May 28, 2004
The “war on terror” has a glaring blind spot that puts the security of the United States at grave risk. While innocent Iraqis are being tortured in their homeland, suspicious criminal activity by Israeli military agents near sensitive nuclear sites in the United States is neither investigated – nor reported. The most damning criticism of the “war on terror” is that it actually creates more terror. Some critics would argue that the increase in terror and instability is intentional – part of a larger geopolitical plan to control the Middle East and Caspian Basin regions and their valuable mineral resources.
In the logic of Anglo-American and Zionist policy makers, the chaos, terrorism and insecurity in the Middle East, which is primarily caused by foreign military occupation, provides a pretext for the presence of occupation forces for the foreseeable future, something global planners have long desired. The U.S.-led occupations of Afghanistan and Iraq resemble the Israeli occupation of Palestine. As Israel’s brutal aggression against Palestinians inevitably produces terror attacks in Israel, the U.S. occupation creates fertile ground for the growth of “anti-American” and “anti-democratic” terrorism. This, in turn, provides an excuse for the continued presence of thousands of U.S. troops in Iraq – and throughout the region.
The recent publication of photographs of Iraqi detainees being abused and tortured by U.S. military personnel only fuels hatred for the occupation across the Middle East. This is well understood and appreciated by the “neo-conservative” Zionist policy makers in Washington, London, New York, and Tel Aviv. Today, life in Iraq is actually more dangerous and less secure than it was under the reign of Saddam Hussein. Scarcely a day goes by in Iraq in which lives of innocent Iraqis and U.S. service personnel are not destroyed by terror bombs.
Meanwhile, on the domestic front, the “war on terror” has changed the face of America. Glaring double standards and blind spots, however, leave the nation vulnerable and raise serious questions about the true goals of the “war on terror.” For example, while wealthy, law abiding European visitors are subjected to extreme and embarrassing scrutiny, the border with Mexico remains as unchecked and porous as ever. Thousands of impoverished and uneducated immigrants cross the southern border illegally every month. On the other hand, the U.S. administration recently applied punitive sanctions against Syria because it said Damascus was not doing enough to prevent illegal border crossings into Iraq. It would seem the U.S. government is more concerned about protecting the borders of Iraq than those of the United States.
Another gaping hole in the domestic “war on terror” was revealed by the bizarre indifference of federal law enforcement to recent criminal activity by Israeli military personnel in the proximity of a number of critical U.S. nuclear facilities. While federal law enforcement authorities warn of a major terrorist attack in the United States, Israeli criminal activity in extremely sensitive areas is allowed to pass unchecked – and uninvestigated. Israeli military personnel run rampant across the United States violating the law with impunity. Since 9-11 there have been dozens of Israeli intelligence teams posing as “movers” and “art students” apprehended by local authorities only to be turned over to federal immigration officials and quickly released or deported. These Israeli military teams, often arrested in the vicinity of sensitive military or nuclear sites, represent a glaring blind spot in the “war on terror.”
Two recent incidents in the southeastern United States reveal how Israeli military personnel are allowed to violate U.S. laws and operate within the country in ways which would never be tolerated of citizens from any other nation. The first incident occurred in the proximity of several nuclear facilities in Erwin, Tennessee, including the Nuclear Fuel Services plant. Nuclear Fuel Services is a company that provides fuel for nuclear submarines and processes spent nuclear materials. This is precisely the kind of radioactive material that is used in a so-called “dirty bomb,” which senior law enforcement officials are warning that terrorists intend to use in the United States.
But who are these terrorists? Are Israeli intelligence agents planning another terrorist attack in the United States? A recent incident with Israeli intelligence agents occurred on Saturday afternoon, May 8, when Unicoi County (Tenn.) Sheriff Kent Harris spotted a rental truck speeding on former U.S. Highway 23, a lightly traveled highway near the North Carolina state line. Two young Israeli men in the rented moving truck evaded Harris in a high speed chase for three miles. During the chase the Israelis threw a bottle containing a mysterious fluid from the truck, an act they later denied. The vial contained an unknown substance, which appeared to be some kind of accelerant because it became warm when it was shaken, according to Harris. The purpose of the mysterious fluid has not yet been explained.
“They were driving recklessly and at a high rate of speed down an old highway that nobody uses anymore,” Harris told independent journalist Dan Hopsicker. “I was really concerned because the driver would not stop after I flashed my headlights for nearly three miles. He was weaving back and forth, and I was wondering what a large truck was doing on a two-lane highway instead of the much-faster I-26 interstate.”
“They ignored my blue lights for two and one half miles and they were traveling 20 miles an hour over posted speed limits,” the sheriff said. Asked if it was possible that the Israelis were unaware they were being pursued, the sheriff said: “Oh no, he had to see me. The siren was going. I could see him in the mirror looking back at me.”
Two young Israelis, Shmuel Dahan and Almaliach Naor were taken into custody. In the wallet of 23-year old Dahan, an Israeli soldier based in Miami Beach, police discovered a “Learn to Fly in Florida” business card. Israeli men serve in the military until age 55. ”I got a sick feeling when I saw it,” Harris told the Associated Press, expressing concern about the proximity of the nearby Nuclear Fuel Services plant. “It’s the nation’s sole provider of fuel for the Navy’s nuclear subs,” he said.
“They were just three miles from where, if you get off at exit 15, off I-26, you’re just a half-mile from all the nuclear plants,” he said. “There’s Nuclear Fuel Services, which is a privately-owned company. Studdwick, another privately-owned company. And they’re building a third one now.”
The Israelis’ truck tested positive for drugs, Hopsicker reported. “While the FBI dismissed the finding as a ‘false positive,'” Hopsicker wrote, “local law enforcement regards the test as highly accurate.” Harris contacted the FBI, the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and other local authorities to investigate the situation.
The sheriff’s investigation, halted by the involvement of the FBI, revealed that the Israelis had just visited a remote storage facility owned by an unlisted “Salvatore Annone” of New Jersey, who Hopsicker reported, recently bought the Mars Hill, North Carolina storage company. ”The truck,” according to the AP, “was rented from a Ryder office in Mars Hills, N.C., and was being held in the county garage pending an FBI investigation, officials said.”
The case is full of “anomalies,” Hopsicker wrote. Shmuel Dahan, for example, listed his address in swanky Miami Beach, and has more than $12,000 in his personal bank account. “That sort of caught my attention,” said the sheriff. ”We’re not overreacting,” Harris said. “We have a responsibility to protect the citizens of Unicoi County and that’s what I’m going to do at any cost. I’d rather overreact, if that’s what you call it, than be sorry later.”
The “Learn to Fly in Florida” business card belongs to another Israeli named Nissan Giat. Giat is an “Israeli military veteran,” according to Hopsicker, and a free-lance flight instructor in the Miami area, working out of the Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport. Asked about Dahan and Naor, Giat told Hopsicker: “These guys aren’t terrorists; they belong to the Israeli military.” The two Israeli soldiers, however, were carrying false identification cards. Dahan had a false Florida driver’s license and Naor had a fake identification card.
Dahan was charged with reckless driving, littering, false identification and evading arrest. Naor was charged with false identification and evading arrest. Police said the Israelis were being investigated by the FBI. I asked Special Agent Gary Kidder of the Knoxville field office about the FBI’s role in the investigation. Kidder said, “Your premise is all wrong. An FBI investigation was never opened. The case was never turned over to the FBI.” The only charges brought against the two Israelis, Kidder said, were immigration charges. The two were then quickly released from government custody after a judge in Erwin, (Tenn.) suspended a 30-day sentence and turned them over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), a bureau within the Department of Homeland Security.
Immigration officials had said Dahan and Naor would be subject to immediate deportation, yet despite convictions for evading arrest and working illegally on tourist visas, the Israelis were soon released and back at Summit Moving Van Lines in Miami, according to Hopsicker. The spokesmen at the Washington office of Immigration and Customs Enforcement were unable to answer any questions about the status of these two Israelis.
A second team of Israeli military agents posing as “movers” tried to enter the U.S. Naval Submarine Base at Kings Bay, Georgia on May 21. When an inspection of their rented moving truck revealed evidence of explosives, the base, home to 8 Trident submarines, was shut down for more than three hours, according to base spokesman Ed Buczek.
When the two Israeli soldiers posing as movers tried to access the base without proper identification an inspection team was called out to check their rental truck. Dogs trained to detect explosives and drugs “hit on something in the cab of the truck,” Buczek told me. The evidence of “potential explosives” led to an immediate lockdown of the base and the St. Mary’s police department closed off the area around the base and called in a bomb squad. ”Guards closed access to the base and notified the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Naval Criminal Investigative Service,” Buczek said.
Buczek said the two were driving a Budget rental truck and were working for an Atlanta-based moving company called Advantage. Advantage Moving and Storage in Norcross, Georgia was blocking calls from unknown callers on May 26. Like hundreds of other “moving companies” in the United States, Advantage is probably Israeli-owned and operated.
It was a “textbook scenario” reaction to an obvious security threat to the base and national security, Buczek said. “We saw something wasn’t right.” When the Israeli intruders were turned over to federal officials, however, their criminal activity was handled with what can only be described as indifference. The fact that Israeli military agents operate moving companies across the United States is a security problem, which apparently does not concern the Department of Homeland Security. Israel’s military foreign intelligence agency, Mossad, has a network of transportation and logistics companies that spans the United States.
Across the river from the site of the World Trade Center stands a massive 15-story windowless building, the Jersey City headquarters of Moishe’s Moving and Storage. I interviewed several of the young Israeli men who work at Moishe’s and learned that they were recruited in Israel and work in the United States illegally. The “war on terror” has apparently not affected Moishe’s illegal practices, or any of the other Israeli-owned moving companies across America.
Israeli-owned “moving companies” have been involved in numerous cases of criminal activity across the country. One notable case was a company based in Weehawken, New Jersey, which was found to be an Israeli intelligence operation with prior knowledge of the terror attacks of September 11, 2001. Five of its agents were detained in the immediate aftermath of 9-11 after being caught filming and apparently celebrating the terror attacks on the World Trade Center. After being held and refusing to cooperate with government investigators the four were turned over to immigration authorities and deported to Israel. One of the five later spoke on Israeli television saying the “movers” with video cameras had been prepared to “document” the attacks.
Like some 60 other Israelis apprehended in the aftermath of 9-11, the two young Israeli movers who tried to access Kings Bay Naval Submarine Base, Tamir D. Sason, 24, and Daniel Levy, 23, were simply turned over to federal immigration officers. Although the truck had tested positive for explosives and a thorough criminal investigation should have been conducted, the two were simply turned over to immigration authorities because one of them was carrying an expired passport. The two were reportedly being held for deportation.
I spoke with Marc Raimondi, spokesman at the Dept. of Homeland Security (DHS) in Washington. Raimondi said that both Sason and Levy “will be deported,” although he did not know their current location or status. Raimondi said ICE had taken custody of the two individuals and simply checked their names against immigration and criminal data bases. Because nothing was found in the data bases, Raimondi said, their only crime was that they had worked illegally on visitor visas. There was no further investigation of their activities.
“Perhaps the conspiracy theory has merit,” Raimondi said when asked why Israeli agents involved in criminal activities were simply being deported on visa violations. When asked if DHS was concerned about the network of Israeli-owned moving companies in the United States, some with proven ties to Israeli intelligence, Raimondi was unable to answer. He said he was unable to carry on the conversation and that the agency welcomes any information that could be helpful in the “war on terror.”
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