Mossad Whistleblower Victor Ostrovsky on Israeli Black Operations

Mossad Whistleblower Victor Ostrovsky in 2014 (SOTT)

Published: October 2023

In his 1994 book, The Other Side of Deception, former Mossad case officer and whistleblower Victor Ostrovsky revealed Israeli intelligence deceptions and black operations.


Book: The Other Side of Deception (Victor Ostrovsky, 1994)

Video: Presentation by Victor Ostrovsky (C-SPAN, 1995)

More about the author: Victor Ostrovsky (Wikipedia)

Annotations and hyperlinks by Swiss Policy Research (2023)



  1. Top quotes
  2. Recruiting of Palestinian agents
  3. Mossad and the Israel Lobby in the United States
  4. False flag attack on the Berlin La Belle disco
  5. Testing bioweapons on Palestinians and Blacks
  6. Using Islamic fundamentalists for political purposes
  7. Robert Maxwell and Mossad media influence
  8. The Iran affair, Waldheim affair, Barschel affair
  9. Global network of Mossad volunteer agents
  10. George Bush false flag assassination plot


Top quotes

  • “The entire Jewish lobby in the United States was mobilized.”
  • “The ADL tarnished as anti-Semitic whomever they couldn’t sway to the Israeli cause.”
  • “We have in this way recruited over eighty Palestinians this past year.”
  • “Using the Trojan, the Mossad tried to make it appear that a long series of terrorist orders were being transmitted to various Libyan embassies around the world.”
  • “The Mossad realized that it had to come up with a new threat to the region, a threat of such magnitude that it would justify whatever action the Mossad might see fit to take.”
  • “Supporting the radical elements of Muslim fundamentalism sat well with the Mossad’s general plan for the region. () And if the Mossad could arrange for Hamas to take over the Palestinian streets from the PLO, then the picture would be complete.”
  • “The ties between (British media mogul) Robert Maxwell and the Mossad went back a long way.”
  • “The American invasion of Panama dried up the Mossad’s income from drug trafficking.”
  • “Operation Hannibal was in itself an arms deal between Israel and Iran, using the German intelligence agency as a cut-out for the operation.”
  • “The manpower for the operation was supplied by a Mossad Italian ally, a man named Licio Gelli and his group Propaganda Due, and a second group named Gladio.”
  • “These seminars that the Mossad was holding in the friendly environment of the country club were in fact well-oiled recruiting operations that had brought into the Mossad’s bank of manpower hundreds if not thousands of Western law enforcement personnel.”
  • “He wasn’t really ‘bought,’ as they liked their politicians to be.”
  • “This had all the dirty elements that are so typical of Mossad activity in a friendly country.”
  • “By the time the wine arrived in Barschel’s room, it had already been spiked by a Kidon member.”
  • “The Mossad had direct links with the Jewish Defense League, the Anti-Defamation League of the B’nai Brith, the AIPAC, and the United Jewish Appeal.”
  • “After filling the kids with a large dose of militant Zionism, the Mossad sends them back as the spies of the future.”
  • “This was an all-out psychological warfare attack aimed at getting the United States involved militarily in the Middle East in general and the Gulf area in particular.”
  • “With all the security forces involved and the assassins dead, it would be very difficult to discover where the security breach had been.”

Recruiting of Palestinian agents

{chapter 4, page 31}

“Once the name [of a Palestinian refugee in Denmark] was regarded as hot and verified, it was added to a roster with all the relevant information. (…) Once the applicant was on Danish soil and under our surveillance, the Danes would be informed he was a dangerous person. They would automatically cease refugee proceedings and bring him in for questioning.

A Mossad officer would then attempt to recruit him in the Danish holding tank. If the recruiting was successful, he would be released and act as an agent for the Mossad inside the Palestinian community in Europe, or elsewhere. (…)

“We have in this way recruited over eighty Palestinians this past year,” my boss had bragged. “It’s too easy to be legal.” It wasn’t [legal], but when I asked if this sort of thing could backfire on us, I got the usual answer you would get in the Mossad to just about any question: “So what?”

Figure: The 1984 film The Little Drummer Girl, based on a close-to-reality novel by John le Carré, describes Mossad infiltration of Palestinian groups and a staged false flag terrorist attack.

The Little Drummer Girl (1984)

Mossad and the Israel Lobby in the United States

{chapter 4, page 32}

“It seemed that the whole [Mossad] building was going berserk. Everybody and his dog were looking for information that could stop Jordan’s King Hussein’s efforts for a peace initiative [between Israel and the PLO].

The initiative caught the Mossad off guard; we had understood from sources in the United States that it was a farce. They had said it was dead in the water almost a month ago. But somehow it sprang to life again, and although Yasser Arafat would not recognize Israel, he had agreed to a meeting with Hussein. The word was that it was a ploy by Hussein. All he wanted, they said, was American approval of his request for a two-billion-dollar arms purchase.

We [the Mossad] had guaranteed the prime minister [Shimon Peres] that this would not happen. The entire Jewish lobby in the United States was mobilized. The man in charge of that was Tsvy Gabay, head of the foreign office intelligence section. He was given lists of sayanim [Mossad assets] and pro-Zionist organizations that he could mobilize. (…)

The American Jewish community was divided into a three-stage action team.

First were the individual sayanim (if the situation had been reversed and the United States had convinced Americans working in Israel to work secretly on behalf of the United States, they would be treated as spies by the Israeli government).

Then there was the large pro-Israeli lobby. It would mobilize the Jewish community in a forceful effort in whatever direction the Mossad pointed them.

And last was B’nai Brith [the parent organization of the Anti-Defamation League (ADL)]. Members of that organization could be relied on to make friends among non-Jews and tarnish as anti-Semitic whomever they couldn’t sway to the Israeli cause.

With that sort of one-two-three tactic, there was no way we could strike out [i.e. fail].”

Read more: The Israel Lobby: Facts and Myths (SPR)

Figure: ADL director Abraham Foxman and US Vice President Joe Biden (2013)

ADL director Abraham Foxman and US Vice President Joe Biden (2013)

False flag terrorist attack on the Berlin La Belle disco (1986)

{chapter 15, pages 113 to 117}

“Shimon [Peres] activated Operation Trojan in February of this year [1986]. (…)

A Trojan was a special communication device that could be planted by naval commandos deep inside enemy territory. The device would act as a relay station for misleading transmissions made by the disinformation unit in the Mossad, called LAP, and intended to be received by American and British listening stations.

Originating from an IDF navy ship out at sea, the prerecorded digital transmissions could be picked up only by the Trojan. The device would then rebroadcast the transmission on another frequency, one used for official business in the enemy country, at which point the transmission would finally be picked up by American ears in Britain.

The listeners would have no doubt they had intercepted a genuine communication, hence the name Trojan, reminiscent of the mythical Trojan horse. Further, the content of the messages, once deciphered, would confirm information from other intelligence sources, namely the Mossad. The only catch was that the Trojan itself would have to be located as close as possible to the normal origin of such transmissions, because of the sophisticated methods of triangulation the Americans and others would use to verify the source.

In this particular operation (…), two elite units in the military had been made responsible for the delivery of the Trojan device to the proper location. One was the Matkal reconnaissance unit and the other was Flotilla 13, the naval commandos. The commandos were charged with the task of planting the Trojan device in Tripoli, Libya. (…)

[Detailed description of how the Trojan was planted in Libya omitted.]

By the end of March, the Americans were already intercepting messages broadcast by the Trojan, which was only activated during heavy communication traffic hours. Using the Trojan, the Mossad tried to make it appear that a long series of terrorist orders were being transmitted to various Libyan embassies around the world (…). As the Mossad had hoped, the transmissions were deciphered by the Americans and construed as ample proof that the Libyans were active sponsors of terrorism. What’s more, the Americans pointed out, Mossad reports confirmed it.

[Note: The Mossad encrypted the forged “Libyan messages” using devices produced by the Swiss company Crypto AG, which was secretly owned and controlled by the CIA.]

The French and the Spanish, though, were not buying into the new stream of information. To them, it seemed suspicious that suddenly, out of the blue, the Libyans, who’d been extremely careful in the past, would start advertising their future actions. They also found it suspicious that in several instances Mossad reports were worded similarly to coded Libyan communications.

They argued further that, had there truly been after-the-fact Libyan communications regarding the attack, then the terrorist attack on the La Belle discotheque in West Berlin on April 5 could have been prevented, since surely there would have been communications before, enabling intelligence agencies listening in to prevent It. Since the attack wasn’t prevented, they reasoned that it must not be the Libyans who did it, and the “new communications” must be bogus.

The French and the Spanish were right. The information was bogus, and the Mossad didn’t have a clue who planted the bomb that killed one American serviceman and wounded several others. But the Mossad was tied in to many of the European terrorist organizations, and it was convinced that in the volatile atmosphere that had engulfed Europe, a bombing with an American victim was just a matter of time. (…)

[Note: In 1998, German state television revealed that the terrorist attack on the Berlin La Belle discotheque was orchestrated by the Mossad and the CIA, using Arab patsies.]

Operation Trojan was one of the Mossad’s greatest successes. It brought about the air strike on Libya that President Reagan had promised – a strike that had three important consequences. First, it derailed a deal for the release of the American hostages in Lebanon, thus preserving the Hezbollah (Party of God) as the number one enemy in the eyes of the West. Second, it sent a message to the entire Arab world, telling them exactly where the United States stood regarding the Arab-Israeli conflict. Third, it boosted the Mossad’s image of itself, since it was they who, by ingenious sleight of hand, had prodded the United States to do what was right. (…)”

Video: CIA and Mossad behind Berlin discotheque bombing (ZDF, 1998)

Figure: Aftermath of the Berlin La Belle disco false flag bombing (1986)

Aftermath of the Berlin La Belle disco false flag bombing (1986)

Testing bioweapons and medications on Palestinians and Blacks

{chapter 21, pages 188/189}

“At the time, chasing Palestinians who infiltrated the border to carry out acts of sabotage was almost a daily occurrence. Most of the time, the infiltrators would be killed during the chase or in short skirmishes in the parched desert. There were cases, however, in which the terrorists would be captured alive; nevertheless, most of the time, even if they were taken alive, they’d be announced as dead over the radio so no one would await their return.

That was where I would come in as a military police officer [before joining the Mossad]; my job was to take the prisoners to a holding facility in Nes Ziyyona, a small town south of Tel Aviv. I’d always assumed that it was an interrogation facility for the Shabak. We all knew that a prisoner brought there would probably never get out alive, but the brainwashing we’d gone through in our short lifetimes had convinced us it was them or us; there was no gray area.

It was [Mossad case officer] Uri who enlightened me regarding the Nes Ziyyona facility. It was, he said, an ABC warfare laboratory – ABC standing for atomic, bacteriological, and chemical. It was where our top epidemiological scientists were developing various doomsday machines. Because we were so vulnerable and would not have a second chance should there be an all-out war in which this type of weapon would be needed, there was no room for error.

The Palestinian infiltrators came in handy in this regard. As human guinea pigs, they could make sure the weapons the scientists were developing worked properly and could verify how fast they worked and make them even more efficient. What scares me today, looking back at that revelation, is not the fact that it was taking place but rather the calmness and understanding with which I accepted it.

Years later, I met Uri again. This time he was in the Mossad, a veteran katsa [case officer] in the Al [American] department, and I was a rookie. He had come back from an assignment in South Africa. I was then a temporary desk man in the Dardasim [Asian] department in liaison, helping him prepare for a large shipment of medication to South Africa to accompany several Israeli doctors who were headed for some humanitarian work in Soweto, a black township outside Johannesburg.

The doctors were to assist in treating patients at an outpatient clinic for the Baragwanath hospital in Soweto, a few blocks away from the houses of Winnie Mandela and Bishop Desmond Tutu. The hospital and the clinic were supported by a hospital in Baltimore, which served as a cut-out [intermediary] for the Mossad. Uri was on a cooling-off period from the United States.

“What is the Mossad doing giving humanitarian assistance to blacks in Soweto?” I remember asking him. There was no logic to it; no short-term political gain (which was the way the Mossad operated) or any visible monetary advantage. “Do you remember Nes Ziyyona?” His question sent shivers up my spine. I nodded.

“This is very much the same. We’re testing both new infectious diseases and new medication that can’t be tested on humans in Israel, for several of the Israeli medicine manufacturers. This will tell them whether they’re on the right track, saving them millions in research.”

“What do you think about all this?” I had to ask. “It’s not my job to think about it.””

Figure: Israel’s Nes Ziyyona biological and chemical weapons facility (GlobalSecurity)

Israel’s Nes Ziyyona biological and chemical weapons facility (GlobalSecurity)

Using Islamic fundamentalists to prevent political solutions

{chapter 22, pages 196/197}

“The peace with Egypt was pressing hard on the Israeli right wing. In itself, the peace, so vigilantly kept by the Egyptians, was living proof that the Arabs are a people with whom peace is possible, and that they’re not at all what the Mossad and other elements of the right have portrayed them to be. Egypt has kept its peace with Israel, even though Israel became the aggressor in Lebanon in 1982 and despite the Mossad’s warnings that the Egyptians were in fact in the middle of a ten-year military buildup that would bring about a war with Israel in 1986-87 (a war that never materialized).

The Mossad realized that it had to come up with a new threat to the region, a threat of such magnitude that it would justify whatever action the Mossad might see fit to take.

The right-wing elements in the Mossad (and in the whole country, for that matter) had what they regarded as a sound philosophy: They believed (correctly, as it happened) that Israel was the strongest military presence in the Middle East. In fact, they believed that the military might of what had become known as “fortress Israel” was greater than that of all of the Arab armies combined, and was responsible for whatever security Israel possessed. The right wing believed then – and they still believe – that this strength arises from the need to answer the constant threat of war.

The corollary belief was that peace overtures would inevitably start a process of corrosion that would weaken the military and eventually bring about the demise of the state of Israel, since, the philosophy goes, its Arab neighbors are untrustworthy, and no treaty signed by them is worth the paper it’s written on.

Supporting the radical elements of Muslim fundamentalism sat well with the Mossad’s general plan for the region. An Arab world run by fundamentalists would not be a party to any negotiations with the West, thus leaving Israel again as the only democratic, rational country in the region. And if the Mossad could arrange for the Hamas (Palestinian fundamentalists) to take over the Palestinian streets from the PLO, then the picture would be complete.

Mossad activity in Egypt was extensive. Now that there was an Israeli embassy in Cairo, the walk-in traffic was heavy. Egypt was being used both as a source of information and as a jumping-off point to the rest of the Arab world. It would be much easier and much less suspicious to have an Egyptian who was recruited under a false flag in Cairo and had never set foot outside the Middle East carry out intelligence gathering in other Arab countries than Arabs who had been to Europe and therefore might be suspected.

That in itself was a “legitimate” part of the game, but once the Mossad began trying to undermine the fiber of Egyptian society by supporting the fundamentalists, also under false flags, it was some- thing completely different. It was more like cutting off the branch on which you’re sitting.”

Video: How Israel helped create Hamas (The Intercept, 2018)

Figure: Militants of the Israel-funded Palestinian Hamas group (2021)

Militants of the Israel-funded Palestinian Hamas group (2021)

Robert Maxwell, Mossad media influence, USSR coup (1984-1991)

{chapter 22, pages 203/204}

Robert Maxwell and Mossad media influence

“[An Egyptian intelligence contact] then wanted to hear as much as I could tell him about Robert Maxwell, the British newspaper magnate. His reason was that they were aware of the constant Mossad interest in purchasing media so that it could both influence public opinion and use journalism as a cover for inserting agents into countries. (…)

[Note: Robert Maxwell (born Jan Hoch) was the owner of the Mirror Group and the father of Ghislaine Maxwell, the companion and accomplice of Jeffrey Epstein.]

He identified Maxwell as a Mossad agent and also reminded me of other occasions on which the Mossad had been behind the purchase of newspapers in England. As an example, he gave the Eastern African, which was bought with Mossad money by an Israeli businessman. The purchase was made, he said, to assist the South African propaganda machine in making apartheid more palatable in the West.

Suddenly, the sinister nature of what was being done with Maxwell became clear to me. In his zeal to cooperate with Israel, and even though he was not an agent himself (as the British had made clear when I had spoken to them in Washington), Maxwell was a sayan [Mossad asset] on the grand scale.

The Mossad was financing many of its operations in Europe from moneys stolen from the man’s [Mirror Group] newspaper pension fund. They got their hands on the pension funds almost as soon as he’d made his purchases (initially with money lent to him by the Mossad and on expert advice he received from Mossad analyses).

What was sinister about it, aside from the theft, was that anyone in his news organization, anywhere in the Middle East, was automatically suspected of working for Israel and was only one rumor away from the hangman’s noose

I explained to my host, as I had to the British, that in the beginning the Mossad would help Maxwell purchase the newspapers by lending him money and causing labor disputes and other problems, making the target purchases more vulnerable. Later, the tactics changed; they would target in advance a paper that he was to purchase and start it on a collision course with bankruptcy using all available strategies, starting with workforce agitation and ending with pull-back of funds from the paper through bankers and advertisers sympathetic to the Mossad. Then, once the target was softened, they’d send Maxwell in for the kill.”

Robert Maxwell funding Mossad operations

{chapter 31, pages 284-287}

“The ties between Maxwell and the Mossad went back a long way. Elements within the Mossad had offered to finance Maxwell’s first big business ventures, and in later years Maxwell received inside information on global matters from the Office. Maxwell was originally code-named “the Little Czech,” and the sobriquet stuck. Only a handful of people in the Israeli intelligence community knew who the Little Czech was, yet he provided an unending supply of slush money for the organization [Mossad] whenever it ran low.

For years, Maxwell would hit financial lows whenever the Mossad was in the midst of expensive operations that could not be funded legitimately and when other less legitimate sources were unavailable, as was the case after the American invasion of Panama in 1990, which dried up the Mossad’s income from drug trafficking and forced Maxwell to dig deep into his corporate pockets.

But the Mossad had used its ace in the hole one time too many. Asking Maxwell to get involved in a matter of secondary importance (namely, the [Israeli nuclear whistleblower] Vanunu affair) had been a big mistake, for which the media mogul would be made to pay the price.

That involvement caused suspicion in the British Parliament that there was no smoke without fire, particularly after the publication of a book by an American reporter [Seymour Hersh] claiming Maxwell was a Mossad agent. Maxwell retaliated in a lawsuit, but the ground was starting to burn under his feet.

The Mossad was late in giving him back his money, and the usual last-minute rescue of his financial empire was looking less and less feasible. (…)

And then came this call from Maxwell, insisting he must meet his contact on a matter of great urgency. The mogul was rebuffed at first, but then he issued a veiled threat: Now that he was being investigated by Parliament and the British media, if he wasn’t able to straighten out his financial affairs, he wasn’t sure he could keep the Kryuchkov meeting a secret.

The 1991 August coup in the USSR

What he was referring to (and in doing so, he sealed his fate) was a meeting that he’d helped arrange between the Mossad liaison and the former head of the KGB, Vladimir Kryuchkov, who was now jailed in Number Four Remand Center in Moscow for his role in the Soviet Union’s August coup to oust Mikhail Gorbachev [in 1991].

At that meeting, which took place on Maxwell’s yacht at anchor in Yugoslav waters, Mossad support for the plot to oust Gorbachev was discussed. The Mossad promised to bring about, through its political connections, an early recognition of the new regime, as well as other logistical assistance for the coup. In exchange, it requested that all Soviet Jews be released, or rather expelled, which would create a massive exodus of people that would be too large to be absorbed by other countries and would therefore go to Israel.

Certain right-wingers within the [Israeli] government had believed this meeting with the coup plotters was a necessity. They knew that if the Soviet Union were to stop being the enemy, there would no longer be a threat from the East, and the strategic value of Israel to its greatest ally, the United States, would diminish. Alliances between the United States and the Arab nations in the region would then be a realistic prospect.

It was Maxwell who had helped create the ties with the now-defunct KGB. The right-wingers realized it would be a devastating blow to Israel’s standing in the West if the world were to learn that the Mossad had participated in any way, as minute as that participation might be, in the attempted coup to stop the democratization of the Soviet Union. It would be perceived as treason against the West.

Mossad murder of Robert Maxwell

Maxwell was now using the Mossad’s participation as a threat, however veiled, to force an immediate burst of aid to his ailing empire. (…)

A small meeting of right-wingers at Mossad headquarters resulted in a consensus to terminate Maxwell. At first, the participants thought it would take several weeks to put together a plan, but then someone pointed out that the process could be accelerated if the Little Czech could be made to travel to a rendezvous where the Mossad would be waiting to strike. (…)

[Detailed description of seaborne Mossad assassination plot omitted.]

Some time during the night of November 4-5, the Mossad’s problem was laid to rest in the salty waters of the Atlantic. (…)

“He had done more for Israel than can today be said,” Prime Minister Shamir eulogized at Maxwell’s burial.”

More: Maxwells and Mossad: The Spy Story at the Heart of the Jeffrey Epstein Scandal (2019)

Figure: Mossad asset Robert Maxwell and his Daily Mirror newpaper (1984)

Mossad asset Robert Maxwell and his Daily Mirror newpaper (1984)

The Iran affair, Waldheim affair, Barschel affair (1986/87)

{chapter 25, pages 225 to 235}

Secret arms deals with Iran via Italy and Germany

“Operation Hannibal was in itself an arms deal between Israel and Iran, using the German intelligence agency as a cut-out [intermediary] for the operation [the Iran-Contra affair].

Since Iran was in need of parts for their dilapidated air force and since Israel had the spare parts, mainly for the F-4 Phantom, a sale was a natural occurrence. It was natural too that the Mossad would have as a clear goal prolonging the Iran-Iraq war, since there was money to be made.

Because Iran and its Ayatollah Khomeini were not especially enthusiastic about dealing directly with Israel, which they vowed morning and night to destroy, the Germans were a natural go-between. The BND, which is the German federal intelligence agency, was the entity the Mossad chose for the job, even though the Mossad was keeping the local police intelligence in both Hamburg and Kiel fully in the picture. The reason for plugging in the locals was that this sort of relationship between the Mossad and the BND was a fairly new thing. The BND was usually kept in the dark regarding Mossad operations in Germany.

Among Mossad personnel, the BND was regarded as untrustworthy for two reasons. First, there was a strong suspicion that the agency had been deeply infiltrated by the Stasi [the East German State Security Police], and second, it enjoyed a close relationship with [German Chancellor] Helmut Kohl, who was not a big fan of the Mossad.

For this operation, however, the Office recruited a BND liaison – one who also happened to be working on the side running some shady deals through ex-Mossad officer Mike Harari.

In this operation, the jet parts (ranging from electronic elements for on-board radar all the way up to full-sized jet engines and wing assemblies) were shipped overland to ensure delivery and to hide the source of the shipment should it be caught before it reached its destination.

The shipments, which were prepackaged in special containers, were originally loaded on Israeli ships at the Ashdod harbor. The containers were of the kind that could be taken off the ships directly to waiting trucks and become a part of the truck. The ships would arrive at various Italian ports where the Italian secret service (SISMI) would handle the necessary document approval, verifying that the containers were in fact loaded with Italian agricultural products headed for Germany. Signs depicting Italian produce were actually affixed to the trucks.

The manpower for the operation and the drivers were supplied by a Mossad Italian ally, the right-wing followers of a man named Licio Gelli and [his] group, by then outlawed, called Propaganda Due, and a second group (a NATO offspring like the one in Belgium) named Gladio.

[Note: Licio Gelli worked for Mussolini and US military intelligence during WWII. In the 1950’s, Gelli became master of the P2 lodge, which managed the Italian “deep state” and organized multiple false flag terrorist attacks and coup attempts. The existence of P2 and Gladio was revealed in 1981 and 1991, respectively. In 1994, former P2 member Silvio Berlusconi became Italian PM.]

The drivers were to deliver the trucks to a warehouse area in Hamburg where they’d be turned over to a new set of drivers, Israelis this time. The Mossad called these drivers OMI, which is an abbreviation for oved mekomy, meaning “local worker.” To be a local worker, you must be an actual student who has come on his own to the country in question. A student may apply to the Israeli embassy for work, and if the Mossad needs help, it will have the Shabak [Israel’s internal security service] run a security check on the applicant. If all is well, the student can be employed to do low-echelon jobs such as driving trucks or inhabiting safe houses.

From Hamburg, the trucks would head for an abandoned airfield some twenty minutes outside of Kiel. where an Iranian who’d studied in the United States and received a degree in aeronautical engineering would come from Kiel and inspect the shipment. (…)

Recruiting Mossad assets among Western police and intelligence agencies

Historically, it must be mentioned that Helmut Kohl approved cooperation with the Mossad in combating terrorism, and therefore the top brass of the BND agreed to allow the Mossad to assist their field stations and regarded Mossad’s seminars on terrorism (given to the BND people without any charge, as guests of the Israeli intelligence community in Israel) as a great gesture of friendship.

What the BND brass didn’t know was that these seminars that the Mossad was holding in the friendly environment of the country club were in fact well-oiled recruiting operations that had brought into the Mossad’s bank of manpower hundreds if not thousands of law enforcement personnel from the United States, where they were recruited by the B’nai Brith [the parent organization of the ADL], and from the intelligence agencies of Denmark, Sweden, and many other countries. (…)

Secret Israeli training of Iranian pilots in Germany

The shipments were occurring as scheduled, and there were no problems with them for a long time. From Germany, the trucks would make their way to Denmark, where they’d be loaded onto Danish ships under the watchful eye of the Danish intelligence and their liaison to the Mossad, Paul Hensen Mozeh. From there, they’d be delivered to Iran.

Emboldened by the success of these equipment transfers, the Iranians asked their BND connection to see what could be done with regard to training Iranian pilots, preferably outside the war zone. (…) The same abandoned airfield with the large empty hangars used for checking parts on their way from Israel to Iran could be used to house the five simulators and all the related equipment needed. (…)

A team of at least twenty Israelis would have to be on hand to train the Iranian pilots, and they would live independently in both Kiel and Hamburg while the Iranian pilots (whom the Germans were afraid would draw attention) would stay at the airfield for the duration of the training.

The BND contact man worked directly with the Mossad liaison in Bonn, who in turn passed the information to the Mossad clandestine station, also located in the Bonn embassy.

How Minister-President Uwe Barschel became involved

At one point, the Germans suggested that, for security and the smooth running of the operation, the prime minister of Schleswig-Holstein be brought in on the secret. This man’s name was Uwe Barschel, and he happened to be a close friend of Helmut Kohl’s.

To guarantee his cooperation, the BND would use its influence to secure a commitment of federal moneys to save a faltering shipping company [HDW], which would be a feather in Barschel’s cap. Then there was the matter of a large new international airport in the area, which he was promised would be helped. The Germans also made several other promises that were not of any interest to the Mossad or to [Mossad case officer] Ran H., who was now running the operation.

The Waldheim affair: former UN Secretary General branded a ‘Nazi’

Ran had realized at some point in mid-1987 that trouble was on the horizon. There was growing dissatisfaction in the Mossad and in the right-wing elements of the Israeli government regarding the behavior of Chancellor Helmut Kohl, who was defying direct Israeli warnings regarding his relationship with the Austrian leader [and former UN Secretary General] Kurt Waldheim, who’d been branded a Nazi [over his alleged military record during WWII].

The branding was done by a field unit of [the American Mossad department] Al that entered a UN building on Park Avenue South in New York and placed several incriminating documents that had been removed from other files into Waldheim’s file – and the files of a few other individuals – for future use. The falsified documents were then “discovered” by Israel’s ambassador to the UN [and future Israeli Prime Minister], Benjamin Netanyahu, as part of a smear campaign against Waldheim, who was critical of Israeli activities in southern Lebanon [the Sabra and Shatila massacre in 1982].

Chancellor Kohl had brushed off these Israeli threats as nonsense, causing fury in Israeli intelligence circles, where he was described as a stupid klutz [a clumsy person].

The Barschel affair

Causing the Mossad leadership additional worry was the sudden crisis in Denmark that had caused the local intelligence to get cold feet and ask that the arms shipments through that country be temporarily halted until they knew what the new political atmosphere would be like.

To keep the arms flowing, the BND asked Uwe Barschel to allow the use of the shipping facilities in his state for the transfer of arms to Iran, something he was opposed to. The Mossad didn’t think there was any need to consult Barschel about this, but the BND didn’t know that the Mossad had already secured the cooperation of the local intelligence. So they asked Barschel anyway, also telling him more about the shipment than they were supposed to.

The BND had miscalculated Barschel’s resolve. When he refused, everyone began to panic, realizing that he might be a threat if he should find it necessary to inform Helmut Kohl about what he knew. It soon became clear that the Mossad needed a new independent political link that could replace the deteriorating hold the BND had on Barschel.

So many birds could be captured in this bush that it was extremely tempting. The Mossad could take the lead in controlling the politician and bring in the BND as a partner, leaving no doubt about who was calling the shots.

They would eliminate from the scene a troublemaker, namely Barschel, who was partly cooperating, but not for the right reasons. He wasn’t really “bought,” as they liked their politicians to be. Instead, he was extracting from the situation what he thought would be the best for his constituents, and at the same time shoring up his political support.

The last, but certainly not least, dividend to be gained from removing Barschel was that it would be a blow to Helmut Kohl. (…)

[Detailed description of complex Mossad plot to oust Uwe Barschel omitted.]

At the last minute, when denials by Barschel would be too late to make a difference at the ballot box, the Whistler [Reiner Pfeiffer] admitted that he was behind the dirty tricks and that he’d acted on Barschel’s orders, thus bringing to an end the career of a politician who wouldn’t deal, and putting into office one who would [Björn Engholm] – and getting an opportunity to embarrass [German Chancellor] Kohl in the process. All Barschel’s protests that he was an innocent man were ignored and brushed off as political rhetoric. (…)

This had all the dirty elements that are so typical of Mossad activity in a friendly country. (…)

The murder of Uwe Barschel in Geneva

[After] Barschel’s defeat in the election (a direct result of the campaign that Ran had organized), [Barschel] contacted his BND connection and threatened to expose all their wrongdoing if they didn’t take action to clear his name.

The BND contact told the Mossad liaison that some hearings were going to take place in several days, and if Barschel was not satisfied before the hearings, he’d use them to spill the beans. The timetable was too short for the Mossad to wind down the operation in the two airfields and get all the Israeli crews and equipment out of there in time. Barschel had to be stopped before he could testify.

The BND gave the Mossad liaison Barschel’s location (he was on vacation in the Canary Islands) and the phone number at which he could be reached. He was staying in a house loaned to him by a friend.

[Mossad case officer] Ran called Barschel on the island. The first call went unanswered, and Ran assumed that Barschel must be out. He called back one hour later and was told that Barschel was not available at the moment. On his third try, Ran made contact with Barschel and told the man that he had information that could help clear his name, and he introduced himself as Robert Oleff [often spelled ‘Robert Roloff’ in later media reports].

He insisted that Barschel come to Geneva. He, Oleff, would have him picked up at the airport. Barschel wanted more information before he would commit himself, and so Ran said that some interested Iranians might be involved in the deal. This led Barschel to realize the matter was serious and that the man he was talking to was well informed. He agreed, and the details of the trip were discussed.

The Kidon team [Mossad assassination unit] was already waiting in Geneva, dispatched directly from Brussels. After examining the field files regarding Geneva, they’d decided that the Hotel Beau-Rivage would be their best bet for the activity they had in mind. (…)

At that point, Ran realized that there was no way to sway the man. The operation had to move into the next phase, which was termination with extreme prejudice [execution]. Barschel was a threat to the safety of the Mossad personnel in the field. Thus, there was no need for approval from outside the Mossad for the elimination, as is the case with a political assassination, for which the prime minister must give written approval. (…)

By the time the wine arrived in Barschel’s room, it had already been spiked by a Kidon member. Some of the other team members were bringing bags of ice to their rooms in preparation for the final act. (…)

[Detailed description of complex medical murder omitted. Although ignored by authorities, many of these details were later confirmed by independent toxicological investigations.]

After leaving the room and closing the door behind them, displaying the Do Not Disturb sign on the knob, they all went their separate ways, one couple checking out that night and the other doing so first thing the next morning. The other members of the team who weren’t staying at the hotel left the city by car that same night, heading back to Belgium and the safety of the Mossad European headquarters.

Ran was informed that the mission was completed, as was the head of the Mossad, to whom one of the team members delivered a Polaroid photo of the dead target. (…)”

Read more: Mossad accused over 1987 death of German politician (Irish Times, 2010)

Video: Operation Gladio (BBC Timewatch, 150 min., 1992)

Figure: The body of Uwe Barschel in his hotel room in Geneva (1987)

The body of Uwe Barschel in his hotel room in Geneva (1987)

Global network of Mossad volunteer agents (sayanim)

{chapter 19, page 150}

“Had this been a normal Mossad operation, he could have gotten as much money as he wanted from a bank sayan – a Jewish banker who is regarded as trustworthy and will open the bank for you at any time and provide as much money as needed. He would be reimbursed the following day, once the station got the money from headquarters. Bank sayans were used only in emergency situations.”

{chapter 25, page 236}

“It was important that we not include things in the [first] book that might nurture anti-Semitism – at least, that was the way we saw it. We all agreed, for example, that the subject of testing medications on blacks in South Africa was too much and would strike too hard a blow against Israel, since the medical personnel who’d been sent to Africa would be associated with the state and not understood as being totally controlled by the Mossad.

The same treatment was given to the direct links the Mossad had with the Kahane people [the JDL], the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) of the B’nai Brith, the AIPAC, and the United Jewish Appeal.

The only subject that we decided needed airing was the Frames (Jewish self-protection units set up by the Mossad all over the world) and the youth camps called Chetz V’Keshet (meaning “bow and arrow”) that the Mossad organizes to bring young Jewish kids to Israel for the summer. After filling the kids with a large dose of militant Zionism, the Mossad sends them back as the spies of the future.”

Video: The Sayanim: Jacob Cohen on Mossad’s Volunteer Agents (3 min., 2014)

Figure: Jacob Cohen, author of the book Springtime of the Sayanim (2019)

Jacob Cohen, author of the book Springtime of the Sayanim (2019)

Getting the US to attack Iraq and Saddam Hussein (1989-1991)

{chapter 27, pages 246-254}

“They were extremely busy at the time [in 1989] preparing for what they called Operation Brush-Fire. This was an all-out LAP (Israeli psychological warfare) attack aimed at getting the United States involved militarily in the Middle East in general and the Gulf area in particular. (…)

By January 1989, the Mossad LAP machine was busy portraying Saddam as a tyrant and a danger to the world. The Mossad activated every asset it had, in every place possible, from volunteer agents in Amnesty International to fully bought members of the U.S. Congress.

Saddam had been killing his own people, the cry went; what could his enemies expect? The grue­some photos of dead Kurdish mothers clutching their dead babies after a gas attack by Saddam’s army were real, and the acts were horrendous. But the Kurds were entangled in an all-out guerrilla war with the regime in Baghdad and had been supported for years by the Mossad, who sent arms and advisers to the mountain camps of the Barzani family; this attack by the Iraqis could hardly be called an attack on their own people. But () once the orchestra starts to play, all you can do is hum along.

[Note: The claim that Saddam Hussein had gassed the Kurds was itself a propaganda lie: as US investigation found that Kurdish civilians living close to the Iraq-Iran border were accidentally killed by Iranian gas during a battle between Iranian and Iraqi forces.]

The media was supplied with inside information and tips from reliable sources on how the crazed leader of Iraq killed people with his bare hands and used missiles to attack Iranian cities. What they neglected to tell the media was that most of the targeting for the missiles was done by the Mossad with the help of American satellites.

The Mossad was grooming Saddam for a fall, but not his own. They wanted the Americans to do the work of destroying that gigantic army in the Iraqi desert so that Israel would not have to face it one day on its own border. That in itself was a noble cause for an Israeli, but to endanger the world with the possibility of global war and the deaths of thousands of Americans was sheer madness. (…)

Israeli intelligence knew that the [missile] launch, although trumpeted as a great success, was in fact a total failure, and that the program would never reach its goals. But that secret was not shared with the media. On the contrary, the missile launch was exaggerated and blown out of proportion. (…)

In the following weeks, more and more discoveries were made regarding the big gun [nuclear missile] and other elements of the Saddam war machine. The Mossad had all but saturated the intelligence field with information regarding the evil intentions of Saddam the Terrible, banking on the fact that before long, he’d have enough rope to hang himself.

It was very clear what the Mossad’s overall goal was. It wanted the West to do its bidding, just as the Americans had in Libya with the bombing of Qadhafi [in 1986]. After all, Israel didn’t possess carriers and ample air power, and although it was capable of bombing a refugee camp in Tunis [operation Wooden Leg targeting the PLO headquarters in 1985], that was not the same.

The Mossad leaders knew that if they could make Saddam appear bad enough and a threat to the Gulf oil supply, of which he’d been the protector up to that point, then the United States and its allies would not let him get away with anything, but would take measures that would all but eliminate his army and his weapons potential, especially if they were led to believe that this might just be their last chance before he went nuclear.”

[Note: In 1991, American-Jewish Senator Tom Lantos and American-Jewish PR firm Hill & Knowlton organized a scripted “human rights conference” during which the 15-year-old daughter of the Kuwaiti ambassador to the United States pretended to be a Kuwaiti nurse named “Nayirah” who supposedly observed how Iraqi troops threw Kuwaiti babies out of incubators. Amplified by the media, the bogus story helped initiate the 1991 US Gulf War against Iraq.]

Figure: Ostensible Kuwaiti nurse “Nayirah” (How to Sell a War, CBC, 1992)

Ostensible Kuwaiti nurse “Nayirah” (How to Sell a War, CBC, 1992)

George Bush false flag assassination plot (1991)

{chapter 30, pages 277-283}

“Air Force One was about to touch down, followed by the second twin Air Force One. The two jumbo jets were en route to deliver the president of the United States and a large media contingent to the Madrid peace talks that were about to start between Israel and all its Arab neighbors, including Syria and the Palestinians, who were part of the Jordanian delegation.

In the months leading up to this theatrical occasion, the American president had truly believed he’d be able to bring about a change in the hardheaded attitudes that had prevailed in the region for decades.

In an effort to bring the right-wing government of Yitzhak Shamir to the negotiating table in what was to be an international peace conference, the president had applied the kind of pressure that an American president rarely has been brave enough to apply. Against the wishes of an angry Jewish community, George Herbert Bush had put a freeze on all loan guarantees to Israel, which were to come to a total of ten billion dollars over the next five years. This freeze was not intended to punish Israel for the construction of settlements in the occupied West Bank and the Gaza Strip (regarded by the US as illegal,) but to force the cash-strapped Likud government to the negotiating table.

Upon making that decision, the president was instantly placed on the blacklist of every Jewish organization in the United States, and regarded as the greatest enemy of the state of Israel. In Israel, posters depicting the president with a pharaoh’s headgear and the inscription “We have overcome the pharaohs, we will overcome Bush” were pasted across the country. Shamir called the president’s action “Am-Bush.”

Israeli messengers in all the communities across the United States immediately went into high gear, launching attacks against the president. They fed the media an endless stream of criticism, while trying at the same time to make it clear to Vice President Dan Quayle that he was still their sweetheart and that what the president was doing in no way affected their opinion of him.

This love affair with a vice president was not a new thing; it had been almost standard procedure ever since the creation of the state of Israel. Any time a president was not on the best of terms with Israel, the Jewish organizations were instructed to cozy up to the vice president.

That was the case with Dwight Eisenhower, whom Israel regarded as the worst president in history (although, ironically, the vice president they regarded as a friend, namely Richard Nixon, himself became an enemy once he was president).

It was what lay behind the strong support Israel and the Jewish community gave to Lyndon Johnson, who almost doubled aid to Israel in his first year as president, after John Kennedy had come down hard on the Israeli nuclear program, believing it was a first and dangerous step in the proliferation of nuclear weapons in the region. [Note: This was likely a key factor in the JFK assassination.]

That strategy was behind their hatred for Nixon and their admiration for Gerald Ford. And then there was Jimmy Carter, whose whole administration was regarded as a big mistake as far as Israel was concerned, a mistake that had cost Israel the whole of the Sinai in return for a lukewarm peace with Egypt [the 1978 Camp David Accords].

And now there was this peace process, put forth by the country club idiot [George Bush]. The right-wingers’ silent cry was to somehow stop the process, which they believed would lead to a compromise that would force Israel to return more land. Refusing to believe that such a compromise would ever be made, settlers in the Occupied Territories had launched a new wave of construction, with the unrelenting help of Ariel Sharon, the minister of housing.

A certain right-wing clique in the Mossad regarded the situation as a life-or-death crisis and decided to take matters into their own hands, to solve the problem once and for all. They believed that [PM] Shamir would have ordered what they were about to do if he hadn’t been gagged by politics.

Like many others before them, in countless countries and administrations, they were going to do what the leadership really wanted but couldn’t ask for, while at the same time leaving the leadership out of the loop – they were going to become Israeli versions of [Iran-Contra mastermind] Colonel Oliver North, only on a much more lethal level.

To this clique, it was clear what they must do. There was no doubt that Bush would be out of his element on October 30 when he arrived in Madrid to open the peace talks. This was going to be the most protected event of the year, with so many potential enemies meeting in one place. On top of that, there were all those who were against the talks: the Palestinian extremists and the Iranians and the Libyans, not to mention the decimated Iraqis with their endless calls for revenge for the Gulf War. (…)

The Madrid Royal Palace would be the safest place on the planet at the time, unless you had the security plans and could find a flaw in them. That was exactly what the Mossad planned to do. It was clear from the start that the assassination would be blamed on the Palestinians – perhaps ending once and for all their irritating resistance and making them the people most hated by all Americans.

Three Palestinian extremists were taken by a Kidon [assassination] unit from their hiding place in Beirut and relocated incommunicado in a special detention location in the Negev desert. The three were Beijdun Salameh, Mohammed Hussein, and Hussein Shahin.

At the same time, various threats, some real and some not, were made against the president. The Mossad clique added its share, in order to more precisely define the threat as if it were coming from a group affiliated with none other than Abu Nidal [later outed as a Mossad asset]. They knew that name carried with it a certain guarantee of getting attention and keeping it. (…)

Several days before the event, it was leaked to the Spanish police that the three terrorists were on their way to Madrid and that they were probably planning some extravagant action.

Since the Mossad had all the security arrangements in hand, it would not be a problem for this particular clique to bring the “killers” as close as they might want to the president and then stage a killing. In the ensuing confusion, the Mossad people would kill the “perpetrators,” scoring yet another victory for the Mossad. They’d be very sorry that they hadn’t been able to save the president, but protecting him was not their job to begin with.

With all the security forces involved and the assassins dead, it would be very difficult to discover where the security breach had been, except that several of the countries involved in the conference, such as Syria, were regarded as countries that assisted terrorists. With that in mind, it would be a foregone conclusion where the breach was.

As far as this Mossad clique was concerned, it was a win-win situation. (…)

[Notes: Ostrovsky goes on to state how he managed to leak information about the assassination plot to the Bush Administration and the press. The plot was aborted and the Palestinian patsies killed.

In 2020, American-Jewish publisher Ron Unz, reviewing Ostrovsky’s book, stated that people he knew “informed me that the Bush Administration had indeed taken Ostrovsky’s warnings about the alleged Mossad assassination plot very seriously at the time ().”

It is possible that the Mossad intended to stage not a real but a failed assassination attempt, similar to Mossad’s engineered and intercepted Hindawi plot to bomb an airplane in 1986.]

Read more: Mossad Assassinations (Ron Unz, 2020)

Figure: George Bush at the 1991 Middle East peace conference in Madrid (ToI)

George Bush at the 1991 Middle East peace conference in Madrid (ToI)


Book: The Other Side of Deception (Victor Ostrovsky, 1994)

Video: Presentation by Victor Ostrovsky (C-SPAN, 1995)

Annotations and hyperlinks by Swiss Policy Research (2023)



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