- ‘Welcome to the edge of freedom’: Biden’s boots touch down in DMZ
- Obama: Hole U.S. ‘digging out of’ requires billions more in unemployment benefits
- Obama’s regulatory agenda will cost U.S. economy $143B next year: report
- Patriot Act author on James Clapper: Fire, prosecute him
- Russia P.M. Medvedev: No amnesty for political prisoners
- Michigan GOP Senate hopeful reminds government is the ‘servant’
- Christmas, by Congress: Members mull a 15-cent tax on trees
- U.S. unemployment falls to five-year low of 7 percent; 203K jobs added
- World mourns Nelson Mandela and celebrates his life; burial set for Dec. 15
- Bill O’Reilly reminds: Nelson Mandela ‘was a communist’
‘Shadow war’ between Israel, Iran rages on as Obama visits
Mossad tactics may lead to friction with the CIA
Iran’s nuclear ambitions may loom large, but lurking in the shadow of President Obama’s highly anticipated visit to Israel this week is a protracted and secretive war already being waged between Jerusalem and Tehran.
Analysts and former officials say the “shadow war,” featuring suicide bombings and clandestine attacks from Eastern Europe to Asia and the Middle East, is a potential source of friction between individuals at the CIA and Israel’s lead intelligence agency, the Mossad.
The shadow war has been defined over the past five years by a tit-for-tat exchange of terrorist-style attacks. Israel’s president has blamed Iran for car and suicide bombings that targeted Israeli diplomats and killed Israeli tourists. Iran’s president has accused Israel and the U.S. of colluding to kill nuclear scientists with magnetized car bombs in Tehran.
While the U.S. vehemently denies involvement, some analysts point out that the Iranian actors in the conflict — specifically Hezbollah and the Islamic Republic’s elite Qods Force — increasingly are seeking not just Israeli but American targets.
The prospect of future attacks has the U.S. intelligence community increasingly piqued, according to Mr. Levitt, who wrote in a January white paper that the “net effect of Iran’s shadow war against the West is that Hezbollah and the Qods Force have climbed back up the list of immediate threats facing the United States and its allies.”
But when it comes to alleged retaliation against Iran by those allies, namely Israel, the tactics being employed are so secretive and controversial that most Western analysts and former officials — let alone active government agents — with any reliable familiarity with the conflict will discuss it only on condition of anonymity.
Jerusalem and Washington may share a common enemy in Iran, but when it comes to the use of clandestinely planted bombs, “It is likely that the United States government as a whole doesn’t see eye-to-eye with the Israeli government,” said one analyst familiar with the Obama administration.
While Iran occupies a spot on America’s official State Sponsors of Terrorism list, Israel does not — so it’s no surprise that Israeli leaders have denied involvement in terrorist-style bombings, including those that killed Iranian nuclear scientists in Tehran in November of 2010 and January of 2012.
Most Western analysts agree, however, the bombings on Iranian interests — such as those that killed the scientists in Tehran — can most likely be linked back to the Mossad.
The notion that Israel would sponsor such tactics is irksome for some members of the U.S. intelligence community. “By any objective criteria, this is terrorism,” said one former official, who also spoke with The Washington Times on condition of anonymity. “For that reason alone, I think you have people over [at CIA headquarters] who view it with repugnance.”
“But it’s not a CIA-specific thing,” the former official added. “It’s just American citizens, looking at these kinds of activities that are constituted as international terrorism.”
© Copyright 2013 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Guy Taylor rejoined The Washington Times in 2011 as the State Department correspondent.
As a freelance journalist, Taylor’s work was supported by the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting and the Fund For Investigative Journalism, and his stories appeared in a variety publications, from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch to Salon, Reason, Prospect Magazine of London, the Daily Star of Beirut, the ...
- U.S., Chinese diplomats talk air defense zone ahead of Biden visit
- State mulling whether to invite Iran to upcoming Syria talks
- Election strengthens Honduran military's hand
- U.S. B-52 bombers buzz China's expanded airspace as dispute with Japan escalates
- Obama defends Iran nuclear deal, attacks critics for 'bluster'
Latest Blog Entries
- Bill OReilly reminds: Nelson Mandela was a communist
- Obama administration issues permits for wind farms to kill more eagles
- Kill team: Obama war chiefs widen drone death zones
- PRUDEN: British press horrified as London's new mayor dares to proclaim the truth
- Obama: Hole U.S. 'digging out of' requires billions more in unemployment benefits
- Spike in battlefield deaths linked to restrictive rules of engagement
- 'Hunger Games' delivers Obama's message on income inequality
- Rush Limbaugh: Obama trying to make Mandela death about himself
- Craigslist killers: Police say newlyweds stabbed man for thrills
- NYC alarms with notice: Immediately surrender your rifle
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Find the latest news and happening that effect those in the Washington D.C., Northern Virginia and Maryland Metro region.
A stat-head’s outlook, direct from his worn in couch cushion.
Classical music and the performing arts: news and reviews you can use.
Covering the world of soccer, including the World Cup, Major League Soccer, D.C. United and the English Premier League and other interesting sporting events.
White House pets gone wild!