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US shocked by failure of Israeli intelligence so being ‘cautious’ in dealings

December 4, 2023 at 11:08 am

Representative Mike Turner, a Republican from Ohio and chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, during an interview on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC, US, on Monday, Nov. 6, 2023. [Al Drago/Bloomberg Via Getty Images]

US House Intelligence Committee Chairman Mike Turner revealed on Sunday that Washington is helping Israeli intelligence agencies to track down Hamas leaders, but is being “selective” about the information it shares with its closest ally in the Middle East. Turner made his comments on the CBS “Face the Nation” programme.

“It’s one thing to be able to try to identify a specific individual and provide information as to their location and operations, and actually directing an operation,” he pointed out. “[CIA] Director William J Burns has been very clear that we are not just providing direct access to our intelligence and that certainly gives us the ability to have caution.”

Turner added that US intelligence agencies are now “working closely” with Israeli intelligence to see “the gaps” that are there. “This obviously could have been an institutional bias that resulted in dismissing it, but the other aspect that made this so dangerous is that even when 7 October began to unfold, their forces didn’t react. They didn’t have the deployment ability to respond, not just the intelligence ability to prevent it.”

He praised Burns, by whom he was briefed on Friday after the CIA director returned from the Middle East. “He’s been working diligently and he’s doing a great job of negotiating for the release of hostages and also trying to make certain that our intelligence apparatus is working closely with Israel to try to fill some of those gaps that they clearly have.”

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