Passengers stand near a check-in desk at Ben-Gurion International Airport, near Tel Aviv.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
WASHINGTON – Security at Israel’s international airport challenges US agents seeking entry into the country to maintain false identification, according to a Central Intelligence Agency document released by WikiLeaks this week.
The document advises agents to maintain cover “no matter what” as they navigate thorough screenings at Ben-Gurion Airport, where Israeli security “commonly refer military-aged males traveling alone with backpacks to secondary screening, regardless of their nationality or skin color.”
The US State Department has declined repeated efforts by Jerusalem to include Israel in its visa waiver program, on the basis of its security process at its border crossings.
WikiLeaks describes the document as being “produced by the CIA’s CHECKPOINT Identity and Travel Intelligence Program to explain and advise CIA operatives on how to deal with secondary screening at airports.”
The document describes Ben-Gurion as one of the toughest airports for its agents to navigate.
“Israel’s security personnel focus on frequent travel to Islamic countries,” it reads. “Secondary screening – a potentially lengthy and detailed look by airport officials at passengers not passing initial scrutiny – can significantly stress the identities of operational travelers.”