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Why is Israel blamed for everything?

Israel's intelligence agencies do have a long reach in the region [Gett]

Date of publication: 24 November, 2015

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Blog: UAE security chief Dhahi Khalfan Tamim has accused Israel of blowing up a Russian airliner over the Sinai. Why is Israel a constant target for people in the region?

When something goes wrong in the Middle East, Israel is often first in the firing line.

The UAE's controversial security chief, Dhahi Khalfan Tamim, is the latest public figure to claim that Israel might be responsible for the bombing of a Russian airliner over Egypt in October.

Dhahi made the accusation on Twitter, saying that Israeli intelligence could have planted the bomb that blew up Metrojet flight 7K9268.

"Yesterday [Vladimir] Putin signed with President Sisi an agreement [to build] nuclear reactors in Egypt... is Israeli intel behind the detonation of the Russian airliner? Very plausible," the tweet read.

Israel connection?

The attack killed all 224 passengers on board the Sharm el-Sheikh to St Petersburg flight, which disintegrated mid-air 20 minutes after take-off.

The Islamic State group later claimed responsibility for the attack. 

On 18 November, IS posted a picture of a soft drinks can, a trigger and detonator in its online magazine, Dabiq.

The group said that the improvised device destroyed the Russian jet.

However, this has not stopped conspiracy theories from continuing to claim that Israel was behind the destruction of the passenger jet - and other attacks.

Suspicions that Israel downed the jet rest on two factors:
one, the location of the crash site close to the Israel border.

Second, Israel has been behind a number of "false flag" operations before.

In an article published 6 November, conspiracy blog Darkmoon claimed that the Airbus 321's computer could have been hacked. 

The writers alleged that one intelligence camp in the Negev desert - Unit 8200 - was located just 60 miles north-east to the crash site and is manned by "Israel's most accomplished computer hackers". 

"Yesterday Putin signed with President Sisi an agreement [to build]nuclear
reactors in Egypt... is Israeli intel behind the detonation of the
Russian airliner? Very plausible." Dhahi Khalfan Tamim


These agents would have the ability to hack into the plane's electronic signals, the website claimed.

"These hackers could have easily gained access to the plane's computer, taking over the plane without the knowledge of the plane's passengers or of the pilots in the cockpit. Computer hacking is indeed the main function of the Israeli operatives based [there]," the article claimed.

The conspiracy theorists then went on to maintain that the missing Malaysia Airlines MH370 and the downing of MH-17 over rebel-held territories in eastern Ukraine were all instigated by Israel's secret services.

Egyptian regime

Obviously, such claims are incredulous to most people, and probably Tamimi too, who has become known for his controversial comments and tweets, such as one comment when he urged the UAE to annex Qatar.

In the latest allegations, he cited the growing closeness between Egypt and Russia as a reason Israel might "down the jet". 

This was linked to an agreement between the two countries on constructing nuclear power plants in Egypt.

Israel has been jitterish about any other country in the region obtaining nuclear power but itself.

Its jets bombed Iraq's Osirak nuclear reactor in 1981, but Saddam Hussein was vehemently opposed to the existence of Israel and supported a number of groups targeting the state.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi has never struck a loud rhetorical tone against "the Zionist entity" - as many anti-Israel figures describe the state.

He has, in fact, been collaborating closer with Israel on joint security at the Gaza border than perhaps any other Egyptian leader before him.

Read more: "You don't have to be mad to rule Egypt... but it helps"


Sisi's rivals in the Muslim Brotherhood have traditionally been more critical of Israel than the security-obsessed, military-backed dictators of Egypt.

"There are hidden intelligence hands behind the recent attacks in France... in terms of both the modus operandi and the timing, coinciding with the raging conflict of the interests of major powers," one article on the website for the Muslim Brotherhood's Freedom and Justice Party read.

"The Paris attacks were a gift handed on a plate of gold to Israeli PM Netanyahu. [He] rushed to exploit the attacks, expressing solidarity with France against 'Barbarians'."


So why is Israel blamed by many for any mishap or disaster in the Middle East, or indeed the rest of the world?

The fact that the country's leadership has been behind numerous black ops gives credence to some conspiracy stories.

Its clandestine efforts include the Lavon Affair, named after Defence Minister Pinhas Lavon, when Egyptian Jews on the behest of the Israeli intelligence services planted several bombs in Cairo cinemas and libraries frequented by US and British citizens.

It was thought that, as Israel was strongly allied to the two countries, nobody would suspect a Zionist link - and so Egyptian revolutionaries (or the Muslim Brotherhood) would be blamed.

This would in turn discourage the UK from withdrawing its troops from the country, which might in turn strengthen Egypt's nationalists.

IS links?

Other similar Israel-organised black ops - and the notorious secrecy of the country's several intelligence agencies known to be active - makes any claim of Israeli links to revolutions, terrorist acts, or social disturbances in the region seem plausible.

It has led conspiracy theorists to link Israel to Syrian rebel groups attempting to overthrow Bashar al-Assad - a longtime opponent of Israel. Opposition militias operating in the Golan Heights in particular have been frequently linked to the country.


The fact that injured rebel fighters - including members of Syria's al-Qaeda affiliate - have been treated by Israeli medics and surgeons have brought charges of collaboration from pro-regime Druze villagers.

However, many analysts have pointed out that Israel's borders with the Syrian regime are perhaps its quietest, while Assad has made no attempt to reclaim the occupied Golan Heights for decades.

Claims of Israel-IS links might also seem outlandish, but at the same time understandable.

There is no denying that Israel appears intent on keeping regional powers weak, vilifying Islam, and destroying any opposition to Tel Aviv - peaceful or not. 

The fact that Israel has never been hit by IS itself is also a curious matter.

But the fact that Iran has never been the target of an IS attack does not bring the same allegations levelled at Tehran.

In the end, the parties most interested in maintaining that an omnipresent Israel is behind every tragedy in the region are usually those with the most to hide - and that includes Israel herself.

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