by Roy Tov
Friday, May 4th, 2012
Unless one is standing in front of an attacking army, one has little chance of being hit by the military. Simply, in most situations military units have no jurisdiction over civilians. Military police can easily be spotted on Tel Aviv streets; yet they can’t speak to a civilian, even if he belongs to the reserve army. The maximum they are allowed to do is to call the police and denounce the civilian. Sadly, this rule of thumb has a few exceptions that are related mainly to the work of the IDF Military Intelligence Directorate, AMAN is its hebrew acronym. Due to its secretive nature, the details of its activities (and violations of human rights) are difficult to elucidate, though many details are partially accessible over the media. Today, May 2, 2012, an important hint was published in the Hebrew media, when Brigadier General (still colonel in the picture) Sima Vaknin-Gil—Israel Military Censor—announced that the IDF has launched a new system to monitor information on social media—mainly Facebook and Twitter—as well as blogs and news sites. This adds to recent bits of information to form a chilling picture.
Sima Vaknin Gil
Israel Military Censor
Her announcement showed—for the first time publicly—that Israel is related to CAZAB (see MI5, CAZAB and Israel). Ms. Vaknin-Gil claimed that “the new system will examine information using keywords labeled in advance.” This is exactly the way ECHELON—the worldwide listening system operated by the CAZAB network—operates. As claimed in the past here, Israel is an unofficial member of CAZAB with a listening station placed not far from Gaza, in Tze’elim. What Ms. Vaknin-Gil forgot to tell us, is how the system treats information published and stored beyond Israel’s still-undefined borders, and by non-Israeli citizens; a good example of this is the recentpublication of Israeli-censored information by Jewish-American blogger Richard Silverstein. Will AMAN attempt to censor this in the future? Ms. Vaknin-Gil didn’t commit an unintentional omission; simply, AMAN doesn’t want us to know the details of its web-operations in order to instill in us an Orwellian 1984-style state of fear. Oddly enough, the answer to this came from another recent incident.
AMAN—and its relatives, the Shin Beth and Mossad—work as a multi-headed hydra; one of the main hints that an event is related to one of these terror organizations is the redundancy in the details. Civilian operations can seldom afford the unlimited budget offered to the intelligence services by the unsuspecting taxpayers. Israel’s Military Censor is technically part of AMAN, but it works as an independent unit. Its head is appointed directly by the Defense Minister—a highly unusual step—and is only subject to parliamentary and judicial oversight. Not even the Minister of Defense can give orders to it. The Military Censor has authority to suppress information it deems compromising from being made public in the media. Probably the most famous event ever censored was the Kav 300 picture (see Kav 300 Forever, picture is reproduced below); the picture was exposed to the Israeli public only after the New York Times published it. This is typical; Israeli news outlets often circumvent the censor by reporting stories “as quoted from foreign news sources,” which are not subject to the restrictions of the Israeli military censor. The trial of Mordechai Vanunu, the assassination attempt on Khaled Mashal (see Mossad, Sonic Weapons & Haled Mashal) and events related to Operation Defensive Shield and Operation Cast Lead were also famously censored.
Shin Beth Assassins Seconds Before Action | Kav 300 Affair
A clear sign of the Military Censor power is the length of his service. A regular post of an IDF officer lasts two years. Yet, Avner Bar-On served as Military Censor in 1951-1953 and 1955-1977. Ytzhak Shani served between 1977 and 2000. The current censor has been in office since 2005. This is highly irregular and allows them to accumulate immense power. Despite what the law says, this power is not limited to Israel. If they want to target foreign media, they can use other units of Israel’s extensive intelligence corps. One of them is the diplomatic corps; diplomats all over the world are nothing but an arm of their country’s intelligence services. In the last week of April, Israel attempted to censor not an unknown American blogger, but a well known CBS program named 60 Minutes.
Israel Ambassador in the USA
On April 24, 60 Minutes aired a segment entitled “Christians of the Holy Land” that offered an unprecedented look into the Christian reality in Holy Land, under Israel’s occupation. Acting as Israel Military Censor in the USA, Israel Ambassador in the USA—Michael Oren—called the Chairman of CBS News and the Executive Producer of 60 Minutes and protested the report before it was aired. 60 Minutes reporter, Bob Simon, said that he had never received such a call in his many years as a journalist. The red-faced Israeli ambassador shamelessly accused Christians for being anti-Semites. The American viewers could witness first hand an extraordinary example of censorship and blatant lies by those who claim to be the “only democracy in the Middle East.” The astonishing video is attached below, courtesy of CBS:
The world has clearly seen an attempt by Israel to censor American media, because it published a piece which was not to the liking of the Zionist state. The Israel Military Censor is trying to influence a foreign country, and the authorities of that country have not reacted at all. A long time ago, I published an Open Letter to the ADL. Let me cite a short sentence from it: ‘…after all you claim to “fight anti-Semitism and all forms of bigotry, defend democratic ideals and protect civil rights for all” and “defend the security of Israel and Jews worldwide.” Your motto is: “To stop the defamation of the Jewish people…to secure justice and fair treatment for all.” You are doing that continuously since 1913; almost a century of undisputed, undiscriminating professionalism.’ Dear leaders of the Anti-Defamation League and their parent organization, the Independent Order of B’nai B’rith, I want to file a new complaint at your office, this time for violation of democratic ideals and civil rights by the State of Israel in the USA; I do that despite your not having answered my first complaint. Will you be faithful to your honorable principles and take action against the State of Israel? Or will you show—again—that you are nothing but an unofficial American arm of Israeli bigotry?