Best Defense

Thomas E. Ricks' daily take on national security.

Ignatius: Turkey ratted out Mossad sources to Iran to punish Netanyahu

David Ignatius, for my money the best intelligence reporter in the business, reports that last year, the Turkish government informed the Iranian government of the identity of as many as 10 Iranians who had been meeting in Turkey with Mossad officers. His overarching conclusion in this interesting, detail-rich column, is that, "The Netanyahu-Erdogan quarrel, with ...

Wikimedia
Wikimedia
Wikimedia

David Ignatius, for my money the best intelligence reporter in the business, reports that last year, the Turkish government informed the Iranian government of the identity of as many as 10 Iranians who had been meeting in Turkey with Mossad officers.

His overarching conclusion in this interesting, detail-rich column, is that, "The Netanyahu-Erdogan quarrel, with its overlay of intelligence thrust and parry, is an example of the kaleidoscopic changes that may be ahead in the Middle East. The United States, Israel, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Egypt are all exploring new alliances and struggling to find a new equilibrium -- overtly and covertly."

I think one of the things that makes Ignatius so good is his novelistic mind, which helps him gaze unblinkingly into the intel world's wilderness of mirrors:

David Ignatius, for my money the best intelligence reporter in the business, reports that last year, the Turkish government informed the Iranian government of the identity of as many as 10 Iranians who had been meeting in Turkey with Mossad officers.

His overarching conclusion in this interesting, detail-rich column, is that, "The Netanyahu-Erdogan quarrel, with its overlay of intelligence thrust and parry, is an example of the kaleidoscopic changes that may be ahead in the Middle East. The United States, Israel, Iran, Saudi Arabia and Egypt are all exploring new alliances and struggling to find a new equilibrium — overtly and covertly."

I think one of the things that makes Ignatius so good is his novelistic mind, which helps him gaze unblinkingly into the intel world’s wilderness of mirrors:

What will the spider do,
Suspend its operations, will the weevil
Delay?

(HT to Jeff)

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com. Twitter: @tomricks1

More from Foreign Policy

An illustration shows George Kennan, the father of Cold War containment strategy.
An illustration shows George Kennan, the father of Cold War containment strategy.

Is Cold War Inevitable?

A new biography of George Kennan, the father of containment, raises questions about whether the old Cold War—and the emerging one with China—could have been avoided.

U.S. President Joe Biden speaks on the DISCLOSE Act.
U.S. President Joe Biden speaks on the DISCLOSE Act.

So You Want to Buy an Ambassadorship

The United States is the only Western government that routinely rewards mega-donors with top diplomatic posts.

Chinese President Xi jinping  toasts the guests during a banquet marking the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China on September 30, 2019 in Beijing, China.
Chinese President Xi jinping toasts the guests during a banquet marking the 70th anniversary of the founding of the People's Republic of China on September 30, 2019 in Beijing, China.

Can China Pull Off Its Charm Offensive?

Why Beijing’s foreign-policy reset will—or won’t—work out.

Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar chairs a meeting in Ankara, Turkey on Nov. 21, 2022.
Turkish Defense Minister Hulusi Akar chairs a meeting in Ankara, Turkey on Nov. 21, 2022.

Turkey’s Problem Isn’t Sweden. It’s the United States.

Erdogan has focused on Stockholm’s stance toward Kurdish exile groups, but Ankara’s real demand is the end of U.S. support for Kurds in Syria.