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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Israel traded 52 terrorists for Ron Arad's personal weapon

What the heck were they thinking? I'll have an answer to that at the end.

A report in Yedioth Aharonoth on Thursday (Israel's largest circulation Hebrew daily newspaper and owner of the YNet web site) says that in 2000, Israel traded 52 'Palestinian' terrorists in exchange for Ron Arad's weapon and personal effects. Arad was an IAF navigator who was shot down over Lebanon in 1986.
A report in Yediot Achronot Thursday said that Israel recovered the personal weapon of missing IDF soldier Ron Arad in 2000 – in exchange for the release of 52 Arab and Lebanese terrorists and security prisoners. Arad went missing in 1986 when his plane went down over Lebanon, and he was captured by the Lebanese Shi'ite militia Amal and later turned over to Hizbullah.

According to the report, Arad's family was invited to an emergency meeting with the head of the Mossad at the time, Efraim Halevy, and were told that the weapon was recovered. Israel sought to make the deal in the wake of the kidnapping of Elchanan Tannenbaum at the time. Hizbullah chief terrorist Hassan Nasrallah set the conditions for the return of the weapon and other personal effects of Arad, and Israel agreed.
This trade was made in December 2000, shortly after then-Prime Minister Ehud Barak ordered the IDF to flee from Lebanon (Tannenbaum and the bodies of three IDF soldiers for which Israel ultimately traded over 400 terrorists were grabbed in October 2000). Payment was made as part of the Tannenbaum deal. It is probable that the IDF wanted to confirm that it was Hezbullah - and not Iran as was commonly believed at the time - that was holding Arad. Still, that was way too high a price.

For those of you who are wondering, here are some more details of what Israel got.
Details of the December 2000 deal were revealed by the mass-selling Yediot Aharonot newspaper, which said it was a secret part of negotiations to release three soldiers and a businessman captured in separate incidents that year.

The ArmaLite AR-7 rifle, a light firearm designed to be used as a survival weapon, was carried by Ron Arad when his plane went down over southern Lebanon during the Lebanese civil war.

"With our hands shaking, we opened the package, compared the serial number, and when it turned out the numbers corresponded, we called (Arad's wife) Tami," one of the officials involved in the operation told the paper.

Eight years of indirect talks mediated by a German intelligence official failed to secure Arad's release and his whereabouts remains unknown.

After his plane went down, Arad was captured by Amal, another Shiite movement headed by Nabih Berri, who is now speaker of the Lebanese parliament.

Two years ago, Hezbollah turned over previously-unseen photographs and excerpts from a diary Arad kept until 1987 as part of another prisoner exchange deal.

It also provided a report saying Arad was dead, which Israel dismissed, vowing to continue the search for him.


Yediot Aharonot said the 52 prisoners were included in the 2004 prisoner exchange for the four captured Israelis, which saw Israel release a total of 400 Palestinian prisoners and dozens more from Lebanon and other Arab states.


At 11:08 PM, Blogger NormanF said...

Stupid Jews.

I can understand trading terrorists for the ransoming of Jews from captivity but for an inanimate object?

Please - its a desecration of Ron Arad's memory, G-d rest his soul. He deserved better from his own country.

At 6:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You fools! You fools!

Don't you see?! Are you blind?!

Now Hizballah has one gun less to attack Israel.

We're so smart!


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