Mahmoud al-Mabhouh’s Fight Exposed the Operation
In the ongoing case of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh’s assassination, culpability can be narrowed based on access to information. Who would have risked the unusually vast resources expended in this operation without advance information sufficient to elicit contingent approval? Mabhouh willingly embarked on an itinerary assigned to him by trusted, familiar handlers; an itinerary designed to result in his eradication. Over the last two years, Mabhouh had suffered two attempts on his life. He was no dummy when it came to his own comfort level. Stratfor has previously documented the extent of the Iranian intelligence network operating in Gaza, Lebanon and Syria. Knowing who controls this netherworld of Hamas and Hezbollah makes it easier to deduce the most probable origin of the operation. Mabhouh had no reason to suspect that his hotel room assignment was predetermined. Yet, the fact that his room was located in an area blind to video surveillance and the coincident ability of the hit team to locate itself directly across from his room reveals both the coordinated agenda and the duplicitous nature of Mabhouh’s orders. This event clearly betrays itself in the magnitude of expended effort. Effort that, without preoperative information, would not have been deemed a reasonable risk. And that’s the point, there was very little risk compared to the very large benefits. One, al-Mabhouh would finally be removed from the payroll while, two, generating a classic “blame the enemy” opportunity. An appropriation of Stalin’s simple lesson as applied by the Ayatollah Ahmadinejad Khamenei.
The immediate release of information and videotapes regarding Mabhouh’s cause of death is simply an elongated ruse to cover the team’s ultimate failure to successfully “execute” their assignment. Suffocation and electric shock purported as causes of death are techniques taken straight from the jihadist curriculum of death which seem incongruent in this case. We reason that Mabhouh violently resisted the dose of succinylcholine that was intended to untraceably stop his heart. Then, facing a noisy fight with Mabhouh, the three assassins resorted to suffocation to accomplish the task, calculating that the combination of complexity, conspicuousness, and credit cards issued in the name of Payoneer, would ultimately provide sufficient cover.
The Stratfor Article
Iranian Weapons interdicted on the way to the Hezzis: