Jewish Terrorist, Charged With Multiple Palestinian Murders, ‘Outs’ Chief of Shin Bet’s Jewish Terror Department
The Israeli police have arrested an alleged key Jewish settler terrorist, Chaim Pearlman, charging him with involvement in multiple murders and woundings of Palestinians going back as far as 12 years. As part of Pearlman’s counter-campaign to impugn the Shin Bet, he released transcripts of 20 hours of conversations with an agent of the Shin Bet’s Jewish terror section. He and his supporters have also outed the chief of the unit in a post at the pro-settler site, HaYamin, claiming he is Avigdor (Avi) Arieli and lives in the settlement of Kfar Adumim.
Haaretz reported in May, 2010 that two women and their 11 children from the far-right Kahanist settlement of Yizhar, were detained when they demonstrated outside the agent’s home in the settlement. I simply find it unbelievable that people would place their own children in such a situation and exploit them in such a way.
HaYamin also posted the image below of another Shin Bet agent whose nickname was Dada, and who Pearlman claims attempted to entrap him as reported in this Haaretz article.
An Israeli source reports that an Avigdor Arieli works in the prime minister’s office (of which the Shin Bet is a part) and joined a delegation of security officials who attended a 2007 NATO meeting. While I don’t profess to be an expert on how the Shin Bet and Mossad parse their relationship, I find it odd that a senior Shin Bet agent would attend a NATO conference. That would seem to be the bailiwick of the Mossad. But perhaps things are looser in Israel than in the U.S. intelligence community, where I think it would be doubtful an FBI agent would attend such a conference unless it directly related to a U.S. domestic security issue.
Pearlman’s transcripts are riveting and reveal Dada to be a overbearing, almost transparent provocateur, which is confirmed by the fact that Pearlman transcribed so many of their conversations likely suspecting his interlocutor was an agent. Among the main thread that the Israeli media has focussed on is Dada’s solicitation to assassinate Sheikh Ra’ad Salah, one of the leading Israeli Palestinian Islamists:
In the recordings released Thursday, the alleged agent can be heard saying that only an “extreme move” could change public opinion, citing the assassination of Sheik Ra’ad Salah as one such extreme move.
“I could do it,” the agent can be heard saying, referring to the proposed killing of the Islamic Movement leader, saying that Salah’s security would prevent him from succeeding, adding that if he were Pearlman he would commit the assassination.
“It’s not about hitting him [Salah] and getting in trouble. It’s about coming over, hitting him, and see you later, like that guy in Bar Noar” the alleged Shin Bet agent can be heard saying, referring to the killing of a counselor and a teenager at a Tel Aviv gay center last year.
The agent continues to explain how he would carry out Salah’s assassination, saying Pearlman would have to “use another person for that”…
“You don’t really want to do it,” Pearlman can be heard as saying, with the alleged Shin Bet agent replying: “Says who? Says you? What are you relying on? Can you check me? Come check me, I’m ready.”
When Pearlman asked if the alleged Shin Bet agent understood the ramifications of such an act, and if he would be willing to take responsibility for it, the agent said: “sure, why not.”
“How long will the noise continue? Will it lead to war? Won’t there be war without it happening?” the agent can be heard asking, adding that “war has casualties.”
“Listen I don’t have a problem [inaudible] someone who takes a life once and gets that feeling…. I would never do it to a Jew. It would be hard,” the alleged Shin Bet agent said, adding, “but I wouldn’t have a problem with one of those.”
After again discussing the risks such an action would entail, Pearlman can be heard asking if the alleged agent even knew where Salah lived, with the agent answering: “somewhere in the North, in one of the villages in the North.
“Look, it shouldn’t be much of a problem. The car passes. You shoot a burst. Chances are the driver will get killed,” the agent added, saying that Pearlman would have to either “finish him with one burst, or a few split ones.”
The alleged agent continues his description of the potential assassination, saying that it would not be the kind of operation where one would “come in close.”
“You need to be as far away as you can in this kind of situation. Or put a bomb in the car. That’s the classic one. Nothing’s left, everything goes everywhere,” the agent added, saying Salah would then “go to all hell.”
Clearly, Pearlman is accusing the Shin Bet of entrapment. He goes so far as to claim that he was a Shin Bet agent, which the agency confirms, though it claims this was for a short period in 2002. Pearlman will of course attempt to claim that any acts for which he is charged were carried out with the connivance of the intelligence agency.
There will be those on the left who will take Shin Bet literally and believe it wanted Pearlman to assassinate Salah. Though I do not necessarily believe this, I’m nevertheless concerned by having an agent plant ideas in a violent terrorist’s mind upon which he might act. It would be in the nature of the Shin Bet to believe they could stop him before he acted. But what’s to stop a nutcase like Pearlman from escaping their surveillance and carrying out the murder? They’re essentially activating a Golem and expecting they can control him. But remember the fate of the actual Golem, who ran amok and had to be killed by his creator, Rabbi Judah Loew of Prague. It’s the height of hubris for the Shin Bet to plant the seeds of murder in Pearlman’s mind.
In fact, the Shin Bet did something very similar in 1994, supplying rifles to two Israeli brothers knowing they planned to use them to murder a Palestinian. They came very close to succeeding thanks to the weapons supplied to them. And the victim recently received a paltry settlement from the State for his trouble. In fact, I believe the Shin Bet cared as little about the fate of the victim in this case as it does about Sheikh Salah. What would it matter to them if Pearlman had taken up the gun and actually succeeded in killing him? It would only matter in the sense of a possible embarrassment about being implicated in the incident.
I also wonder how the Shin Bet would deal with a potential Palestinian terrorist and whether they would go so far as to suggest targets and offer arms to carry out attacks. I don’t know the answer, but I would imagine they would treat a Palestinian differently out of deference to their Jewish targets.
Returning to Pearlman, his attorney is Adi Keidar, who works for the far-right terror legal defense organization, Honenu. They also represent Yigal Amir and lobby intensively for the legal pardon of convicted settler murderers.
As part of its coverage of this story, Haaretz published an eye-opening story explaining why the Shin Bet fails so miserably in tracking, preventing, and prosecuting Jewish terror:
When compared to the terrorist attacks carried out by Palestinians…the percentage of Jewish terrorist cases that have been solved is far from being impressive. The rate at which cases are solved is also different. More often than not years pass before any arrest is made.
…To a great extent it boils down to resources. The main role of the Shin Bet security service is to foil terrorism aimed against Israelis
Chief among the reasons I would note is a failure of will. The Shin Bet’s views are so close to those of the settlers that they may not even want to stop them. And even if they do, they show an amazing unwillingness to prosecute them fully. Finally, those who are convicted and sent to jail almost invariably receive presidential pardons: an expectation Palestinian terrorists somehow never realize.
It’s also interesting to note that Judge Leah Lev-On, hearing Pearlman’s case, was asked by the Shin Bet to place a gag order on the proceedings. Astonishingly, she agreed but limited it–allowing publication of Pearlman’s name. This threw the security agency into turmoil. In fact, once she allowed publication of the accused’s name the Shin Bet was forced to seek removal of the entire gag in order to reply to Pearlman’s accusations against it. Israeli judges almost never reject such applications. They certainly never do in the cases of Israeli Palestinians accused of security threats. They also did not in the case of Anat Kamm. Either there was something in this particular judge that made her unwilling to be an accomplice to the Shin Bet; or perhaps she felt a certain affinity for Jewish suspects which few Israeli judges would feel for Arab suspects. Whatever her reasoning, she shocked the secret police out of their pants. They almost never lose on these motions and they likely did not expect to have to defend themselves and explain their behavior in such a public setting and so quickly after the accused terrorist’s arrest.
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14 thoughts on “Jewish Terrorist, Charged With Multiple Palestinian Murders, ‘Outs’ Chief of Shin Bet’s Jewish Terror Department – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم”
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As the government of Israel is a coalition and Mossad and the Shin Bet are “responsible” through different ministries, there’s no intrinsic guarantee that they won’t work at cross-purposes at the behest of one minister or another.
It’s also probably a bit like the FSB and the SVR; the SVR is responsible for gathering technical and even political intelligence in the West, the FSB is apparently charged with the solemn duty of killing the Kremlin leadership’s political enemies by the most gruesome of methods in the West.
The division between the two is much less clear than that between the FBI and the CIA, and is based more on the type of operation than on geographical area.
Concepts of propriety sacred in America, mean little in Tel Aviv and Moscow, and probably a lot less than that in Paris.
(The DGSCE response to a shipload of civilian protestors doing something they didn’t like, was a limpet mine as I recall.)
I detect a contradiction here…on the one hand you say that the “SHABAK may not want to stop Jewish terrorists” since you think their views are “close to those of the Jewish terrorists”, but on the other hand, you correctly mentioned the Kahalani brother’s case in which the SHABAK encouraged them to attack Arabs and even gave them the weapons. If you notice, that occurred in 1994. What is important about that date? That was the beginning of the Oslo Agreements which were not popular among the public, particularly among traditional supporters of the Labor Party and MERETZ. The head of the SHABAK was Carmi Gillon who was and is still identified with the “peace camp” in Israel (he wrote a Master’s Thesis on “Jewish terror” which consisted of numerous articles by Uri Avnery) and the government thought it would be useful for propaganda purposes for people to think there was a Jewish terror undergound. In other words, the action was intended as political sabotage against the anti-Oslo Right. These activities culminated in the actions of Avishai Raviv, a SHABAK provocateur who assaulted Arabs in Hevron where he was sent to carry out provocations, and against Leftist Jewish figures such as HADASH MK Tamar Guzansky. Ultimately, he became Yigal Amir’s closest companion, as is described in depth in the Shamgar Commission report on the Rabin assassination.
What fascinating fiction you concoct. Since Yossi Beilin & members of Labor were the ones who devised, negotiated & implemented Oslo you might want to check yr reality meter & recalibrate. What you mean to say is that Oslo was unpopular among your far right pro settler crowd.
Ah, that’s so convenient–only a Labor gov’t would be so cynical as to arm two settler crazies & allow them to fire an M 16 at the head of a Palestinian at pt blank range. Because they wanted to provoke a major bloodbath & blame the far right. That’s makes so much sense. Thanks for enlightening us as to your fever dreams & wild conspiracy theories.
And the Shin Bet also colluded in the assassination of Rabin. Nice. Keep up the good work informing the world about the “truth” through your eyes.
While i am not a supporter of the popular conspiracy theory about Rabin’s assassination, I do agree that your perecption of Israel’s labor/meretz crowd is unrealistic, Richard. The differences, de facto, between labor politics and likkud are more a matter of style or cosmetics. Definitely, the attempt to frame the settlers is plausible, despite the fact that the settlements are the creation of Labor. By making false divisions you overlook the fact that every activity in Israel is state sponsored, and so its much more disturbing to realize that those “jewish terrorists” are in fact coerced state agents, who are created and forced into “plausible deniability” status.
nobody in Israel (and the elections are the proof) “buys” the meretz-labor facade anymore, among the lefties as well (or mostly). It was convenient to play “good cop/bad cop”
traditionally, the Shin Bet/Mossad/atomic energy committees were bastions of labor, in the management level. and the scenario proposed up here in the talkback is plausible.
I made the same comment re your over protectiveness of New Israel Fund, in light of the recent attack they endure. These people ARE part of the establishments they so called criticize. its a bit of a scam. Regardless of the true rifts in other issues bn the “old guards” and the new ones.( which are more on the issue of “how” and not so much on “what” to do, in terms of policies and wars).
Kadima is the ultimate proof that by and large the political parties are in cohutes, and remember who headed Kadima’s creation.
I think its important to listen to what people are telling you here, the violations of human rights in Israel run deep.
I am no apologist for liberal Israeli parties like Labor or Meretz. But the idea that Labor had a hand in fomenting settler killings seems far fetched to me.
why far fetched ?
its very practical to conduct a certain hardline policy (for instance in the territories) and blame it on “vigilantes” that were properly groomed, wittingly or not, to serve the role. La guerre comme la guerre (sp ?).
In fact the “settlements” as a concept are just that. Its labor “shtik” and some say a golem that now usurped the master.
that’s very much israel, the “instrumental” treatment of citizens for some uber complex strategy to outsmart the “world”, never mind the costs. its very convenient to inflame an artificial boogieman, and then off-set them with palestinian demands. I do not condone that. People have a right not to be cynically brainwashed in order to later condemn their extremism. definitly it turns out that some brainwashing sticks and outlives its original time limits. therefore, if there are agent provocatuers acting among disturbed youth, for instance, in the territories, its a grave matter that I don’t take lightly, even if I dislike the target crowd to begin with. people like teitel, the american born jewish terrorist of last year, appears to me,IMVHO, a case of chronic, long term, abuse by government, given his family background. or at least deserves a second look.
” That was the beginning of the Oslo Agreements which were not popular among the public, particularly among traditional supporters of the Labor Party and MERETZ. ”
That is completely untrue .
Who was it you think that filled the square the night of the peace rally when Rabin was shot in the back ?
We who were once Meretz have now become Hadash bar_kochba132 , for this you may thank the ” anti-Oslo Right ” .
Has nothing to do with SHABAK or Carmi Gillon our vote is due to the policies of your far right pro settler crowd.
You are driving us further Left with your lies and your politics of fear , your hatred of us and of anyone that does not support the dream of a Greater Israel .
Yigal Amir silenced one voice , those of us that were there that night refuse to be silenced , the Israeli ” peace camp ” is still very much alive and we do not think ” there was a Jewish terror undergound ” we KNOW that there is .
RE: “I simply find it unbelievable that people would place their own children in such a situation and exploit them in such a way.” – R.S.
MY COMMENT: Well then, you probably wouldn’t want to join the Westboro Baptist “Church”! (lol)
Westboro Baptist Church (JPEG Image) – http://coffeeforclosers.files.wordpress.com/2010/06/westboro_baptist_church_drones_church.jpg
It’s very interesting…
When the Shabak goes against a Leftist, you are very concerned, write one article after the next and defend the probable criminal.
When the Shabak goes against a Rightist, you defend the Shabak in certain points and attack the probable criminal. So far for your ‘fairness’ and ‘universal values’.
But another interesting point:
Pearlman is not allowed to see his family and even not his lawyer! I just try to imagine what articles you would have produced, if Anat Kamm or the Hisb’Allah freaks from Balad would have been forbidden from seeing their lawyer?!
So you think that my identifying a Shin Bet agent by name and by picture means I’m defending it? What planet are you living on? I am uniformly critical of the Shin Bet. But yes, I think people like Pearlman who have likely murdered Palestinians are extremely dangerous. I hadn’t noticed that Anat Kamm or Ameer Makhoul had killed anyone, yet they are treated as bad or worse than a likely killer like Pearlman.
Can you show me where you complained about Makhoul being tortured & treated precisely the same as Pearlman. Then I’ll sympathize. BTW, I don’t support torture against Jewish terrorist any more than I do against Palestinian suspects. But the Jewish terrorist are far better equipped to withstand their interrogations.
I haven’t commented very much lately, but I still check in to read your blog which I find fascinating.
I’m in a funk over the issue of Israeli occupation since Obama’s been grovelling before Netanyahu.
Where’s the justice when the world looks the other way while Israel continues down this road? I’m not sure what it will take to end the occupation and the mounting injustice.
BTW, I don’t support torture against Jewish terrorist any more than I do against Palestinian suspects. But the Jewish terrorist are far better equipped to withstand their interrogations.
Jewish terrorist – guilty till proven innocent
Palestinian suspects – innocent till proven guilty