Israeli Shipping Company Operates Vessel Attacked by Iran Ofer Brothers Routinely Violated Sanctions by Trading With Iran, Assisting Mossad Spy Operations There
The ship which Iran attacked near Oman a few days ago is operated by the Israeli company, Zodiac Maritime, in which the oligarch Ofer family has a major interest. It owns Zim Lines and associated shipping interests and until 2011, itself traded with Iran, despite international sanctions prohibiting such commerce.
Among other products, Ofer ships shipped Iranian oil, enabling it to obtain desperately needed foreign currency to float its economy. While such business dealings may have been profitable for the company, there was an even more compelling reason to deal with Iran: Mossad boss, Meir Dagan, asked him to. Tikun Olam broke this story as well, which was banned from publication by the military censor. At the time, my source was confidential. But since his death, I can report it was former defense minister, Binyamin Ben Eliezer.
It was vital for the Israeli spy agency to have access to Iranian ports (in English) in order to conduct sabotage and espionage operations there, which included murdering nuclear scientists and sabotaging IRG missile bases, among other things. Israel agents and equipment were delivered there by Ofer vessels.
In fact, news reports at the time offered the bizarre claim that three of the Mossad agents involved in the plot to murder Mahmoud al Mabouh in Dubai in 2010 escaped via ship to Iran. It would seem highly likely they did so in an Ofer ship.
But this derring-do on the high seas came to an abrupt end when the US Treasury put the company on its sanctions black list, which named and shamed companies who were violating international sanctions. Ofer stopped its Iran trade and was removed from the US list.
Now, Iran has repaid the company in kind by targeting its ship and killing two of its crew. The attack by a suicide drone seems designed to escalate the maritime tit-for-tat sabotage campaign by Iran and Israel against each other’s ocean-going cargo ships.
In one such attack, Israeli naval commandos exploded a mine on the hull of an Iranian oil tanker in the Mediterranean. The damage was far more severe than the Israeli military expected and the resulting oil spill caused an environmental catastrophe on Israel’s beaches. I broke this story based on a confidential Israeli source. There likely was a gag order on reporting this in the Israeli media.
With the inauguration of Iran’s new hard line president, and the failing prospects of renewing the JCPOA nuclear deal, it would seem that the attack was meant as a deliberate escalation in hostilities between Iran and its Israeli-US rivals. Pres. Raisi seems intent on conveying a strong message: whatever you may have thought of Rouhani, he was a walk in the park compared to what I will be. Nor do Biden threats to impose harsher sanctions move him: been there, done that, the new Iranian leaders seem to be saying.
Thankfully, Israel’s new government seems not to have quite the appetite for terror attacks as its predecessors. Instead of immediately bombing an Iranian communications vessel as Netanyahu did a few months ago or killing a nuclear scientist, Prime Minister Bennett has appealed to the US and Britain to support it in demanding action by the UN Security Council. That’s not to say that Bennett won’t make such an aggressive response at some point. But at least he starts off with diplomacy instead of the braggadocio and bellicosity for which Netanyahu was known.
19 thoughts on “Israeli Shipping Company Operates Vessel Attacked by Iran – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم”
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Why not just admit the obvious, that Iran is ‘slow walking’ these talks until she reaches her nuclear breakout point.
@ Jack Hoffman: Read the comment rules, buddy. Do not offer opinions. Offer facts or statements based on credible evidence. There is absolutely no evidence Iran’s goal is “reaching a breakout point.” None. Nor is this anywhere near “obvious.” You’re right on the edge fella.
in their own genius mind , they will reply that their doing is only karma and never revenge
it would be funny if their tools weren’t so life threatening.
now that there is a “working” gov. and it seems they all are keeping their noses very close to their grindstones, there are a lot more news about all things irani than all things israeli. har har
there is little coming from ultra busy norwegian gov and whats really interesting is under gag
you and forbidden stories are keeping us up to date
mr richard. no country has dedicated so much of its economy and resources just for the glory of uranium enrichment for medical or scientific endeavors.
their propaganda has been to purport that their endgame is non military and yet how do you explain the time and again when their desire to import xerox based detonators were foiled.
its like you buy a turkey chick you put a big chunk of your paycheck to grow it so that it appears to be THE thanksgiving contender by the sheer size and meat tenderized ONLY to brag you will not wind up eating it.
to keep scaring the entire region and beyond about your obsession and wind up not doing it would be the greatest face losing strategy ever.
what non military equipment could they not buy at lesser cost even in this direction they would have sufficient expertisewhile getting the manufacturing up and running.
their dual route peaceful experiment propaganda and military attitude in deeds just dont gibe.
at this moment you have to accept the old, if it walks like a duck if it quacks like a duck then it is a ….. sadly that is their finish goal
“…At the time, my source was confidential. But since his death, I can report it was former defense minister, Binyamin Ben Eliezer…”
Richard: Seriously? Did Fuad leak such information to you?
I wouldn’t be surprised if he did, as the only thing that saved him from a jail sentence for taking bribes was having been called for a meeting with the angels.
@ Eli Gal: First, Israel is one of the most corrupt OECD countries. Corruption is rampant from the prime minister down to the person on the street. The powerful never get caught because they’re greased the skids and have connections to avoid getting into hot water. Fuad was my main source for several years, long before he was accused of corruption. Whether he committed a crime or not has nothing to do with the credibility of his information, whose accuracy was proven time and again. Finally, Fuad was never charged with a crime, never tried, never convicted. There is a presumption of innocence in country’s observing the rule of law. If you want to convict him before any of these processes play out, fine. Just admit you live in a dictatorship where anyone can say anything about anyone else and have it accepted as fact.
“…Fuad was my main source for several years…”
Richard: that is definitely a bombshell. Did he give any reason for having done so, or do you have any idea?
@ Eli Gal: I think partly Fuad loved to talk. He was a source for others as well. But many of the things he knew could not be published in Israel because of censorship or gag orders. I think I was a convenient way to get the information into the public domain by avoiding those obstacles.
Richard, based on your logic, bibi is innocent too
@ Ock: I have no idea what you’re talking about.
Finally, Fuad was never charged with a crime, never tried, never convicted. There is a presumption of innocence in country’s observing the rule of law. If you want to convict him before any of these processes play out, fine. Just admit you live in a dictatorship where anyone can say anything about anyone else and have it accepted as fact.
Iran rams a drone into the bridge of this ship and murders two crewmen, and all you can talk about are the Ofer brothers, one of whom already died of old age.
The dead crewmen were a Briton and a Romanian.
Probably family men too, murdered in cold blood because some mullah in Iran needed a diaper change.
@ KC: How many Iranians are dead as a result of Israel invading Iranian territorial sovereignty and international law and attacking its scientists and military personnel? The number of dead is in the scores, if not hundreds. So while normally I would decry such maritime attacks, Israel started this covert war and Iran has every right to respond. So if you want to cry crpcpdo;e tears over people you couldn’t care less about except as pawns in an Israeli game of chicken, be my guest.
As for the Ofer Brothers, some of the richest oligarchs in Israel. And I should feel sympathy for them because one of them died? Who are you kiddin’??
The Fiji Sun named the man as Fijian-born former British Army veteran Adrian Underwood. Underwood worked as a security contractor.
I will try to find out the name of the Romanian Ship’s Master who also died.
@ KC: No you won’t. Unless you also do the same for every Iranian assassinated or killed by Israeli sabotage of Iran’s nuclear and military facilities.
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[comment deleted: You are already moderated. Now you are banned. Comparing Iran to Nazis is not acceptable here.]