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Meir Dagan

Discussion in 'Roll of Honor & Memories - All Other Conflicts' started by GRW, Mar 20, 2016.

  1. GRW

    GRW Pillboxologist WW2|ORG Editor

    Oct 26, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Stirling, Scotland
    "Meir Dagan, who has died aged 71, was a retired general in the Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) and, between 2002 and 2011, head of Mossad, the Israeli agency responsible for gathering intelligence from abroad and running special operations.
    Dagan was appointed head of Mossad by his former military commander, Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. As an outsider from the army, Dagan was not welcomed by the career intelligence officers of Mossad, but his impact was felt immediately, as he sacked many and then went on to restore the organisation’s reputation for brilliance and daring.
    A few weeks after taking office Dagan addressed his operators by telling them how, “When I was fighting in Lebanon, I witnessed the aftermath of a family feud. The patriarch’s head had been split open, his brain on the floor. Around him lay his wife and some of his children. All dead. Before I could do anything, one of the murderers scooped up a handful of brain and swallowed it”. Dagan then warned: “This is how you will all now operate. Otherwise someone else will eat your brain”.
    Sharon gave Dagan the green light to hunt down Israel’s enemies abroad and thus shift Mossad’s activities from back-door diplomacy – as was the case during Dagan’s predecessor Ephraim Ha’Levi – to daring field operations. Dagan restored assassinations as a major tactic to fight Israel’s enemies, saying in an interview that, “no terrorist should feel immune anywhere … I think that a person’s life is forfeit the moment he decides to adopt terrorist tactics …”.
    Subsequently, in February 2008, his agents assassinated Imad Mughniyah, a leading Hezbollah’s operator by replacing the driver’s seat headrest in Mughniyah’s Mitsubishi with a booby trapped one. Six months later, General Mohammed Suleiman, the Syrian President’s top aide on military and security matters and the liaison officer between Damascus and Hezbollah, was hit by a sniper on the Syrian coast. Then, in January 2010, dressed up as tennis players, Dagan’s assassins killed a senior Hamas activist, Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in a Dubai hotel. Throughout Dagan’s relatively long time as head of Mossad (his tenure was extended by Sharon’s successors, first by Ehud Olmert and then by Benjamin Netanyahu), scores of scientists, involved in developing the Iranian nuclear project, were also assassinated all over the world.
    While Dagan’s activism neither halted the Iranian nuclear project, nor put an end to the Arab-Israeli conflict, it did deter Israel’s enemies; in a leading 2010 article, the Egyptian newspaper Al Ahram described Dagan as a “superman”.
    Dagan was born Meir Huberman on January 30 1945 on a train crossing from the Ukraine to Poland. When Meir was five his family emigrated to the two-year-old Israel and settled in the coastal town of Bat Yam, just south of Tel Aviv.
    In 1963, Dagan joined the Israel Defence Forces; four years later he fought as an officer in the Paratroopers Brigade during the Six Day war in which he was seriously wounded."

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