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  • December 4, 2012

    Why did Israel kill Jabari?

    I am not endorsing this article. Some of it is probably true but not its speculations.

    By Reuven Pedatzur, HAARETZ

    The real story behind Operation Pillar of Defense in Gaza has not yet been investigated, but now that the explosions have stopped, we are obligated to delve into the truth. The decision to kill Hamas military chief Ahmed Jabari, which was the opening shot of the operation, was made even though he was involved in negotiations on signing a long-term cease-fire agreement.

    A few hours before he was assassinated, he had received a draft of an agreement for a permanent cease-fire with Israel, and he was apparently expected to reply to it affirmatively. The indirect contacts with Jabari had taken place over the course of months via Hamas’ deputy foreign minister, Ghazi Hamad, with the knowledge and consent of Defense Minister Ehud Barak.


    These contacts with Hamas were conducted by Gershon Baskin, who served as an intermediary in the deal for the return of kidnapped soldier Gilad Shalit. Baskin had reported his progress toward a draft agreement to the members of a special committee appointed by Barak back in May, a panel that also included representatives of other government ministries.

    In other words, our decision makers, including the defense minister and perhaps also Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, knew about Jabari’s role in advancing a permanent cease-fire agreement. Jabari was the strongman of the Gaza Strip – Israel’s “subcontractor,” as Haaretz editor-in-chief Aluf Benn characterized him – so Hamad submitted each draft prepared with Baskin to Jabari for approval.

    Also party to the negotiations on a permanent cease-fire were Egyptian intelligence officials. Some of the meetings between Baskin and Hamad took place in Cairo. These Egyptian intelligence officials were in constant contact with Barak’s envoys, so one would assume that in addition to Baskin, they too were informing Israel of their impressions of the progress in the talks on a draft agreement.

    At no point in the negotiations between Baskin and Hamad was the former ever told to stop.

    Moreover, about a week before Jabari’s assassination, Israeli military officials asked permission from their commanders to meet with Baskin and get a briefing. This permission was denied.

    Thus the decision to kill Jabari shows that our decision makers decided a cease-fire would be undesirable for Israel at this time, and that attacking Hamas would be preferable. It seems a view had developed that Israel needed to strengthen its deterrence against Hamas rather than reach agreement with it on a period of calm. In the view of the defense establishment and the prime and defense ministers’ bureaus, a cease-fire agreement might have undermined Israel’s deterrence and weakened its image of resolve. Bolstering its deterrence, in this view, would be achieved by killing Jabari, who was liable to respond affirmatively to the offer of a long-term cease-fire.

    In this way, Israel’s leaders killed three birds with one stone: They assassinated the man who had the power to make a deal with Israel; they took revenge on someone who had caused more than a few Israeli casualties; and they signaled to Hamas that communications with it will be conducted only through military force.

    Quite aside from the fact that the results of Operation Pillar of Defense didn’t meet the expectations of those who launched it, the decision makers must answer one important question: If they knew it was possible to reach a cease-fire agreement (whose provisions, incidentally, were better than those of the agreement reached after the operation ) without going to war, why did they assassinate Jabari, and thereby also assassinate the chances of achieving calm without shooting? Is it possible, heaven forbid, that Barak and Netanyahu feared the opportunity to conduct a military operation at the end of their government’s term would elude them, and that’s why they ordered Jabari’s liquidation?

    To keep us from suspecting their motives, the prime minister and defense minister must explain their considerations and decisions in the Jabari affair

  • Posted by Ted Belman @ 1:48 pm | 12 Comments »

    12 Comments to Why did Israel kill Jabari?

    1. trump says:

      Amoud Anan is said to have eliminated 90% of “fajr 5 “stock
      We have now far more ressource to deal with hizbula should iran be attacked.
      This is just my amateur thought ……..

    2. Shy Guy says:

      Ted, why are you promoting this already-old leftist tripe?

    3. Max says:

      What a dumb question.The question is what took so long? The question is why didn’t they kill all Hamas members and retake the corridor? They are seven years too slow. THe moment the Hamas came into existence by very definition of itself and it’s charter , it was one hundred percent legal and absolutely necessary to hunt down every last one and exterminate them. Simply being a Hamas is to be guilty of terrorism and necessitates a death sentence.
      ..
      blah blah blah,
      blah blah blah

      Wizened little logics running around the sweating tortured brain like scampering mice that is what is this article because this mind is in delirious trying to find little twisted logics to avoid the cold hard reality of threatened existence and the fundamental question which is:
      Why is a deadly and sworn enemy allowed to exist??!!!
      Why hesitate a day let alone years when hesitation means living under the threat of annihilation?
      Shoot first, pontificate later!

      Why are they all still alive?

      It’s a crime against humanity not to exterminate terrorists when the opportunity presents itself, The leadership is criminally negligent as well as having socks in their brains.

    4. Bernard Ross says:

      A typical Haaretz article full of silly conclusions. Even if the negotiations were taking palce there wold be more reasonable expplanations for a turnaround. If Baskins last report was im May then it appears that success was not on the agenda. When I see the term “as characterized by Aluf Benn” as if this was a refernce of credibility I must laugh. I cannot ever remembering reading an article by Benn where his onclusions made any sense. Heres a different explanation, though maybe untrue, is more likely: Perhaps Israel, or Barak, discovered that Jabari was “playing” them pretending to be working to a cease fire but instead was operating for the Iranians to delay and keep up the attacks. Perhaps Barak and Baskin appeared as fools, (reasonable) and got really pissed off.

      At no point in the negotiations between Baskin and Hamad was the former ever told to stop.

      Well DUH?? Would any one want to alert the mole that you know what he is doing, so he can become more security conscious than he was already famed to be?
      I would like to apply to Haaretz for a job writing because even though they are in the midst of the action, and have all their sources, they are apparently “reason” disadvantaged and still manage to serve up a dumb ass dish of “pigs plop”. Here’s advice to the author: don’t quit your day job and stop writing novelas. As for Baskin, go back to the ice cream business. Barak, you finally did something right.

    5. dionissis mitropoulos says:

      Haaretz the newspaper said:

      “To keep us from suspecting their motives, the prime minister and defense minister must explain their considerations and decisions in the Jabari affair”

      Well, how about the more than 120 rockets fired at Israel the week before operation Pillar of Defense?

      Does this count as a rational motive for killing the terrorist leader? Especially with the Prime Minister in need to show resolve prior to the elections?

      Or should we accept Haaretz’s conspiracy theories?

    6. Beverly Lyons says:

      You would think from reading the article that progress was being made. But this flies in the face of the acceleration of the rocket attacks on the south. There are a cadre of “useful idiots” who believe that they can negotiate a peace agreement or in this case a cease fire irrespective of what the other side says or does to the contrary. This article is pure dilution and I don’t understand why it was presented without the comment about what was actually happening.

    7. dionissis mitropoulos says:

      @ Beverly Lyons:
      Beverly Lyons Said:

      There are a cadre of “useful idiots” who believe that they can negotiate a peace agreement or in this case a cease fire

      Dr Richard Landes calls them “useful infidels“.

      Hey, it’s a better expression, equally derogatory plus invective-free.

    8. Rahamim Akerib says:

      Hi Ted,
      I am just appalled at the fictitious scenario that was created in the article. All Hamas members are terrorists and should be eliminated. You just cannot have a repeated cease fires every now and then. The cancer must be cut to the core.

    9. dwelller says:

      @ Max:

      “The question is why didn’t they kill all Hamas members and retake the corridor?”

      That would leave peace-loving, moderate, Fatah without a major rival — in the West’s lefty perception

      — and therefore there’d no longer be any reason

      to not hand over J/S to Fatah for a state. . . .

    10. Max says:

      @ dwelller:

      “A tale, told by an idiot, full of sound and fury signifying Jihad.”

    11. dionissis mitropoulos says:

      @ dwelller:
      dwelller Said:

      [Israel did not invade and kill all Hamas members because]That would leave peace-loving, moderate, Fatah without a major rival — in the West’s lefty perception

      — and therefore there’d no longer be any reason

      to not hand over J/S to Fatah for a state. . . .

      Dweller, i think Israel’s government could have achieved the objective that you cite even if she exterminated Hamas. Aren’t there other jihad-minded organizations in Gaza? I suggest that the people of Gaza (the majority of which proved to be terrorist-supporters by voting for Hamas) would side with those smaller wanna-be factions against Fatah, so Fatah wouldn’t be left without a rival. Gazans love “resistance”.

      “It’s in their culture, as the Scorpio said to the frog” – i just paraphrased Yamit’s paraphrase of the Aesop’s fable to make it more politically correct (“nature” instead of “culture” needlessly attracts accusations of racism).

    12. dweller says:

      @ dionissis mitropoulos:

      “[T]here’d no longer be any reason to not hand over J/S to Fatah for a state. . . .”

      “Aren’t there other jihad-minded organizations in Gaza? I suggest that the people of Gaza (the majority of which proved to be terrorist-supporters by voting for Hamas) would side with those smaller wanna-be factions against Fatah, so Fatah wouldn’t be left without a rival.”

      There’s Islamic Jihad & others, but they’re not strong enough (at this juncture) to pose a significant threat to Fatah.

      And besides that, it’s not merely about Gaza; the heartland provinces are at stake here too.

      Much of politics is perception, and the US State Dept & White House would seize upon Hamas’ demise as an opportunity to pressure GOI to cede J & S also to Fatah. They’d probably beef up Fatah’s ‘security forces’ too, to prepare them for the takeover. (USA forces were training them for at least a few yrs; maybe still are.)

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