Working for the Enemy.

 

Script 34 final

 

  

 

 

Gaza frontier drone

It's been called the world's largest open prison

 

Gaza

 

 

 

Wall gun-turret shot

 

 

 

COMM

 

Penned in by Israeli walls, barbed wire and gun turrets

 

 

 

 

 

Gaza

COMM

 

The 1.8 million people living in Gaza have little chance of ever leaving

 

Passport checks etc

COMM

 

As a foreign journalist, I can come and go

 

But for Palestinians to see relatives, have essential medical treatment, or just visit the outside world, Gazans need the express permission of the Israeli authorities

 

 

 

Gun turrets etc in Eres

 

 

 

Salwa

COMM

 

 

They asked her questions, like “you want to be treated, Khulood, you want chemotherapy? You have to talk.”

 

 

 

Negev desert

 

 

 

Abu Hassan

COMM

 

This is the story of the desperate choices people have to make

 

If someone from us collaborated with the government, it was to prevent an attack or to stop a person from doing an attack.

 

 

Tel Aviv beach

 

 

Dichter

COMM

 

It's the story of how the Israeli state seeks to protect its citizens

 

Better the tears of the mothers of a thousand terrorists, than the tears of my mother

 

 

 

 

 

Bird

COMM

 

And of those who now live tortured by shame

 

We didn’t withhold anything from the State of Israel. Some of us have blood on our hands.

 

 Murad walking along Eres

 

 

COMM

This is a film about Palestinians who collaborate with the Israeli state - those who would work for the enemy

 

TITLE

 

WORKING FOR THE ENEMY

 

Hamas investigation video

Upsot

 

COMM

 

In May 2017, Hamas in Gaza released this film to a shocked public..

 

Hisham Al Aloul

 

I call on all who cooperate with the Israeli occupiers to turn back to God

 

 

Confessions in Hamas video

 

Abdulah Nashar

 

 

 

 

Abu Layla

0335

 

0403

 

 

COMM

 

Three Palestinian men had apparently been caught working for Israel in Gaza

 

I started collaborating in 2010 while applying for permission to travel and see my wife in the West Bank.

 

COMM

Abdullah Nashar hadn’t seen his wife for 3 years before he was recruited

 

 

In 2004 someone from abroad started chatting online to me. He told me he believed in extremist ideology and embraced Jihad

 

COMM

Ashraf Abu Layla was a militant drawn to jihadis opposed to Hamas in Gaza.

 

 

 

more Hamas video upsot

 

 

Mazen Fuqaha street posters, Gaza, Murad walking

 

Ashraf


COMM

 

The three men are confessing to involvement in an Israeli plot to kill a senior leader of Hamas' military wing, al-Qassam Brigades.

 

Mazen Fuqaha

 

He said shoot him and finish him by shooting in the head and chest. I said okay.

 

 

Fuqaha archive

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

COMM

Fuqaha was one of those behind a series of bombings in 2002, killing and wounding Israeli citizens.

 

He received nine life sentences for murder.

 

But was released in a controversial prisoner exchange in 2011.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Zahar: 07:52

A071C252_171117Q3_MAREK

 

 

COMM

 

Mahmoud al-Zahar co-founded Hamas. He helped broker the release of prisoners.

 

 

Mazen pained (find a better translation, this is unclear) Israel before he was imprisoned. Releasing him was like breaking their own neck

 

They thought that Mazen was active in the West Bank while based in Gaza. 09:10: Either some Palestinian told them, or they had intelligence.

 

Interviewer: 09:15: And was he active?

 

Zahar: 09:16: I don’t know.

 

 

Murad on trail of event etc

10.28

 

COMM

Someone seemed to think Fuqaha was still active, though

 

On 24 of March 2017, Ashraf Abu Layla received his instructions

 

The officer called me on Friday evening and told me to go to the Tal al Hawa district in Gaza

 

I entered the street where the Al Quds Hospital and Mazen Fuqaha’s building stand

 

Hamas video / CCTV

 

 

And Murad on trail, drone etc

COMM

Hamas officials say this is Ashraf, caught on cctv as he walks past the hospital

Into the yard

And towards his target’s parking lot

 

Murad aerial, PTC

 

COMM

Fuqaha had spent a family day on the beach. He was alone in his car

 

PTC

The gunman followed him, knocked on his window, and shot him five times

 

Ashraf’s job was done

 

 

Gaza / Fuqaha funeral pics

 

Press TV report

COMM

Hamas had lost one of its key assets

 

They picked up three suspects, who confessed. The Hamas authorities executed them as traitors, and as a warning to others.

 

 

 

12:52

Abdulah Nashar

 

The intelligence officers said we were important to them, that they would never abandon us

 

They made us feel like they’re our guardians and are looking out for us.

 

Gaza / Murad[PE3]

COMM

 

We cannot verify the testimonies in the video

 

The Hamas authorities were unwilling to share any of their evidence or investigative material.

 

But how could Israel persuade Palestinians to betray their own people? And how many do this?

Into prison

 

PTC - Working for Israel security forces is a matter of taboo here among Palestinians. I’m on my way to a prison to speak to an inmate who knows a lot about this subject

 

COMM

 

At this Gaza prison a quarter of those incarcerated are convicted collaborators

 

This inmate - I’m calling him Ibrahim - runs a self-help group for those who have worked for the Israeli state.

 

A072C454_171119N0_MAREK

 

Check Arabic, he is not saying what is in the script, you may have made a cut. He does not use the word ‘criminal’.

Inmate: 00:17: People should understand that no-one is born a criminal. Most people who fall into this trap – 90% or more – are victims. 00:53: We in Gaza are suffering from a very harsh siege. Everything is lacking: healthcare, basic needs.

 

 

 

 

A072C454_171119N0_MAREK

 

COMM

Ibrahim told me that Israeli recruiters prey on the needs of people in Gaza

 

02:16: They use financial problems to put pressure on some young men. To start with, they say they’re not asking for anything serious. Just a word. And then you fall into a bigger trap.

A072C454_171119N0_MAREK

 

Murad: 04:10: Who are they targeting?

 

Inmate: Firstly it’s those in need of medical treatment. This is the biggest problem because it faces us all. Secondly it’s people with financial problems. And thirdly those who are vulnerable and turn to drugs.

Prison

COMM

 

Most of those imprisoned here for collaboration have been prosecuted for simply giving information to the Israelis.

 

Ashraf Abu Layla went much further.

Murad on computer

COMM

 

How might the Israeli security forces have found and recruited the man who shot Mazen Fuqaha?

           

It doesn't take much to discover that the Fuqaha murder confession wasn’t the first time Ashraf was noticed

 

He was active in the violence that had brought Hamas to power here in 2007

 

PTC on balcony

PTC

It turns out that Ashraf Abu Layla was a member of Hamas security forces.

He was heavily involved in fighting against Hamas opponents.

Then, back in 2007, he started to adopt more radical views.

 

COMM

 

In 2007, Ashraf kidnapped and murdered the owner of a Christian bookshop in Gaza

 

When Rami Ayyad’s body was recovered,  it was disfigured by multiple stabs and gun wounds

 

 

Murad in car

 

PTC in car

 

 

 

PTC

Jihadists aren’t welcome with Hamas authorities here in Gaza. But I have managed to contact one of them who is very influential among Jihadi circles. I hope he will be able to tell me more about Ashraf Abu Layla

Mysterious shots around car etc

COMM

 

Did Ashraf share his plans with other radicals here?

 

Jihadis have been arrested in Gaza, and even killed. The Hamas authorities have attacked their mosques

 

Was Ashraf motivated by revenge?

 

Murad emerges from meeting with jihadi

PTC

 

So I met him. He doesn’t want to be filmed, but he told me very interesting stuff.

Ashraf Abu Layla approached the jihadists claiming he’s a member of the so-called Islamic State. But the jihadists rejected him.

 

More mysterious pics / Ashraf

 

 

 

 

 

 

COMM

 

As a loner, Ashraf might have been easier to control.

 

But would the Israeli security forces really recruit a jihadi - someone dedicated to the violent destruction of Israel?

 

It seemed an extraordinary risk

 

Tel Aviv beach etc

COMM

 

The sea-front in Tel Aviv feels a different world from Gaza

 

These joggers, swimmers and holiday-makers seem to take their safety and protection for granted

 

 

Shin Bet video

 

Pedestrians, writing, boy bouncing ball etc

 

 

What do you think you see here?

 

Calm

 

Routine

 

But the real question is…

 

What don’t you see?

 

Shin Bet video

 

COMM

But as this Israeli Security Agency promo tells its viewers, safety comes thanks to the constant vigilance of the security services

 

Shin Bet video / more beach shots

COMM

 

It’s about Shin Bet, the Israeli security agency which is supposed to have recruited the killers of Mazen Fuqaha.

More Shin bet video

COMM

 

In the film, Shin Bet agents are aided by high tech surveillance, resources - and of course, informers.

 

Only with Palestinians giving information are the agents in the film able to prevent a devastating terror attack.

Boy drops ball etc / disappearing agents

 

Murad enters building for Dichter

 

 

 

COMM

 

In reality. Shin Bet is just as mysterious as its agents in the film

 

It doesn’t speak to the public

 

Communication with the media is via an impersonal email address

 

 

COMM

But I'm coming to meet a man who headed the organisation in one of its most critical phases

 

Avi Dichter now heads the Foreign Affairs and Defence Committee of the Knesset

0768

 

Dichter

 

 

If I just take the second intifada, during three years - 01, 02, 03 - we've lost 900 people. Mainly civilians, mainly in suicide bombings. In many cases we've succeeded to foil those terror attacks. So if the number of people got killed is 900, I wouldn't rule out that 9000 people are still alive, they don't even know they were about to be killed.

 

 

767

 

Dichter

 

 

COMM

 

I asked Dichter how easy it was to recruit reliable informers

 

When you’re interested in someone, you try to map - what are his skills, what are his weaknesses, but above all, what are his strengths,. Otherwise you don't need him. You can take another one,

0766

 

 

Dichter

 

 

Q 0256: Would SB recruit a jihadi to target someone from Qassam?

 

AD: Everything is possible in this fight against terrorists - everything. There's one very strong principle in my eyes. I always used to tell it to my people.

 

Better the tears of the mothers of a thousand terrorists, than the tears of my mother (in Arabic[ )

 

if you decide to become a terrorist, then you better know that the Israeli SB, military Mossad, police, doesn't matter - an Israeli. In one way or another, you reach your cell in prison, or your grave in the cemetery.

Whistleblower Aaron in park

COMM

 

In a Tel Aviv park, a reserve officer from Israeli military intelligence tells me more.

 

He’s talking because he has doubts about the morality of how the security forces operate

 

We are protecting his identity, and he has to be careful about what he says in order to avoid arrest.

 

I’ll call him Aaron.

960

Aaron

0215

when you're having a military regime over millions of people, you have to have a strong kind of intelligence over any kind of person that is a threat to this kind of regime, so this means many innocent people who have nothing to do with this violence per se.

 

0966

 

 

 

 

COMM

 

The role of Aaron's unit was to recruit informers among the Palestinian population in places like Gaza

 

And that meant mass covert monitoring - of phones, email, and social media

 

WB: People's lives are like an open book for us. We know so much about people's personal lives, their ... romantic affairs, their sexual affairs, their health problems - everything

 

WB

960

 

If you want to gain cooperation from people, it's obviously best if we have something to use to extort, blackmail this person.

 

WB

960

 

WB: in some basic courses of Arabic in the unit you learn specific words like different synonyms for homosexual in Arabic, like ‘luty’

 

Q: So you will tell this guy, for instance, you are luty, in order to break him, or why?

 

WB 0632: That's a possible method of action, yes.

 

0961 0216 WB: You practically put this person in a lose-lose situation. Either way, his life is in great risk.

 

960

 

 

COMM

But it’s not just sexual orientation that can make people targets

 

0962

WB: if someone's daughter has cancer. And he wants to get treatments in one of the Israeli hospitals, which is known to have better treatment than Palestinian hospitals. And if we know about it, maybe we can stop him and tell him, OK, you can have this, but only if you cooperate

Back to Gaza drone

 

 

Salwa and granddaughter in kitchen

 

 

COMM

 

Salwa al-Saedni knows all about cooperation.

 

Today she is with her grandchildren

 

A year ago, their mother Kholoud needed urgent treatment for cancer

 

 

COMM

 

The Israeli authorities granted her permission to go to a hospital in Jerusalem

 

Driving to Eres

COMM

 

 

It was 6 o’clock and barely light when Salwa and her daughter Kholoud arrived here, at Eres Crossing, one morning in January 2017

 

 Salwa interview at Eres

 00:08: It was a very difficult day. She was tired. We entered the waiting hall and sat for about 4 hours. 00:30: Then we were called and taken into the interview room.

01:09 They asked her, “do you want to be treated, Kholoud? You want chemotherapy? You have to talk.”

Crossing / border shots

COMM

 

The officers wanted information about a man married to Kholoud’s cousin. She said he was an olive tree farmer.

 

 

 

He told her, yes, but he plants rockets. He plants rockets with Hamas. 04:15: So said, if you know that he plants rockets, what’s that got to do with me?’ I’m sick and need to be treated. I want to be able to raise my kids.

 

 

COMM

 

Salwa says her daughter was not able to give any information about the man.

 Salwa: 04:26:

 

 

 

 

He told her: ‘There’s the bus you need’. Only a glass screen separated us from it.

 

COMM

But the Israeli authorities did not allow Kholoud to board the bus

 

 

04:46: Fate was against her. We had to turn back

 

 

 

COMM

 

Three weeks later, Kholoud died.

 

The Israeli authorities told us that they do not condition entry to Israel on providing information or cooperation

 

They denied any irregularities in their dealings with Kholoud

 

 

07:22 Many people in Gaza need treatment and they should be treated. Khulood paid the price with her life. Those inside [Gaza] are not guilty. I swear they’re not. All they need to cross is this fence. 07:42: It separates them from living a good life with their family. This fence. This fence

 

 

Tel Arad

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

COMM

 

Some Palestinians work with Israel because they genuinely believe this is the right way to protect their own people.

 

I’ve come to a tiny village in the Negev Desert in the far south of Israel

 

It’s an entire Bedouin community that has been moved from Gaza, where they had devoted their lives to working with the Israeli state

 

 

Hassan shows photos on wall

 

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This is my brother Abdel Raouf, he was older than me. He was killed by Palestinians. [I: Really, why?] 00:31: They claimed that he was a collaborator

 

Sitting with Hassan

COMM

Hassan is the community leader for the dozens of families that live here - a role he inherited from his father, a Bedouin sheikh from the Sinai Desert

A067D065_1711150Q_MAREK

 

I: 00:45: So this is your father, the one wearing black sunglasses.

M: God bless his soul. This was the Israeli commander in charge of the Gaza Strip and Northern Sinai

 

M: 01:24: His eye was injured during a mission for the state.

I: 01:33: What kind of service?

M: 01:34: A mission with the secret intelligence.

I: 01:39: So he was unable to see?

M: 01:40: He lost his eye completely.

 

 

 

 

COMM

 

Hassan’s father threw in his lot sided with the Israeli state after Arab nations were defeated in the 1967 Arab-Israeli war and Israel occupied his land

 

 

Abu Hassan

A067D067_171115RQ_MAREK

 

He decided to work with them, so that he and his people could live. 02:50: But to fight them? He wouldn’t be able to. If 14 Arab countries weren’t able to, do you think my father was going to? No. He worked it out in his brain. He decided to shake hands with the Israelis, the Israeli state, and to support it, help it, and also make people help it, and make the state help the people.

 A067D067_171115RQ_MAREK

 

A067D073_1711157K_MAREK

 

I: 08:59: How do you feel when you or your father are called a traitor or a spy?

 

Find me one person who can say “you imprisoned me or my father or my brother or so and so.” 02:49:  If someone from us collaborated with the government, it was to stop an attack or to stop a person from doing an attack. 03:01: But never to imprison someone or to ruin someone’s life. Only imprison someone who wanted to attack in a bus. My brother could be in the bus, my mother could be in the bus, my sister could be on the bus, my cousin could be on the bus.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

COMM

 

Abu Hassan’s community is safe, deep in Israel.

 

But Israeli counter-terror operations have also been far more aggressive

 

Over the last 15 years, more than 300 Palestinian militants have been assassinated in Gaza

 

How often have collaborators helped in these killings? How often have they even carried them out?

 

In a side-street in a provincial Israeli town, I’ve found someone who might be able to tell me. We have to protect his identity.

 A067D131_171115NM_MAREK

 

 

 

 

Need to mask his face when he turns left, because he could be identified.

04:03: We didn’t withhold anything from the State of Israel. Some of us have blood on our hands.

 

Interviewer: What do you mean, hands stained with blood?

 

04:18: They worked with the state to murder people. Some of them killed well known Palestinian militants.

 

Interviewer: You did this?

 

04:39: My hands are stained with blood.

 

Interviewer: Why?

 

04:51: I did thing that so my hands are stained with blood. I was sentenced to death.

 

Interviewer: Where are you sentenced to death?

 

I’m sentenced to death.

 

Interviewer: Where?

 

In Gaza. They say I took part in a murder.

 

Interviewer: Murdering who?

 

05:01: The terrorists

 

Murad, close-ups etc

COMM

 

I could now understand why this man wanted his identity concealed.

 

He told me he had worked in Gaza for the Israelis from the age of 17

 

 A067D132_171115O0_MAREK

COMM

But that was before he had to get out

 

When I became well known all over Gaza, I came to Israel and continued working locally

 

Murad: Where locally?

 

02:44: In various places. I worked for 10 years in prison.

 

Murad: In prison. What were you doing?

 

02:54: Sharing cells with inmates, pretending I was a prisoner too.

 

Murad: What are people like this called?

 

03:01: Birds. You extract information from them and then hand them over to the interrogator.

 Prisons

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Need to blur him, he could be identified.

COMM

 

Over the past 20 years Israel has held many thousands of Palestinian detainees

 

And all of the jails have their birds - working to secure long sentences for militant and terrorist suspects

 

This bird told me his testimony had ensured many Hamas cell-mates remained behind bars for decades

 

But it’s taken its toll

 

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11:10: I regret every minute I spent working for these people. I regret it.

 

11:31: It completely destroyed us. I live on stress relief medication. I see a therapist for all the terrible memories I have.

 

Murad: Like what?

 

11:46: Memories. Nightmares. My past is haunting me.  My past is haunting me.

 

People like us did not lead normal lives.

 

 

 

Gaza beach etc

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

COMM

 

Normality - more than anything - is what Gazans crave

 

But for many most here, it's out of reach

 

Perpetual scrutiny, suspicion and human need mean collaboration will

persist in shaping and poisoning lives

 

And some people will continue to work for the enemy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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