Zvi Zamir, Former Spymaster, Dead at 98

Red roses on light grey tombstone outdoors. Funeral ceremony

(RightWing.org) – A man who was passionate about the state of Israel, even before its official establishment after World War II in 1948, has died at the age of 98. Zvi Zamir rose to the rank of major general in the Israeli Defense Force (IDF) and eventually became the head of the country’s spy agency, Mossad. Some of his activities are legendary.

Ignored Then, Remembered Now

In 1973, Zamir tried to warn then Prime Minister (PM) Golda Meir and the rest of her cabinet that a Mossad agent by the name of Ashraf Marwan, who was a close advisor to former Egyptian President Anwar Sadat, that an attack was imminent. The spymaster flew to London in the middle of the night to meet with this source and was told that Egypt and Syria were about to launch a surprise attack on the Jewish nation.

However, Israel’s Military Intelligence Director at that time, Eli Zeira, didn’t believe it, calling it a “ruse” and prevented Tel Aviv from increasing the alert status of the IDF. This meant that the front-line soldiers were not as prepared as they may have been when the two Arab nations launched their invasion just a handful of hours later in what we now call the Yom Kippur War.

Eerie Foreshadowing

Those who are old enough will never forget the events that unfolded at the 1972 Olympic games in Munich, West Germany, when eight Palestinian terrorists of the Black September Organization assaulted the athlete’s village and proceeded to massacre all 11 of the unarmed civilians who comprised the Israeli team.

PM Meir authorized Zamir and Mossad to develop counterintelligence squads to hunt down and kill those who were the masterminds of the terror attack, which included the group itself along with certain Iranian officials and members of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO).

Known as “Operation Wrath of God,” teams of Mossad agents were sent abroad and carried out assassinations in Italy, France, Cyprus, and Lebanon, amongst others. In the aftermath of the Yom Kippur War, Zamir made an unfortunately prophetic statement when he said, “if there is no far-reaching change in Israeli policy [in the future], war should be expected.”

The Beginning

Before the official establishment of Israel in 1948, there was the British Mandate in Palestine, where the number of Jewish immigrants to the region was tightly controlled. With the outbreak of World War II, the leadership decided to form an elite group of fighters known as the Palmach as a sort of forerunner to the IDF.

The unit was created out of fear that the British occupying force would be recalled home in what was certainly a dire situation because Nazi Germany’s Blitzkrieg attacks against the United Kingdom would leave the Jewish people open to attacks from the Axis powers or the Arab armies that literally surrounded them. A 17-year-old Zamir, feeling a call to duty joined up and took his first steps on the path to where we are today with the world mourning his passing.

Copyright 2024, RightWing.org