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From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Arther Miller) Newsgroups: alt.politics.org.cia,alt.politics.org.fbi,alt.politics.usa,alt.politics.usa.congress Subject: THE LAVON AFFAIR Date: 28 Aug 2003 19:34:05 -0700 Organization: http://groups.google.com/ Message-ID: <email@example.com> NNTP-Posting-Host: 126.96.36.199 NNTP-Posting-Date: 29 Aug 2003 02:34:06 GMT * THE LAVON AFFAIR * http://christianparty.net/lavonaffair.htm Now forgotten by most of the few people who ever knew about it, was the Lavon Affair that once rocked Israel to the very core. After the Egyptian revolution of 1952, relations between the U.S. and the new Gamal Abdel Nasser government steadily improved. Cultural and economic agreements between Egypt and other Arab states and the U.S. were being discussed, and it was sincerely hoped that the U.S. would aid the projected Aswan Dam development program. By 1954 American Ambassador Henry Byroade's personal friendship with Nasser seemed likely to produce results. A U.S. aid program of $50 million had been started. The situation was viewed in high Israeli quarters as a grave threat to the continued flow of American dollars into Israel from public, if not private, sources. A direct severance of relations between Egypt and the U.S. was deemed desirable. An Israeli espionage ring was sent to Egypt to bomb official U.S. offices and, if necessary, attack American personnel working there so as to destroy Egyptian-U.S. relations and eventually Arab-U.S. ties. The creation of simulated anti-British incidents was calculated to induce the British to maintain their Suez garrison. Several bomb incidents involving U.S. installations in Egypt followed. Small bombs shaped like books and secreted in book covers were brought into the USA libraries in both Alexandria and Cairo. Fish skin bags filled with acid were placed on top of nitroglycerin bombs; it took several hours for the acid to eat through the bag and ignite the bomb. The book bombs were placed in the shelves of the library just before closing hours. Several hours later a blast would occur, shattering glass and shelves and setting fire to books and furniture. Similar bombs were placed in the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Theater and in other American owned business buildings.24 In December two young Jewish Egyptian boys carrying identical bombs were caught as they were about to enter U.S. installations. Upon their confession, a sabotage gang of six other Jews was rounded up. Five more were implicated in the plot. The conspirators, who received sentences ranging from fifteen years to life, were the objects in the U.S. of multifold sympathetic editorials and articles. Nothing appeared in print at the time to refute the image that this had been but another Nasser conspiracy to unite his country against Israel. The cry "anti-Semitism" widely reverberated. In 1960 an investigation in Israel called attention to the forgery of an important document in what had been announced as a "security mishap" that had precipitated the resignation of Pinhas Lavon as Minister of Defense in 1955. Shimon Peres, then Deputy Minister of Defense, and Moshe Dayan had, with the forgery, attempted to place the legal responsibility for the unsuccessful 1954 sabotage attempt at Lavon's door. Ben-Gurion had fought the reopening of the case, but a subsequent rehearing revealed that Lavon had been an innocent victim of the machinations of Peres, Dayan, and Brigadier Abraham Givli. Even though the army, through censorship, attempted to cover up its own blunders, the "Lavon Affair" led to a Cabinet crisis and the resignation of the Ben-Gurion government in 1961. As late as December 29, 1960, the Times was still referring to the scandal only as "a disastrous adventure in 1954." As the already abnormal ties between Israel and the U.S. grew stronger, scant attention was paid to the disclosure in Israel of this blatant attempt to torpedo U.S.-Arab relations. The above is taken from "The Zionist Connection II, What Price Peace?" by Alfred M. Lilienthal (J)
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