Lebanon finds Israeli spies.

Mossad_crest"…the Lebanese government is taking a more pro-active role against alleged Israeli spies than in the past, when many of those accused of working with Israel escaped punishment or were treated leniently because they belonged to politically influential Christian militia groups. This time, the accused may face the death penalty. And in order to spread the word that times have changed, Hizballah and the government may declare a short amnesty period for spies to turn themselves in, after which no quarter will be given, the Hizballah operative told TIME." 


I worked in and around Lebanon for a long time.  The country has some of everything.  Pro-Western Christians, pro-Saudi Christians, Shia militiamen (lots of those), Sunni remnants of the old power structure, many of them in "bidness," policemen in a half dozen different agencies created distantly on old French colonial models (round up the usual…), an army good for nothing except absorbing foreign aid, politicians striving mightily and conspiratorially for the imagined favor of foreign "'forces" who are imagined to have the final decision making power over the Lebanese.  Actually, they do have that power because the Lebanese believe that they have it.  Oh, and beautiful women, they have lots of those.

In that "brew" there are bound to be lots of spies, spies for everyone and everything.  What a fun game!  And you can make a few "bucks" in it as well.  One can always use another pair of handmade Italian shoes.  The Lebanese are of the rentable class.

The ISF has found a few spies, a few Israeli spies?  Keep digging boys.   Keep digging.

Spies— Start thinking about that amnesty.  Think about it.  pl

PS  Do any of you know the famous Middle Eastern intelligence joke in which the punch line is "Confess, confess, we know you are a rabbit?"  ("I'tarif, I'tarif, na'rif anak arnab!")


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17 Responses to Lebanon finds Israeli spies.

  1. G says:

    So the KGB, CIA, and Mossad decide to have a spy competition…

  2. J says:

    Don’t forget the Israeli Kidons that ‘go in and out of’ Lebanon. The ISF/Hizbollah setting up a Kidon ‘turkey shoot’, what an interesting picture that would make.

  3. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Col. Lang:
    I do not know that joke – probably because of its Arab provenance. But there is an old story in Persian:
    One day people watched the Fox runnig madly.
    – What’s up Mr. Fox?
    – Have you not heard? The Ruler has ordered all camels to be arrested and taken to his castle. THat’s why I am running away.
    – But you are not a camel, you a fox.
    – Yes, I know that and so do you. But what if I am mistaken? By the time I have established that I am indeed a fox and not a camel it will be tool late.
    Such is the history of lawlessness in that corner of the world.

  4. J says:

    What is also going to be interesting is the ‘New’ Mideast Peace Plan that the Obama administration is supposed to announce shortly.
    Will it be an AIPAC/Israeli government originated/orchestrated/written scenario? Or will it be a ‘real deal’ proposal that treats Palestinans and Arabs as the human beings that they are.
    All past Israeli originated/inspired U.S. Mideast Peace Plans treated the Palestinians, and other Arabs (Jordanians, Lebanese, Saudis, etc.) as ‘chattle’ instead of the intelligent caring/feeling human beings that they are.
    I’ll be soooo glad when the ’24 mentality’ towards Palestinians/Arabs which promotes the Israeli superior attitude, finally goes back into the sewer from which originated. The show 24 has done our human race a big disservice.

  5. Nightsticker says:

    Colonel Lang,
    I don’t know the joke. It sounds like a good one. Would you share it with us? [I have a presentation to make next week and they have heard all the Intelligence jokes I know].
    USMC 65-72
    FBI 72-96
    P.S Would that be a good thread – all your correspondents share their best Intelligence joke?

  6. Mark Logan says:

    A possible version? Well, for Night Sticker anyway..
    The CIA, the FBI and the LAPD are arguing over who is the most efficient, so they hit upon an idea to work out who really is.
    A rabbit is let loose inside a huge wood, and all three agencies must find it.
    The CIA go first, and they take mineral samples, aerial photos and bring in informants. After two weeks they conclude that rabbits do not exist.
    The FBI go next, and they cover the wood with petrol and set it alight, burning all the trees and plants along with the rabbit. They say the rabbit provoked them.
    The LAPD – since the FBI destroyed the forest – conduct their test in a shopping centre. They let loose the rabbit, and an hour later come back with a grizzly bear. It’s been badly beaten, and is screaming “OK! OK! I’m a rabbit!”

  7. johnf says:

    There’s a great description in the Page, Leitch Knightley book on Philby about some market place in Europe – I seem to remember it was Vienna but maybe it was somewhere in the Baltic – where, when the dealers on the stock exchange were having a bad day – which in the 30’s was quite often – they used to cross the square to a cafe and set up a market in secrets – military, diplomatic, political and financial. Military attaches from the British, French, German and Russian embassies used to turn up and bid against each other for the best secrets.
    Sounds just like the Lebanon.

  8. Patrick Lang says:

    G et al
    L heard it first from a Jordanian and spread it to the IDF DMI and the Egyptians. When I told it in Syria I said it was about the Mossad.
    Long ago and Far Away —-
    The Olympic Committee decided to hols a soecial series of games to know which was the world’s best inelligence service.
    A lot of countries sent teams often from both their military and “civilian” services. Each team was composed of a captain and two sergeants. They all assembled on the island of Cyprus (no idea why). There were various events and they eventually came to the ultimate and most heavily weighted event which was to be a kind of treasure hunt. They all went up into the mountains in the western part of the island where there are a series of parallel ridges covered in pines and separated by deep terrain compartments. They assembled in front of a wood line. In front of the teams there were several UN referees in white coveralls with blue helmets and a stack of cages in each of which there was a white rabbit. The head UN boffin held uo a rabbit and said that it would be released into the woods behind him and that after 15 minutes the first team chosenat random would go in after it. The team that came back with a live rabbit in the shortest time would win the event.
    The rabbit went in. 15 minutes passed and the KGB team went in after it. They could be heard thrashing about and eventually emerged with the rabbit in 35 minutes. The next team was the French DGSE. They came back with the rabbit in 10 minutes. (The rabbit looked strangely content). Next was the turn of the Mossad. They were back in in 13 minutes loudly proclaiming that they were “the best.” The CIA never found the rabbit. Finally it was the turn of the Syrian Mukhabarat (the secret police). A half hour passed, 45 minutes, then an hour. The UN people went in to find them. They went down one steep slope into the valley bottom, then up another rugged incline to the top of the ridge. From the height, they could see the three Syrians who were at the bottom standing in a sandy road. They had captured a large animal. The UN men crept down, hiding the while in the bushes until they were close enough to see and hear.
    The Syrians had found a Nazarene donkey. (The kind with a cross marked in the fur of its back). On of the Segeant had a grip on the head while the other sergeant beat the beast’s hindquarters with a stick.
    The captain was whispering to it, “Confess, confess, we KNOW you are a rabbit…” pl

  9. Many Lebanese are still disgusted with the Army officers who served the Israelis tea in 2006. But then there’s a very old joke that my mother used to tell in Virginia accented English about the poor suffering Arab on an El Al flight who had to bring his Israeli seat-mate tea. If you know the joke, you don’t want to drink the tea.

  10. I mean to say that my mother told the joke in Virginia-accented ARABIC. If she got very giddy at a LEbanese party she would take the mike and tell the story. She always said they were mostly laughing at her accent, but the joke was fine too.

  11. David Habakkuk says:

    Babak Makkinejad,
    There was a modern British version of your old Persian joke, told at the expense of the NKVD.
    A guard on the Turkish border sees what seems to be a cloud of dust approaching from the Soviet side. As it comes closer he sees it is a mass of hares, running at great speed. The lead hare draws up, agitatedly demanding political asylum.
    Guard asks: Why? Hare says: Haven’t you heard — giraffes have been declared enemies of the people and are to be liquidated. Guard says: But you’re a hare, not a giraffe. I know, says the hare. But you try explaining that to the secret police.

  12. Despite the joke a serious post. Interesting that no form of international protectorate could be established in Lebanon so that it could flourish and prosper given it strategic location and past history. I guess the Lebanese and their neighbors are just unable to figure out that they have successfully managed to make their country and/or its neighbors appetitites just too too tempting to find camels or rabbits or whatever. My guess is that the one chance Lebanon had was in 1982 before the Marines left for good. Now once the US gives up on an arena for its armed forces you can be sure that it will still play covertly but without backup force. So condemned to watch others with armed force backup dominate. What a tragedy for Lebanon however in that it now is condemned like the South Bronx in the 60’s to further decay and disintegration. I put Lebanon at the top of the list of failed states and now just a pawn of others. Tragic.

  13. mo says:

    “The Lebanese are of the rentable class”
    Not all of us Colonel, not all of us

  14. mo says:

    “I put Lebanon at the top of the list of failed states and now just a pawn of others”
    After the 7th June, you may just be somewhat surprised my friend.

  15. americangoy says:

    I second the beautiful women.

  16. curious says:

    Lebanese national Elie Toufiq al-Hayek escaped across the southern border into Israel at dawn Monday, a security source told AFP. The source conveyed Hayek is a mathematics professor who lived in the border town of Qleiaa.
    He added Hayek, 49, fled to Israel through a concrete wall between the villages of Rmeish and Yaroun, a few kilometers from the border. Hayek, who is from Mieh Mieh east of the southern port city of Sidon, is married with three children.

  17. curious says:

    Lebanon is gonna boil. Israel couldn’t wait to pull the trigger.
    We’ll see how Syria and Iran react.
    New Evidence Points to Hezbollah in Hariri Murder
    The United Nations special tribunal investigating the murder of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik al-Hariri has reached surprising new conclusions — and it is keeping them secret. According to information obtained by SPIEGEL, investigators now believe Hezbollah was behind the Hariri murder.

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