Sunday, 15 November 2015

The eroticism of belief

Have you ever tried to wonder how convenient it is to have a belief to begin with? If we were the primates who were born thousands of years ago when there was no civilization and there were not beliefs and values, we might've been forced to be pragmatic and unflinchingly astute. But courtesy of beliefs that are passed on as emoluments from our origin and roots, we have the luxury of being dogmatic and to question only what doesn't fit in our own realm of reasoning and rationale. And hence we are spared from some of the classic problems of human existence, and are therefore ready to carouse one of the many beliefs available. and to be fondled by the Pontiffs of one of them. 

So, what are beliefs? If we don't go finicky, a belief can be defined as an established set of caveats that, given certain assumptions, may hold true. It's really worth noting that these certain assumptions are almost always intangible and are tough to define or clearly incorporate in the definition of a belief. Hence a belief is therefore one core phenomenon, surrounded by supporting pillars. The validity and viability of a belief is dependent on the strength of these pillars. If the pillars are strong and sturdy, the core value sustains and remains in its stolid and unfettered form. If, however, the pillars are frail and lurid, either the belief disappears, or worse, gets amended to the whims and fancies of a handful of people. 

A belief can be a beautiful companion. It diverts your attention from all the lepers and paupers, all the misery and despair, all the unceremonious disparity, all the ludicrous rules of hegemony, all the tainted rulers of the world, and focuses our attention on the solemn hope that following our belief can bring about the verdant happiness that the belief promises. Hence irrespective of whether a belief is garroted down our throat, or accepted via volition, once a belief finds a set of faithful loyalists whose eternity now functions around the cogs and sprockets of the belief, the belief becomes everything, and we its everlasting fawners and advocates. 

Another benefit that comes along with a belief, and almost invariably, is an exact opposite misbelief. A misbelief is almost as necessary as a belief because once the belief's proselytizing gets over on the basis of endured benefits of following the belief, a rumpus of a bedeviling contributes the largest to creation of an even more enormous following. It's as if the chief architects or advocates of the belief now seek a disparaging and virulent force, one that they can ask all the followers to direct their rage against. In the short term, more and more people give in to the larger belief because there are so many people fighting for it so it really has to be worth it, they assume. In the long term, the belief becomes paramount because if it's sustained for so long, it becomes an automatically inveterate presumption on the conjecture that "yes, this has to be a worthy addendum to life". What takes a beating in the process is the fact that the belief gets altered with many important facets omitted, and many new sections secretly added. And while all of this gives the impression of an upliftment, it's necessarily a dilution of what the belief once was! 

We all choose from a certain set of ready beliefs because the deeper we scrutinize a belief the more we realize how esoteric one is. And because we are forced to accept a belief when we're still in a jejune and novice state, we're all the more forced to simply pick up one of the beliefs. And more often than not we pick up beliefs our parents or our mentors chose, because even they never had a chance to refute or repudiate any of those beliefs which with time became their sine qua none. And thus beliefs thrive, ages after ages, epochs after epochs, until one day when they become too strong to be as much as challenged. And while everyone is happy about the perpetrators of the belief carrying out oblation of newer followers, and they hold umbrage about a few renegades who dare to question the sanctity of the belief, no one knows that maybe what the renegades are preaching was once the real belief, which with time became a palimpest of successive generations altering it completely. 

Human history is centered around beliefs, with the conflict of beliefs marking the most important milestones. Take religion and you'd know that the crusades and the intifidas resulted in insurmountable amount of bloodshed and mobilization. Take economic world order and you'd see capitalism taking on socialism. Take political maxims and you have the right and left wings. And then even within sects you can have sub beliefs like Marxism and Maoism within communism. See everywhere and you find core beliefs colliding. It's pretty good to fight for your belief because you hold it so dead. But the most doltish thing we do, and which we do day and night, is that we fight for beliefs which ever since the beginning have been held a little too consecrated since the beginning. So while at a top level any questions against the belief can be answered by averring some facts, at a lower level most of the questions cant be answered. And here comes the doctrine of unquestionability. 

Every belief, beneath a level of abstraction, can't provide you sufficient answers to the questions, and hence to prevent hard core followers from growing capricious, a custodian is to be appointed. American presidency is the custodian of capitalism, the British queen was once the cornerstone of imperialism, the Pope is the altar of Christianity and the Muslims had their caliphates. Every belief that has sustained long enough shall also be having schools expatiating and in preponderance, the virtues of the belief. Christian convents preaching Catholicism to Islamic Madrasas to the business schools and law schools of the United states literally blooming capitalism in the mental vistas of fledglings. Every belief needs to have a set system of organization. One purpose is to make the belief appear more grandiose because the institutions add to the veracity without any doubt, and two, to maintain the belief from getting diluted and inevitably too arcane. This is what's really important. 

Today, the world has become a parade of individuals, all praising some belief against some belief held by those from the opposite sect and primarily because of our ill judgment on choosing the custodians or because us never having a say in that, we've been choosing people who serve the agenda of holding the belief true, but allowing the belief to be both challenged and even partially subjugated. If a belief is the lifeblood of so many, it has to be preserved and has to be maintained. But at the behest of a handful of men who further their own ends, the belief might be contorted and be made a little too risky for anyone to follow anymore. 

Consider the Muslim caliphate for example. It's really deplorable to trace terrorism to a religion but the people at the helm of the religion have simply asked for it. While every other true blue Muslim who has read the Koran can contend that the verses not even remotely insinuate violence of any forms, just because there is no more a Caliphate whose word can be blindly trusted, and more so because there are now local heroes whose word is the only word a Muslim can seek, the verses can always be twisted to refer to something completely incompatible with the originally intended meaning. The true asset of a belief is that it's recondite and hence takes time to swallow and respect, but with the absence of a custodian, this becomes the biggest threat to the dilution of the beliecf's core values. 

Same happened with capitalism. Never in the original tenets did anyone suggest the idea of all capital expenditure being good. But with time some of the leading authorities on capitalism have advocated theories which have suggested gargantuan capital expenditures even if it means taking more leverage than you know you could ever pay. All the major collapses of the most major stock exchanges can be attributed to this financial cavorting, and all because capitalism is to tricky to be easily interpreted. No one may ever again know what the original thought leaders might have meant when they thought of capitalism. 

People all over the world have a lot of problems and everyday we wake up and wear above our own persona the accouterments of these beliefs we possess. We are proud about our beliefs because even in our lows, our beliefs tend to exhume the dead conscience out and get it back in action. Beliefs are arduous to create and more strenuous to maintain. And beliefs are really useful because they make life so simple in an ever changing effervescent world. But it's not uncommon for beliefs to become either decrepit because they were fidgeted with or obsolete because they never changed. Hence as long as we're not sure there is a honorary and venerable custodian of the belief taking care of that for us, we have to start questioning our beliefs ourselves, and to keep questioning them till we either ascertain that the belief is still intact in its original form, or till we die fighting against those who don't even allow us to question. Because it's better to die fighting for a new set of beliefs than to live with a wrong set of beliefs to begin with! 

Saturday, 14 November 2015

Operation Diamond : How Mossad stole an Iraqi MiG 21

Back in the year 1959, the Mikoyan-Gurevich MiG-21was put to production. It was considered the most advanced and sophisticated soviet jetcraft at that time. Israel's bete noire Iraq, Syria and Egypt received many of these jets that were to the envy of many of those jets Israel received from the US. As a result, the US and Israel set out on a joint mission to retrieve one such MiG 21 from one of these Middle Eastern benefactors. What ensued was the most exhilarating purloin to be ever committed in mid air. 

First, a Mossad agent in Egypt made a valorous attempt of defecting an Egyptian pilot to fly one of these MiGs to Israel. He was offered a whopping million dollars back in 1962. However, the plan was foiled and the lead Mossad agent and his team were arraigned for espionage and given heavy terms. Another opportunity came up in the year 1964, and in not a very distant Iraq. 

An Iraqi Jew contacted Israel's services in Tehran and informed them of a certain Munir Refda. Refda was the husband of a friend of his girlfriend, and an extremely frustrated and flustered Iraqi. But most importantly, he was an Iraqi pilot. Refda had christian roots and hence was never treated at par with his Muslim counterparts. It was his modicum of christian provenance that prevented him from soaring among the ranks as he was never allowed to fly with full tanks and hence he was only able to prove his prowess over shorter distances. Moreover, his anger was buttressed by him being forced to attack Iraqi Kurds. Hence Mossad sensed this as a perfect opportunity and sent a female katsa to befriend him.

In a typical ensnaring operation, the female found a lot about Refda's life. His family lived far away in Baghdad, and he showed clear intent of leaving the country if a safe passage could be ensured for his family and if he could feel sanguine about his future prospects. So Mossad made its move and implored Refda to visit Europe to strike a deal. 

The deal was carried out under the direct supervision of Meir Amit, the first and foremost director general of Mossad, and went brilliantly. Refda was assured of everything he wanted and a million dollars. A large team of agents was sent to Baghdad and his family was brought to Israel. Finally, everyone started waiting for an opportunity to sneak out the cynosure of jetcrafts - the MiG 21, out of the Iraqi airspace. 

On August 16, 1966, the moment finally arrived. Refda was flying his MiG 21 over the Jordanian airspace. The authorities grew conscious and sent out multiple messages to nearby ATCs. While Iraq didn't respond, and this jeopardized Refda and his aircraft with impending conflagration from Jordan's emphatic anti aircraft systems. Much to everyone's surprise, Syria claimed responsibility for the aircraft and mentioned that it was on a training mission. The MiG finally crossed the Jordanian airspace and entered that of Israel where it was welcomed by a small but powerful armada of Dassault Mirage IIIs, which took it to the final destination. 

In the later years, the priced possession of the Israeli air forces, the MiG was flied, dismantled and thoroughly analyzed. In fact the analysis helped Israel devise a prolific strategy on how to counter the MiGs in combats with its own Dassault Mirage IIIs. And in the war with Syria, the Israeli air force vanquished 6 MiGs with their own Mirage IIIs getting away unscathed. The aircraft was later passed on to the US which was desperate to get its hands on this enigmatic and recondite flying machine, and in effect destroying the MiG's cabalistic properties it so proudly adorned and adulated. 

"Hatzerim 201206 MiG21" by Oren Rozen - Own work. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Commons -
The MiG 21 at the Israel Air Force Museum. It was renamed 007 to commemorate the spectacular way in which it was acquired.

The heist in the mid air provided Israel with a massive bargaining chip with the US because of the latter's interest in the MiG architecture and technology, and also established both Mossad and Israel as a rather cataclysmic force to reckon with. Mossad was soon on its way of developing the reputation it commands today. 

This article is a series of articles, all intended to outline some of the bravest feats Mossad has pulled off. For more, please visit the following links.

Main article:

Operation "Wrath of God" : How Mossad avenged the Munich massacre

The Munich Olympics in 1972 were to hold a pretty historical significance. Olympic games returned to Germany after the infamy of the 1936 games at Berlin which were tainted by Hitler's gambit to convert the games into his own agenda. Hence these games were augured to be the "peace games" by many. And so it proved, until that one fated evening of September 4, 1972, which changed how the world viewed terrorism. 

As a Jewish contingent of 11 athletes came back to their quarters, they were followed by members of a newly emerged terrorist group Black September, which was believed to include members of Palestinian Liberation Organization(PLO) and PFLP(Popular front for liberation of Palestine). The contingent was taken hostage and the terrorists demanded that more than 200 Palestinian prisoners of wars who were trapped in many Israeli and other jails be released. What transpired was the most grisly counter-terrorism encounter with an extremely lumbering German attempt to obliterate the terrorists resulting in the death of all the hostages. 3 of the terrorists were captured alive. 

"Ap munich905 t" by Source. Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia -
One of the most iconic images from the Munich massacre. A Black September terrorist appearing at the balcony of the room where hostages were held

While the Jewish population at large remained enraged and saturnine, the Israeli administration was swiftly seeking methods to retaliate. They first responded with raiding of PLO bases in Syria and Lebanon, killing as many as 60 belligerents. But it was decided under the direct supervision of the Prime Minister Golda Meir, that Israel had to expunge all the Palestinian names that surfaced out of the initial inquires, off the face of the planet, And it was mutually understood that the prime objective was to spread the message of what it means to mess up with Israel, than to just seek vengeance. The operation was named "Wrath of God" and it lasted for the next 2 decades! 

New teams were formed from the scratch. The teams comprised of kidons(assassins), guards and bulwarks, helpers, clean up personnel and even bomb and weapon experts. Most of the people were picked from different Mossad, IDF and Shin Bet divisions and these teams were ordered to function under the dominion of the plausible deniability doctrine. It meant that Mossad or Israel had nothing to do with these teams and hence there was no way for anything to be traced back to Israel. And with this premise, these teams set on to their job. No one knows the exact number and size of these teams or the whereabouts of these agents. It was designed to be the perfect clandestine operation. 

The revenge commenced with the assassination of Wael Zwaiter, a Palestinian who translated Arabian Nights into Italian but who was the PLO point man in Rome. He was shot 12 times as he headed back to his apartments. But the operation that takes the cake was the ingeniously stupefying termination of Mahmoud Hamshari. 

Hamshari was the prime PLO henchman in France and was regularly interviewed including during the hostage crisis at Munich. A Mossad agent posing as a journalist made it to Hamshari's apartment, and excused himself to his landline telephone to study its specs. Later on, the Mossad team designed and planted an explosive inside the same phone. A few days later, Hamshari received a call on the same phone and a voice questioned from the other side "Are you Mahmoud Hamshari?", and the moment Hamshai identified in affirmative, a remote detonator was pressed from a nearby vehicle, literally knocking off Hamshari. Hamshari survived but later on succumbed to his injuries. 

Another notably risky but immensely successful assassination was carried out when Hussein Al Bashir was blown up. Al Bashir was not only believed to be involved in the Munich Massacre but he was the PLO's supreme operative in the turbulent and close by nation of Cyprus, and was also KGB's contact for the Black September. In fact as per what's depicted in the 2005 movie Munich, he was literally accompanied to and from his room at the Olympic hotel by KGB officials every day. A Mossad agent finally checked into the room adjacent to that of Al Bashir, and the bomber set to work. 

A bomb circuit was planted under Al Bashir's mattress, such that his weight would force the loose joints together and complete the detonator circuitry. One night, as Al Bashir switched off his lights and went to bed, a powerful explosion rocked the entire roof of the floor and Al Bashir was gone in no time as a remote detonator sealed his fate. Al Bashir was quickly replaced by another PLO operative, who too was assassinated by Mossad just a few months later. 

Mossad teams spread all over the world kept seeking the targets and kept killing. Most of the assassinations were covered up as accidents or inscrutable and mysterious occurences including one Palestinian activist who got crushed to bits as he was pushed under a London bus. Throughout Europe, many assassinations were happening, all unconnected to the outside world, but the Black September and its patriarchal organizations knew that Mossad was knocking them off. Hence Black September planned to launch a missile at Israel PM Golda Meir's aircraft in 1973 when she was about to land in Rome to meet the pope. The attempt was foiled just in time and the prime perpetrator of this proposed attack and the Munich Massacre, Ali Hassan Salameh made it to the top of Mossad's hit list. 

Salameh was a venerable figure among the PLO ranks and the commander of Force 17, the prime force in charge of Yasser Arafat's security. His tactics and mission planning capability made him unnervingly frightening to the Israelis and their fight against the Palestinians. While Salameh was the top target since 1972, Mossad prove too lumpen on 4 occasions including one in Norway when an innocent man was mistaken to be Salameh, and killed. Many Mossad agents were convicted for espionage and some were released. And the mission was called off because it made the whole Wrath of God pretty debilitated. 

Finally the mission resumed in 1978 when out of hibernation search and seek operations, Salameh was tracked down to Beirut. Being wary of the bungled up attempts that brought much disdain and contempt to Israel in the past, Mossad was careful not to jump the horses and to plan a mission to take off Salameh in the most punctiliously planned fashion with almost no scope for error. Multiple Mossad agents went and left and on the afternoon of 22nd January 1979, as Salameh's vehicle passed through a Volkswagen van, it exploded. All the passengers of the car, which comprised of Salameh and his bodyguards, were instantly killed and a few bystanders were extirpated as well. And finally, Mossad nipped off the biggest bud of PLO. 

Assassinations kept moving on with no rescinding and no consternation of any sorts. Some Mossad agents might've dithered on the issue in the beginning. But with the terrorists who were captured at the Munich massacre getting released when a Lufthansa flight was hijacked and the release of the former was demanded and secured, all of that fizzled away. At the prime of this assassination spree, Mossad partnered with Shin Bet and Israeli navy in carrying out a full blown Brobdingnagian assault on the PLPF headquarters in Lebanon. They killed 3 from the original list of Black September's perpetrators, and many other PLO and PLPF staff. 

It is believed that it was only in the 90's that the operation was formally terminated with only 2 of the original list of the 11 Palestinian operatives believed to have planned the Black September attacks left alive. Israel didn't expect the terrorist forces to blench or cower, and the Black September did cause quite some quagmire through their letter bombs sent to many Israeli embassies But Israel did in fact accomplish the task of taking down many of those it intended to. Once again, it serves to act as a testimony to the legerity and perspicacity of Mossad, which was successful in running probably one of the largest espionage and termination operations to be ever carried out.

This article is a series of articles, all intended to outline some of the bravest feats Mossad has pulled off. For more, please visit the following links.

Main article:

Operation Thunderbolt : Mossad's reply to an airplane hijacking

On 27th of June 1976, an Air France flight bound for Paris via Athens, left from the Tel Aviv international airport in Israel. The flight had about 180 odd passengers and around 50 were to board at Athens. These 50 included 4 terrorists who immediately after the takeoff, hijacked the plane and brought upon the world a rather dastardly piece of news with the demon of hijackings back in action. The airplane was diverted through multiple territories and was finally brought to a halt at the Entebbe international airport in Uganda, a country that back then was ruled by Idi Amin, a ferocious Machiavellian dictator. Amin, in a surprising move, welcomed the hijacking and the terrorists. In fact Uganda's secret service agents and commandos were personally sent to Entebbe to assist the terrorists in their ghastly operation. Israel stared at the real face of devil, one that could collude and complicit with another devil. It was absolute havoc! 

The terrorists set heavy demands in lieu for the release of the hostages. It included a ransom of 5 million USD as well as the release of 56 prisoners in total, out of which around 40 were present in many of Israel's penitentiaries. The deadline for the demands to be met was set to 1st of July, post which the terrorists were to commence killing of the passengers. Israel set itself on heavy diplomatic negotiations and accosting, and directly and indirectly through its katsas and sayanim reached out to many top notch leaders and bureaucrats, including Yaseer Arafat! Arafat actually sent his ambassadors to Idi Amin and the terrorists to allow for a peaceful resolution. However, all of this met a blind eye, and the beadle among the bevy Idi Amin, started personally visiting the Entebbe terminal everyday to greet the terrorists and assure the hostages that he was a part of the negotiations. 

By seeing every other approach fail, Israel finally asked for an extension of the deadline to the 4th of July, which was approved. But instead of deference and fulfillment of demands, Israel sought to fight back by sending their IDF commandos to carry out the rescue. In the meanwhile, many developments were taking place at Entebbe and once again Mossad became the fulcrum of the operations by collecting all the intelligence it could to ensure the success of the rescue mission. 

At Entebbe, an unused old terminal building was used to house the hostages. And then in due course of time, a separation of passengers was carried out into Israelis and non-Israelis. The aircraft roster was used, and the passports came handy in doing so. However, a couple of Jews, who held dual citizenship couldn't be identified and were put in the non-Israeli block. But surprisingly, as the non-Israeli block was evacuated slowly and steadily, these Jews proclaimed their Jewish origin and joined their own people to share the same fate. It was only a matter of time when all non-Israeli passengers were evacuated and left behind were 92 hostages, mainly Israelis but all Jews, and 12 Air France crew members. And the terrorists simply awaited their appraisal.  4th of July was almost around. 

At Israel, something intense was being planned. It was a rescue operation named Operation Entebbe/Thunderbolt. Mossad was able to get in touch with some passengers who were released to find the specifics of the building where they were held. Mossad was hence able to draw a pretty accurate profiling of the terrorists and Ugandan commandos carrying out the seizure, and of the interiors and connections of the building itself. Veritably in their inquires, Mossad found out that the airport building was constructed by an Israeli company! Mossad was quick to bring them on board and to help them in creating an exact replica of the designated section of the terminal building where the hostages were held. Mossad hence did all the groundwork to ensure that the IDF had sufficient intelligence in carrying out the operation. 

On the eve of 3rd of July, 4 Lockheed Hercules C-130 aircraft along with other carriers flew over the Red Sea route, at a pretty gnawing low height to avoid radar detectio,n and the flights finally found their way to Entebbe. The overall operations team was divided into a ground support team, an assault team of 29 members, a team to clear the military strip near the airport to destroy Ugandan aircraft in order to prevent aerial retaliation, and  finally a team of paratroopers to take on the Ugandan commandos. 

As the C-130s approached, a cavalcade of vehicles moved out of their rear storage. This included a black Mercedes and a set of Range rovers. This was the exact replica of Idi Amin's personal caravan and Mossad believed that it could be used as the perfect guise for the IDF commandos to enter the terminal without anyone as much as catching a whiff. No Ugandan commando would've dared to stop Amin's vehicles, they believed. However, Mossad lacked one really important piece of intelligence. Amin had bought a white Mercedes just a few days ago. Hence, as the procession crossed, it was halted and the commandos were brought into action sooner than they'd expected to. 

Fire broke from the Ugandan side, but the IDF commandos were too swift to knock them out in no time, first with silent pistols from point blank range, but then later with rifles because the sentinels were still alive. This obviously alerted the terrorists holding the hostages captive. Next, IDF commandos swerved past the main portico and rushed into the terminal building, moving from section to section, till they finally found the first section of hostages. They used the loudspeakers to pronounce in Hebrew and English, asking everyone to stay down, but a few sprang up and were mutilated instantly. 

Next, room after room the commandos looked for the 4 terrorists. The 4 comprised of 2 Palestinian terrorists and two German revolutionary guards. One such guard held many hostages captive in one section, not shooting at them even once but waiting to confront the commandos. He was killed in one clear shot. Next, the commandos sought help from the hostages to find out where the remaining 3 terrorists were hiding. The intrepid hostages pointed towards a section leading into a room. The commandos overwhelmed the opening with grenades, then swiftly moved into the section and killed all three in no time. They started taking the hostages out of the main entrance towards the C-130s for immediate evacuation, when the Ugandan guards from the main traffic control tower started firing. 

There was crossfire from the IDF commandos, but the commander in-charge Yonathan Netanyahu, notably the younger brother of the current Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu, was shot in chest and killed instantly. Finally, the Israeli force suppressed the Ugandan guards, and the Israeli fleet left with about 100 passengers, leaving behind lifeless a few hostages, some Air France crew members, one commando, the terrorists, and about 45 Ugandan guards. Also worth noting is that 11-30 of Uganda's MiG 17 and 21 aircraft were completely destroyed and the Entebbe building was left in tatters, as it stands till date as shown in the following picture. 

"Entebbe Airport DF-ST-99-05538" by SRA Andy Dunaway -, J3003-SPT-94-03-003-0489. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons -
The Entebbe terminal where the hostages were held. The bullet marks are still pretty much visible.

A big problem in the rescue plan was of refueling because the C-130s were not capable of flying for that long a distance. Help had been sought in advance from Nairobi after a very rich Kenyan Jew businessman, also a Mossad sayanim, convinced the President through a upper rank minister to extend his help in that. Finally, the help came to avail and the aircraft was refueled at Nairobi from where it left for Israel and reached there on July 4th, 1976, coincidentally the 200th anniversary of signing of America's declaration of independence. 

There were some Kenyans who lived in Uganda and they were killed immediately, and the Kenyan president too was assassinated on the orders of a revanchist Idi Amin who was now more vindictive than ever. But governments, bureaucracies and intelligence agencies from all over the world, watched in awe as Mossad and IDF brought back their men and women, and did not let their nation succumb to the demands of a few fanatics. The raid was obviously criticized by many African nations and Palestinians, but gained praise from countries like US and UK. In fact France even passed on the Legion of Honor to a few members of the command force. Israel through the staunch supremacy of its IDF commandos and Mossad agents had yet again proven that they were definitely not timorous.

This article is a series of articles, all intended to outline some of the bravest feats Mossad has pulled off. For more, please visit the following links.

Main article:

How Mossad's Mega made Bill Clinton dance on his toes

In the year 1997, when the world was going through quite some vortexes, a really big revelation struck multiple security agencies and inter agency bureaucrats in the US. The sudden death of the princess of Wales Diana(Which Mossad had a more than big a role to play in) had opened a Pandora's box of problems for the most powerful intelligence units including Britain's MI6, CIA, French DGSE and of course, Mossad. But back in the US, someone eavesdropped on a secure line telephone conversation between a Mossad undercover agent situated in the Israeli embassy in the US, and the director general of Mossad. There was reference to some hidden asset code named 'Mega' who was clearly situated deep enough inside the Clinton administration to be able to pass on some really secret documents of interest to Israel to some katsa.

While Israel and US intelligence agencies always shared a coquettish and rather phallic relationship in terms of taking down their common targets together, this presence of a 'Mega' agent at the helm of Clinton administration, jolted all agencies into the action with FBI taking the lead. Meanwhile, a discreet backdoor channel that exists between the Mossad to the CIA, which acts to expedite processes instead of the political traipsing that happens in matters of intelligence cooperation, was put to thorough scrutiny, with direct insinuations sent to Mossad to stop the 'Mega' affair. But Israel clearly denied any apostasy. 

Throughout the year, media leaks kept taking place and tabloids were full of what someone in CIA would sooner than latter term bushwa, but which surely wrecked the integrity of the US intelligence network, with headlines pummeling the Clinton administration for not only having a big Mossad mole in it, but more importantly for it not being able to trace down the mole. It almost resulted in a bit of an internecine battle where different agencies began squarely blaming others for the Mossad mole getting in. And finally, a coordinated mole hunt was initiated which met with a lot of resistance and confusing moves by Mossad in the begging, but with the help of NSA's Echelon monitoring system, FBI finally came withing striking distance. And that's when Mossad decided to get their bargaining chip to the hilt. 

Whole of the world knows today about the flirtations between Bill Clinton and Monica Lewinsky. But back then, apart from America's own intelligence services, it was only Mossad which had direct access to tapes that were enough to obliterate the President's already tarnished reputation. These included rather salacious conversations between the two, and Clinton apparently even warned Lewinsky of using secure communications as he feared her line might be tapped. But later it was discovered to everyone's surprise, the White House's own lines were tapped, ostensibly because it was an Israeli company that worked on the communications and because of which Israeli workers had unfettered access to all communication switch boxes! It is believed that through such access, Mossad was able to get their lined plugged into the White House's telephony, facsmile and Internet lines, and were able to record extremely explicit conversations between the two. When Mossad sensed the joint hunting teams closing in, Mossad in some way or the other, delineated the threat to White House. Not surprisingly, White House retreated and the hunt for 'Mega' was called off. Moreover, the news disappeared from all channels and rumor monger tabloids overnight. Poof! 

Meanwhile, the FBI, considering Clinton's decision as a blot on its own position, exhibited sheer temerity in pursuing Mega but in more subtle ways, until one day they realized the whole affair had turned otiose and with no relevant leads. Mega was now buried in the section of FBI's abandoned projects. Mossad had sent out the signal. Even the world's most powerful administration supported by the even more powerful intelligence apparatus was penetrable. Some believe that Mega was not an agent, but the 'Boss' himself! Who is this 'Boss' is which they're referring to, only Mossad knows. And it obviously shall remain a pretty closely guarded secret much like every other facet of this mysterious agency.

This article is a series of articles, all intended to outline some of the bravest feats Mossad has pulled off. For more, please visit the following links.

Main article:

Operation Finale : How Mossad put the world's biggest murderer on trial

With the world witnessing the downfall of Adolf Hitler's heinously justified empire, the Nazis as well as the holocaust survivors got into a bizarre slugfest of sorts. As the Nazi leadership went into oblivion, men and women were quick to renounce all their associations as they were sought by both the Allied Forces as well as the highly unorganized Israeli battalion. Many fled away and receded into the alcoves of nothingness to escape perdition, and while the world went jubilant to the end of the most hideous Adolf till date, another equally repugnant Adolf went away and avoided the expurgation. This demon was Adolf Eichmann. 

Eichmann was the greater Adolf's point man in the execution of the latter's final strategy "The final solution" for dredging the Jewish 'scum' off the planet. Hence the pedicular responsibility to operate the holocaust gas chambers and massive enslaving and termination facilities with all pertinent logistics, came under the direct suzerainty of Eichmann. With Hitler never even personally visiting any of the concentration camps, Eichmann became the chief executioner of the world's most Goliath genocide - The Jewish holocaust. And now with Berlin in absolute doldrums, Eichmann surreptitiously moved out and fled away from the smoldering Jewish fury for vengeance. 

"Eichmann, Adolf" by Yad Vashem and the United States Holocaust Museum do not name an author.The Bayerische Staatsbibliothek website attributes the image to Heinrich Hoffmann (1885–1957) (image: hoff-895; negative: Hoffmann 8841), a German photographer who was known as Hitler's personal photographer. The library obtained the negative and a copy of the image as part of a collection purchased from Hoffmann's son in 1993.Following an inquiry from a Wikipedian in 2014, the library checked the negative and confirmed "with certainty" that this is not one of Hoffmann's images. His negatives were made of glass and had identifying numbers etched onto them. The library said they cannot determine the authorship of the Eichmann negative. - Yad Vashem (see here, and here for a version with a signature); the caption of this image on another page (link doesn't work) reads "Eichmann, RSHA (Reich Central Security Office), 1942, Collection Archive, Yad Vashem Archives."The image is also available at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, crediting DIZ Muenchen GMBH, Sueddeutscher Verlag Bilderdienst. The latter credits "S. M." Photograph number (Bild-ID): 126367.. Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia -,_Adolf.jpg#/media/File:Eichmann,_Adolf.jpg
Adolf Eichmann in his Nazi Regalia
Shortly after the Axis disintegration, the focus of Israel moved on to the strengthening of its dominion against all its Arab neighbors. However, the focus on nabbing Eichmann never fizzled even a bit. Day after day, top leaders sat to see where they stood on finding out Eichmann. It was pretty much clear Eichmann had developed many close contacts during his term as Hitler's top man, and he was going to leverage on some of them to settle in one of the many countries, which in a rather reticent way, still supported the Nazi cause. Hence getting Eichmann to Israel was the classic example of seeking a needle in a hay sack.

Year after year, the search continued. With Mossad's formation in 1949, all the relevant files on Eichmann were passed on to them. It included photos from his SS file. The same were circulated among all the Mossad katsa network which was now pretty widespread. The help of many sayanim was also sought to see if someone who fit in Eichmann's description was checking in at a hotel or aa airport or was boarding a taxi. And soon, much to their chagrin, Mossad found out that Eichmann might have undergone a plastic surgery in a circumventing move. 

The Nazis had championed the technique of plastic surgery, all just to further their unedifying agenda to besmirch Jews as being inferior to and distinct from the pure Aryan race. There were rumors that in the Jewish concentration camps, children who didn't look Jewish were made to look more Jewish to justify their entrapment. It was now conceived that one such deft doctor from the Nazi days might have come at Eichmann's avail to get him a makeover. 

While any other intelligence agency would've moved on to the more pressing matters, Mossad has always been relentless on getting to the guillotine someone who just as much as got featured on their list. Hence Mossad analysts sat on the job of coming up with multiple visages of Eichmann so that many prospective faces and corporeal profiles could be created, and distributed among the ever pervasive katsa network. And so it happened! 

From 1946 onward till 1960, katsas all over the world indulged in a massive and a rather eternal lookout for Eichmann, who as per Mossad was definitely alive and had assumed a new look. The team of analysts kept revising their facial estimates of how Eichmann would look then on the basis of many innuendos Mossad's katsas kept receiving from multiple informers spread all over the world. The search seemed endless and incessant until that one day in 1960 when Mosaad's network got the much awaited piece of info. 

A man who resembled one of the many of Eichmann's prospective profiles drawn up by Mossad's own surgeons, was spotted in Buenos Aires in Argentina. It was definitely among one of the many cities where Mossad thought Satan's own child could be. He was working under the guise of a red cross officer and used to go to work with a rather innocuous job role, by catching up a bus every single day. It was this inveterate routine that Mossad chose to capitalize to bring him down. 

On one fine evening in the May of 1960, as Eichmann was walking back to his apartment, a Mossad unit led by the legendary Rafi Eitan(Who later became the most successful director general of Mossad), swiftly made their moves. Before anyone could catch a whiff, 2 men from the back of a Buick limousine moved out, muffled Eichmann to tamper his howl, and snatched him and hurled him on the back seat. He was immediately sedated. As Eitan had Eichmann's head in his lap, he observed the distinctive scar marks on Eichmann's neck, which reaffirmed that it was Eichmann indeed. From there on, Mossad's main problem begun. 

While capturing Eichmann was a feat in itself, getting him out of the country and back to Israel was quite a gargantuan task. However, Mossad's grip on the matters was so surreal and pragmatic, that they had a solution for that as well. Eichmann was put in a safe house and he didn't prove very trenchant or non-cooperative. He probably realized that fate had the better of him. In the meanwhile, Mossad executed the small steps that were to lead in the most massive covert spurious expat operation ever conducted. 

A conference was scheduled to take place in Argentina, and an El Al(Israel's national carrier) airlines was sent with a truckload of delegates. But scattered in this concoction were Mossad katsas who were to carry out the crucial task of getting Eichmann to Israel. As the conference went on, Eichmann was given another makeover. Ironically, as the first one got him spared for 15 years, the second one was his death knell. Eichmann's hair was colored and was given a mustache that made him appear prominently Jewish. He was then put on the El Al flight back to Israel, where he was made to look like a sick El Al crew member. He was heavily sedated for him to not be able to as much as speak a word. Finally, amid much tension and apprehensions, the flight took off, quenching much of the gnarling anxiety the Mossad operatives had in their minds about pulling off the most preposterously risque operation with supreme sagacity. It was the closest real life came close to real life in producing a gut wrenching climax. 

Eichmann was flown to Israel where on the next morning, an elated Prime Minister announced to a flummoxed parliament and to the world, that Adolf Eichmann, the most notorious Nazi perpetrator still alive, whose prime job was to get millions of Jews from France and other countries to Germany and gavel them to damnation, was now not very far from the noose. Later on May 31st 1962, Eichmann was hanged. It was the only hanging ever announced on the holy lands. His body was cremated and ashes scattered all over the sea. And with that, Mossad thought Israel may never have to encounter the unrestrained antisemitism. But not to be!

Mossad - Israel's invincible hitman!

As a nation, Israel might hold various connotations depending upon who is considering them. Antisemitism could comprise of  pretty substantial portion of people because they consider Judaism to be a sacrilege in itself. Hence most of the middle east as well as most of the European world(tacitly, of course) holds quite a rather staunch animosity against the current occupants of the holy land. On the other end of the spectrum is the United States which considers Israel as a pivotal ally in its Middle East policy execution, duly enshrined in their political, diplomatic and military ties. Further, there are countries like India and China whose position vacillates and is largely dependent on our own interests. And finally, there are people who are neutral in their orientation on this rather turbulent subject of Israel v/s Middle East, but who surely are fascinated by how this minuscule set of dots on the map, went on to become the mightiest force of the Middle East. 

The onus of protecting the country shortly after the massive conquest of the 1948 Israel Arab war, which Israel shocked the whole world by being triumphant in, came on the shoulders of the country's multiple military wings. Most of the intelligence was gathered and dutifully disseminated by IDF(Israel Defense Forces), the pinnacle at the integration of this fledgling state's military and security services. ShinBet/Shabak was assigned to be IDF's prime intelligence unit. 

Israel's history with its involvement in wars and with its insistence on its own independent Jerusalem is marred with bloodshed, frays and most intriguingly, human intelligence(Hum Int). Ever since the era of Gideon, the legendary fabled warrior, battles were waged and won with prior and credible human intelligence at the forefront of the Jewish strategy to outwit the belligerents. And about 20 centuries down the line, in 1949-50, Israel's intelligence gathering system was further restructured to produce an agency that would bring the innate human intelligence gathering capabilities of the Jews at the zenith again. Two agencies sprung out of this - Amaan and Mossad. The latter is what sends bolts across the spine of anyone who dares to even as much as conspire against the state of Israel. 

The more I have plunged and delved into how exactly was Israel able to topple the more than ever united Middle East in the 6 day war and the Yom Kippur war, the more I found out about the multiple impregnable covert operations Mossad has been able to carry out well in advance for the IDF to take on from and then to literally annihilate the many supreme powers of the Middle East. Israel has had to confront PLO, Syria, Iraq, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, Uganda, Hezbollah, Hamas and many more countries and entities in the past. Israel had always been woefully outnumbered against all these enemies it took on at different times in the history. Experts attribute Israel's stupendous success to armory and support from US and the country's own surreal information gathering ability and military might. But at the heart of most of Israel's ruthless quest for its own survival has been Mossad!

Over the last few days, I've devoured a lot of content on this subject matter, and I came across many books, articles and documentaries that, in astonishing detail, have captured most of what Mossad does and how it does it. However even with surfeit of literature available, I'm bewildered to know how unaware most of us are of this lethal unassailable force that is taking up the most fatuously perilous missions and is accomplishing most of the set objectives, every other day. Hence I'm preparing these brief accounts of some of Mossad's most spine chilling adventures, which are bereft of most of the operational details and any bias towards Israel's own position at the helm of all its conflicts. These accounts are there to serve as an exordium to the utmost lack of fear and the enormous penchant for rampage and tractability that Mossad agents have got. 

Before we commence the series, here are a few Hebrew terms you'd have to familiarize yourselves with:

Katsa - Hebrew word for an agent/operative.

Kidon - A Mossad assassin

Sayanim - One or a set of local jews who have usual professions but who when called upon by Mossad, can provide intelligence as well as direct/indirect help to Mossad katsas involved in an operation. In short, this is a cell of Jews whose help can be called upon. They may be hotel butlers, drivers, travel agents and what not.

Knesset - The Israeli parliament.

Gideon - The mighty mythical warrior designated as the supreme pontiff in the Hebrew Bible's "Book of Judges"

Sunday, 8 November 2015

Intolerance is in our blood!

When I was pretty small my mom shared a parable right from her own childhood days. She shared the story of two young peasants. They were from the lower social strata and were employed under the vassalage of a very opulent landlord. One was a young man of about 20 and who was very particular about working hard and rising among the ranks of petty laborers as one who could get more to the small towns from his hamlet. And the other was a nubile daughter of another family with a history of producing labor for this landlord's lineage. Hence both were bonded labor but the only thing between them was the difference of their castes. 

While the caste of both of them, duly represented by their position in the society, was pretty low, one was considered more inferior by the others. In fact we've got so many castes and hierarchy of castes that multiple castes at the same level of the tree may be led to believe that the other one should stoop in front of them. And so struck the ogre of casteism on these two on that one scorching afternoon! 

Right in the middle of the summer heat, the young boy was using the sickle to plough through a small section of wheat fields, and the girl was walking through the furrows in the field to carry a small container with vermilion that her mother had called for. Suddenly, a strong wave of hot summery wind flew and vermilion from the container, whose lid dropped out, swooshed all over the place. It initially mottled the girl and then made conspicuous marks over the lambent white kurta of the young man. And suddenly there was clamor bigger than anyone witnessed. 

Given the historical relevance of vermilion in an Indian gamy, the act was commensurate with a spurious and rather blasphemous marriage, and the sarpanch - the Indian version of the satrap, immediately issued the missive that the girl and boy be buried alive at the corner of the wheat plantations. It was to act as some collective sacrifice for the sacrilege they were party to. The girl and boy had barely talked to each other, and now everyone spread rumors about their assignations and them conversing and roaming around, which further fumigated the local populace and everyone wanted to see the two being buried alive asap.

Folklore my mom shared ensued in the ferreting spirits of the two, who were branded an illicit couple, turning rogue and ravaging the village, which was kind of absurd. But that story had an enormous impact on me. It exposed me to the vagaries of the caste and class systems that seem to be prevailing in the country since time immemorial. And the fact that our culture has so much to offer and is such a concoction of colors has since done little to assuage the impact that this ghastly malignant stigma of our society made through that story. 

Throughout my formative years as I forayed into the reams of textbooks, everything and every piece I read on the nation tried to convince me that I have to be exorbitantly proud of this country's rich heritage; and that our cultural supremacy is simply too magnificent to be refuted and questioned. As I interacted with people - people from other religions, other castes, other places - I realized that everyone indeed is taking immense pride in their provenance. That everyone does owe a part of theirs to their own values and traditions, deeply imbibed like plaits in the harmonious fabric of the nation as a whole. Things seemed nice for a moment and I thought it's fatuous to question who we have been and what we represent. And I reserved all that umbrage I've had for this nation until now. I took offense on many things, but I kept telling myself that I am the one at fault. And then one day I realized I am too docile to think that this reek we're living in is the aroma everyone claims it to be! 

Look at the things we're concerned about when we start a conversation with someone. Our first question may be an ice breaker about the weather, but our mind is always hovering around the possibility of knowing the person's name(to find his religion if the appearance doesn't make it obvious) and then their surname(To find the sect within the religion). And the decision whether or not to continue the conversation wholeheartedly is sealed there. If the person's religion and sect are compatible with what we have marked in our database as 'acceptable' we proceed with asking about that person's place, family and what not. And if the mind sends a red signal, poof and off goes all anxiety to know about this stranger! 

Look at the larger picture and you'd see that except for a handful of states, all others would like to be identified through the majority populations. In fact even if you look at official classifications, you can have beeline categories dictated through largely predominant religion, caste and creed. And then at times the turbulence that steams through the mismatch of a wrong population finding itself under a wrong classification erupts in the form of states breaking up. In fact back in 1950 we had a far fewer number of states. And then as politically motivated crusades centered largely along religious polarization took place, states broke and merged and broke again, leading to the ever increasing number of states we've got today. 

In essence, except for classifications as per natural resources, our religion and caste become the only way of categorizing people among states. And what's not surprising is that the stereotypes we associated with the classes, castes or sects of people have become automatically associated with these states. And what takes the biggest hit in the process is the country as a whole. 

A few days ago I visited the Museum of India's struggle for independence situated inside a palatial building at Lal Quila, Delhi. I wasn't sure what I was going to see in lieu of the paltry 10 Rupees I spent to enter. There were fuse based telephones from world war 2, a torn German flag our soldiers brought with them, and all kinds of spears,bows and rifles. And then I came across a letter written by a certain J Nicholson on the eve of the Sepoy Mutiny of 1857 and I felt a tinge of inspiring sensation fondle through my nerves. 

The letter mentions the first official recognition of the fear and wrath that the largely unorganized but surreal and lethal self-led regiments of the army brought upon the British might. The letter reads as a testimony to the fact that India, considered to be a motley state of minion communes, was now above the vice of our differences, and that suddenly, out of nowhere, provinces that were further broken according to lead religions or castes or sects, came up and became India as a whole and revolted to the surprise of ourselves than of anyone else. And the Brits knew they didn't play on our central weakness well enough. 

What ensued in many years of further rule was an inexorable series of strategies, making India a palimpest of religious and caste based debauchery. The divide and rule policy became a catechism of the new rule and disintegration of India the prime motto. And I can only wonder how the supreme pontiff of this scene, the British monarchy, would've laughed when the country was torn apart in 1947, and how it continues to see a new state split up or renamed almost every now and then. We were treated like a herd of mules, all aligned when the Brits had a purpose, and all separated when we served our masters well. And hence half a million men successfully ruled a nation of half a billion. 

And that runs through our fabric even today. We intermingle and our differences don't appear on the surface every day, but we still continue to silently groan and chide someone from the other sect and clan just because we've historically done so. We say we are proud to represent our nation at some platform, but we are silently indebted to our state, and more so to our own community. In fact even today educational institutions of tremendous national and international repute have state based quotas, duly inscribing on the supposedly perfect fabric of our nation, the blots of apathy and indolence that lay beneath. 

Ask yourselves this question. How often would a Hindu and Muslim fall in love knowing each person's religion in advance? How often a north Indian lampoons someone from down in the south, and how often someone from the south takes pride in Google's Sundar Pichai being from south, rather than him being an Indian. How often we ridicule Sikhs without knowing the generous contributions they make, and how often we dismiss tribes as being too obsolete and then turn a blind eye when one gets a medal. How often do we term every person from the north east a 'Chinky' just like that, or how often we only seek business partners from our religion, our caste and maybe even from our own native place. 

We Indians are restricting into grotto of preservation. We take sublime pride in besmirching others just because they don't own a place in our caucus where we gained a place by birth. And above everything else, we have much more bizarre conceit in our lineage than in what we stand for. Within a 2 minute eulogy on someone, we inadvertently make a reference to their place in our large labyrinth of class, caste or creed. In fact the emphasis laid on surname tells you how much we love to do that. We essentially are not a nation, we never have been! We are a set of communities who feel obligated to their own part of the country, and their own place in the nation's history, but who feel it a mandate to live as one.

We consider it a birth right to go and settle in the bedazzling cities, but even there we like to congregate in pockets of our own communities. Muslim factions in one part, a community of Gujaratis in another, and a set of apartments owned by Bengalis in yet another one. And then we name these societies as per our long established traditions and take pride in bringing our own state and customs to a new city; not knowing that the prime purpose of the despots and crusaders was pretty much the same expect that they carried their identity to different countries. 

The reason I wrote this litany is because it bemuses me that a nation of people who consider themselves ruthlessly pragmatic, adorned with so much of their history, suddenly speak of rising intolerance in pretty riling terms. It's okay to speak and harangue those who are the usual culprits but it makes sense to see that we've never seen India free from its shackles in our lifetimes. Every decade and era is marked by some gable of communal violence, and yet we suddenly move out of our alcoves and shout and ask for a remedy. Truth be told, there is none! We're born with the hatred, which is further fostered by our society, and much more accentuated by the propagandists, caliphates and self proclaimed custodians of religions, who nail it to the last bit. We essentially are an army of lunatics, veiled with the pride of our identity, the same that continues to tarnish us perpetually, like a ticking time bomb, and yet we consider fighting intolerance with a spurt of intellectual rebellion. "How cute?", some Brit viceroy to India would silently be saying in his casket. We can't kill intolerance. It's in our blood!

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Leaders who were once spies.

Throughout the history of human civilization, one profession that never really got the respect it commanded, was that of intelligence gathering. Everyone saw the front end armies with their commanders in their distinct regalia. Everyone witnessed the prowess of the state leaders who ordered wars and plunged themselves. Moreover, even the coroners had a share of public space with POWs being sentenced to the noose and guillotine. However, a caucus of men, who surreptitiously and imperiled through the enemy lines, plodded through the reign of the enemy to get what could prove to be more vital than the most lethal weapon available - information; they decided the victors. Those who got it aplenty and got it first, won. Those who didn't, faded away in the pages of history. Gideon, the venerable out of the lore Jewish warrior, was the first one to send his spies to get nuggets of enemy strategy for drawing out plans for the first holy wars. And till date, nations that do it best are at the pinnacle of progress and integrity of sovereignty. And so powerful is the art of gathering intelligence, that those who knew how to do it well, went on to rule the world. 

Here's a few men, who at some point of time in their life were associated with some of the most indomitable intelligence agencies of the world. And boy, did they prove their mettle later on. 

Vladimir Putin, Soviet KGB 

Putin in KGB uniform
Oh yes, you've heard it right. The gallant Russian president with his suave spiels all over the world, and whose grip on his part of the world remains strong as ever, was a KGB agent and for very long! Post graduation, Putin was inducted into the lethal erstwhile Soviet union's zenith intelligence agency in 1975. He was considered inept and anomalous as per his initial assessment. In fact he assumed the role of a haberdasher of sorts. He had multiple appointments and transfers and he largely spent his time collecting piles and piles of information in Leningrad. He later on moved on to East German Soviet occupied territory where he became a more covert spy with a more discreet cover of being a translator at an embassy. His job was to coordinate with Statsi, the erstwhile soviet intelligence agency in East Germany in looking for new recruits. They were to be sent undercover to the US.

Post the collapse of the USSR, Putin kept pestering Moscow for his next orders after the Berlin wall was razed, and soviet supremacy mutilated. Putin was later on recalled to Leningrad, where he became a spy who would carry out top level espionage on college students with an eye on the outcome of the impending elections. KGB was history, and now Putin had a much more politically motivated espionage conquest to carry out. One that saw him get close enough to the rank and file of new Russia's political masters, in whose plenum he later sealed his position as the supreme soprano! 

George H W Bush, CIA

Need we say anything more

Out of thin air, one day this troubadour of 70's American politics, Mr. Bush was anointed the Director General of CIA, undoubtedly the world's most widespread intelligence phenomenon. Post that what transpired was pure revelation. Mr. Bush's presence at the helm of literally one of this world's most formidable powerhouses, was not very much welcome. And rightly so. Mr. Bush had assumed more political and diplomatic roles, and then there was this specious connection that till date remains in the twilight of dark American assassination rampage as an unsolved mystery. Mr Bush, some believed was closely related to JFK's tragic end. And then what ensued post Mr. Bush's term as the head of CIA, became a cornerstone for his surreal rise to the top. Some considered him sibylline and some a masterful manipulator. Of course he could be. He was CIA, after all!

Ariel Sharon, Mossad/Shin Bet

Sharon, the solider!
Israel's premiership has been quite a quizzical maze. Right from the wars of 48' to Benjamin Netanyahu, everyone seems to have been a part of the country's defining military coups and wars that can send down shrivels across the largest armies of the middle east. Ariel Sharon, the 11th prime minister of the Semitic occupancy on the holy lands, was no different. 

A man who had a pivotal role with his commands in the War of Jerusalem's freedom, the legendary 6 day war and the Yom Kippur war, Sharon was a veteran with an unmatched bravura and stupendous military excellence. On his day his platoon could humiliate one twice their size, and this was largely because of right and timely decision making, all owing to Sharon's construed view of human intelligence. 

Sharon has been a leading advocate of human intelligence and its role in decision making. While NSA and MI6 indulge in flabbergasting satellite surveillance, Sharon was hell bent on top notch human infiltration and that's how he led his brigades to victory in wars that rocked the middle east. In fact, Mr. Sharon was once deployed as an intelligence officer for central command. That was 1950, when Israel was finding its footing among a murky and baloney of a regime. In 1952, the world's deadliest intelligence service Mossad was formed, grabbing pieces of what people like Sharon had left behind in the wars that made the world what it is today!

Osama Bin Laden, CIA 

Okay. Unlike all other mentions in this stolid attempt to bring to the fore something I find rather startling, this one connection needs further perusal to be faithfully established. Nevertheless, keeping in line with the quintessential element of uncertainty, so pervasive in the grisly world of espionage, let's mention this anyhow. 

It is believed that Osama Bin Laden had once worked for the CIA as a partial point man in Afghanistan. This was apparently a part of America's desperate assault to dredge the soviets off the lands. It is further believed that as a part of America's long term strategy to promote the Mujahid by bestowing upon them unmatched armory from the US, Laden too was trained in weaponry and in both espionage and counterespionage to work under cover for the CIA, so that the US could get a tab on the Soviet preparation in the area, and to equip the local belligerents to knock them off. If any of this is true, then CIA in a way fostered the Goliath who later on become their biggest bete noire. 

The world outside is pretty clamorous and full of din. Countries engage in open affrays and regimes are toppled every now and then. Countries upbraid others on global pulpits and issue threats of nuke vengeance. But someone somewhere, silently ingratiates people of influence, and steers through the reek of global fracas, and finally fights their way back to homeland, to provide some really important decision maker with a make or break resource that can have a bearing on the lives of millions. So the next time you see someone surge to success overnight, do check if they ever served the murky world of intelligence sometime! 

We might have missed out on some significant names here. Dwight Eisenhower, the commander of the Allied forces, who went on to alleviate the world, was also involved in some primordial form of intelligence gathering. He served as the president later on. Pervez Musharraf too had coordinated with the ISI many a time and has been deeply involved in that domain. There could be many more and I'd be more than happy to accept additions to this list I want to see becoming more replete and consummated.