A Digest of debkafile Round-the-Clock Exclusives in Week Ending July 7, 2005:

debkafile Exclusive: The Hizballah infiltrators were spies


1 July: A large group of Hizballah infiltrators spent two days in the Har Dov corner of the Golan Heights Wednesday and Thursday, June 29-30 – something which has never happened before. Israeli military intelligence, still puzzling over its mission, wonders why they risked crossing the border in broad daylight – albeit under cover of heavy Hizballah shelling against Israeli border positions. One Israeli soldier was killed and three injured in the incident.

Some initial conclusions reached by debkafile‘s military sources –

1. The Hizballah sent a single large team of between 6 and 10 men – and not several small ones as believed.

2. The raiders were not looking for a fight with Israeli forces. Their mission was to gather intelligence. This is deduced from their stubborn insistence on staying on after their presence was discovered by an Israeli special unit and they lost two men in a firefight. They then split up into several small groups to elude the Israeli hunt and finish their task of collecting information.

They stuck to their mission even after Israeli combat helicopters sprayed heavy machine gun fire over the terrain to flush them out of hiding.

3. The IDF has no knowledge of the precise mission or what intelligence they were able to collect.

4. The place selected by the infiltrators for their incursion is interesting – Har Dov, the rugged mountain ridge of northeastern Israel that borders on Lebanon. It is uninhabited country that ranges from the Blue Line marking the Israel-Lebanese border and the military fence. This is Israeli territory, not in dispute like the Shabaa farms further to the north. The Hizballah trespassers did not break through the fence but moved along it. They appeared to be saying that Israel could no longer count on attacks being confined to the location under dispute; its own sovereign territory was now fair game.

Israel’s northern border positions are still on high alert Friday, July 1.


Why Film Director Steven Spielberg Should Avoid Malta this week


2 July: Wednesday, July 30, Steven Spielberg began filming in Malta the highly-charged account of the undercover Mossad team which was ordered by the late Israeli prime minister Golda Meir to hunt down and assassinate Palestinian terrorists after the massacre of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Munich Olympics.

debkafile‘s counter-terror experts comment it is not a good week to start shooting in Malta. The director of the War of the Worlds and his crew would be well advised to give the Mediterranean island a wide berth for the moment because of certain events that might even place them in harm’s way..

The Palestinian Jihad Islami plans this week to commemorate the 10th anniversary of its founder, Fathi Shikaki’s assassination in Malta. He took five bullets from two motorcyclists as he stepped out of his Malta hotel in October 1995. Israel has never either confirmed or denied that the killers were Mossad. Under Shikaki’s leadership, Jihad murdered dozens of Israelis in terrorist attacks. This murderous campaign continues under his successor up until the present day.

According to our sources, US and Israeli security authorities are worried that the Jihad Islami may typically decide to mark its commemoration date by hitting American or Israeli targets somewhere in the Middle East.

Jihad has more than one reason for lashing out in the coming few days.

Its kingmaker, Professor Sami Aal-Arian, is on trial in Florida for conspiracy to collect funds for the Jihad Islami’s terrorist operations against Israel. Many Israeli victims of the organization’s terrorist attacks have been called to testify.

It is worth considering the possibility of the concatenation of date, US trial, and the filming in Malta of an American movie whose theme is an episode of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict striking the Jihad leader Shalah as a timely setting for a terrorist attack on an American target famous enough to shake the world. That is, if the target is placed in easy range on Malta.

Last week, Iran elected a hardline president who is committed to sponsoring jihadist terrorism. That same Jihad Islami is a prime operational arm of the Iranian terrorist machine. Its networks across the Middle East and the West Bank and Gaza Strip receive logistical and intelligence backing from the Tehran-sponsored Hizballah’s undercover agencies. The harder Washington leans on the Lebanese Shiite terrorists to disarm, the more aggressive the Hizballah and those networks will be and the more determined to get their own back at America.


Putin in surprise call for world cooperation to help US in Iraq


3 July: Russian president Vladimir Putin urged the world community to pool efforts with the US to promote stability in Iraq. Past disputes should not prevent future cooperation, said Putin while hosting German chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and French president Jacques Chirac at Svetlogorsk outside Kaliningrad Sunday, July 3, a get-together of three leaders who opposed the 2003 Iraq war.

debkafile‘s political sources explain Putin’s surprise volte face on Iraq as influenced by the solid progress made in the Amman conciliation talks with Sunni guerrilla leaders brokered by former Iraqi prime minister Iyad Allawi, first revealed by debkafile. The Russian leader is throwing his support behind the US because he sees a real chance of a breakthrough. The kidnap of the Egyptian envoy in Baghdad July 3 is further indication of progress. Egypt is a lead player in the inter-Arab umbrella granted the peace effort. The abductors aim for sabotage by holding the diplomat to political ransom. He will be harmed unless Cairo desists from its support for the Amman initiative,


Palestinians demand an extra 2 km of Israel’s Negev north of Gaza Strip


5 July: This would entail evacuating the veteran Israeli moshav Netiv Ha’Asara as well as the Gaza Strip. Palestinian Gaza would stretch north almost to Sderot’s outskirts.

At a briefing to the Knesset foreign affairs and security meeting, Monday, July 4, Israel’s national security council director Giora Eiland revealed this demand was made in a conversation he had with Palestinian minister Mohammad Dahlan on the pull-back.

He replied the Gaza Strip’s northern border was signed and sealed by mutual consent with international endorsement in 1950. However Netiv Ha’Asara residents are gearing up for battle.

debkafile‘s Palestinian sources add: The Gaza land claim is just the prelude to an extensive Palestinian plan to grab tracts of Israeli territory abutting on the northern West Bank after Israel removes four communities in mid-August. They are citing President George W. Bush’s reference to the 1949 armistice lines as the basis of peace negotiations, which he made during Israeli prime minister Ariel Sharon’s April 2004 visit to the White House.

The Palestinians are also demanding that no Israeli personnel man the border crossings out of the Gaza Strip – only a third party. They are in negotiation with a Swiss company.

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