In their new book, CBS News’ Dan Raviv and Israeli journalist Yossi Melman have given a detailed report on how Israel’s intelligence agency operates inside Iran.
According to the book, “Spies Against Armageddon: Inside Israel’s Secret Wars”, Israel’s foreign intelligence agency, the Mossad, hires Iranian dissidents to carry out sabotage and assassinations inside Iran.
However, a study of fifty years of assassinations by the Mossad, including conversations with current and former operatives and those who work with them in countries friendly to Israel, concludes that the assassins inside Iran are Israelis, CBS News reports.
The Mossad has a special operations unit, a kind of Mossad within the Mossad, called Kidon, which has over the years developed unique methods for infiltrating enemy countries, and for murdering Israel’s enemies without leaving a trace, the book revealed.
The Mossad benefits from unmatched linguistic capabilities, in part because Israel has many citizens whose families moved from Arabic- or Persian-speaking countries.
Israeli operatives have traveled to Iran using the passports of other countries, including bogus documents produced by skilled Mossad forgers, and genuine passports where the photographs might be altered slightly.
Insight into the psyches and behavior of members of the super-secret Kidon squad can be found – perhaps surprisingly – in the pages of a novel called “Duet in Beirut,” published only in Hebrew (in 2002), by Mishka Ben-David, a former intelligence officer in the Mossad’s operations department, which runs and coordinates Kidon.
From the book and other sources it is understood that Kidon is so compartmentalized that its office is not inside the Mossad headquarters.
Their training includes almost anything one might imagine is needed for an intelligence operation: surveillance, shaking off surveillance, studying objects and memorizing everything about them.
Because they are the cream of the crop, Kidon men and women are the ones the Mossad director selects for very dangerous missions – including complex operations of an information-gathering nature – that require top professionals.