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They’ve Got a Thing for The Navy (Update)

A US Navy sailor, Ariel J. Weinmann, is suspected of spying for Israel and has been held in prison for four months, according to an article published Monday in the Saudi daily Al-Watan. It reported that Weinmann is being held at a military base in Virginia on suspicion of espionage and desertion.

According to the navy, Weinmann was apprehended on March 26 “after it was learned that he had been listed as a deserter by his command.” Though initial information released by the navy makes no mention of it, Al-Watan reported that he was returning from an undisclosed “foreign country.” American sources close to the Defense Department told Al-Watan that Israel was the country in question.[…]

Al-Watan speculated that if Weinmann spied on behalf of the Mossad, it would be the biggest espionage case since Jonathan Pollard’s arrest. Pollard, who worked as a civilian intelligence analyst for the US Navy, was caught in 1985 and convicted of spying for Israel. He is currently serving a life sentence in the US.

Far as I know, only this Saudi paper is reporting the espionage angle, though others have covered the fact that he’s been essentially disapeared. You don’t treat guys like that for just any old disapearance. Waiting and seeing . . .

Update: CNN is saying Russia, not Israel . . .

Michael Tanji

Michael Tanji

Michael Tanji spent nearly 20 years in the US intelligence community. Trained in both SIGINT and HUMINT disciplines he has worked at the Defense Intelligence Agency, the National Security Agency, and the National Reconnaissance Office. At various points in his career he served as an expert in information warfare, computer network operations, computer forensics, and indications and warning. A veteran of the US Army, Michael has served in both strategic and tactical assignments in the Pacific Theater, the Balkans, and the Middle East.