Israel’s security apparatus and its over-collaborative judiciary would do well to look up, then commit to memory, the words of U.S. Supreme Court justice Louis Brandeis: „Publicity is justly commended as a remedy for social and industrial diseases. Sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants.“
This explanation was meant to provide grounds for a claim of necessity, which is a fundamental condition for permitting the use of “special means” – that is, torture – while still staying within the limits imposed by the High Court of Justice on interrogations of this type.
It’s still impossible to know whether this essential condition, necessity, actually existed. But even if it did, serious questions arise from this case regarding the interpretation that has been given to the possibility of using torture.
Israel media reported that a judge gave the domestic intelligence agency permission to “use exceptional ways to investigate” Samir Arbeed.
Diskin’s remarks followed a furore over comments made on Wednesday by Israel’s serving military chief, Benny Gantz, which starkly contrasted with Netanyahu’s rhetoric on Iran. Gantz said he did not believe the Iranian leadership was prepared to „go the extra mile“ to acquire nuclear weapons because it was „composed of very rational people“ who understood the consequences.
Anyone speaking to people close to the prime minister and his ministers are hearing panic that stems not just from Benjamin Netanyahu’s vigorous attempt to stop the clock on the new election. On the agenda, they whisper, is a pending security crisis. The evil will come from the Persian Gulf, the Gaza Strip or the northern border, generated by Iran and its proxies. Then the military agenda will soon overwhelm the political one, overshadowing the political parties’ petty considerations.
(today) The Mossad, Israel’s foreign intelligence agency, is currently headed by Yossi Cohen, who was chosen for the post by Prime Minister Netanyahu after serving as his national security adviser.
Even if Iran really turns out to be responsible, it does not amount to more than an embarrassment, Pardo said. „Anybody who understands anything about cyber security knows that if somebody wants to do harm – illegitimately and unethically – they can disseminate fake, fabricated information – and go prove that it’s wrong.“
According to the report, Netanyahu asked the former head of the Shin Bet, Yoram Cohen, to use his security service’s “special capabilities” to monitor the communications of senior defense officials, including former IDF chief of staff Benny Gantz and former head of the Mossad spy agency Tamir Pardo.
“He was supposed to protect his phone. That is his personal failure. If Gantz can’t protect his phone, how will he protect the country?” Netanyahu asked. “Second, Gantz and Lapid supported the dangerous nuclear deal with Iran, the deal that I fought and I am glad that I acted successfully to convince the president of the US to leave and to renew sanctions on Iran.”
Speaking at a joint press conference with Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, Netanyahu responded to the report about Gantz’s request that the Shin Bet investigate, saying,“They [Kahol Lavan] are trying to drag the Mossad, that magnificent organization that protects Israeli security, into the political discourse. That mustn’t be done, and I don’t plan to let it pass. The leaks about Gantz came from the headquarters of [Yesh Atid Chairman Yair] Lapid and Gantz, so I am calling on them to show responsibility, be statesmanlike, and leave the Mossad and the Shin Bet out of politics. We have enough things to fight about.”
In the recording, broadcast on Israeli television news, Gantz said Netanyahu may have coordinated with the Russians to hack his phone
In israelischen Medien wird davon ausgegangen, dass das Netanjahu-Lager die Information an die Medien weiterspielte, um Gantz unter Druck zu bringen.
Dieser wies alle Vorwürfe zurück und bestritt die Behauptung Netanjahus, auf dem Handy hätten sich sensible Daten befunden. Er sei daher auch nicht erpressbar. Netanjahu griff Gantz bei einer Pressekonferenz jedoch an und warf ihm vor, die Unwahrheit zu sagen: „Was wissen die Iraner über dich, das du uns nicht sagst?“
(19.3.2019) Blue and White leader challenges Netanyahu to debate, says there was nothing sensitive on device and his wife supports him; rules out coalition with Arab Israeli parties
Legislation is expected to advance, but critics say it could give prime the minister authority to ask security body to look into his political rivals, if security justification is provided
In special press conference, main Netanyahu rival calls the story ‚a political spin,‘ said no compromising data was found in phone ■ Likud petitions election committee not to allow live broadcast for fear of electioneering
The report does not specify when the meeting took place, but says it came amid a series of meetings Argaman held with senior PA officials in recent months in which he stressed they would benefit from renewed contact between Israeli and Palestinian leaders.
‚Why are you nervous?‘ she asked. He replied, ‚B/c you’re applying pressure’…She said: “Maybe you’re nervous because you’re a criminal”
“Don’t lie to us, because we already know everything anyway, and we can see when you lie too. We have a lot of video footage of you, we know where you went and what you did,” a second interrogator reportedly told him.
Nadim Sarrouh, a 34-year-old German citizen, says he’s accustomed to short detentions and questioning. But this time was different
Reza Aslan says he was asked about his views of Netanyahu by Israeli interrogator; Shin Bet denies the Iranian-born author was threatened
The prime minister’s PR move doesn’t explain why the Shin Bet security service has detained a number of ‘far left’ activists in recent months
Then he told me that on my last trip to Israel I had participated in a protest, which is true. He asked where it occurred and I answered “Hebron.” He asked its purpose and I answered that we were protesting the fact that Palestinians in Hebron and across the West Bank lack basic rights. (I wrote about the protest at the time). He asked how I had become involved in the protest and I mentioned The Center for Jewish Nonviolence. He asked if the Center had incited violence, and I replied that, as its name suggests, it practices non-violence. My interrogator then replied that names could be misleading. The government of North Korea, he observed, calls itself a democracy but is not. I told him I didn’t think the Center for Jewish Nonviolence and the North Korean government have much in common.
As part of the war that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is waging against the “enemy within” – that is, anyone who thinks differently than he does – the state has adopted the despicable practices of a thought police in its attempt to intimidate and silence opponents of the occupation from Israel and abroad.
You can’t make an omelet without breaking some eggs; we’ve broken lots of eggs for the sake of the settlements, and all we’ve got to show for it is a small, foul-smelling, toxic omelet
The impression one gets is that anyone who thinks differently from Netanyahu, and not just on security issues, is immediately suspected of sabotaging him, and in the prime minister’s view, all means of acting against such people are legitimate. After all, Netanyahu also frequently and irresponsibly throws out hints of “coups” and accusations that he’s being undermined by the police, the police commissioner and the judicial system.
Yoram Cohen says he never got ’specific‘ instructions from Netanyahu to listen in on Tamir Pardo and Benny Gantz, though the explosive report mentioned a general request to tap a series of confidants
The Prime Minister’s Office told Uvda: “The claim that the prime minister asked the head of the Shin Bet to listen in on the chief of staff and the head of the Mossad is completely unfounded. This is a total distortion of systemic efforts that are made from time to time to maintain information security regarding sensitive matters of paramound importance to Israel’s security. The decision of what means to use and against who is in the hands of the authorized officials.”
(31.5.2018) “I do not want to believe that in Israel, which is a democratic state, the prime minister is asking the Shin Bet to tap the chief of staff or me,” Pardo said in an interview. He added: „Wiretapping is the greatest possible [sign of] lack of trust. I never asked to wiretap any of my employees in the Mossad. Never. It never even crossed my mind. In my view, that’s outside the rules of the game.”