50 Influential Jews: David Barnea - No. 10

The director of Mossad is helping frame the trilateral Israel-Saudi Arabia-US deal. Here is how.

 Mossad Director David Barnea. (photo credit: Courtesy)
Mossad Director David Barnea.
(photo credit: Courtesy)

When Mossad Director David Barnea met with a variety of senior White House officials and CIA Director William Burns mid-summer to help frame the trilateral Israel-Saudi Arabia-US deal, he put his own unique mark on decades of work by the spy agency.

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Others have and are working the Saudi angle besides the Mossad, but The Jerusalem Post understands that Barnea has been at the forefront of progress between Israel and many countries with whom it currently has no diplomatic relations. All of this adds a crucial piece to the Mossad director’s main reputation as the disrupter of Iran and global terror.

For example, Barnea has conveyed intelligence to the US which either nixed a nuclear deal with Iran, delayed it, or helped reshape it.

His agency has been credited with a variety of sensational attacks on Iran’s war-making capabilities, from Karaj in 2021, to a series of hits on military figures in the spring of 2022, to destroying a major weapons facility in Iran in January of this year.

The Mossad during his term has also been credited with thwarting terror attacks against Jews in Europe, the Middle East, Asia, and elsewhere. These headlines can drown out the agency’s role in promoting peace. However, even if others have been involved, Barnea has played a key role in maintaining the respect, desire, and vision of a deal both in Riyadh and Washington.

Barnea’s secret diplomacy fits into the larger picture of his role in the Mossad as being not just a “gadget-loving killing machine,” as one article dubbed him, but as highly effective in promoting a potential future historic three-way deal, which could then lead to normalizing Israel’s relations with much of the Sunni world.