IDF Censor Seeks Possible Phantom Leaker | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

IDF Censor Seeks Possible Phantom Leaker

Haaretz’s managing editor, Aluf Benn, published a series of articles (this is the main one) about an ill-fated Israel-Iran oil venture, the Eilat-Ashkelon Pipeline Company (EAPC), that began in 1968 and ended in 1979, just after the Iranian Revolution. The most criticial part of the project was a pipeline running from Eilat to the major Israeli port of Ashdod. The Shah agreed to ship his oil via the pipeline, thus avoiding the Suez Canal, and then transport it, via tankers jointly owned by the venture, to Europe. Israel received approximately $200-million in oil from Iran before the Shah’s regime collapsed and Iran withdrew from the venture.

At a cabinet meeting in 1979, the Begin government decided to refuse to pay Iran for its share of the venture, even though the agreement spelled out that both nations were 50-50 partners. Instead, it opened a bank account with Bank of Israel into which it deposited $250-million. That account has existed ever since then, but in secret. Benn was the first journalist to expose its existence and describe which government officials managed it. He also noted, based on public government financial reports, that at various times major portions of the proceeds were withdrawn and used for unknown purposes. After these withdrawals, some or most of the funds were replenished by new deposits.