I wonder what he meant by that
Posted by aogWednesday, 21 April 2004 at 18:02 TrackBack Ping URL

According to Rantburg the Israelies are claiming to have infiltrated Hamas.

the [“senior Israeli”] official claimed that individuals “sympathetic” to Israel have been key in helping Jerusalem “eliminate” the two former Hamas leaders.

I wondered about this quite a bit. If it’s true, why would it be revealed to a news organization? What is the win from outing the fact that Mossad has sources inside Hamas? Perhaps it doesn’t matter - unless the Hamas leadership is completely stupid (which, I admit, is not outside the realm of possibility) they have to be assuming they’ve been penetrated to some extent by Mossad. Such an admission wouldn’t really change anything with regard to Hamas, but consider the effect on potential future recruits. It doesn’t seem like a smart move.

On the other hand, if it’s not true, if instead Israel used mini-drone technology to target Yassin and Rantisi, it might well be worthwhile to claim informants in order to sow suspicion and distrust in the ranks. The flip side of this is the same as the previous paragraph, where one presumes there was already about as much internal paranoia and suspicion as possible.

On the third hand, there could be informants that are not friendly to Israel, but had their own motivations (say, someone from Fatah who’s keen on having the PLO take control when Israel withdraws, or someone whose little brother was sent off to be a splodey-dope). I find this one the most plausible. The “sympathetic to Israel” is the misdirection, generating the advantages of the two previous options with little downside.

Overall, though, perhaps this entire post is part of the disinformation effort.