Meir Dagan

Meir Dagan
Meir Dagan
Birth name Meir Hubermann
Born January 30, 1945 (1945-01-30) (age 66)
Novosibirsk, USSR
Allegiance Israel
Service/branch Israeli Defence Forces
Years of service 1963–1996
Rank Aluf
Battles/wars Six Day War
Yom Kippur War
First Lebanon War
Awards Medal of Courage
Other work Director of Mossad

Meir Dagan (Hebrew: מאיר דגן‎; born 30 January 1945) is a former Israeli military officer and former Director of the Mossad (replaced by Tamir Pardo on January 1, 2011).[1]


In the early 1970s, Dagan commanded a temporarily-formed undercover commando unit, known as Sayeret Rimon, whose task was to combat the increasing insurgent violence in the Palestinian territories.[2]

Dagan was appointed Director of the Mossad by Prime Minister Ariel Sharon in August 2002, replacing outgoing Director Ephraim Halevy. He was reconfirmed until the end of 2008 by Prime Minister Ehud Olmert in February 2007,[3] and in June 2008 Olmert again extended his tenure until the end of 2009.[4]

In mid 2007 Dagan had a "spat with the Deputy Director N, who is thought to be a candidate for replacing Dagan in late 2008. Dagan restored his former deputy T to the post and Dagan is likely to recommend T as his replacement.[5]

He was re-appointed in 2009 by Netanyahu to serve until the end of 2010.[6] In January 2010, the Mossad allegedly assassinated Hamas commander Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in Dubai. The Dubai Police identified it as a murder, and the culprit as the Mossad. Israel also faced international criticism for allegedly forging European passports, and a Dubai arrest warrant was issued for Dagan. In June 2010 a report from Channel 2 stated that Netanyahu had denied a request by Dagan for another year as Mossad director,[7] though this was quickly denied by the Prime Minister's Office.[8] In November 2010, Tamir Pardo was announced as his replacement.

Following his departure from his post as Director of the Mossad, Dagan has made several controversial public statements concerning the prudence of an Israeli military attack on Iran's nuclear facilties. He has asserted that such an attack would be “a stupid idea...The regional challenge that Israel would face (following such an attack) would be impossible". He was quoted in the media as saying that he has decided to speak out because with his retirement, as well as with the recent retirement of both chief of general staff Gabi Ashkenazi and Israel Security Agency head Yuval Diskin, “there is no one to stop Bibi [Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu] and [Defense Minister Ehud] Barak.” Dagan was quoted as saying that when he was in office he, Diskin and Ashkenazi could “block any dangerous adventure." In response to these criticisms, the government of Benjamin Netanyahu has demanded the return of Dagan's diplomatic passport, which ex-officials customarily are allowed to keep up until expiration.[9]

As of 2011, Dagan serves as the director of the Israel Ports Company.[10] In 2011 he was also appointed chairman of Gulliver Energy Ltd. (TASE:GLVR), which announced that it intends to mine uranium at a license in the Dead Sea area.[11]

Dagan is a vegetarian and an amateur painter, who studied painting and sculpture at the Tel Aviv University.[12]


  1. ^ Egypt claims Mossad to blame for shark attacks (& details of new Mossad head) | Tom Gross Media
  2. ^ Analysis: Another year of Dagan means continuity for Sharon's Iran policy | Jerusalem Post
  3. ^ Pfeffer, Anshel. "Analysis: Another year of Dagan means continuity for Sharon's Iran policy", The Jerusalem Post, February 21, 2007. Retrieved February 21, 2007.
  4. ^ "Citing "exceptional success," Israel's Olmert extends Mossad chief's term". International Herald Tribune. 2008=06-22. Retrieved 2008-06-22. 
  5. ^ Haaretz, Mossad deputy chief N. quits after spat with boss Dagan
  6. ^ Ravid, Barak (22 June 2009). "Dagan given another year as Mossad chief". Haaretz. Retrieved 2010-05-06. 
  7. ^ "'Mossad chief Meir Dagan to step down'". Haaretz. 2010-06-26. Retrieved 2010-06-27. 
  8. ^ "PM's office: Mossad chief didn’t ask to extend his tenure". Ynetnews. 2010-06-26.,7340,L-3910995,00.html. Retrieved 2010-06-27. 
  9. ^
  10. ^,7340,L-4038305,00.html
  11. ^ "Gulliver and Zerah in uranium prospecting agreement". Globes. 27 June. Retrieved 21 July 2011. "Gulliver will have the right to mine metals in Zerah's Maya license in the Dead Sea area." 
  12. ^ "Vegetarian, painter ... spy chief". Times. 

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