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Anat Kam – Israeli Traitor

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Anat Kam – Israeli Traitor

Kam, 23, is accused of appropriating 2,000 documents, 700 of which were classified as "top secret" while serving in the IDF's Central Command in 2007. After her army service, Kam went on to work for the Walla news agency.

"She's an Israeli, she's a Zionist - she's even opposed to the refusal of orders," a representative of Kam said Thursday, after the gag order was lifted. Kam had "no intention of harming the security of Israel," he added. "This is a dangerous precedent."

Haaretz is currently negotiating with the legal authorities for the return of the reporter in question, Uri Blau, who is presently in London.

In a rare media briefing on Thursday, Shin Bet chief Yuval Diskin said that Blau was currently wanted by both the security service and Israel Police for questioning.

According to an agreement reached in September 2009 by the Shin Bet and Haaretz's lawyer, Mibi Mozer, Blau was to return to the security services some 50 classified documents still in his possession. But the Shin Bet believes Blau is still holding a nymber of secret documents that he received from Kam.

"Our main goal is to see those classified documents returned so that they do not fall into hostile hands," said Diskin. "It is the dream of all our enemy states to get their hands on these kinds of documents."

"We see this is a very serious matter in terms of the potential security damages it could save caused," added Diskin. "This affair is not yet over. We are looking for the documents and waiting for them to return to the country, so that the damage cannot be caused."

Haaretz learned Monday that Israel's defense establishment decided to withdraw its support of a months-long blanket gag order on the security-related affair.

Diskin told reporters on Thursday that he had agreed to a partial lifting on the gag order after Mozer rejected an offer for another arrangement between Blau and the security services.

The names of those parties involved in the case and the charges leveled against them were thus released in Israel for the first time on Thursday.

After the details were exposed, one of Kam's lawyers, Eitan Lehman, said Thursday that "some unusual mistakes were made in this case, including the unclear, careless, and lazy investigation which aimed at the wrong places, such as imposing a blanket gag-order."

"At no time did her actions harm Israel's security and there was certainly no intent to do the country any damage," Lehman said, adding that "the published documents were all authorized by the IDF censor, proving that publishing them did not endanger the state's security."

"The real story is that the documents were exposed, unmonitored, and available to hundreds of people in the IDF, including low ranking members," he said, adding that "Anat is not affiliated with any extreme political groups in Israel, and she is not one of those who attempt to hitch a ride on her back. She is a mainstream, Zionist, Israeli girl, the salt of the earth."

Representatives of the Israel Defense Forces, the Shin Bet security service and the State Prosecutor's Office filed an appeal with the Tel Aviv District Court on Thursday, in which they requested the partial removal of the gag order. It has been in place for the last three and a half months.

Despite the court-imposed gag order, Israeli blogs and Web sites, along with foreign media outlets not subject to Israeli law, have been discussing the affair in detail over the past several weeks.

The reversal in the position reportedly came about after messages from the Supreme Court were sent to the State Prosecutor's Office and the presiding judge, Ze'ev Hammer, allegedly hinting at the peculiar situation created, in which Israeli media was banned from publishing the story while worldwide outlets already released most of its details.

Col. Sima Vaknin-Gil, the chief military censor, commented on the situation during an interview with Haaretz on Monday. "I think when the coverage began abroad ... especially with the comprehensive aspects connected to Israel's image, it would have been right to consider lifting the order, at least partially," she said.

Sometimes, she continued, "when there is a gag order, the censor is even barred from expressing its professional opinion and has to wait like everyone else for the order to be lifted - usually at the initiative of the media or the body that issued the order.

Source : http://www.haaretz.com

Israeli journalist Anat Kam under secret house arrest since December

Woman faces treason trial after allegedly leaking documents that suggest military breached court order on West Bank assassinations

Anat Kam – Israeli Traitor
Israeli soldiers sleep on the ground in the West Bank. Anat Kam is accused of copying documents while she was a soldier on her national service and passing them on to Ha'aretz. Photograph: Ilan Mizrachi/AP

An Israeli journalist has been under secret house arrest since December on charges that she leaked highly sensitive, classified military documents that suggest the Israeli military breached a court order on assassinations in the occupied West Bank.

Anat Kam, 23, goes on trial in two weeks on treason and espionage charges and could face up to 14 years in jail. A court-imposed gagging order, proposed by the state and more recently by the defence, is preventing media coverage of the arrest and charges in Israel.

Kam is reportedly accused of copying military documents while she was a soldier on national service and then passing them to an Israeli newspaper, Haaretz. Kam denies the charges. Her lawyers declined to respond to repeated requests for comment.

A Haaretz journalist, Uri Blau, who has written several stories critical of the Israeli military and who has been linked in internet reports to the case, has left Israel and is now in London, apparently for fear he will be targeted for his reporting. Haaretz and Channel 10, an Israeli television station, will challenge the media gagging order at a hearing on 12 April, two days before Kam's trial is due to start at the Tel Aviv district court.

The Jewish Telegraphic Agency, which reported the story from New York this week, said the investigation into Kam was jointly conducted by Israeli military intelligence, the police and the Shin Bet, Israel's domestic security service. The Israeli military declined to comment on the case.

During her military service, Kam reportedly worked in the office of a senior Israeli general and is accused of copying classified documents from the office. After her time in the army she became a journalist, working for the Israeli news website Walla, which was previously partly owned by Haaretz but entirely editorially independent. Reports suggest she is accused of leaking the documents to Haaretz.

Attention has focused on an investigation Haaretz published on the Israeli military's assassination policy in November 2008, written by Uri Blau and headlined "Licence to Kill". He reported that the military, the Israel Defence Force, had been carrying out assassinations of Palestinian militants in the West Bank in contravention of an Israeli high court ruling, which said efforts should be made first to arrest suspected militants rather than assassinating them.

The story described meetings in the spring of 2007 in which senior Israeli generals discussed a mission to assassinate Ziad Subahi Mahmad Malaisha, a senior leader of the Palestinian Islamic Jihad. The army chief, General Gabi Ashkenazi, allegedly approved the operation but said Malaisha's car was not to be attacked if there was "more than one unidentified passenger" in it.

Malaisha and another Islamic Jihad leader were killed by the military in June that year, and the military claimed at the time that the militants had first opened fire at the soldiers.

One of the generals involved in the meetings, Major-General Yair Naveh, was quoted in the story as defending the killings as legal. The AP reported that Kam served in Naveh's office during her military service.

The Haaretz piece was accompanied by copies of military documents but it was approved by the military censor before publication, the Guardian understands. The story was published more than a year before Kam was arrested and was followed by several other articles by Blau that were similarly critical of the military.

Dov Alfon, editor of Haaretz, said: "Uri Blau is in London. He will be there until his editors decide otherwise. We are ready to continue to keep him in London as long as needed. Uri Blau published a lot of articles in Haaretz. All of them are dynamite stuff and it is clear of course that the authorities are not satisfied with these kind of revelations in a major newspaper.

"We understand this but we also understand that Israel is still a democracy and therefore we intend to continue to publish whatever public interest demands and our reporters can reveal."

Source: guardian.co.uk, Friday 2 April 2010