Tongue In Cheek: Profile - the Anglo-Israeli assassin

The perfect subject for top secret globe-trotting escapades?

February 19, 2010 01:10
2 minute read.
This combination image made from undated photos re

mabhouh assassins 311. (photo credit: AP)


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You couldn't ask for a more fitting secret service assassin than the Anglo-Israeli - 'Anglo' being British, South African, Canadian or Australian.

American immigrants won't do - they're too much like Israelis. Assassins need to work quietly, not attracting too much attention. So sending an American oleh on a complicated mission in a high-pressure environment, with many, many cameras, just won't work. The Anglo-Israeli, however, is at once quiet, reserved, self-effacing and unobtrusive; while at the same time managing to be assertive, aggressive, and in-your-face.

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(Anglo-Israelis also won't make too much of a fuss if you steal their passports, ID cards, immigration papers, drivers' licenses or other official documents. As long as it's in the vital security interests of the state, they won't run and tell the hevre (guys). They'll grin and bear almost anything. Just don't make them out to be frierim (suckers). They'll never let you get away with that.)

The Anglo-Israeli combines the moderate temperament and poise of the Brit, with the ruthlessness and cunning of the Israeli; the pedantic perfectionism of the city mixed with the inventiveness, ingenuity and opportunism of the hi-tech park in Kiryat Atidim; the easy-going nature of British Columbia, Canada with the flash tempers of Beersheba's downtrodden Shchunat Daled.

The Anglo-Israeli can be eminently polite and offensive in equal measure. Well-mannered, yet able to get under your skin in seconds. He's likely to pull a chair out for a lady, or pull a chair out from under you.

The Anglo-Israeli is just as comfortable in long cricket whites as in short tennis pants and sneakers; he can play both James Bond and Yossi Bublil with consummate ease.

He can drink tea with Her Majesty and drink Arak with (Queen of Israel) Sara Netanyahu.

The Anglo-Israeli is a complex creature, at once following the rules, but only to the extent that it serves his purpose. Take for instance the published photographs of the suspected Dubai assassination team's passports. According to the Home Office Identity and Passport Service, people posing for British passport photographs are not allowed to smile or wear glasses while having their pictures taken. Only Israelis would break that rule while posing for a fake British passport. The facial expression must be neutral with the mouth closed. But take a close look - it looks as if some of the passport photos were taken at a camera shop on Rehov Yeffet in Jaffa with Galgalatz playing in the background. At least five of the suspected assassins are smiling, and almost all are wearing glasses.

One cannot blame the Mossad, if foreign press reports prove correct, for using the identities of Anglo-Israelis as cover for their operatives on their escapades across the globe. They were born for the task.

Now the question is whether the British government will be forgiving of its former subjects, or punish the Israeli in them?

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