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Profile: Israel Institute for Intelligence and Special Tasks

 
  

Positions that Israel Institute for Intelligence and Special Tasks has held:



 

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Israel Institute for Intelligence and Special Tasks actively participated in the following events:

 
  

February 6, 2000: Apparent Mossad Attempt to Infiltrate al-Qaeda Thwarted      Complete 911 Timeline

      
Ephrahim Halevy is head of the Israeli Mossad from 1998 to 2002.
India's largest Newsweekly reports that it appears a recent Mossad attempt to infiltrate al-Qaeda failed when undercover agents were stopped on their way to Bangladesh by Indian customs officials. These 11 men appeared to be from Afghanistan, but had Israeli passports. One expert states, “It is not unlikely for Mossad to recruit 11 Afghans in Iran and grant them Israeli citizenship to penetrate a network such as bin Laden's. They would begin by infiltrating them into an Islamic radical group in an unlikely place like Bangladesh.” [The Week, 2/6/00]
People and organizations involved: Israel Institute for Intelligence and Special Tasks, al-Qaeda
          

December 2000-April 2001: Israeli Investigators Deported After Identifying Two Hijackers      Complete 911 Timeline

       According to later German reports, “a whole horde of Israeli counter-terror investigators, posing as students, [follow] the trails of Arab terrorists and their cells in the United States. ... In the town of Hollywood, Florida, they [identify] ... Atta and Marwan Alshehhi as possible terrorists. Agents [live] in the vicinity of the apartment of the two seemingly normal flight school students, observing them around the clock.” Supposedly, around April, the Israeli agents are discovered and deported, terminating the investigation. [Der Spiegel, 10/1/02]
People and organizations involved: Israel Institute for Intelligence and Special Tasks, Marwan Alshehhi, Mohamed Atta
          

June 2001: Germans Warn of Plan to Use Aircraft as Missiles on US and Israeli Symbols      Complete 911 Timeline

       German intelligence warns the CIA, Britain's intelligence agency, and Israel's Mossad that Middle Eastern militants are planning to hijack commercial aircraft to use as weapons to attack “American and Israeli symbols, which stand out.” A later article quotes unnamed German intelligence sources who state the information was coming from Echelon surveillance technology, and that British intelligence had access to the same warnings. However, there were other informational sources, including specific information and hints given to, but not reported by, Western and Near Eastern news media six months before 9/11. [Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, 9/11/01; Washington Post, 9/14/01; Fox News, 5/17/02]
People and organizations involved: UK Secret Intelligence Service, Israel Institute for Intelligence and Special Tasks, Central Intelligence Agency
          

August 8-15, 2001: Israel Reportedly Warns of Major Assault on the US      Complete 911 Timeline

       At some point between these dates, Israel warns the US that an al-Qaeda attack is imminent. [Fox News, 5/17/02] Reportedly, two high-ranking agents from the Mossad come to Washington and warn the FBI and CIA that from 50 to 200 terrorists have slipped into the US and are planning “a major assault on the United States.” They say indications point to a “large scale target,” and that Americans would be “very vulnerable.” They add there could be Iraqi connections to the al-Qaeda attack. [Daily Telegraph, 9/16/01; Los Angeles Times, 9/20/01; Ottawa Citizen, 9/17/01] The Los Angeles Times later retracts its story after a CIA spokesperson says, “There was no such warning. Allegations that there was are complete and utter nonsense.” [Los Angeles Times, 9/21/01 (B)] Other newspapers do not retract it.
People and organizations involved: Israel Institute for Intelligence and Special Tasks, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Central Intelligence Agency, al-Qaeda
          

August 23, 2001: Mossad Reportedly Gives CIA List of Terrorist Living in US; at Least Four 9/11 Hijackers Named      Complete 911 Timeline

       According to German newspapers, the Mossad gives the CIA a list of 19 terrorists living in the US and say that they appear to be planning to carry out an attack in the near future. It is unknown if these are the 19 9/11 hijackers or if the number is a coincidence. However, four names on the list are known, and these four will be 9/11 hijackers: Nawaf Alhazmi, Khalid Almihdhar, Marwan Alshehhi, and Mohamed Atta. [Die Zeit, 10/1/02; Der Spiegel, 10/1/02; BBC, 10/2/02; Ha'aretz, 10/3/02] The Mossad appears to have learned about this through its “art student spy ring.” Yet apparently, this warning and list are not treated as particularly urgent by the CIA and the information is not passed on to the FBI. It is unclear whether this warning influenced the decision to add Alhazmi and Almihdhar to a terrorism watch list on this same day, and if so, why only those two. [Der Spiegel, 10/1/02] Israel has denied that there were any Mossad agents in the US. [Ha'aretz, 10/3/02]
People and organizations involved: Central Intelligence Agency, Israel Institute for Intelligence and Special Tasks, Federal Bureau of Investigation, "Israeli art students", Khalid Almihdhar, Marwan Alshehhi, Nawaf Alhazmi, Mohamed Atta
          

September 4, 2001: Mossad Gives Another Warning of Major, Imminent Attack      Complete 911 Timeline

       “On or around” this day, the Mossad give their “latest” warning to the US of a major, imminent attack by al-Qaeda, according to sources close to Mossad. One former Mossad agent says, “My understanding is that the warning was not specific. No target was identified. But it should have resulted in an increased state of security.” US intelligence claims this never happened. [Sunday Mail, 9/16/01]
People and organizations involved: Israel Institute for Intelligence and Special Tasks, United States
          

September 11, 2001: Five Israelis Arrested for Puzzling Behavior near WTC      Complete 911 Timeline

      
The white van used by five Israeli agents as they were leaving New York on 9/11.
Five Israelis are arrested around 4:30 pm for “puzzling behavior” related to the WTC attacks: filming the burning WTC from the roof of their company's building near Liberty State Park, New Jersey, then shouting in what was interpreted as cries of joy and mockery. A neighbor spotted them and called the police and the FBI. The police tracked them down in a van with the words “Urban Moving Systems” written on the side. [Bergen Record, 9/12/01; Ha'aretz, 9/17/01] One man was found with $4,700 in cash hidden in his sock, another had two passports on him, and a box cutter was found in the van. [ABC News, 6/21/02] Investigators say that “[t]here are maps of the city in the car with certain places highlighted... It looked like they're hooked in with this. It looked like they knew what was going to happen.” [Bergen Record, 9/12/01] One of these Israelis later says, “our purpose was to document the event.” [ABC News, 6/21/02] The FBI later concludes at least two are Mossad agents and that all were on a Mossad surveillance mission. The FBI interrogates them for weeks. [Forward, 3/15/02] They are held on immigration violation charges, but are released 71 days later. [ABC News, 6/21/02] Their names are later identified as Sivan and Paul Kurzberg, Oded Ellner, Omer Marmari, and Yaron Shmuel. [Forward, 3/15/02]
People and organizations involved: World Trade Center, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Omer Marmari, Paul Kurzberg, Israel Institute for Intelligence and Special Tasks, Yaron Shmuel, Oded Ellner
          

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