Israel Immensely Proud of Intelligence Success, Tracking ‘Iranian’ Shipment of Missiles from Syria Bound for Gaza — Ship Seized by Israel

Israel’s politicians, military, and intelligence chiefs are immensely proud of the interception – by Israel’s navy — of a Panama-registered ship that was carrying powerful missiles believed to have originated in Syria, intended for delivery to the Palestinian radicals of Hamas in Gaza.

The M-302 rockets aboard the ship have a potential range of 125 miles, meaning that if they were fired from Gaza they could cause heavy damage to Israel’s large coastal city, Tel Aviv, and even the Dimona nuclear reactor.  If Hamas had gotten M-302 rockets, it would have been a game-changer.

Israeli officials, unusually talkative now about an operation that was kept secret for many weeks, say that the Mossad and Aman (the military intelligence agency) had been tracking the shipment for a long time — including the ship’s stop at a port in Iraq where grain was loaded aboard as a kind of cover story.

Israel’s navy stopped the ship — nearly 1,000 miles from Israel’s southernmost port, Eilat — and boarded it without having to fire a shot.  The captain was said to be Turkish, but the Israelis say they feel certain that the entire smuggling operation was controlled by Iran.

Prime Minister Netanyahu

Prime Minister Netanyahu

The officials say the intelligence operation was “spectacular” and “flawless.”  Defense Minister Moshe (Boogie) Ya’alon said the discovery of the missile-smuggling ship unmasks the true nature of the Iranian regime.  Echoing  Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Ya’alon said Iran’s leader may smile and speak in friendly tones, but they haven’t changed a bit in their active support for terrorist groups such as Hamas.

Netanyahu, conveniently, was in the United States — where he had made a point of repeatedly warning Americans not to believe the sweet words of the new Iranian president Hasan Rouhani.  Netanyahu returned to saber-rattling, declaring in Washington that Israel will never allow Iran to have even the capability of building a nuclear bomb — vowing he will do whatever is necessary to protect the Jewish state.

March 6, 2014

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