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67 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Riveting!
Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service by Michael Bar-Zohar and Nissim Mishal

"Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service" is the fascinating history of Israel's greatest defense against terrorism, the Mossad. An earlier version of this book was published in Israel in 2010 and broke record sales. This book highlights the...
Published on November 13, 2012 by Book Shark

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Mossad , a model for our CIA
tremendous subject matter but needed a great writer... ala Herman Wouk caliber. I am sorry the book was poorly written. But, the saving grace is it is worth the price just for the facts and appreciating the severe struggle our allies and Frends live under day to day....
Published 6 months ago by John H. Meade


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67 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Riveting!, November 13, 2012
This review is from: Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service (Hardcover)
Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service by Michael Bar-Zohar and Nissim Mishal

"Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service" is the fascinating history of Israel's greatest defense against terrorism, the Mossad. An earlier version of this book was published in Israel in 2010 and broke record sales. This book highlights the greatest missions of the Mossad, as well as some of the most noteworthy failures that have tarnished the agency's image. Author Michael Bar-Zohar and Israel's foremost TV personality Nissim Mishal join forces to bring readers insightful accounts into the most dangerous operations for the sake of defense of Israel. This mesmerizing 400-page book is composed of twenty-one chapters: 1. King of Shadows, 2. Funerals in Tehran, 3. A Hanging in Baghdad, 4. A Soviet Mole and a Body at Sea, 5. "Oh, That? It's Khrushchev's Speech...", 6. "Bring Eichmann Dead or Alive!", 7. Where is Yossele?, 8. A Nazi Hero at the Service of the Mossad, 9. Our Main in Damascus, 10. "I Want a MIG-21!", 11. Those Who'll Never Forget, 12. The Quest for the Red Prince, 13. The Syrian Virgins, 14. "Today We'll Be at War!", 15. A Honey Trap for the Atom Spy, 16. Saddam's Supergun, 17. Fiasco in Amman, 18. From North Korea with Love, 19. Love and Death in the Afternoon, 20. The Cameras Were Rolling, and 21. From the Land of Queen of Sheba.

Positives:
1. A well-researched and well-written book that is accessible for the masses. It's based on a large variety of sources, books, articles, and interviews.
2. Fascinating topic. It doesn't get much more interesting than espionage at the highest level.
3. Excellent format, each chapter is about a particular operation. Most chapters begin with a tease and proceed to the heart of story and eventually take you back to the tease in progress. Code names for each operation are also provided.
4. A quote that reaches to the heart of this book, "To protect civilians, the state needs sometimes to do things that are contrary to democratic behavior. It is true that in units like ours the outer limits can become blurred. That's why you must be sure that your people are of the best quality. The dirtiest actions should be carried out by the most honest men".
5. The real-life stories presented in this book cover a wide-range of fascinating operations: from eliminating terrorist groups, destroying a Syrian nuclear reactor, eliminating Iranian scientists, providing protection and transfer of Jewish people, the capture of Adolf Eichmann, the thwarting of plots, the exposure of crimes, saving a child with national implications, and even acquiring a MiG-21...it's all here.
6. One of the best strengths of this book is the precise capturing of the Mossad leadership through the years. The authors do a wonderful job of describing the men and women behind these courageous operations and succinctly point out their major accomplishments and any shortcomings they may have had.
7. The politics behind espionage. Most apparent when things go wrong during an operation.
8. The planning behind some of these operations is of interest. So many layers involved in order to execute an operation. Everyone has a role and it has to be accomplished within a degree of precision otherwise the operation can unravel.
9. One of the boldest spies ever, Elie Cohen. One of my favorite chapters.
10. Unusual ties and relationships forged for desired results. As an example, the Mossad and the Moroccan secret service. Double agents.
11. Missions involving the capture of Nazis are always gripping such as Eichmann and "The Butcher of Riga".
12. The elimination of the organization "Black September" involved with the massacre of the Israeli athletes is one of the most riveting chapters I've ever read.
13. The retrieval of young Jews and Jewesses from Syria.
14. Who was the Angel? Find out.
15. The incidents that embarrassed the Mossad. The Fiasco in Amman is just astonishing...the things that can go wrong.
16. How priceless information turned into Syria's top-secret nuclear program.
17. The operation involving "The terrorist with nine lives".
18. The emotional retrieval of the Ethiopian Jews.
19. Excellent Bibliography and Sources.

Negatives:
1. Visual aids would have added immense value to this book. Timeline charts depicting the Mossad leadership and how it relates to the operations would have been helpful.
2. A photo insert section is included but I would have preferred the photos be inserted in the chapters that they belong in.
3. A chapter on espionage gadgets would have been welcomed.
4. A cast of characters per operation would have been very helpful.
5. The Kindle version did not take advantage of its ability to link notes and sources.
6. An appendix with a table of operations with code names would have added value.

In summary, this is a fascinating and topical book. Some of the operations read like a good spy novel, this is truly a riveting book. There are so many interesting operations, so many interesting personalities...it's espionage at the highest level. My only negative of the book is the lack of illustrations or diagrams that could have added value. That being said, this is an excellent book on the history the greatest missions of the Mossad. I highly recommend it!

Further recommendations: "Vengeance: The True Story of an Israeli Counter-Terrorist Team" by George Jonas, "Israel's Secret Wars: A History of Israel's Intelligence Services" by Ian Black and Benny Morris, "Gideon's Spies: The Secret History of the Mossad" by Gordon Thomas, "Hunting Eichmann: How a Band of Survivors and a Young Spy Agency Chased Down the World's Most Notorious Nazi" by Neal Bascomb, "Spycraft: The Secret History of the CIA's Spytechs, from Communism to Al-Qaeda" by Robert Wallace and H. Keith Melton, and "Standing Next to History: An Agent's Life Inside the Secret Service" by Joseph Petro.
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21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating and informative read, November 23, 2012
By 
Joshua Ford (Ft Myers, Florida) - See all my reviews
What a great book and very well written. Discusses the Mossads many accomplishments and successes as well as their failures. Would highly recommend.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast Paced and Fas­ci­nat­ing, November 17, 2012
This review is from: Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service (Hardcover)
Mossad: The Great­est Mis­sions of the Israeli Secret Ser­vice by Michael Bar-Zohar and Nis­sim Mishal is a non-fictionbook by Israeli jour­nal­ists Michael Bar-Zohar and Nis­sim Mishal. The book recounts some of the great suc­cesses and fail­ures of the secret Israeli agency.

The book is divided into twenty two dis­tinct chap­ters, each one a story of its own. The oper­a­tions range from the com­plex assas­si­na­tions of Syr­ian gen­eral Muham­mad Suleiman, find­ing and assas­si­nat­ing rogue sci­en­tist Ger­ald Bull(he was devel­op­ing a super­gun for Sad­dam Hus­sein), the kid­nap­ping Nazi Adolf Eich­mann in Argentina and lur­ing Mordechai Vanunu out of Eng­land into Rome as to not suf­fer the wrath of Thatcher.

Even oper­a­tions which seem mun­dane, such as smug­gling out of the Soviet Union of Nikita Khrushchev's secret speech, or sneak­ing across the bor­der Jew­ish Syr­ian women (the Syr­ian brides) gets an air of rev­er­ence and com­plex­ity. Other chap­ters include a run down of the years Israel's great­est spy, Eli Cohen, spent in Syria as well as bring­ing the Jews of Ethiopia to Israel.

The chap­ter about the elim­i­na­tion of Black September's lead­er­ship does not fail to men­tion the inno­cent Moroc­can waiter, whose only crime was resem­bling Ali Has­san Salameh, one of the Mossad's tar­get. One of the biggest fail­ures of the Mossad that we know of.

I am famil­iar with Pro­fes­sor Bar-Zohar's writ­ings, he is a lead­ing Israeli writer on espi­onage. As most of his books, Mossad is also a fast paced, fas­ci­nat­ing look behind thick cur­tains which have been pre­vi­ously closed. The authors' analy­sis and insight are mes­mer­iz­ing and usu­ally spot on, while the new infor­ma­tion they present, infor­ma­tion that just recently has been uncen­sored, is sim­ply amazing.

One of the most intrigu­ing aspects of the book is not the spec­tac­u­lar suc­cesses, but the equally spec­tac­u­lar fail­ures. Some of these fail­ures are so aston­ish­ing one has to look at the cover to make sure the book is about the Mossad and not the key­stone cops. After­wards pound­ing ones head - "what were they think­ing".

Author Michael Bar-Zohar said that this is due to "The feel­ing is that we are the best in the world, and there­fore a sense of Israeli ama­teur­ish­ness some­times creeps into the sys­tem. This means they send peo­ple who are not as sea­soned as they should be and they trust that they will not be caught and iden­ti­fied."

That being said, the Mossad cer­tainly has an extra­or­di­nary achieve­ment record. That record though, cou­pled with clas­sic Israeli self-assurance and over­con­fi­dence, can eas­ily get smirched.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mossad, January 22, 2013
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Great read, it will hold your interest. It is like reading a good spy novel, but then you realize that this is true to life ! My oly fault is that it ended when it did. I wanted to read more !
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars First Insight, December 11, 2012
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This is the first time I've ever read anything about Israel's heralded Espionage Organization, the Mossad, that sounds factual and genuine. Although it's a catalogue of intelligence events for the last 50 or so years, it reads like a novel. It's the type of book that I didn't want to put down. Though in some cases, I found it a bit too detailed to follow exactly. Not that it's a short book, but If anything, I'd have liked it to be about twice as long. Perhaps then, with still more detail and explanation it would have been easier to follow in some spots. But please don't get the wrong impression. It's quite clear and readable for the most part. Just some of the plots are very intense and intricate. And, as is often said, truth can be stranger than fiction. I found the book to be extremely enjoyable and looked forward to it each time I picked it up to read. In fact, If I could give it another half of a star in the Amazon rating, I would. I highly recommend it to anyone interested in this venue and in the Mossad, which is rated by many as the finest Intelligence service in the world.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service, an excellent book, January 28, 2013
By 
glenn (United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service (Hardcover)
I finished book, Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service, and found it an excellent read, riveting. I read through it quickly as I found it difficult to it down. The book is one of the best non fiction historical books that I have read. I would recommend it for anyone who would like to know more about the state of Israel and middle eastern politics from an honest perspective.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Adventures, And True, February 8, 2013
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I chose this book because I am intrigued with the accomplishments of the Israeli secret services/military beginning with their birth as a State. This book met all my expectations: interesting,fascinating, courage and creativity thats hard to imagine by a relatively small country and its people. I'd recommend it to anyone who appreciates spy and intrigue stories that are also factual.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars real good book, February 1, 2013
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good true rearing. Actual events both good and bad. The truth about mistakes made. The great accomplishments.A lot of stories, all for a good cause.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mossad, the story about Israel's famous security operation, February 1, 2013
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A true accounting and very interesting and exciting , masterly written. An enjoyable read . Most enlightening .D. Shutan, Boynton Beach, Florida
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Jaw Dropping!!!, January 27, 2013
Every story in this book is just WOW!
Buy it first and only then feel free previewing it!
There are many stories no one knows about.
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Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service
Mossad: The Greatest Missions of the Israeli Secret Service by Nissim Mishal (Hardcover - November 6, 2012)
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