‘Level 2 Priority’ – This is How the CIA Helps Israel Gather Information on Hamas Leaders

Jake Sullivan, US national security adviser. (Image: Palestine Chronicle)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

This procedure is part of a task force assembled soon after the Hamas military operation on October 7, which Israel says has killed nearly 1,200 Israelis.

The American newspaper, the New York Times reported on Friday that the US intelligence agency, the CIA, is directly involved in the war on Gaza by helping in information gathering on behalf of Israel. 

“C.I.A. is collecting information on senior Hamas leaders and the location of hostages in Gaza, and is providing that intelligence to Israel as it carries out its war in the enclave,” the newspaper said, citing US officials.

This procedure is part of a task force assembled soon after the Hamas military operation on October 7, which Israel says has killed nearly 1,200 Israelis, including hundreds of military and intelligence personnel. 

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US officials who spoke to the newspaper on condition of anonymity said that “Immediately after the Oct. 7 attack, Jake Sullivan, the national security adviser, sent a memo to the intelligence agencies and Defense Department ordering the task force’s creation and directing increased intelligence collection on Hamas’ leadership.” 

US involvement in the war became apparent from the first days, when Secretary of State Antony Blinken attended the Israeli war council meeting to discuss Tel Aviv’s war strategy. 

Washington also provided Israel with billions of dollars of additional economic aid, hundreds of millions in more weapons and munitions to sustain the intensity of the war, which has so far killed over 23,700 Palestinians and wounded over 60,000 more. 

Over 7,000 Palestinians are believed to be buried under the rubble, but their bodies are yet to be recovered due to the ongoing Israeli onslaught. 

Raising Priority Level

“The establishment of the task force has not created any new legal authorities, but the White House raised the priority of collecting intelligence on Hamas,” NYT reported.

Officials, however, claimed that Washington “provided no intelligence for Israel’s Jan. 2 strike in a Beirut suburb that killed Saleh al-Arouri, a deputy Hamas leader.”

But the US has also “stepped up collection on Hamas with more drone flights over Gaza and has increased its efforts to intercept communications among Hamas officials.” 

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It is believed that the war on Gaza, described by many international law experts as a genocide, would have not extended for this long if it were not for the material and political support of Washington. 

The information provided by NYT indicates that the war has made Hamas a top US, not just Israeli priority, although the Palestinian Resistance group poses no direct threat to US security or interests in the Middle East. 

“Before the Oct. 7 attack, Hamas was a level four priority, meaning few resources were dedicated to collecting intelligence on the group,” the newspaper said, adding that “since then, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence, which helps oversee intelligence priorities, has raised Hamas to a level two priority.” 

“Raising the priority level provides additional funding for intelligence collection and most likely increases the range and volume of information that the C.I.A. tries to collect on Hamas, which the United States has designated a terror organization.”

(The Palestine Chronicle) 

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