Israel tracked every Hezbollah vehicle with GPS for the last 4 years

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Israel tracked every Hezbollah vehicle with GPS for the last 4 years

In an amazing spy episode Israel installed GPS and voice recording equipment on every Hezbollah vehicle used by them in the last four years using a spy at their highest levels.

BEIRUT // The revelation last week that Israeli intelligence had penetrated the highest levels of Hizbollah left the normally secretive militant group scrambling to contain the damage.

The initial reports, detailed in the Lebanese media last week, revealed that Marwan Faqih, a long-time associate of the group’s tight-knit leadership, has been accused by an internal Hizbollah investigation of spying for Israel since at least the mid-1990s. Hizbollah is thought to have arrested Mr Faqih last month before recently turning him over to the Lebanese authorities for prosecution.

A well-known businessman in the southern city of Nabatiyeh, Mr Faqih ran several automobile-related businesses, including dealerships and mechanic shops. Official leaks from Lebanese security forces accused Mr Faqih of using access to Hizbollah vehicles to install tracking and listening devices on behalf of Israeli intelligence services to track Hizbollah members.

Multiple security sources – including Lebanese military intelligence, security officials and police – confirm the broad outlines of the media reports. They add, however, that the Israeli operation has been far more damaging to the group than initially admitted.

Hizbollah publicly denies that Mr Faqih was an official member of the group, claiming he merely had close business contacts with certain officials, but security sources familiar with the case say he was a high-ranking member of the group’s political wing and had been one of the sole suppliers of automobiles to the group for official use.
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He sold them all their cars. This man was a trusted colleague of ‘the Resistance’, a friend and member that the leadership had known their entire lives. This is the worst penetration of Hezbollah by the Israelis any of us have ever heard about.

Although local press reports have put the number of vehicles potentially compromised in the low dozens, military and security officials say the actual figure is in the hundreds, and that most of the vehicles supplied to the group by Mr Faqih have been found to contain the GPS-tracking devices. Multiple sources also said this particular operation had continued for more than four years and Mr Faqih was a major, if not sole, supplier of vehicles to the group’s military wing.

The source said it could comprise all of the officials and their vehicles right up to the Hizbollah leader, Hasan Nasrallah. “At this point Hizbollah knows that all of the movements by major officials for the past four years are probably detailed on a screen in an Israeli intelligence centre.”

Hizbollah’s initial reports into the conspiracy claimed that an auto mechanic repairing an electrical short in an SUV used by a Hizbollah commander accidentally discovered the devices. Media reports say the mechanic brought the device to the attention of the group, which started an internal investigation. But one security official described this claim as “disinformation”.
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Iran had recently supplied more modern counter-intelligence devices to Hizbollah. When they turned the new equipment on, it told them all their vehicles were sending encoded locations to a satellite. It was then they knew what sort of problem this would be. They’re trying to convince the Israelis that they stumbled on it by accident, but Mossad was probably listening to them as they found it.
the source said.

The damage to the group is seen as a devastating intelligence blow not only because Israelis were monitoring the movements of its leadership and members, officials say, but because the monitoring had been going on for some time.
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Any time more than three or four vehicles stopped in the same place, that place needs to be abandoned. So that includes not just homes, safe houses and offices, but more importantly, their military headquarters, operational areas, bunkers. All the new things that have been built or put into place since the end of the 2006 war could be lost to them. They have been very busy since January moving everyone and everything to new locations.
says the security official, who has worked closely with the group for decades.

The security official seemed to agree with the assessment of another military intelligence official, who said even the paths travelled by each vehicle around Lebanon – if observed for years – would show a wealth of patterns and habits by officials that could help the Israelis. The group might be forced to rethink almost all of its procedures.
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They might not have known exactly who was in the vehicle at any given moment, but the Israelis now have a clear view of how the group moves, what lines you can draw from place to place.

“It’s just an unbelievable logistical problem for any army, let alone a secret resistance group.
the security official added.

That the vehicles had been tracked for four years goes to explain many of the Israeli air strikes conducted on seemingly civilian areas during the 2006 war, the security official said.

In the case of Sheikh Nabil Kaouk, Hizbollah’s military wing commander for southern Lebanon, it resulted in a series of near misses by Israeli forces in 2006 that the group had not been able to explain until the tracking devices were found.
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Kaouk was nearly killed no less than three times in Ghaziyeh, just south of Sidon, where he was hiding in the 2006 war. On two occasions, less than 10 minutes after he left a building, an Israeli bomb would fall on it. For two years, [Hizbollah] has been trying to explain why. Well, now they know.
a security official said.
By netchicken: posted on 24-2-2009

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