By Richard Walker
The brazen murder of an Iranian nuclear scientist shows once again that Israel cares little for international law and stands alone as a country that has assassinated more people than any other Western nation since World War II.
That achievement is confirmed in a book by Ronen Bergman, an Israeli investigative writer. In Rise and Kill First: The Secret History of Israel’s Targeted Assassinations, an analysis of Israel’s history of eliminating its enemies, he says Israel has liquidated 800 “targets” since the end of the Second Intifada in 2005. He unashamedly makes the point that Israel does not shy away from glorifying its most infamous assassins. Instead, it makes them prime ministers. He cites the examples of Ariel Sharon, Yitzhak Rabin, Menachem Begin, Benyamin Netanyahu, and his predecessor, Ehud Barak who was linked to the late disgraced pedophile, Jeffrey Epstein.
In modern times, Netanyahu stands out as the one who has made every effort to goad Iran into a war, which he expected America to lead, by carrying out killings and bombings inside Iran. He has authorized the assassination of at least five Iranian nuclear scientists. I say at least because we do not know if the figure is higher. During the Obama administration, Barack Obama warned the Israeli leader to call a halt to his campaign of assassination. Netanyahu agreed, but he did not stop ordering the widespread liquidation of other targets in the Palestinian territories, Syria, Iran, and Lebanon.
The tool of political assassination is banned by the 1907 Hague Convention on the Law of Armed Conflict when it is used outside of wartime. It is a legal stipulation for which Israel has never shown any respect. As a consequence, Israel has devoted more military and technical resources to making the liquidation of its enemies the spear of its domestic and foreign policy. It has done this regardless of the fact that other nations that have acted likewise, but on a lesser scale, such as Russia, China, and North Korea, have been pilloried by the Western media and by the U.S. Congress. Not so Israel. Its considerable hold over U.S. foreign policy has allowed it to flout every international law by targeting countries with which it is not at war and assassinating targets in cities across the Middle East and Europe.
Israel has developed assassination skills that other nations have mimicked, especially in the use of chemical agents. Russia and North Korea have followed suit by arming their assassins with chemical weapons that can be put in a person’s drink or on the door handle of a car.
Israel’s various intelligence agencies, especially Mossad, have spent untold resources in training assassins in deep-cover roles, especially in injecting victims with chemicals that can disguise the cause of death, making a murder appear to have been a natural death. They have the most sophisticated surveillance teams, which shadow their assassins and guide them to and from targets. Mossad’s killers have been known to use the passports of countries like Canada, Ireland, and Australia.
It did not come as a shock to most observers when it was claimed that Israel may have used a remotely controlled machine gun on the back of a pickup to kill its latest target, Iranian scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh. Some sources claimed the gun was controlled via a satellite or a drone. While that is possible, since Israel has built and used robotic weapons of late, there is every reason to believe that Mossad also had people on the ground when the assassination took place, because Mossad likes to use proxy terrorists for some of its ops, especially in Iran, Iraq, and Lebanon.
In particular, Israel has trained members of Mujahideen e-Khalq (MEK), an Iranian cult-like group with Marxist origins. MEK was branded a terrorist organization by the State Department until the CIA persuaded Barack Obama to take it off the U.S. terrorist list. Subsequently, the likes of John Bolton and other neocons began promoting it, while the CIA and Mossad trained MEK operatives for bombings and assassinations in Iran and Iraq. Mossad has used MEK fighters in the past to liquidate Iranian scientists.
What ought to be shocking, but is not, is the fact that Israel’s campaign of assassination over decades has been backed by Congressmembers on both sides of the aisle, yet those same members have condemned Russia, China, and North Korea for killing enemies abroad, albeit on a much lesser scale than Israel. In 2018, Saudi Arabia joined the assassins club by killing and cutting up the corpse of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
The killing of the Iranian scientist was justified by Israel as a need to eliminate a man who was Iran’s version of Julius Robert Oppenheimer, the scientist responsible for America’s atomic bomb. What makes this claim ludicrous is that Israel pretends it does not have nuclear weapons, and Washington promotes the lie, knowing that Israel is a major global nuclear power. This latest assassination likely had the backing of President Donald Trump. The question is, was it launched to goad Iran into a war, allowing Mr. Trump to unleash America’s
military might on Iran before leaving office, all to please his friend Netanyahu? Or was it a ploy to force Iran to the negotiating table to avoid being bombed before the Biden administration might have the chance to reinstitute the Iran nuclear deal?
Such theories are not outside the realm of possibility, and it does bear thinking about because of what would follow.
Richard Walker is the nom de plume of a former New York mainstream news producer who grew tired of seeing his articles censored by his bosses.