on Lebanese, Syrian and Egyptian ports. The Department has access to all sources of information available to the DMI. In addition to levying requirements for collection on the Military Intelligence Collection Department, the Director of Naval Intelligence is on regular distribution for information obtained by the DMI related to naval affairs.
The Production Department, with a staff of about 40, is the largest component of Naval Intelligence. This unit is divided into two divisions: (1) Arab Navies; and (2) the Soviet Navy. The Production Department handles research, analysis, production and dissemination of information on all mobile forces associated with Arab navies and the Soviet Navy in the Mediterranean. This component is the primary user of all source material which flows into the Naval headquarters, especially SIGINT information. The work of this department is mainly in support of units operating out of the four naval bases and the commando unit in southern Sinai. Production is limited largely to studies on enemy order of battle and special weapons. Those studies and others, including target folders, identification manuals and enemy tactics outlines, are disseminated to operational commanders and crews through the base intelligence officers. The base intelligence officer disseminates such information by briefing crews or updating a ship's intelligence library through additions, updates and changes.
The Security Department, which has a staff of about 12, performs a limited counterintelligence function within Navy headquarters at all naval bases. Security Department personnel are navy officers and enlisted men who have been specially trained by the Field Security Department of Military Intelligence. They perform basic countersubversion and countersabotage tasks at headquarters and at subordinate bases. They do not, however, carry out base security or personnel investigations, which are done by Military Intelligence Field Security units.
The Organization and Administration Department with about six personnel assigned, provides seccretarial support for the Director of Naval Intelligence. These personnel handle routine administrative duties.
Naval Intelligence, although small, is a well-trained and evidently highly efficient service. Recruiting of personnel into Naval Intelligence is done by means of a very efficient, informal system which identifies individuals and matches them to the needs of the Director of Naval Intelligence. (The system is apparently in force throughout Israeli military intelligence organizations.) Naval Intelligence officer personnel are recruited through several different channels. Most younger junior officers enter directly from the universities while others transfer within the navy from naval operations units to the intelligence service. A third souce is enlisted personnel who have displayed the necessary qualities and have indicated an interest in following a career in naval intelligence. Once identified, such people are sent to a university at Navy expense. Upon completion of their training they are commissioned and pursue careers in Naval Intelligence. Israeli Navy enlisted personnel, both male and female, are mostly volunteers who have been screened by the Director of Naval Intelligence. The Naval Intelligence women serve 20 months, while the men serve 36 months.
There are no special naval intelligence schools in Israel, and naval intelligence officers and key enlisted personnel are trained at the Military Intelligence School. In general women receive only on-the-job training; however, if a woman shows an interest in a naval intelligence career, she will be enrolled in the enlisted course of the Military Intelligence School. Naval Intelligence enlisted men attend an abbreviated course, enrollment in an expanded course depending on motivation and intended utilization. There appears to be very little problem with the retention of naval intelligence personnel. The primary constraint on the Director of Naval Intelligence is the total number (officer and enlisted) of slots assigned. The centralized system combined with primary area of intelligence interest lends itself very well to the Naval Intelligence personnel structure. The close knit intelligence support system also works well considering the lack of integral collection assets.
Intelligence, prior to and during the Yom Kippur War, was received in the Operations Center at Naval headquarters. During the war, the director of Naval Intelligence worked very closely with the Officer Commanding the Navy in the Center during ongoing operations. Information from SIGINT and other sources was received in the Center as raw data. Correlation of all information was then done on the spot by the Chief of Naval Intelligence and passed on to the Officer Commanding the Navy. The information was disseminated in the form of orders or reports to operational commanders and units. Processing and dissemination of naval intelligence was accomplished in a highly professional manner with no major deficiencies or Arab naval surprises in the Yom Kippur War. Naval Intelligence also revealed a built-in flexibility when the service shifted quickly to a hot war situation and handled support for active naval opeartations including shore bombardment missions. One major area where Naval Intelligence has problems is the limited number of personnel. In case of continuous operations, similar to the Yom Kippur War, quality naval intelligence work would probably degenerate after a month of steady operations.
3. Administrative practices of the Directorate of Military Intelligence
There are approximately 450 officers plus a larger number of NCOs, enlisted personnel and civilian clerical peronnel in the DMI. The service has priority in the selection of qualified military personnel for intelligence assignments. Military Intelligence prefers to bring individuals into intelligence work while they are young and move them upwards as they acquire experience and can assume greater responsiblity. Recruiters seek promising young people who are studying foreign languages or other subjects of interest to the service in secondary school. Prior to graduation, Military Intelligence officers contact selected young students — males and females — and offer them positions as interpreters during the two years of compulsory military service which follows at the completion of secondary education. Those who accept are assigned to Military Intelligence when they join the IDF. Promising young army personnel are then sent to the Military Intelligence School, following which they may be commissioned and assigned as assistants to intelligence officers in the field. When they attain the rank of captain, having served as intelligence officers, some are assigned to an area command headquarters or to the Directorate of Military Intelligence to expand their experience and qualify them for more responsiblity and eventual promotion to higher rank. Thus, many of the officers now serving with Military Intelligence entered as young men and moved up through the ranks.
Most Military Intelligence personnel are regulars, not reservists because the IDF requires career intelligence officers. All personnel, including conscripts, join Military Intelligence voluntarily. Female enlisted members, who often serve as translators, usually serve only 20 months whereas male enlisted personnel serve 36 months.
Military Intelligence training is professional and extensive. Officers and analysts are well-trained and competent in their fields. The Military Intelligence School is located north of Tel Aviv on the road to Sde Dov airport. This school trains both officers and noncommissioned officers. Approximately 150 instructors and 90 support personnel train between 2,000 and 3,000 students annually. The school's usual course runs from September through February. This arrangement has been made to take advantage of new groups of high school graduates. This center is a relatively new facility which was established in the late 1960s. It was formerly part of the IDF Infantry School.
The commander of the Military Intelligence School is responsible to the DMI for intelligence instruction and to the Intelligence Corps for training in general. Course content is the responsiblity of the DMI. The training staff supervises training aids and instruction methods. A Combat Intelligence Branch provides instruction for operational personnel and a General Subjects Branch trains specialists. The General Subjects Branch, for example, teaches courses in field security, censorship, military drafting, photo interpretation, research for order of battle analysis, collection and serial observation. Other special courses are taught as needed. Field Security counterintelligence personnel, Air Force and Navy students also take courses at the Military Intelligence School and Military Intelligence instructors are responsible to the DMI for intelligence training at the schools of other IDF branches. They are charged by the DMI for quality of intelligence teaching. These instructors usually have wartime assignments with tactical units. Military Intelligence personnel staff intelligence positions down through brigade level; line officers with intelligence training at the Infantry school staff the lower echelons.
Field Security personnel are selected on the basis of strict criteria regarding personal security and loyalty to Zionism and the Israeli State. They are trained by Shin Beth.
In general, Military Intelligence, although it has a good training program and tries to offer career inducements, has difficulty in retaining competent personnel because of low wages and slim opportunities for advancement.
4. Methods of operation
Military Intelligence is responsible for cross-border operations into the neighboring Arab states. Its operations rely heavily on the exploitation of Arabs within Israeli and the Administered Territories; Arab students, who though residents of Israel, attend universities in the Arab nations; Arab travelers and visitors, Arabs in Israeli prisons; and Arab military deserters, defectors, Bedouins and smugglers.
Military Intelligence collection requirements cover political and economic subjects as well as military information and uses the information acquired both for policy making purposes and as basic intelligence. Military Intelligence is also active in collecting information from sources outside Israeli terrorist and subversive organizations and activities. Although SIGINT sources acquire some information on these subjects, Military Intelligence officers believe that only agent sources can really obtain the data needed on various terrorist groups policies and plans, methods of operation, equipment, training and relations with other groups. Primary Israeli interest in terrorism is to obtain early warning of impending operations.
In each regional area of Israel, local citizens, in some cases Arabs, who are Israeli agents, act as spotters for Military Intelligence. Most of these spotters have long worked for Military Intelligence, which alerts them to the type of sources desired. Once a spotter has reported a potential source, he steps aside and leaves the rest to Military Intelligence officers. Military Intelligence contacts the potential source, assesses him and, if appropriate, attempts to recruit him as an agent. This is described as the "direct method" of recruiting agents for Military Intelligence. The "indirect method" refers to recruiting sources by or through agents outside Israel. Both Field Security and the police investigate the backgrounds of potential agents for Military Intelligence.
The motives of the spotters and local support people are either monetary or a desire for services in the form of aid in reuniting families or representation on behalf of the spotter in some problem with the Israeli Government. The basic agent motivation is generally economic gain in the form of salaries, loans (which are seldom repaid), and gifts. Another common incentive is a wish to move to Israel and rejoin relatives who reside there. In some cases the agent may be a Palestinian refugee, who believes that he still has a claim to property in Israel and wants either recompense or a guarantee of the eventual return of his property. Other agents are members of Arab minority groups or opponents of Arab regimes.
Military Intelligence officers do have problems in handling Arab agents, who tend to exaggerate and often fail to report accurate details. Therefore, the Military Intelligence officers encourage their Arab agents to provide photographs, maps, and other corroborating documents. Military Intelligence officers also cross-check reports often by using other agents in the same region. Despite Israeli warnings during training, Arab agents tend to tell other members of their family about their association with Military Intelligence. Occasionally an Arab agent may recruit all the members of his immediate family as subagents and try to get his case officer to pay them salaries. The Israelis refer to these family subagents as "nonfunctionalist." These subagents sometimes compromise a whole operation as a result of boasting about their activities. Occasionally the Military Intelligence case officer will order these unwanted"nonfunctionals" across the border into Israel for security briefings but Military Intelligence has not solved this problem completely.
Military Intelligence trains its agents in tradecraft, collection methods, security and reporting procedures. Military Intelligence runs its agents in networks or as singletons; the latter are referred to as "lone wolves." For security reasons, Military Intelligence prefers that an agent with good access remain a "lone wolf." Agent networks consist of a primary source and subsources. Military Intelligence does not refer to sources as such, instead calling both primary and subsource "agents." Military Intelligence officers try to meet and train each agent personally on the Israeli side of the border. Networks usually include a radio operator and in some cases, a courier.
Military Intelligence also communicates with its agents by S/W letters posted in third countries, by agent radio and by deaddrops. Military Intelligence operations have been marked by flexibility, economy in the use of assets and by responsiveness to requirements; the system worked well prior to the Yom Kippur War in October 1973. Agents reported early warning information which, in retrospect, contained reliable indications of a coming Arab attack. Direct communication with agents, however, virtually ceased during hostilities and what little agent reporting there was during the war was of limited value to Israeli Military headquarters and field commanders. The principal problem faced by Military Intelligence in the acquistition and reporting of intelligence by agents is the lack of modern equipment. Although many of the agents have radios (mainly receivers) and cameras, and are familiar with secret writing, the sophistication level of techniques and equipment is low. This adversely affects the quality, security and timeliness of collection operations. Military Intelligence employs a SIGINT system that is modern, sophisticated and effective.
The DMI is responsible for providing technical support to other directorates, but the technical services of the various military intelligence directorates are inferior to the technical groups of Shin Beth. The DMI's technical equipment, such as that used in audio surveillance or that employed in work agent support is generally high although it is less good in some special fields such as miniaturization. In the use and application of infrared devices, however, the DMI capability is usually good. Military Intelligence personnel are capable of making ad hoc modifications of existing equipment and are up to date on technical advances concerning remote control and activation of transmitters, and in the field of low-light photography. Military Intelligence relies heavily on aerial reconnaissance and SIGINT for timely order of battle information. Aerial reconnaissance is apparently a primary instrument for locating fedayeen groups, although such organizations are well penetrated by field agents.
Military Intelligence is capable of providing timely and detailed information on Israel's primary neighboring enemies through agent operations that are well planned and highly imaginative.
The main purpose of Military Intelligence Field Security units is to control the local Arab population in the Administered Territories and to minimize their participation in terrorism. In this endeavor, Field Security of the Administered Territories works closely with Shin Beth and the Border Guard. Residents are required to carry ID cards, curfews have been imposed, suspected resistors have been detained, and the houses in the area of persons presumed to know of terrorist activities have been demolished, even though the inhabitants were not directly involved. In the early 1970s it was estimated that the Israelis had some 900 residents of the Administered Territories under administrative detention. Personnel of Field Security units have carried out sweeps in searches for terrorists and arms caches through areas in the West Bank where terrorism has occurred. On some occasions Israeli operations have taken place at night, apparently intended at least in part to intimidate the populace.
In December, 1969 the Defense Minister announced that 516 buildings had been demolished in the occupied territories since the 1967 war — 265 in the West Bank, 227 in Gaza and 24 in Jerusalem. While these Israeli policies and actions have intimidated many Arabs who might otherwise have engaged in resistance activities or in terrorism, in many cases they have been counterproductive in that they have aroused deep and widespread resentment among the residents of the Occupied Territories. In areas where buildings have been destroyed, an atmosphere of personal anger and resentment has been added to the natural bitterness of a defeated people, particularly among the younger Arabs.
5. Relations with other services
There appears at the present time to be a very harmonious relationship between Military Intelligence and the other Israeli intelligence and security services. Most Israeli intelligence and security personnel, especially on the policy and coordination level, realize that their very national existence depends on an effective and smoothly functioning intelligence and security community. In addition, officers at the department chief and even more so at the division chief level all have known each other personally for a long period of time. These relationships have been forged during troubled times seldom experienced by any other nation and now provide a framework for cooperative teamwork and coordination among the services.
Liaison between Israeli Military Intelligence and foreign organizations have varied over the years from good to poor, depending on the exigencies of the situation and the demands of policy. In recent years the Israelis have provided military and security aid and training to various African nations, including Ethiopia, Uganda and Zaire. They have also engaged in military and security training and equipment exchanges with Latin American and Asian services.
The Israelis have maintained good relations with Turkey and Iran in military and security matters. While the Israelis do not have full diplomatic relations with Iran; they have an overt official mission whose members have diplomatic titles, including that of military attache.
E. Research and political planning Center
The Research and Political Planning Center, formerly the Research Division in the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, prepares analysis based on raw intelligence for government policy makers. Its office is located in a separate fenced compound within the Ministry of Foreign Affairs complex in Jerusalem. A guard at the compound gate prevents unauthorized entrance into the Center, and photo ID cards are required for admittance.
The Center presently employs fewer than 100 people, both analysts and support staff, who were recruited from the Minstry of Foreign Affairs and Israeli universities. The Center has six divisions: North Africa; the Fertile Crescent; the Arabian Peninsula; other Geographic Regions; Economic; and Strategic. Some 70 percent of the Center's personnel are employed in the three Arab units. The Center prepares its analyses on the basis of raw intelligence data available to the Israeli intelligence community. The Center produces short papers on current intelligence and longer analytical memoranda, as required. The Center's products are disseminated to all ministries of the government.
The Foreign Minister uses the Center as his personal braintrust to give hm an independent means of judging the products of Military Intelligence and Mossad. Although its analyses are sent to Israel's top decisionmakers, the Center's role in the Israeli intelligence and security community probably is still a modest one. The Center reportedly has few problems arising from competition within the community, probably because of a lack of status in comparison with the established and larger intelligence and security organizations.
F. The National Police
The Israeli Police Force is a national organization headed by an Inspector General responsible to the Minister of the Interior. The national headquarters moved in mid-1969 from Tel Aviv-Yafo to Jerusalem. The force is comprised of the following departments: (1) Administration, which is responsible for transport, supplies, communications, property and finances; (2) Investigations, which is concerned with criminal and fraud investigations and special tasks in support of the intelligence and security community; and (3) Operations, which is in charge of training, patrols and traffic. There are also personnel, reasearch, planning and development offices. The Prison Services and the Civil Guard are also part of the Police (Figure 9).
The force is divided territorially into districts, subdistricts, zones, police stations, and posts. The three police districts are: Northern, including Haifa, Tel Aviv, and Southern, including Jerusalem. Attached to the Haifa subdistrict is a small coast guard or marine police force, which is based in the port of Haifa and patrols the whole coastline to prevent smuggling, infiltration, and illegal fishing. This unit also has patrol craft on Lake Tiberias and at Elat on the Gulf of Aqaba. The Southern District includes a special unit at Ben Gurion (Lod) airport (Figures 10 and 11).
A special component of the national police force is the Border Guard, whose missions are to guard the ceasefire lines against Arab infiltration and detecting and running down terrorists. It works closely with the Army and patrols the Administered Territories and the border area. The Border Guard also trains settlers in defense measures against infiltrators, and schedules guard duty in border villages. Military conscripts who elect to fulfill their term of service by joining the Border guard are the principal sources of new recruits for this component. The Border Guard, which number about 6,000, is integrated into the Army in time of war.
The effective strength of the police force (not including the Border Guard) reached about 12,000 at the end of 1969. Roughly 1,100 of the police, including 768 Arabs, were employed in the Administered Territories in 1969. Over half of the police force are Jews of Oriental background and, in fact, the police force is a branch of government to which the assignment of Oriental Jews has been particularly encouraged.
The police force is capable of maintaining public order and safety under normal circumstances. It has, however, been troubled by a manpower shortage caused by resignations resulting from low pay, overwork and the attraction of higher paying jobs elsewhere. Despite the persistent shortage of manpower, police discipline is generally satisfactory and, in the case of the Border Guard, excellent. The public attitude toward the police has improved since the early days of statehood, despite scandals involving smuggling and the acceptance of bribes. The police force has worked hard to overcome the traditional Jewish fear of police authority stemming from the historic oppression of Jews. The Israeli Police Force in effect acts as a very important auxiliary to Shin Beth in the preservation of internal security throughout the country. The police support Shin Beth in investigations, by providing cover and making arrests.
G. Key Officials
Achi-Tuv became Director of Shin Beth in the summer of 1974. He is a career security officer. His reputation was established as chief of Shin Beth's Arab Affairs Department, where he was responsible for conducting operations in the Administered Territories and within the Arab community in Israel. He served briefly as Deputy Director of Shin Beth prior to his appointment as Director. Achi-Tuv is of German background. He is married and has a daughter. He earned a law degree at the University of Tel Aviv in the early 1970s while serving in Shin Beth. He is extremely bright, hard-working, ambitious and thorough. He is also known to be headstrong, abrasive and arrogant.
Major General (Ret.) Yitzak Hoffi became Director of Mossad on 1 September 1974. He was born in Tel Aviv on 25 January 1927. He joined the Haganah in 1944 and commanded a company in the Arab-Israeli War in 1948. He continued to serve in the Israeli Defense Forces in a variety of command, staff and training posts, including the command of the Paratroop Brigade. Hoffi was Acting Chief of Staff for a brief period in April 1974, but retired from the IDF at that time, apparently because he was not appointed Chief of Staff. Hoffi attended the US Army Command and General Staff College in the mid-1960s. He has also visited the US on many occasions. In 1968 he inspected police units and participated in army exercises in Uganda. He traveled as a tourist to Hawaii, Japan, Hong Kong, Bangkok and Tehran in 1970 and went to Singapore on undisclosed business. He inspected Israeli advisory efforts in Ethiopia in 1972 and also went to other parts of Africa. Although not an intelligence officer by background or training, Hoffi apparently demonstrated his flair for intelligence analysis as Commander of the Northern Command in the days preceding the Yom Kippur War in October 1973 by sensing the impending Syrian attack and requesting the Defense Minister to reinforce the Golan Heights with an armored brigade. Hoffi reportedly has expanded Mossad's role in the collection of intelligence on Arab capabilities and the interpretation of such information.
Hoffi is reserved and quiet but can be warm and genial among friends. He is married and has two daughters. He speaks English. Neither as flashy nor as imaginative as some of his predecessors in Mossad, he is reported to be meticulous and somewhat dour.
General Yehoshua Sagi, born 27 September 1933, Jerusalem, Palestine (Israel), entered the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) in 1951 and was commissioned in 1953. >From 1953 to 1964 he served in the Southern Command, fulfilling field duties. During the Sinai Campaign he served as an intelligence officer with the 7th Brigade and later as an assistant intelligence officer, Southern Command. In 1965 he graduated from the IDF Command and Staff College. Following his graduation he served as commander of an Intelligence Officer Training Course, and as an intelligence officer with the Southern Command before returning in 1971 as an instructor with the Command and Staff College. In 1972 he became commander of the Intelligence School but left in 1973 to become intelligence officer with the Armored Division, Southern Command. On 19 May 1974 Sagi was appointed Deputy Director, Military Intelligence, Production and Estimates. On 2 February 1979 he assumed the Directorship of Military Intelligence. Sagi is soft-spoken, direct and has a no-nonsense outlook. He considers himself an Arab expert. He is married and has three daughters. He speaks English.
H. Comments on Principal Sources
1. Source Materials
Most of the information in this publication has been derived from a variety of sources including covert assets of the Central Intelligence Agency, publications of the Israeli Government and reports prepared by the United States Department of Defense. Research was basically completed in December 1976.
2. Supplementary Overt Publications
- Aldouby, Zwy and Ballinger, Jerold. The Shattered Silence; the Eli Cohen Affair. New York: Coward, McCann and Geoghegan, 1971.
- Arendt, Hannah. Eichmann in Jerusalem. New York: Viking Press, 1963.
- Bar-Zohar, Michel. The Avengers. London: Arthur Barker, 1968.
- Bar-Zohar, Michel. Spies in the Promised Land; Iser Harel and the Israeli Secret Service. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1972.
- Ben-Hanan, Elli. Our Man in Damascus. New York: Crown Publishers, 1969.
- Ben-Porat, Y. (Dan, Uri). Secret War. New York: Sabra Books, 1970.
- Ben-Porat, Y. (Dan, Uri). Spy from Israel. New York: Tower Publications, 1969.
- El-Ad, Avri and Creech III, James. Decline of Honor. Chicago: Henry Regnery, 1976.
- Eytan, Steve. Repeated Triumphs Scored by Israeli Spy System. Washington: Joint Publications Research Service.
- Harel, Isser. The House on Garibaldi Street; the Capture of Adolph Eichmann. London: A Deutsch, 1975.
- Israel Government Year Book 5735-6 (1975-1976). Jerusalem, 1975.
- Lotz, Johann Wolfgang. The Champagne Spy. New York: Manor Books, 1973.
- Pearlman, Moshe. The Capture of Adolf Eichmann. London: Weidenfeld and Nicolson, 1961.
- Pickalkiewicz, Janusz. Israel's Langer Arm. Frankfurt (Main): Goverts, 1975.
- Rabin, Jacob. Elie Cohen, L'espion de Damas. Paris: Flammarion, 1967.
- Shlaim, Avi. Failures in National Intelligence Estimates: The Case of the Yom Kippur War. Princeton: World Politics, April 1976.
- Tadmar, Joshua. The Silent Warriors. Edited and translated by Raphael Rothstein. Toronto: MacMillan, 1969.
- Tinnin, David B. and Christensen, Dag. The Hit Team. Boston: Little Brown, 1976.
- Who's Who in Israel, 1976. Tel Aviv: Bronfman and Cohen, 1976.
A number of Israeli officials have reacted sharply to the Washington Post and Boston Globe articles on this document. A government spokesperson called the reports on Israeli operations against the United States "ridiculous, not worthy of comment." Intelligence sources quoted in Israeli papers said the CIA document was a Soviet disinformation effort. The Jerusalem Post, quoting unnamed Israeli and American sources, stated that the U.S. had conducted operations against Israel similar to those the document says Israel conducted against the U.S.
The most reliable response to the Post and Globe articles came from former Mossad chief Isser Harel, who in a Ma'ariv interview called the assertions of the document "malicious," "dilletantish," "distortions ... but probably authentic." "The report is one-sided and malicious, it ignores Israel's special position in its struggle for survival," Harel said. He also complained about the CIA document's style, calling it anti-Semitic. He told Ma'ariv it was "shockingly irresponsible" for the CIA to keep a document like this "rolling around" in the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. Altogether, Harel concluded, publication of the document had been a "nightmare" for him.
This is a reprint of an article originally published
in the magazine CounterSpy in their May-June 1982 issue.
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See also David Ignatius's article, published May 5, 1991, in The Washington Post:
Bungles, Bobbles and Spies; The Tehran Papers: Portrait of the CIA in a Maze of Its Own Design
A PDF file, 104 KBIn the shelves of a few libraries around the country — and undoubtedly also in the archives of the KGB — is a remarkable collection of books entitled "Documents from the U.S. Espionage Den." These flimsy paperback volumes, now 68 in all, contain the raw CIA and State Department cables seized by Iranian militants when they overran the U.S. Embassy in Tehran in 1979. The most sensitive CIA cables had been shredded into confetti by the embassy staff, only to be reconstructed, strip by strip, by the industrious Iranians.
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