Intelligence: Israel Is Listening

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November 2, 2007: The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) is resuming monitoring their own communications. The practice was halted seven years ago, after persistent rumors that senior officers were using the system to spy on subordinates and rivals. But during the 2006 war in Lebanon, Hizbollah was found to be monitoring cell phone use by Israeli soldiers. This was because Hizbollah had found that Israeli troops would discuss classified or operational matters on their cell phones. The Israelis were not supposed to do that, but since the IDF monitoring had stopped, the troops were getting sloppy.

Another reason for bringing back the monitoring is to try and stop soldiers from leaking information to the media. This has gotten out of hand as well. This is usually done by soldiers that disagree with some government policy. This is often the case with very religious Jews who support the settlers program (Jews living in the West Bank, Golan Heights or Gaza). These troops get too involved in their partisan beliefs, and often tip off their political allies about secret army plans.

The monitoring system will tap into landlines that connect the military phone system to the civilian one. Just the existence of this system is expected to cause most troops to watch what they say on the phone.

 


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