a different side of Israel

Tag: Hezbollah (page 2 of 10)

Navy Seals Commandeer Antiguan Ship Carrying Iranian Weapons to Hezbollah

During an overnight raid on Tuesday last week, the Israeli Navy, about 100 nautical miles off the coast west of Israel and near Cyprus, seized hundreds of tons of weaponry on a ship sailing with an Antiguan flag. The weaponry was sent by Iran and destined for Hezbollah, in Syria.

The IDF was monitoring the Francop for several days before Navy Seals boarded it in the middle of the night. When they found the dangerous cargo, they easily commandeered it and sailed it to Israel.

The government of Antigua informed Israeli Intelligence that a ship left from the Bandar-Abbas Port in Iran with cargo which was shipped through the Suez Canal, unloaded in the Mediterranean Port of Damietta in Egypt and then loaded onto the Francop. The intended destination was the Latakia Port in Syria.

The ship’s crew was unaware that there were weapons on board, as they were disguised as humanitarian aid.
Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem denied the entire event. He said:

“Unfortunately there are official pirates disrupting the movement of goods between Iran and Syria, I stress, the ship was not carrying Iranian arms bound for Syria, nor was it carrying material for manufacturing weapons in Syria. It was carrying [commercial] goods from Syria to Iran.”

Meanwhile both Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres complimented the Navy and the IDF, for the exemplary execution of a critical operation.

Today in Knesset, Tzipi Livni said:

“We all today praise the Navy and IDF over the seizure of the ship – it’s not a controversial matter. There are issues over which there are no coalition and opposition. We are all partners in the people of Israel’s war on terror – whether it’s Hamas, Hizbullah or other supporters [of terror]. Well done.”

Now since the world is basically ignoring this OBVIOUS WAR MONGERING ACTION BY IRAN AND HEZBOLLAH LAYING THE GROUND WORK FOR THEIR NEXT WAR – WE THOUGHT WE WOULD PUT TOGETHER A LITTLE GALLERY FOR YOUR VIEWING PLEASURE (again, these are not weapons as the Syrian Foreign Minister explained, these are commercial goods!!!!)

Hezbollah Operatives Working Against Israel in New York

Israeli security and intelligence got a bit of a wake-up call today, October 27, when an Indian man, living in New York, and his accomplice were charged with providing guns and other weapons to Hezbollah.

hezbollah NYCPatrick Nayyar, 46, who has for years been living illegally in New York City, “agreed to provide weapons, ammunition, vehicles and night vision goggles to Hezbollah operatives in Lebanon” reports the Jerusalem Post.

Nayyar’s accomplice, Conrad Stanisclaus Mulholland, was doing business with an FBI informant, pretending to be a member of Hezbollah. He unknowingly provided the informant with a handgun, a box of ammunition and a pick-up truck, which were supposed to be delivered to a Hezbollah post in Lebanon.

Mullholland has not yet been arrested. And Nayyar was originally pinched at his home in Queens, New York on September 24, on charges of gun and ammunition possession.

check it out

Will Ron Arad’s Wife Finally be Free?

In 1986, his plane went down over Lebanon due to what is believed to have been a mechanical failure. After parachuting to the ground, Ron Arad was kidnapped by a Lebanese terrorist named Mustafa Dirani. In 1994, Dirani was captured by Israeli commandos at his home, who kidnapped him and took him to Israel, where they interrogated him concerning the whereabouts of the man he kidnapped.

Ron AradThey found that Dirani had sold him to Iran for $300,000 and from then on had no idea where he was.

It’s being reported by Ynet now that after Dirani’s kidnapping, Iran transferred Arad back to Lebanon fearing Dirani would reveal that the Iranians were involved. After Arad was returned to Lebanon, he apparently died of an illness sometime in the mid 90’s. Such is word heard from an Iranian official passed on to Israel recently.

No word of Arad has been heard in years, save a letter that was delivered to his wife in 2004 written in the late 80’s. Repeated attempts to get information on him have failed. The last serious attempt was made in 2004 when Israel traded Dirani and another Lebanese commander in exchange for Elhanan Tannenbaum, an Israeli former soldier caught by Hezbollah in the middle of a drug deal.

Arad’s family responded to the report by saying that they still consider him to be alive. “Even if the article is accurate and Ron is not alive, we are committed to bringing him home,” Eliad Shraga, the family lawyer, said.

IDF Chief Ashkenazi – First His Credit Card, Now his Life?

Boy is it dangerous to be the IDF Chief of Staff these days. First, he gets his credit card and antique pistol stolen by some soldier, and now a Hezbollah-recruited Israeli-Arab has been caught trying to kill him to avenge the death of assassinated Hezbollah leader Imad Mughniyeh.

Gym AshkenaziThe Shabak, Israel’s secret service, caught the culprit by tracking his emails and Facebook messages. The suspect, Rawi Sultani, a 23-year-old Israeli-Arab from the town of Tira, was recruited by Hezbollah in the summer of 2008 when he traveled to Morocco to attend a Balad Party summer camp.

Balad, an Arab party with representation of the Knesset, was recently disqualified by the central elections committee from running in these past elections on the grounds that its leader, former Knesset member Azmi Bishara, fled to Syria to escape terrorism charges. He still gets a pension though. We’re just that gracious and self-effacing of a people. The Supreme Court reversed the disqualification, and Balad continues to run its Hezbollah-attended summer camps from Knesset headquarters.

During his stay at the camp, Sultani met Hezbollah operative Salman Harab, where Sultani gave him information on Ashkenazi’s daily routine, including the fact that the two occasionally worked out together at a Kfar Saba country club.
I wonder if this will be enough evidence to bar Balad from running in the upcoming Knesset elections. Something tells me, though, that nothing will ever be enough.

Hezbollah is still trying to avenge the assassination of Mughniyeh, as yet unsuccessfully, since they blame Israel for his death. Israel has not claimed responsibility for the assassination, but was openly satisfied that Mughniyeh, responsible for the bombing of a Jewish Community Center in Argentina in the early 90’s, can no longer direct terrorist activities, given that he is no longer alive.

Car bombs will do that to you.

Three Years Later – Dan Haloutz and Lebanon II

Sunday July 12, marked the third anniversary of the beginning of the 2006 war between Israel and Hezbollah in Lebanon. For a lot of people, especially those who lost loved ones in the 34 day conflict in which 121 Israeli soldiers and 44 civilians lost their lives, the day was marked by reflections and sad recollections of the event, which had begun following the Hezbollah led attack on an Israeli army patrol along Israel’s northern border in which several soldiers were killed and two were taken captive. The remains of the two taken captive, Eldad Regev and Udi Goldwasser were later returned in two black coffins, more than two years later.

Dan HaloutzOn this day, one particular individual, former IDF Chief of Staff Dan Halutz, still appears to stand by the decisions he made during the war, and does not regret his actions during the conflict – actions that have been criticized by many since then.

“The government’s decision to take action (against the Hezbollah) was correct and justified” Halutz said, when interviewed by media reporters. “Sometimes these decisions must be made, even if they are not popular”, he continued. He did finish the interview by saying that the decisions were made by “a leader who was willing to accept responsibility for the outcome of those decisions – that is what leadership is all about”.

Since then, Halutz has left active duty and entered private life as a salesman of high line BMW automobiles for Kamor Motors, Israel’s main importer of the German higher priced auto line. In fact, Halutz appears to have done so well in his new profession that he was recently appointed CEO of Kamor Motors, and is reported to have received around 5% of the company’s stock, worth an estimated $1.99 million. Not bad for only being about two and a half years in the car business. And it doesn’t stop there, as he was also appointed as Chairman of the Board of Starling Advanced Communications; a start-up company jointly owned by Raphael, Elbit and Nochi Dankner’s IDB group, where he earns an estimated $7,500 a month.

Halutz even went so far as to say that if he were in the same position as he was in on July 12, 2006, he would make the same recommendations as he did then to the Defense Minister (you know who he was – that guy who was photographed trying to look through a pair of binoculars on which the lens caps were still on).

On top of all this, let’s not forget Halutz’s military pension, which considering his rank and length of military service must be an amount that a lot of corporate executives would like to be living on.

The war not only caused a considerable amount of damage in Israel, as well as incapacitating and uprooting at least a million Israelis. It also did considerable damage to Lebanon’s infrastructure as well as killing more than 1,000 civilians.

A number of Israeli officers who served under Halutz were not so upbeat in their opinions concerning the conflict, including outgoing Deputy Chief of Staff Major General Moshe Kaplansky; who noted a number of failures related to the war, particularly the decision to call up the reserves only in the last days of the conflict. He also said that IDF budget cuts and concentrating against fighting terrorism led to a state of being unprepared when the war broke out.

Palestinian Suez Canal terror cell seized in Egypt

Egyptian security authorities announced the arrest of 25 Palestinians, who they claim have links to the Al Qaeda terror organization and were plotting to bomb American and other ships passing through the Suez Canal. The terror cell planned to fabricate bombs that could be detonated by using cell phones, Egyptian authorities said. The group planned to make car bombs to bomb oil and gas pipe lines running across and alongside the canal; and bombs that could be ferried to the passing vessels in small boats, similar to the way the American destroyer, USS Cole, was severely damaged by Al Qaeda suicide boat bombers in the Gulf of Aden in October, 2000.

USS COLEThe Suez Canal has seen a heavy use of marine traffic lately, despite the frequent attacks by Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean off the eastern coast of Africa. Many American naval vessels pass through the canal on their way to and from the Persian Gulf; and with things heating up in Iran, especially following the demonstrations against the results of the June 12th elections there, levels of security alert have been increased by US naval bases in the Persian Gulf.

More recently, Israeli naval vessels have passed through the canal, including at least one submarine capable of firing nuclear tipped missiles; which the Israeli Navy said is to show the Iranians that Israel is watching events going on in Iran very closely.

These and other Palestinians could well be parts of large groups of Palestinians who crossed into Egypt over a year ago when they bombed parts of the security fence between Gaza and Egypt. Although most of the thousands of Palestinians who went on “shopping sprees” in Egypt eventually returned to Gaza, many did not; and they are still hanging out in various parts of the Sinai Peninsula, including along the Red Sea coast; where many Israelis and Egyptians like to go for holiday vacations. For this reason, the Israeli Foreign Ministry is constantly advising Israelis to refrain from vacationing in the Sinai, due to a very real threat of kidnappings and terror attacks.

The 25 detainees told Egyptian authorities that they had received funds for these terror operations from Islamic charities abroad, many of whom are actually fronts for terror organizations like AL Qaeda and Hezbollah.

Lebanese Fuck Up?

Reports in the Lebanese press on agents from the same Hamulot (Arab gangs), the determination of Lebanese Shabak and modern technological equipment (supplied surprisingly by the USA) according to reports, this is how an Israeli spy ring in Lebanon was caught.

In Lebanon they call it the Mossad Network, and local press have brought in more and more information over the last weeks on captures and arrests of Israeli spy network representatives.

The number of arrests is not clear: 34 according to one source, 65 according to another and no less than 80 according to a third. According to the Lebanese press, agents have marked the homes of Hezbollah people, have gathered information and have drafted additional agents with the “friend brings a friend” method.

A fuck up perhaps?

IAF Unmanned Aircraft a Big hit at Paris Air Show

IAI HeronIsrael’s high technology expertise in the military armament fields is once again on display at this year’s 48’th Paris Air Show. This year, the main attractions appear to be the IAF’s unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV’s for short). UAV’s are being used more and more on both combat and reconnaissance missions as they can be controlled effectively from a base far away from where the mission is actually taking place, and without endangering pilots’ lives. Three of the more prominent exhibitors include Elbit Systems, Rafael, and Urban Aeronautics, who are showing off their new creations at the IAF’s new exhibition pavilion, which cost more than $ 1,500,000 to construct.

Something completely new this year is the unmanned rescue MULE, which has been designed to rescue wounded combat troops in battle zones. The MULE can carry approximately 317 kilograms over an 80-kilometer radius, at a top speed expected to be in the range of 100 knots, with a maximum operating altitude of 3,660 meters. It is also a vertical takeoff vehicle, enabling it to take off and land from a limited space.

Another unusual UAV is one called the Picador, which is an unmanned helicopter capable of carrying a 180 kg payload at a distance range of 200 kilometers. This craft can be used by both land and naval forces and can have armament mounted on it such as air to surface missiles, as well as surveillance equipment. The Picador is being offered by Aeronautics Defense Systems.

Hermes 1500Other noteworthy items on display this year include the HAROP drone aircraft which can be used as a “kamikaze” aircraft to destroy enemy installations by hovering over them and then diving to crash into them while exploding a munitions payload. A relatively inexpensive UAV, the HAROP can be launched from various platforms and is designed to be especially effective in destroying enemy missile launching sites, such as those the Hezbollah has in southern Lebanon. It is also said to be an excellent weapon against enemy air defense systems. IAF spokesmen noted that the IAF has entered into a contract to supply these drones to the Indian Air Force.

Not featured at the show is a new missile interception device known as the “Iron Fist” which can be mounted on ground armored personnel carriers and will be used to intercept incoming missiles by means of a radar and passive optical system that detects incoming threats and destroys them within a fraction of a second using a combustible blast interceptor.

Israel learned a lot in the 2006 war with Hezbollah and this gained knowledge is being used to construct various new weapons systems and other equipment as noted. Using the old phrase of “necessity is the mother of invention” the IAF is continually upgrading is weaponry and developing new systems to maintain it’s qualitative edge over Israel’s adversaries.

Lebanon’s Pro-Western Coalition Wins Parliamentary Elections

Lebanon’s pro-western political parties appear to have maintained their holding on to power following that country’s parliamentary elections on Sunday. In what turned out to be a closely contested race between the pro-westerners, head by Saad Hariri‘s Future Movement party and that headed by Hezbollah and it’s allies, Hariri’s coalition received 68 seats in parliament, while the Hezbollah let coalition won 58. While there was reason for celebration by prime minister Fuad Siniora, The Hezbollah faction and their allies (including former army chief Michel Aoun) still have enough seats in parliament to maintain their veto power, which they have often used affectively.

Lebanon Elections 2009Hariri, the son of assassinated former Prime Minister Rafic Hariri, appeared satisfied with his side’s performance although it was a bit less than hoped for. More then 52% of eligible Lebanese exercised their voting rights, in a remarkably calm election that was supervised by a number of international observers, including former U.S. president Jimmy Carter.

Israeli officials also appeared pleased with the outcome, although there was no doubt that the Hizbullah led faction still has great influence in what goes on in Lebanon, from both a political and military angle. Political strategists who followed the election and pre-election campaign, say that high Christian voter turn-out was a decisive factor this time. Lebanese politics have been divided up among sectarian lines since the country’s independence, and the Lebanese parliament’s 128 seats are evenly composed of Christian and Muslims, even though Muslims now outnumber Christians by 65% to 35%. Many Sunni Muslims also voted in favor of the pro-western side, especially due to Hezbollah’s “street party” a year ago in which they literally controlled the streets of Beirut for a while, resulting in their winning the veto rights in parliament.

Christians were also warned by party leaders that the Hezbollah, led by Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah, would lead their country towards more control by the Hezbollah, who are Shiite Muslims and virtual proxies of Iran.

The U.S. Government has also warned beforehand that their country would give less aid to Lebanon (now at $ 1 billion a year) if the Hizbullah side won.

Lebanese President Michel Suleiman, a Maronite Christian, expressed the hope that a national unity government could now be formed. If this should happen, however, who would gain the most from it – the Hariri led side, or the Shiekh’s?

Zvi Sela & The Good Sheikh Yassin

Sheikh Ahmed YassinIf any of you read an article in Friday’s Haaretz about an interview with former police psychologist Zvi Sela, now turned writer, you may have been as surprised as we were to read Sela’s remarks about deceased Hamas founder Sheikh Ahmed Yassin, whom Sela met with many times during Yassin’s imprisonment in Hadarim Prison, south of Raanana. Sela, who worked for many years as a senior police officer and has a PHD in educational psychology, told Haaretz reporter, Kobi Ben-Shalom, that Yassin, though cruel and ruthless, and responsible for most of the suicide bombings that were killing scores of Israelis during the mid 1990’s, was willing to have his Hamas organization recognize Israel as long as the Palestinians were given a state of their own. Sela said during the interview that “if we (Israel) had tried for an agreement with Yassin, we would have succeeded”. He also said that Yasser Arafat, with whom Israel was trying to negotiate, was in reality very corrupt, and that Hamas could not deal with him at all.

In regards to a final settlement, Yassin was quoted as saying: “I have no interest in destroying you – all I want is a state”.

Sela confessed his unhappiness that Israeli governments refuse to talk to Hamas leaders, saying that this is due to “the ego of our leaders”. During his two years of conversations with Yassin, Sela also had meetings with other imprisoned terrorists, including Samir Kuntar; who said he had not been responsible for the murders of Danny Haran and his daughter in Nahariya in the late 1970’s. Sela seems to paint a different picture of these people, whom many say return to terrorism immediately upon their release back to Gaza or Lebanon. In fact, Sela believes that long time terrorist internees, like Kuntar for instance, do not return to terrorism after being set free.

Return to active terrorism or not, these people certainly do not keep quiet about their feelings towards their former captors, as was seen from Yassin, before his assassination in 2004; and has been seen from Kuntar, who is being used as a symbol of resistance by another Sheikh, Hassan Nasrallah of the Hezbollah.

So are there some “good” terrorists and extremists, as far as Israel’s security is concerned? We’ll let everyone draw their own conclusions on this subject.

Nasrallah’s Tip Off & The Bitter Taste of Betrayal

So this morning we got a little love from our cousins in the North.. A Palestinian Group was able to get up close and personal and shoot a few older model rockets over the border.


Although no one is actually taking responsibility for the shooting of these 4 rockets into Nahariya and the Western Galilee there are the usual suspects. There was no real surprise here and there was an expectation both in the army and civilian authorities that an attack will be coming especially after the speech by Nasrallah.

The Army Command-Directorate of Orientation issued a statement on Thursday saying that “an unknown party launched a number of rockets toward the Occupied Palestinian Territories, and Israel retaliated and launched artillery shells on the southern region of Naqoura.”

The Army statement added that no casualties resulted from the Israeli bombing, stressing Army units were cooperating with the UNIFIL and took adequate measures to protect the residents and control the situation. (Al Manar TV)

But we all know who runs the show in Lebanon and if you were listening carefully last night to the nightly rant of the bearded, semi hysterical Hezbollah leader I swear you could hear a hidden tip off…

On Wednesday, Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Lebanon’s Hezbollah, warned that “all possibilities” were open against Israel as he gave a speech condemning Israel’s offensive in Gaza and voicing support for Hamas….

The comments marked the first time he has spoken so openly on the possibility of a renewed conflict with Israel since the war in Gaza began on December 27.

Nasrallah warned that the 2006 conflict would be “but a walk in the park” compared to what awaits Israel if it launches a new offensive on Lebanon.

“We have to act as though all possibilities are real and open [against Israel] and we must always be ready for any eventuality.

“We are ready to sacrifice our souls, our brothers and sisters, our children, our loved ones for what we believe in.” (Al Jazeera)

So, if one was to listen to the message and put that together with the attack this morning, one could make the claim that we were duly warned. But why would he do that? Hezbollah is not looking for another fight (at least not right now) and yet they had to let the “rogue faction” blow off some steam. Now I know they’re not Jewish but that sounds like … guilt. They feel a little guilty.

I guess sending an entire nation to a state of chaos and death can cause a little guilt even in Nasrallah.

Let’s face it, the Iranians and Nasrallah pushed and egged on Hamas, they made them believe that when the time came they would be there and instead hung them out to dry. The way its being described here is that Nasrallah would fight Israel until the last drop of Gazan blood.

That’s what I call the bitter taste of betrayal. I hope that when this war is over the Palestinian people keep in mind what their “friends” were doing to help them… With friends like that who needs enemies..

Honda Takes a Brave Stance

Do not forget Gilad

Since Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev had been lay to rest, the topic of Gilad Shalit has largely disappeared from the media. As cynical as it may sound, Gilad’s parents don’t manage to draw enough attention or to foster enough sympathy as did Karnit, Ehud’s widow.

Despite the overwhelming support the Israeli public had for the “deal” with Hezbollah, it was still controversial, and it has made the public reluctant to release more prisoners in the near future. And on top of this all, Olmert’s resignation and the scuffles of his successors will continue to draw our attention for at least another month. So Gilad’s pleas are now placed on the back burner, and I find it very disturbing.

I urge everyone in the Israeli public and the Israeli media to keep this issue at the top of our national concerns and at the top of the headlines. The time to free Gilad is NOW.

All hearts face North, not West

Human Narration on

According to well-informed predictions, the highly anticipated prisoner swap deal with Hezbollah is set to take place tomorrow morning (Wednesday, July 16) in Rosh Ha’Nikra – Israel’s northernmost border post along the Mediterranean Sea.

Rosh Ha
Rosh Ha’Nikra

Recent speculation, initiated by Lebanese newspapers, says that one of the two Israeli captives might be alive. Although many official reports in Israel have claimed that both Ehud Goldwasser and Eldad Regev are likely to be dead, we all hope for a miracle tomorrow.

On to a different subject… During the AIPAC convention in June, Barack Obama announced his clear devotion to an undivided Jerusalem — a message that surprised many, but was very resolute, and couldn’t be interpreted in any other way than as an affirmation of Israel’s sovereignty over east Jerusalem. However, this Sunday, the Democratic Nominee made a squeaking U-turn and retracted his AIPAC comments, saying they were “badly phrased”. As he explains: “The point we were simply making was that we don’t want barbed wire running through Jerusalem, similar to the way it was prior to the ’67 war.”

And to this I can only respond: Give me a break!

Obama plans on visiting Israel next week. I do not expect a warm welcome.

Daily Israeli – Weekend Recap

New Story MarkPressure is mounting on PM Olmert and his Ministers to make a decision regarding the captive soldiers Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser. After long two years, a swap deal with Hezbollah has finally been drafted, and the only thing that’s required for its immediate execution is the government’s approval. Ehud’s wife, Karnit Goldwasser, made a public appeal over the weekend and urged PM Olmert not to delay this decision any further, and to bring Eldad and her husband back home.

Israeli and American Chiefs of Staff
New Story MarkAdmiral Mike Mullen, chairman of the United States’ Joint Chiefs of Staff, made a short and unscheduled visit to Jerusalem this Saturday, meeting with his Israeli counterpart, Rav Aluf (that’s the title) Gabi Ashkenazi. This is his second visit to Israel in 6 months. As a result, oil prices crossed the 140$ mark for the first time in history.

New Story MarkMinister of Justice Prof. Daniel Friedmann continues his crusade against the High Court, this time proposing to amend the “Basic Law: Human Dignity and Liberty” in such a way that it will not apply on immigration and border control issues. In other words, if this amendment is accepted by the Knesset — and that’s an unlikely scenario — Israeli officials will be legally free to deport any and all foreigners, including asylum seekers, without the High Court being able to intervene in the matter. Since Israel does not currently have a Constitution, Basic Laws are the closest thing we have so far, and playing with them is a very big deal.

Photo by AP

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