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Operation Atlas - Poisoning Tel-Aviv Residents

Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini with Adolf Hitler

On 1941 the Arab Mufti of Jerusalem Haj Amin al-Husseini met with Adolf Hitler and discussed ways to 'solve the Jewish problem'. Three years later the Nazis and the Arabs of Palestine planned to poison the drinking water in Tel-Aviv with Arsenic poison.

Four years before the establishment of the State of Israel the Nazis and the Arabs of Palestine planned to poison the water of Tel Aviv with Arsenic poison, and only as a result of an early intelligence report by a British spy who was working undercover in the German military intelligence service, the plan was never carried out.

Background

On November 28th, 1941 the Palestinian Mufti of Jerusalem, Haj Amin al-Husseini, met with Adolf Hitler and other Nazi officials. The participants of this meeting agreed that there was an urgent need to 'solve the Jewish problem.' Hitler promised that when the Middle East would be occupied by Germany, the Jews of the area would be exterminated. Amin al-Husseini then moved to the Balkans to help the Nazis establish a special SS unit of Muslim Serbians.


Mufti Haj Amin al-Husseini with Nazi Muslims in Bosnia

Two years later a plan was made by Amin al-Husseini to poison the water systems that flowed into Tel Aviv. The Germans approved the operation and called it 'Operation Atlas.' Besides poisoning the water, part of the plan was also to damage the Israeli Electricity structure in Naharaim and to blow up the main gasoline pipe that ran from Iraq to Haifa.

Operation Atlas

Hassan Salame (left)

A collaboration between Palestinian and Nazi parachutists was developed by al-Husseini, and On November 5th 1944, five people parachuted into the skies over Jericho from a German plane – three Germans and two Arabs – and landed in the area southeast of Jericho. The head of the operation was Kurt Wieland who was living in the German Colony in Jerusalem and was a great admirer of Hitler. Another member of the group was Hassan Salame who was from the leaders of the Palestinian Revolutionists against the British at the time. They carried with them containers with a deadly Arsenic poison - white powder which dissolves in water and can kill 25,000 people per container. They had 10 containers with them.

Some Bedouins from the area of Jericho witnessed the parachuting and informed the British police who then began searching for them. Four of the five-member group were located in a cave close to Jericho. One of the terrorists, Hassan Salame, escaped (and was later killed by the IDF in the War of Independence). After searching the area the police found bags filled with money, a radio transmitter produced in Germany, 200 gold coins, ammunition, automatic weapons, explosives, medicine, two German-Arabic dictionaries and the containers of the deadly poison. 

Arsenic poison

Effects of severe exposure to arsenic include 'pins and needles' tingling in the palms, or cramps in calf muscles, Heat and irritation in throat and stomach, a garlic odor on breath, or a metallic taste in the mouth, vomiting, purging with very loose stools, neurological effects including restlessness, chronic headaches, apathy, fainting, dizziness, delirium, somnolence, convulsions and coma. Signs of long-term exposure include, development of white crescent-moon marks on the fingernails, a darkening of the skin, skin lesions, a skin rash and the appearance of small warts on the palms, soles and torso, mottled spotting.

Hezbollah planning to poison rivers that flow into Israel

After the Second Lebanon War on 2006 the Israeli Defense Ministry received some disturbing information concerning the water in Israel. According to the information, Hezbollah is attempting to sabotage the quality of the water in Israel by pouring poison from the Lebanese side of the border to the rivers that flow to the Kinneret (Sea of Galilee).

Carp fish

After an evaluation of the situation a decision was made by the Mekorot Company - a water company that provides 90% of the drinking water for the inhabitants of Israel - and by the Defense Ministry, to put special types of fish into the Snir River, close to the Lebanese border. Each type of fish responds to different types of poisons that could appear in the water. Mekorot is inspecting the activity of the fish from a control room. If something happens to one of the fish it gives an immediate indication that the water is poisoned and by which type of poison. The security of water is not abnormal. Mekorot is taking the same measures in other locations in Israel in order to prevent water poisoning including strategic apparatuses in the south and electronic devices in sensitive areas.

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