Jordan’s police released an account of the killings of two Jordanians by an Israeli Shin Bet agent, who was deputy chief of security for the Israeli embassy in Amman. The official account contradicts in substantial ways the Israeli version, which has been the only account reported in the media for the past 36 hours. Given the outrageous abuse of truth and facts of Israeli officials and security personnel in past instances, it’s highly likely that the Jordanian account is, if not fully accurate, closer to what actually happened:
A…special investigation team has found that there was a prior agreement between people working in carpentry to supply bedroom furniture for an apartment rented by an Israeli embassy employee, the statement indicated, adding that two people came to furnish the bedroom of the Israeli employee’s apartment inside the compound.
During the process, a dispute has erupted between one of the carpenters, who was the furniture shop owner’s son, and the Israeli diplomat. The two had a verbal argument as the Israeli diplomat claimed that there was a delay in completing the agreed upon work on time.
The altercation escalated to physical confrontation where the carpenter attacked and injured the Israeli diplomat who in turn shot the carpenter and the apartment’s owner…The building’s doorman were present at the scene, the statement added, citing the testimony given by the other person who came with the carpenter.
The team also listened to the doorman’s testimony, who corroborated the story as mentioned in the investigation.
If even half of this account is true, it is absolutely outrageous that a Shin Bet agent should draw his service weapon on private Jordanian citizens in the midst of a personal or commercial dispute. Especially in the midst of a huge religious crisis that encompasses both Israel and Jordan. Though the agent will probably be lionized by the far-right government, he deserves to be cashiered from any security function for the rest of his life.
The Israeli account accuses the shop owner’s son of being an Islamist. This account doesn’t mention any religious or political motivation for the attack. Over the past two days I’ve repeatedly said the Israeli account stunk. Though I have no way of confirming the Jordanian account, it sounds much more plausible to me. If I am correct, it is yet another example of Israeli mendaciousness in the face of national disgrace or embarrassment.
Can you imagine that the entire Israeli diplomatic staff was withdrawn from one of Israel’s most important frontline allies over something as stupid as a commercial dispute? And that all this happened as Jerusalem was about to explode in a near religious war?
Keep in mind as well that Jordan is the key player in resolving the al Aqsa crisis. Now Israel has no diplomats there. It has no official presence there. At a time when they are needed the most. It’s insane. It’s not just that the people running this country don’t know what they’re doing. It’s worse than dysfunction. It’s toxicity. A toxic national leadership which is liable to embroil an entire region in its fiery embrace.