Sat Apr 10th, 2021 at 07:25:56 PM EST
A bit of history put into context due to recent developments in the Middle East, the Abraham "Business" Accords, neglect of Palestinian cause and "regime change" in the White House from Trump to Biden. A new ball game?
Dahlan hired US mercenaries for UAE killings in Yemen | MEMO - Oct. 17, 2018 |
The Palestinian Authority (PA)'s ex-Security Chief Mohammed Dahlan arranged for US mercenaries to carry out targeted assassinations in Yemen on behalf of the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The deal emerged yesterday after the founder of the security firm hired by Dahlan - Hungarian-Israeli security contractor Abraham Golan - gave an interview to Buzzfeed News in which he detailed the elaborate details of the arrangement.
Golan told Buzzfeed that his firm - Spear Operations Group - began its contracted killings of clerics and politicians at the end of 2015, at the behest of the UAE. One of the main targets was political party Al-Islah, which the UAE sees as the Muslim Brotherhood's branch in Yemen. Golan claims that he was told in his first meeting with Dahlan to help "disrupt and destruct" Al-Islah, so subsequently assembled a team of mercenaries to carry out the operation. Dahlan promised that the team would receive $1.5 million a month in return, Haaretz reported.
The team of mercenaries was comprised of former US Special Forces and Navy SEALs, with Buzzfeed describing how on 29 December 2015 "their job was to carry out [the] assassination [of] Ansaf Ali Mayo, the local leader of the Islamist political party Al-Islah".
Standing in front of a UAE military plane are Gilmore (middle left), Golan (middle right), and two soldiers on their mercenary team [Buzzfeed]
The deal between Golan's company and the UAE was struck by Mohammed Dahlan - the PA's Security Chief during the Oslo years until his resignation in 2007. He has since been living in exile in the UAE and worked as a close adviser of Emirati Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan.
The UAE has been heavily involved in the civil war in Yemen, which has been ongoing since 2011, forming an integral part of the Saudi-led coalition fighting in the country. The US and Britain have provided weapons, intelligence and other support to the coalition, with the war seen as one of the worst humanitarian catastrophes of the 21st century.
The Israeli assassin who teamed up with Mohammad Dahlan | Ynet News |
The United States is assisting coalition forces and supplies weapons and intelligence, among other things. The exposé by Buzzfeed comes amidst the "murder at the consulate" scandal: the alleged assassination of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul, Turkey.
Golan said that the team he headed was responsible for several major assassinations, but he refused to specify the names of those killed. He said that the United States needs an assassinations program similar to the one he has been running for months in Yemen.
"I just want there to be a debate," he said. "Maybe I'm a monster. Maybe I should be in jail. Maybe I'm a bad guy. But I'm right." According to him, the model for the assassinations industry is based on Israel's targeted killing of terrorists.
Golan, who maintains good relations with Israel through security deals in which he is involved, said he had lived in Israel for several years. In the past he attended a party with former Mossad chief Danny Yatom, and his expertise "was to provide security for energy clients in Africa."
Yatom confirmed in a conversation with Ynet that they had indeed met at a party in London: "I have not been in contact with him for years; we were in touch during my time as a businessman."
According to Yatom, "My acquaintance with Golan was not extensive, but he gave me the impression of an enthusiastic Zionist, a courageous man who was prepared to take great risks, and unfortunately, in the end, after he immigrated with his family to Israel, he emigrated and since then we have not spoken for many years."
Regarding the things attributed to Golan in the article, Yatom said: "I have nothing to do with these things."
Former Yemen allies furious as UAE assassination campaign exposed | Middle East Eye - Oct. 18, 2018 |
Since 2015, al-Islah, the Yemeni branch of the Muslim Brotherhood, and the United Arab Emirates have been fighting against Houthi rebels in an attempt to prop up the internationally recognised government of President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi.
Buzzfeed revealed that the Emiratis had hired a team of American and Israeli mercenaries to assassinate members of the Islahi leadership - enraging the influential party and exposing the UAE's presence in Yemen to fierce criticism.
It has also placed Saudi Arabia, which leads an anti-Houthi coalition and is closely allied to both the Islahis and Emiratis, in a deeply uncomfortable position.
"Although the announced aim of the Emirates in Yemen is to support the legitimate government, it fights legitimacy with all its might," Issa Qadhi, a member of al-Islah in Taiz, told MEE.
Instead of prioritising the defeat of the Iran-allied Houthi rebels, Qadhi said, "the UAE made the annihilation of the al-Islah party the first aim of its presence in Yemen".
"The UAE is willing to destroy the whole country and bring mercenaries from around the world to annihilate al-Islah," he added. "The UAE is cunning but God does not help the cunning to succeed."
Ankara Red Notice Request for Mohammed Dahlan
Key reasons why Turkey placed a bounty on Mohammed Dahlan | TRT World |
Interpol rejected Turkey's request to arrest dismissed Fatah leader Mohammed Dahlan | al-Monitor - Aug. 28, 2020 |
The General Secretariat of Interpol informed its National Central Bureau (NCB) in a letter published Aug. 22 of its decision to reject the Turkish request to issue an international arrest warrant (red notice) against dismissed Fatah leader Mohammed Dahlan who is currently residing in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
The General Secretariat said Turkey's request does not comply with Article 3 of the Interpol Constitution, which states, "It is strictly forbidden for the Organization to undertake any intervention or activities of a political, military, religious or racial character."
The General Secretariat further confirmed that all information related to Dahlan has been deleted from Interpol's databases, and no police contact or cooperation can be made in this case through Interpol channels.
On Aug. 21, the Turkish TRT channel reported Turkey's diffusion of a request from Interpol's NCB in Ankara against Dahlan, accusing him of carrying out espionage activities targeting Egyptian citizens and Palestinians residing in Turkish territory.
In November 2019, Ankara had issued an Interpol red notice request for Dahlan on charges related to his involvement in issues affecting Turkey's national security.
Imad Mohsen, spokesman for the Democratic Reform Current led by Dahlan, told Al-Monitor, "Turkey is greatly disturbed by the Arab position that Dahlan adopts, as it represents an obstacle to its greedy colonial ambitions in the Arab region."
On the Arab position adopted by Dahlan, Mohsen explained that the latter is part of the Arab alliance between Egypt, the UAE, Jordan and Saudi Arabia against any foreign interference in Arab affairs, especially from Turkey. Mohsen denounced Turkey's false and fabricated allegations against Dahlan, which he said are not based on any legal arguments and documents.
Interpol makes 'first arrest' at PA request as new member | I24 News - Aug. 15, 2018 |
Serbia Quietly Grants Citizenship to Abbas Rival | Balkan Insight - Jan. 30, 2015 |
Serbia's government has quietly granted citizenship to Mohammed Dahlan, a key rival of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and adviser to the crown prince of Abu Dhabi, the Balkan Investigative Reporting Network, BIRN, can reveal.
Dahlan, his wife and four children, a nephew and five key political supporters were all granted citizenship between February 2013 and June 2014, according to documents from the state's Official Gazette analysed by BIRN.
The government is able to grant citizenship during closed cabinet sessions to foreigners when it is deemed to serve "state interests" without offering any detailed public explanation.
Dahlan is credited with facilitating Abu Dhabi's promised investment of billions of euros in Serbia. However, the government in Belgrade has refused to explain whether this is the reason it has gifted citizenship to 12 Palestinians since 2013, all of whom are linked to the powerful politician.
Nobel Peace Prize winner Tawakkol Karman to deliver the third Hanway Lecture in Global Studies
Human rights activist Tawakkol Karman will deliver Loyola University Maryland's third Hanway Lecture in Global Studies on Tuesday, April 7, 2015, at 7 p.m. in McGuire Hall. The event is free and open to the public, but tickets are required.
Karman, a journalist and politician in Yemen, has played a major role in the peace-building movement and revolution in her country, protesting for human rights and against government corruption. She was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 for her leadership in the non-violent fight for women's rights and peace.
She was the first Yemeni, the first Arab woman, and the second Muslim woman to win the Nobel Peace Prize, and at the time was the youngest Nobel Peace Laureate at age 32.
"With her inspiring courage, tenacious spirit, and ability to bring voice--and action--to the difficult position of Muslim women in our world, Tawakkol Karman can give our students deep insight into the human rights movement and the role we can each play in improving our world," said Rev. Brian F. Linnane, S.J., president of Loyola. "I look forward to welcoming Ms. Karman to Loyola and seeing how she will continue to elevate the conversation on our campus and in our community, just as the previous speakers in the Hanway Lecture in Global Studies have."
My earlier coverage on Yemen atrocities ...
Further reading, European nations complicit in war crimes ...