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Israeli agents operating at international airports
Israeli agents operating at international airports
Big News Saturday 28th November, 2009

[Image: 844b49c912861ada.jpg]
Israeli spies have been found to be posing as airport security guards at international terminals, subjecting unsuspecting travellers to illegal interrogations and strip searches.

A television network covering southern Africa recently aired a report, after an extensive undercover investigation, that revealed an elaborate Israeli secret service operation being carried out at Johannesburg International Airport.

The report claims black and Muslim travellers are being subjected to illegal interrogations and strip searches by Israeli intelligence service, the Shin Bet, who are purportedly employed as security guards by Israeli airline El al, but pose as officials of airport security.

The racial profiling is so extensive one former agent says he has conducted 40,000 of the interrogations. An Israeli human rights organization says similar operations are being carried out at most major airports around the world.

The South African government has been investigating the claims made by Carte Blanche, southern Africa’s leading television investigative news program which is beamed to 45 countries and has won more than one hundred awards. A team of Israeli diplomats has been flown to Johannesburg after South African authorities issued an ultimatum demanding that Israel resolve the issues surrounding the security guards by the end of this month, or the guards would all be deported.

At least one El Al official, has already been deported as a result of the investigations which are continuing. Curiously that official was in fact revealed to be an employee of the Israeli embassy, despite performing duties for El Al security. He was also found to have had a diplomatic passport.

The explosive claims made on the southern African television network have been supported by footage of an interrogation of an undercover Muslim reporter with the network. The incident was filmed by a hidden camera. A person employed by El Al was seen approaching the Muslim reporter saying he was from “airport security.” He demanded the undercover reporter hand over his ID and passport as part of “airport regulations.” The reporter objected to handing over documents, saying he was not travelling and was waiting for a friend. At this point “El Al’s Security Manager,” identified as Golan Rice, confronted the reporter for additional interrogation. The reporter was then told he was in a restricted area and was told to leave.

“What we are trained is to look for the immediate threat, the Muslim guy. You can think he is a suicide bomber, he is collecting information. The crazy thing is that we are profiling people racially, ethnically, and even on religious grounds,” Johnathon Garb, a former El Al security guard told the Johannesburg TV program. “This is what we do,” he added.

Mr. Garb said the El Al airline had been a front for Shin Bet for years. “Here is a secret service operating above the law in South Africa,” Garb said. “We pull the wool over everyones’ eyes. We do exactly what we want. The local authorities do not know what we are doing.”

Two other former security guards with El Al verified the allegations. They told Carte Blanche black and Muslim people were often taken to a special annex room where they were held for questioning. They were interrogated they said not necessarily on matters relating to airport security. In some cases they were strip searched and their luggage taken apart. Clandestine searches of their possessions and laptops were also carried out.

One person targeted for special treatment was Virginia Tilley, the chief researcher at South Africa’s Human Sciences Research Council which recently released a report accusing Israel of apartheid in the Palestinian territories. “The decision was she be checked in the harshest way because of her connections,” Garb told the Carte Blanche news program. He said Ms Tilley’s luggage was taken from her and documents in her possession were photo-copied and forwarded on to the Shin Bet in Israel. Ms Tilley confirmed she had been detained by El Al staff at the airport and her luggage was taken from her for inspection elsewhere.

El Al’s General Manager in South Africa confirmed Mr Garb was working in security at the airport but was indirect on who his employer was, suggesting it was the Shin Bet.

Three years ago a report issued by two Israeli human rights organizations, the Centre against Racism, and the Arab Association for Human Rights, alleged that El Al security staff employed racial profiling at most major airports around the world. The report said people were subjected to discriminatory and degrading treatment in violation of the relevant countries’ laws, and international law. “Our research showed that the checks conducted by El Al at foreign airports had all the hallmarks of Shin Bet interrogations,” Mohammed Zeidan, the Director of the Human Rights Association said.

Mr Garb, who said he was recruited by the Shin Bet 19 years ago and was trained in a secret Shin Bet facility in Israel, said El Al smuggled weapons into the Johannesburg Airport with the co-operation of the Israeli embassy.

Asked to comment on the allegations, the Israeli foreign ministry, through spokesman Yossi Levy said, "the Ministry cannot comment on security matters."
"The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways. The point, however, is to change it." Karl Marx

"He would, wouldn't he?" Mandy Rice-Davies. When asked in court whether she knew that Lord Astor had denied having sex with her.

“I think it would be a good idea” Ghandi, when asked about Western Civilisation.

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