Mossad Director David Barnea on Monday said that the government's repeal of the reasonableness standard had not yet crossed the line into bringing the agency into a legal dilemma, but that is such a point arrived, that the Mossad would always remain loyal first to the rule of law.
The statement was similar, but not exactly identical to a first report by Channel 12 in which he had allegedly said that if the government goes the wrong way, his agency will come out on the right side of history - but that such a point had not yet been reached.
The Jerusalem Post can confirm that there have been high tensions within the Mossad regarding the issue and that Barnea is attempting to maintain the spy agency's cohesion while permitting open dialogue among its agents.
On Monday, a critical mass of Mossad officials held a dialogue with Barnea over government policy with disparate accounts of whether he called the meeting proactively or was pressed into it.
Former Mossad chiefs speak out against reform legislation
All of the six living former Mossad chiefs had either explicitly opposed the reasonableness standard repeal or called for a pause to arrive at a compromise.
Five out of six had blamed Netanyahu for tearing apart the nation, while Yossi Cohen had said the vote must be paused to give more time for dialogue.
To date, Mossad agents below top ranks have been allowed to participate in protests without identifying features and this has helped prevent any agents from quitting.
However, the Mossad cannot assure that the passage of the new law, or additional actions against the legal establishment might not lead to large-scale quitting as is occurring in the IDF.