Israel, Iran and the all-seeing eye of the Mossad
Jake Wallis Simons - September 19th, 2012
It has been revealed that last month there was another covert attack on Iran’s nuclear project, in which the power cables to the Fordow Enrichment Plant were blown up. As with all attacks of this sort, at least two purposes were served. Firstly, the development of nuclear weapons was disrupted; secondly, it was intended to have a damaging impact on Iranian morale.
The perpetrators of this operation remain unconfirmed, but the immediate suspects will naturally be the Mossad. This may be true, but in much of the Muslim world there is a perception of the Israeli military machine as having a superhumanly long grasp. Notwithstanding Israel’s various inconclusive recent military operations, it maintains an almost mythological status. The legacy of Entebbe, Operation Wrath of God and the Six Day War lives on: the reputation of Israel’s military and secret services is so fearsome that it has been blamed for everything from the Breivik massacre in Norway to shark attacks in the Red Sea.
For its part, the Mossad has always seemed keen to perpetuate this reputation. Their attacks have always been as flamboyant and audacious as they are deadly. From the 1996 killing of the Hamas suicide bombmaker Yahya Ayyash, whose head was blown off by a booby-trapped mobile phone, to the assassination of the Hamas weapons smuggler in Dubai two years ago, for which operatives disguised themselves as tennis players (in Israel, tennis kit has become a standard fancy dress outfit), Mossad operations command the attention of the world. Even magnetic bombs on motorcycles have entered our cultural consciousness, and have sparked (failed) copycat attacks.