Israel and Zionism Department
1930s-era Jewish gangster

Half-Billion-Dollar Industry Largely Staffed By Sex Slaves, by Dr. Martin Brass, Soldier of Fortune, October 2002, p. 32
"Israel prides itself as a 'beacon of light,' paving an enlightened path for democracy and human rights in a region of dictators, theocracies, tyrants and human rights abusers. In July 2001, the U.S. State Department placed Israel on a 'third tier' list of countries, or worst offenders, of Traffickers in Persons. In the shadows of the 'beacon of light' lurks a brutal and inhumane abuse - trafficking of women and children for the sex-slave trade. Israel was on the same list as Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Sudan, Yugoslavia, Bahrain, Greece, Pakistan, Qatar, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and 12 others ... 'Elderly Jewish women in the Ukraine often lure the girls into the trade,' Specter said. Or, the girls are recruited through 'an ad or an unexpected meeting on the street, with a proposition to work abroad as a maid, secretary, showgirl, nanny or waitress.' A typical ad, writes Walter Zalisko, 24-year police veteran, authority on Russian organized crime in New Jersey and New York, seeks '... pretty woman, under age 40, slender, educated, to work in modern office setting; $600/month; documents and transportation provided.'"

Israel Fears More Rights Challenges in Europe,
[Israeli newspaper], July 26, 2001
"The [Israeli] Foreign Ministry has begun 'mapping' the criminal justice systems of European countries, trying to identify 'problematic states' where prominent officials in the Israeli security services might face legal action because of wide-ranging local authority to prosecute suspected human rights violations. Sources in the Foreign Ministry warned that prominent IDF and Shin Bet security service officers, who have appeared in the press in connection with their past or present jobs, might be subject to prosecution in some European countries. The issue first arose with a complaint to the Belgian court system against Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, for alleged responsibility for massacres in the Sabra and Chatila refugee camps in Beirut during Israel's 1982 invasion of Lebanon. This was closely followed by complaints from Danish parliamentary and human rights groups against Carmi Gillon, the former Shin Bet chief recently appointed ambassador to Denmark. Several high-ranking security officers, both past and present, have recently asked the ministry whether they might face difficulties traveling through Europe."

Israel Extradition Law Offers Help to Alleged Criminals.
Jewish Bulletin of Northern California
, February 27, 1998
"Are Israelis committing crimes in the United States and fleeing home to avoid prosecution? In some cases, yes. But recent developments suggest that while these alleged criminals can run, they can't necessarily hide. The issue emerged in September, when a Maryland teenager claimed Israeli citizenship in an effort to avoid a murder trial in the United States. The case of Samuel Sheinbein came before the Israeli courts this week as Israeli officials, seeking to comply with a U.S. request for extradition, argued that despite the youth's claim, he is not an Israeli citizen. While Sheinbein's case is extreme, his flight from U.S. prosecutors has focused some unwanted attention on Israel's extradition policy. Like most European countries and many South American nations, Israel does not extradite its citizens. But it does allow prosecutions in its own courts for crimes committed abroad. But the fear of prosecution at home has not stopped at least a half-dozen Israelis from fleeing the United States in recent months. The recent trend has elicited much concern among U.S. law-enforcement personnel and prosecutors, who fear that Israeli criminals will use the Jewish state as a refuge ... Until 1977, there was an extradition treaty between the United States and Israel. But an Israeli law, passed in 1977 and intended to protect Israelis from legal actions abroad motivated by anti-Semitism, superseded that treaty, according to an Israeli official in Washington. Since then, the Israeli law barring extradition of its citizens has come under fire in the United States. The Sheinbein case reopened the issue, resulting in congressional pressure not only to extradite Sheinbein, but also to change the law to prevent similar situations in the future."

Fit to Be Tried. But Where? Jerusalem Post, October 19, 1997
"Samuel [Sheinbein, is] the 17-year-old Maryland youth suspected of a brutal slaying and now trying to turn Israel into his land of refuge. According to the 1978 [Israeli] law, passed by Menachem Begin's government, Israeli citizens cannot be extradited for crimes they allegedly committed abroad. Instead, the bill authorized Israeli courts to try such persons here. The impetus for the bill was the case of Reuven Pesahovitz, an Israeli accused by the Swiss of embezzlement and fraud of more than 10m. Swiss francs. Prime minister Begin, then serving also as justice minister, refused to extradite Pesahovitz. Meretz MK Amnon Rubinstein, formerly the dean of Tel Aviv University's Law Faculty, said that Begin's pushing of this legislation was part of his philosophy of not wanting to turn Jews over to non-Jews, because of a concern that they would not get a fair trial. At the time that the law was enacted, another high-profile extradition case, involving Shmuel Flatto-Sharon, was stirring passions in the country. Flatto-Sharon was accused of embezzlement and fraud by France which was seeking his extradition."

Former Jewish Agency Chief Fined $13,000 on Fraud Charges
. Jewish Bulletin of Northern California, May 17, 1996
"Former Jewish Agency for Israel chairman Simcha Dinitz has been fined approximately $13,000 after being found guilty of billing the agency for charges on a personal credit card. In announcing the fine, a Jerusalem district court judge stressed the seriousness of the offenses, which were fraud and breach of trust. At the same time, he rejected the prosecution's request for a prison term."

Israeli President Faces Criminal Investigation. The Independent [Great Britain], January 21, 2000
"Israel's head of state, Ezer Weizman, became the first President in the nation's 52-year history to be the subject of a criminal inquiry yesterday, for accepting large sums of cash from a reclusive French millionaire while serving in parliament and as a minister. The attorney-general told police to investigate the activities of Mr Weizman, 75, after the Justice Ministry announced it had new evidence that may link him with the business interests of the textile magnate Edouard Saroussi in Israel in the early 1980s. The launch of a police inquiry, in which the tax authorities will also play a role, prompted fresh demands for the resignation of Mr Weizman, whose uncle, Chaim Weizmann, was Israel's first president and who has been a flamboyant and outspoken fixture on the Israeli political scene for decades."

Scandal Probe Paralyzes Israel. The Standard-Times, April 18, 1997
"Defiant in the face of an influence-peddling scandal, Benjamin Netanyahu vowed yesterday to hang tough through calls for his resignation. 'We're not going anywhere,' he told supporters. The government, and efforts to revive the peace process, have virtually stopped while Israelis wait to find out whether prosecutors will follow police advice and charge the prime minister with fraud and breach of trust ... The scandal stems from Mr. Netanyahu's decision in January to appoint Jerusalem lawyer Roni Bar-On as attorney general. Mr. Bar-On resigned after a day in office amid a storm of criticism that he was unqualified. Days later, Israel TV alleged that the appointment was part of a conspiracy by senior officials who expected Mr. Bar-On to end the corruption trial of Aryeh Deri, head of the Shas religious party."

Military Industry Rocked by Scandal.
Jewish Bulletin of Northern California
, March 15, 1996
"Three Israeli military equipment dealers were arrested recently amid allegations of a multimillion dollar bribery and fraud case involving private contractors, the Defense Ministry, and Israel's air force. Sources close to the case said more arrests are expected of ministry officials and army officers."

Sir George Martin Gets Back 6 of 7 Stolen Scores.
Jerusalem Post
, June 6, 1999
"In an incident that Israel Festival organizers would soon like to forget, famed Beatle's producer Sir George Martin had seven original scores stolen during his first concert at the Jerusalem International Convention Center. The original orchestrations were the only copies Martin brought with him, and their absence put his second performance of the festival in jeopardy. Two of the scores were discovered when a woman approached Martin after the concert and asked him to sign the sheets of music she had taken during intermission. One witness noted the woman's shock as Martin displayed his unhappiness. Not until Sir George's producer Zev Eizik ran an advertisement on Israel Radio pleading that Martin would be unable to continue his tour unless the sheets were returned, did three people come forward and give back four more scores. Martin's monumental orchestration Golden Slumber is still missing."

Keeping the Election Kosher. Jerusalem Post, May 24, 1999
"'We are taking all possible precautions against any fraud at the polls. We're manning every single polling station,' Alkeslassy said, and additional volunteers will be sent to polling stations that have been problematic in the past. He wouldn't specify which ones, explaining that he didn't want to apportion blame, since 'most people are fine, it's just some activists who cross the line.' Eli Pelles, an 18-year-old Meretz activist from Jerusalem who used to be haredi [ultra-Orthodox], feels differently. Election fraud is rampant in the haredi community, he charged. It is considered normal to take the ID cards of people who have died or are away and vote in their place, he said. 'I spoke to haredim who are friends of mine and they said to me, 'We all know that happens, but why did you go and tell the press?' In the 1996 elections, when Pelles was not only haredi but also underage, he voted three times at three different polling places. After he became secular, Pelles switched his support to Meretz because of its stance on religious issues. He has addressed several of its seminars on how to spot people who are voting illegally ... The kibbutzniks, not the haredim, are the ones stuffing the ballot boxes, according to Yitzhak Pendruc, a UTJ election day coordinator."

Israeli Life. Meat in the Deri Case? Hadassah
"His story has all the elements of Greek tragedy. A young man rises from a poor Sefardic family to transform Israeli society. He creates Shas, and through his brilliant maneuvering this ultra-Orthodox political party becomes a force to be reckoned with; by tipping the scales it can create or destroy ever-fragile coalition governments. But as with all tragic heroes, the very pride and confidence that made him might also be destroying him. Since 1990 Aryeh Deri, former Minister of the Interior, has been on trial for fraud, violating the public trust and embezzling government funds. A lightning rod whose fate enmeshes the whole society, Deri has embroiled Israel's entire political elite in his trial, and it is feared he may bring down the government. The investigation into Ronnie Bar-On's short-lived tenure as attorney general is only the last in a series of Deri-connected scandals, but this time it has sullied the reputation of the prime minister himself."

Ministry Never Pressed Charges Against Yeshiva Fraud.
, August 21, 2001
"The Religious Affairs Ministry awarded NIS 11 million to two fictitious Be'er Sheva yeshivas in the past seven years, but never went to police over the fraud after comptrollers uncovered it. The two yeshivas, run by Be'er Sheva residents Yeshua Okanin and Yisrael Shneor, claimed they had 270 pupils. It was the worst of many fraud cases uncovered in a report by the treasury on yeshiva claims in 2000 ... Two weeks ago Ha'aretz reported on the deputy general accountant Yossi Strauss' treasury report on allocations to yeshivas. Strauss' report summarized the findings of a detailed investigation that revealed systematic whitewashing of fraudulent reporting during 2000 by the Religious Affairs Ministry. This enabled fraudulent reporting to continue and prevented any punishment of the yeshivas or their managers. The treasury estimates that the coverup cost the state NIS 85 million [about $30 million] a year."

The Crisis at the Hebrew National Archives "Gnazim," The Mendele Review: Yiddish Literature and Language (A Companion to Mendele -- Vol. 05.014, November 5, 2001
"The 'Gnazim' archives of the Hebrew Writers' Association is presently closed to the public due to a labor dispute. (2) The six 'Gnazim' employees (like the other ten employees of the Association) have not received salaries for many months. The elected officers of the Association have been accused by other members of misusing funds and of other irregularities -- internal disputes are not a rare phenomenon in the Writers' Association. The Histadrut workers' federation has entered the fray to protect the employees' rights. While the inner conflicts rage, the work of the national institution responsible for the preservation and cataloging of the letters and manuscripts of generations of writers and thinkers is frozen. If paralysis continues long enough, permanent damage may result and the nation as a whole will suffer a palpable cultural loss ... As lovers of Yiddish, we are interested parties. The papers of 730 writers -- amounting to over six million items -- are held in the 'Gnazim' archives. Among these many items are thousands and thousands which are either written in Yiddish, are written by a writer who wrote Yiddish, or concern a Yiddish-related subject. In short, 'Gnazim' is a vital station on the map of the Yiddish researcher."

Israelis Confess to Internet Attack,
Excite (from Associated Press), December 8, 2001
"Four Israeli youths in police custody have admitted to creating and spreading the computer worm 'Goner' by e-mail to attack hundreds of users around the world, police said Saturday. Police arrested the high school students, ages 15 and 16, from the northern city of Nahariya on Friday, said Meir Zohar, the head of the police computer crime squad. The Internet worm first spread early this month to computers in Europe, especially in France and Germany. American anti-virus companies have reported more than 400 cases of Goner attacks worldwide. An Internet worm can spread to other computers on its own."

Teachers' Union Head Obtained Degrees By Fraud,
Jerusalem Post, December 11, 2001
"Histadrut Teachers Union head Avraham Ben-Shabbat and his deputy, Uri Groman, were placed under 14 days' house arrest by Tel Aviv District Court yesterday after both admitted to fraudulently obtaining academic degrees, then using them to receive higher pay. The two posted NIS 100,000 bail apiece. Their arrests were a part of an unfolding scandal surrounding ISE Co., which operated extensions of Latvia and Burlington universities here, and sold degrees for $5,000 each without demanding any academic effort. The company provided academic papers for its 'students' and even awarded grades. Its main clients were Civil Service workers, who receive wage incentives for continuing their education and earning advanced degrees. Police believe that, over the past two years, ISE's operations have cost the public payroll millions of shekels."

Romania Probes Israeli Adoption Agency Link to Organ Trafficking,
Haaretz, December 13, 2001
"Romanian authorities are looking into possible links between Israeli adoption agencies and an illegal global conspiracy to sell organs for transplants. The Romanian Embassy in Israel has asked for, and received from the Labor and Social Affairs Ministry, a list of all children born in Romania who have been brought to Israel for adoption in recent years. The Romanian officials are trying to ascertain if all such children arrived in Israel with all organs in their bodies."

Another Mossad Scandal Chips Away at Agency's Credibility
CNN, December 6, 1997
"The latest scandal to rock Israel's Mossad spy agency involves allegations that an agent fabricated information that may have skewed Israeli assessments of Syria's political and military intentions. It is being called the 'Gil Affair,' named after Yehuda Gil, 63, who was identified on Saturday as the Israeli Mossad agent who allegedly received some $200,000 for passing along bogus intelligence reports on Syria. The charges brought against Gil include spying and fraud, Israel Radio said quoting a charge sheet. Bit by bit, Israelis have been reading between the lines in newspapers squeezed by censorship about what is being called 'the mother of all intelligence scandals' ... It was revealed on Saturday that Gil was a former general-secretary in a far-right political party that advocates expelling Palestinians from the West Bank and Gaza. The disclosure that he was affiliated in 1992 with the ultra right-wing Moledet party has prompted speculation that his concocted reports may have been aimed at discouraging Israeli leaders from making peace with Arab partners."

Think Again: Presumed Guilty, Jerusalem Post, November 30, 2000
"The family of Alastair Sinclair, a Scottish tourist, who, hanged himself in an Israeli jail, was forced to bring suit for the return of missing body parts. University of Glasgow pathologists, who did an autopsy at the request of Sinclair's family, found that it had been returned without a heart (which they suspect was used for a transplant) and without the crucial bone needed to confirm the claim that he died from hanging."

Credit Lyonnais Stops Taking Israeli Checks, Haaretz, January 20, 2002
"French bank, Credit Lyonnais, has decided to stop accepting checks from correspondent banks in Israel and other companies on the blacklist of the Financial Action Task Force on Money Laundering (FATF). Earlier this week, another French bank, Societe Generale, announced that it was suspending the processing of checks from correspondent Israeli banks until the investigation into a Franco-Israeli money laundering affair was cleared up. Banking industry sources believe that other French banks may follow suit, leading to possible difficulties in bilateral trade. Israel is on the blacklist of 19 countries and territories considered particularly problematic when it comes to the supervision of money-laundering activities. The money-laundering affair has caused a storm in France and two senior executives at Societe Generale have been arrested. Several Israeli banks are involved, including Leumi, Israel Discount Bank and the First International Bank of Israel."

Retired Israeli General Investigated for Embezzling $10 Million in U.S. Aid Funds, Washington Report on Middle East Affairs, Jan/Feb 1997
"A retired Israeli general is under investigation for allegedly embezzling an estimated $10 million of U.S. foreign military aid. Brig. Gen. (res.) Alex Eyal, a former head of naval procurement in Israelís Ministry of Defense, allegedly overcharged Israelís U.S. foreign military aid account in a contract for Panther helicopters supplied to the Israeli navy by the American Eurocopter Corporation (AEC), a wholly-owned U.S. subsidiary of the Eurocopter France firm ... Perhaps the most disturbing aspect of the case to both American and Israeli officials is that this is not the first time Americaís generous foreign aid relationship with Israel has been abused. In 1991, retired Israeli general Rami Dotan was indicted for embezzling some $40 million in U.S. foreign military aid with the assistance of Herbert Steindler, an official of the American Pratt & Whitney aircraft engine manufacturer. Dotan was imprisoned for his actions, and in July 1992 General Electric paid $59 million in civil damages and $9.5 million in criminal penalties in a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice."

Background. Israeli Soccer Under Threat
Haaretz [Israel], May 8, 2002
"Asked in late February whether he believed that his referees were "clean," the head of the soccer Referees' Association, Arye Zeif, said he trusted 90 percent of the referees. The legal adviser of the Israel Football Association (IFA), Shalom Ibn-Ezra, hurried to correct Zeif, saying that until it was proved otherwise, 100 percent of the referees were above any suspicion of involvement in match-fixing. Zeif agreed. If we rely on Zeif's original statement, then there is no justification for holding soccer matches in Israel. On Monday, Zeif's words echoed eerily when police arrested four referees for allegedly taking money in exchange for fixing matches. On Tuesday, a fifth referee was arrested. Four months ago, Army Radio's sports editor, Niv Ruskin, revealed information regarding the involvement of referees in rigging matches. At the time, the IFA considered suing Ruskin. The police, however, took the report seriously. Senior figures in the Israel Fraud Squad convinced Ruskin not to publicize any names. And, ever since, they have been involved in trying to verify the allegations. Police discovered large amounts of foreign currency in raids carried out on the homes of some of the suspects. The police also have a list of suspects who are not referees, but are known to be involved in running illegal gambling. Some of them have a sporting past ... There is sufficient evidence floating around to cast a shadow over the viability of Israeli soccer. It is important that Vilnai and Shalom move quickly, because after the next criminal fiasco, there will be nothing left of Israeli soccer to save."