Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service

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Overview

The Mossad is widely recognized today as the best intelligence service in the world. It is also the most enigmatic, shrouded in secrecy. Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service unveils the defi ning and most dangerous operations that have shaped Israel and the world at large from the agency's more than sixty-year history, among them: the capture of Adolf Eichmann, the eradication of Black September, the destruction of the Syrian nuclear facility, and the ...

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Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service

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Overview

The Mossad is widely recognized today as the best intelligence service in the world. It is also the most enigmatic, shrouded in secrecy. Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service unveils the defi ning and most dangerous operations that have shaped Israel and the world at large from the agency's more than sixty-year history, among them: the capture of Adolf Eichmann, the eradication of Black September, the destruction of the Syrian nuclear facility, and the elimination of key Iranian nuclear scientists.

Through intensive research and exclusive interviews with Israeli leaders and Mossad agents, authors Michael Bar-Zohar and Nissim Mishal re-create these missions in riveting detail, vividly bringing to life the heroic operatives who risked everything in the face of unimaginable danger. In the words of Shimon Peres, president of Israel, this gripping, white-knuckle read "tells what should have been known and isn't—that Israel's hidden force is as formidable as its recognized physical strength."

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Two insiders—Bar-Zohar, a politician and biographer of David Ben-Gurion, and Mishal a leading Israeli journalist—reveal some of the more fantastic episodes in the history of Israeli intelligence operations around the world. A quick and easy read, this book focuses on the operational details and personalities behind the famed Mossad’s record of assassination, kidnapping, sabotage, and clandestine surveillance. Most of the stories covered—the assassination of Hezbollah’s Imad Mughniyeh in Damascus, the botched attack on Hamas leader Khaled Mash’al in Amman, Elie Cohen’s rise through the ranks of Syrian society and eventual capture and execution—are well-known, a few are more speculative, concerning highly confidential subjects such as the strikes on Iranian nuclear scientists and facilities. Mostly silent about the political, social, and ethical dimensions of the Mossad’s work, Bar-Zohar and Mishal are resolute cheerleaders, and the writing is patchy and breathless: “The news spread through Damascus like wildfire. Fantastic, absurd, impossible nonsense!... Could one of the leaders of the ruling party... be a spy?!” 16 pages of b&w photos. Agent: Al Zuckerman, Writers House. (Nov.)
Kirkus Reviews
Action-packed accounts of the missions of one of the world's most effective and mysterious intelligence services, Israel's Mossad. Former Knesset member Bar-Zohar (Shimon Peres, 2007, etc.) and Israeli TV personality and journalist Mishal (Those Were the Years: Israel's Jubilee, 1997, etc.) spare no detail about the gruesome killings and plots of the Israeli agency. In fact, the authors often boast about the deadliness of Mossad agents, especially former director Meir Dagan. Most of the missions included here feature unexpected twists and nearly unbelievable plotlines that rival a fast-paced thriller. For example, there is the story of Elie Cohen, a Mossad agent who posed as a Syrian expatriate who was homesick in Argentina and wanted to move back to his homeland. He threw parties and mingled with the political inner circle, all while dispatching their secrets to Israel on a daily basis. Another operation involved smuggling the unconscious body of a former Nazi leader out of Argentina by having his double check into a hospital using the target's name. Though unquestionably exciting, many readers may find the narrative bordering on propaganda, and the last chapter is disappointing. Bar-Zohar and Mishal cobble together facts to make an unconvincing argument about how Israel should receive support to fight against the threat of Iran, cherry-picking facts to fit their position. For example, the authors write that former Iranian deputy defense minister Ali-Reza Asgari defected to Israel in 2007, even though the debate continues about whether he actually defected or was kidnapped. Entertaining and somewhat informative, but readers should take it with a grain of salt.
Shimon Peres
“This book tells what should have been known and isn’t—that Israel’s hidden force is as formidable as its recognized physical strength.”
Chuck Hagel
“Mossad reads like a spectacular spy novel, and contains the real stories from one of the world’s premiere intelligence agencies. It’s worth reading.”
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780062123404
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 11/6/2012
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 98,703
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.60 (d)

Meet the Author

MICHAEL BAR-ZOHAR is a writer, public speaker, and former lawmaker. Author of many novels and nonfiction books, he was a member of the Knesset and envoy to the Council of Europe. A former advisor to General Moshe Dayan, Dr. Bar-Zohar also has served as a professor at Haifa University in Israel and at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. He is one of Israel's foremost experts on espionage and the official biographer of David Ben-Gurion and Shimon Peres. He also wrote the biography of Isser Harel, the legendary director of the Mossad, and coauthored The Quest for the Red Prince, which dealt with the bloody war between the Mossad and Black September. Bar-Zohar's books have been translated into eighteen languages.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Alone, in the Lion's Den ix

1 King of Shadows 1

2 Funerals in Tehran 8

3 A Hanging in Baghdad 26

4 A Soviet Mole and a Body at Sea 38

5 "Oh, That? It's Khrushchev's Speech…" 50

6 "Bring Eichmann Dead or Alive!" 59

7 Where Is Yossele? 88

8 A Nazi Hero at the Service of the Mossad 112

9 Our Man in Damascus 131

10 "I Want a MiG-21!" 157

11 Those Who'll Never Forget 171

12 The Quest for the Red Prince 186

13 The Syrian Virgins 214

14 "Today We'll Be at War!" 222

15 A Honey Trap for the Atom Spy 239

16 Saddam's Supergun 254

17 Fiasco in Amman 266

18 From North Korea with Love 279

19 Love and Death in the Afternoon 291

20 The Cameras Were Rolling 304

21 From the Land of the Queen of Sheba 317

Epilogue: War with Iran? 333

Acknowledgments 339

Bibliography and Sources 341

Index 371

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 22 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 22 Customer Reviews
  • Posted November 17, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Mossad: The Great­est Mis­sions of the Israeli Secret Ser­vice b

    Mossad: The Great­est Mis­sions of the Israeli Secret Ser­vice by Michael Bar-Zohar and Nis­sim Mishal is a non-fictionbook by Israeli jour­nal­ists Michael Bar-Zohar and Nis­sim Mishal. The book recounts some of the great suc­cesses and fail­ures of the secret Israeli agency.

    The book is divided into twenty two dis­tinct chap­ters, each one a story of its own. The oper­a­tions range from the com­plex assas­si­na­tions of Syr­ian gen­eral Muham­mad Suleiman, find­ing and assas­si­nat­ing rogue sci­en­tist Ger­ald Bull(he was devel­op­ing a super­gun for Sad­dam Hus­sein), the kid­nap­ping Nazi Adolf Eich­mann in Argentina and lur­ing Mordechai Vanunu out of Eng­land into Rome as to not suf­fer the wrath of Thatcher.

    Even oper­a­tions which seem mun­dane, such as smug­gling out of the Soviet Union of Nikita Khrushchev’s secret speech, or sneak­ing across the bor­der Jew­ish Syr­ian women (the Syr­ian brides) gets an air of rev­er­ence and com­plex­ity. Other chap­ters include a run down of the years Israel’s great­est spy, Eli Cohen, spent in Syria as well as bring­ing the Jews of Ethiopia to Israel.

    The chap­ter about the elim­i­na­tion of Black September’s lead­er­ship does not fail to men­tion the inno­cent Moroc­can waiter, whose only crime was resem­bling Ali Has­san Salameh, one of the Mossad’s tar­get. One of the biggest fail­ures of the Mossad that we know of.

    I am famil­iar with Pro­fes­sor Bar-Zohar’s writ­ings, he is a lead­ing Israeli writer on espi­onage. As most of his books, Mossad is also a fast paced, fas­ci­nat­ing look behind thick cur­tains which have been pre­vi­ously closed. The authors’ analy­sis and insight are mes­mer­iz­ing and usu­ally spot on, while the new infor­ma­tion they present, infor­ma­tion that just recently has been uncen­sored, is sim­ply amazing.

    One of the most intrigu­ing aspects of the book is not the spec­tac­u­lar suc­cesses, but the equally spec­tac­u­lar fail­ures. Some of these fail­ures are so aston­ish­ing one has to look at the cover to make sure the book is about the Mossad and not the key­stone cops. After­wards pound­ing ones head – “what were they think­ing”.

    Author Michael Bar-Zohar said that this is due to "The feel­ing is that we are the best in the world, and there­fore a sense of Israeli ama­teur­ish­ness some­times creeps into the sys­tem. This means they send peo­ple who are not as sea­soned as they should be and they trust that they will not be caught and iden­ti­fied.”

    That being said, the Mossad cer­tainly has an extra­or­di­nary achieve­ment record. That record though, cou­pled with clas­sic Israeli self-assurance and over­con­fi­dence, can eas­ily get smirched.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 10, 2013

    A must read. It's like 21 awesome Daniel Silva books rolled into

    A must read. It's like 21 awesome Daniel Silva books rolled into 1! But even better, they are all TRUE!!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 28, 2013

    This is the best book I have read in years!  I have never posted

    This is the best book I have read in years!  I have never posted a book review but felt this was so extraordinary that I wanted to share the experience.  And yes, it was an amazing experience, an adventure, keeping me totally immersed in the missions to the point of feeling like I was a part of them.  Exciting, intriguing, suspenseful and full of surprises.  The writing is beautifully crafted with colorful descriptions and reads like a spy novel instead of a work of non-fiction.  I could not put it down and did not want it to end! 

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 17, 2013

    The good, the bad and the ugly.

    Having met some members of Mossad many years ago I couldn't wait to read this book authored by two outstanding people. You always think that Mossad did everything perfectly and then you learn that as an organization they had their flaws. It was easy reading and truly enjoyable.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 17, 2013

    Awesome

    What a chronicle! The people featured in this book are bold, brave, and nuts! A really good read!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 14, 2012

    Brilliant descriptions and well presented exploits of a largely

    Brilliant descriptions and well presented exploits of a largely successful intelligence. The book gripped my attention from the opening chapter and retained it all the way to the end. It basically wrapped up a relaxing weekend, which started with Triple Agent Double Cross, another interesting book of exploits. I like stories of gusto.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2013

    OutCast

    Smiled. "Give chase?"

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2013

    Moon

    She growled and ran after.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2013

    Silvefang

    I have nothing to lose by killing him
    All bloodclan cats follow him and attack

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2013

    Panther

    Pads back to camp

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2014

    Hi

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 30, 2013

    Mossshadow

    I am not blaming you. I am trying to figure something out.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 4, 2013

    MOSSAD IS GREAT

    MOSSAD IS GREAT

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 23, 2013

    Absolutely an amazing book. A must read!

    Absolutely an amazing book. A must read!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2012

    I could'nt get through the whole book. Was absolutely a horrible

    I could'nt get through the whole book. Was absolutely a horrible lopsided read,ugh!

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 20, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 11, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 14, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted February 27, 2013

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 22 Customer Reviews

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