Intelligence experts: No proven links between Bangkok blasts and Indian, Georgian attacks
Notwithstanding the loud and angry Israel official contentions that the three explosions in Bangkok Tuesday Feb. 13 were part of an Iranian global terror drive, senior Israeli intelligence sources told debkafile that no connection – other than circumstantial – had been uncovered as yet between that incident and the sticky-bomb attacks on Israeli official cars in New Delhi and the Georgian capital of Tbilisi 24 hours earlier.
The wife of an Israeli official and three Indians were seriously wounded in the first attack, which Indian home minister P Chidambaram attributed to a “very well trained person.”
In contrast, the Bangkok episode stands out as bizarre and aberrant: No terrorist attack actually took place there and there is no proof that the three persons who rented an apartment in the city were preparing to attack Israelis or anyone else, although they had bomb materials with them.
Something caused those materials to blow up and all three took to their heels. One of the trio, identified by his Iranian passport as Saeib Morabi, kept the explosives with him. He threw one at a local cab driver who refused to pick him up and another device at a policeman who came to arrest him. The second bomb bounced back and blew off one of his legs.
Senior intelligence experts find this conduct incredible. A terrorist on the run would above all keep his head down and avoid attracting attention. He would certainly not start throwing bombs on busy foreign streets.
Neither would members of a terrorist cell use their real identities and carry genuine passports. Those passports were used to rent an apartment in Bangkok on Feb. 8.
So why did Israeli officials assert so confidently that a major terrorist attack had been planned in Bangkok as part of the Iranian global campaign? Three reasons:
1. There are no plans for retaliation;
2. Israeli counter-terror agencies failed to see the New Delhi and Tbilisi bombing attacks coming on Feb. 13 and missed the start of a fresh wave of terror;
3. They are in the dark about the source or sources of the attacks on Israeli diplomats abroad and the investigations have a long way to go.
Tuesday, Thai police declined to make any link between the three explosions Tuesday and the arrest last month of a Lebanese man in Bangkok who had links to Hizballah.
At first, Israeli terrorist investigators assumed Hizballah carried out the bomb attacks on diplomats in Georgia and India to mark the fourth anniversary of the death of the Lebanese Shiite group’s commander in chief Imad Moughniyeh.
They shifted ground when it was discovered that a motorcyclist had attached a magnetic bomb to the Talya Koren’s car not far from the Israeli embassy, and noted that the attack mirrored the method used in the assassinations of Iranian nuclear scientists in Tehran.
Tuesday, Iranian spokesmen stopped denying responsibility for the incidents. Instead, Defense Minister Gen. Ahmad Vahidi, avoiding mention of Georgia and India, said this: “The Supreme Leader’s remarks indicate that we will never and under no circumstances back down and give in to the enemy’s threats, but we will make threats against them using appropriate mechanisms.”
He was confirming the strategy laid down at a three-way meeting in the summer of 2011 meeting between Vahidi, Syrian President Bashar Assad and Hizballah leader Hassan Nasrallah, which debkafile reported at the time from its military and intelligence sources.