by Mordechai Sones
Sheba Medical Center Director: 'Can you imagine Mount Sinai Hospital going to CIA for help?'
Mossad emblem iStockEarlier this month,Yediot Aharonot reported Mossad agents succeeded in obtaining ventilators, millions of surgical and N95 masks, and bringing them to Israel, despite the international scramble to locate and purchase these urgently needed supplies. Mossad officials also obtained thousands of overalls to be used by Magen David Adom (MDA) teams testing Israelis for coronavirus.
The New York Times spoke to Sheba Medical Center Director Prof. Yitshak Kreiss, who related details of his talk with the Mossad head at a private event where Kreiss says he enumerated the most urgent equipment needs to Mossad head Yossi Cohen, who obtained further lists from the Health Ministry, and the Mossad began activating its international network to find the items needed.
The Mossad says this is the first batch of several they hope to bring to Israel. The operation to procure medical supplies is being overseen by Cohen himself, who is utilizing his global connections with political leaders and heads of intelligence organizations in order to acquire essential equipment for Israel.
"Kreiss declined to say precisely how Mossad officers had helped the Israeli medical establishment or where the imported equipment came from," NYT wrote, but did quote "six people who spoke on the condition of anonymity" who "would not confirm non-Israeli media reports that some of the items were acquired from neighboring Arab nations with no official diplomatic relations with Israel."
A source involved in the Mossad procurement effort best summarized the culture by explaining to Yediot Aharonot: “We purchase supplies without seeking recognition, and fly them to Israel without seeking recognition.”
"The Mossad’s efforts were easier in nondemocratic countries where intelligence agencies have more influence with the rulers," NYT quoted an official. "The efforts were based on prior familiarity and mutual trust between the Mossad and those agencies.
"In some instances, the official said, Mr. Cohen personally contacted his counterparts. Such contacts were often enough to expedite purchase of the goods. In other cases, the official said, Mr. Cohen spoke directly to the rulers of particular countries, which he declined to identify."
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