Eli Cohen's widow: Deeply disappointed, they forgot about him

The widow of the spy who was hanged in Syria in 1965 asked why she was not informed of the return of the body of Zecharia Baumel, and why her husband's body had not yet been returned to Israel.

April 5, 2019 08:48
1 minute read.
Stamp issued in honor of Eli Cohen

Stamp issued in honor of Eli Cohen 370. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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Nadia Cohen, widow of the late Israeli spy Eli Cohen, told Kan radio on Friday that she was "deeply disappointed" by the state's attitude toward her family, and expressed satisfaction over the return of the body of missing IDF soldier Zacharia Baumel who was killed in the Lebanon war in 1982, but asked why the body of her husband, who was hanged in Syria in 1965, had not yet been recovered.

"I sat alone at home and wept. My heart is with the Baumel family, but if I had known in advance, I would not have watched it, it takes me back to my story, to Eli, myself and the children. I remember how the kids called for "Daddy" when they were in the cradle. She also protested that her husband was not considered a soldier of the State of Israel.

"It's insulting, their behaviour hurts me, they promise and disappear," Cohen said. "It's like an old wound does not heal, it only gets worse from day to day, from month to month. It's as if Eli was only on a mission for the Mossad, you know how many bodies he served? Everyone asked for him. He was forgotten."

"An event like this can make you collapse, I fainted today and spent most of my day in bed. A disappointment from the depths of my soul, only those who knock at the table, only those who are constantly at the back, I have no strength for it," added the widow of the most famous spy in Israel's history.

Cohen was caught after he managed to make friends with Syrian President Amin al-Hafiz, with members of the ruling party and military leaders, and provided Israel with great amounts of intelligence information.

The IDF Spokesperson, Brig.-Gen. Ronen Manlis, disclosed on Thursday the details of Operation "Zemer Noga," during which the body of Zacharia Baumel, who was killed during the battle of Sultan Yaakov, was returned. According to a briefing he gave to military correspondents, it was a joint operation of the IDF and Russian army intelligence division, which lasted two years, during which the parties conducted a fruitful intelligence dialogue, according to which the Syrian army operated on the basis of information from the IDF's intelligence bodies.

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