Saturday, 9 January 2016

Tel Aviv Terror?

On Friday 1st January 2016, a man fired a semi-automatic weapon outside a cafe/bar in the centre of Tel Aviv, Israel, killing, it is claimed two people and injuring more. The outrage was almost immediately blamed by the authorities on a thirty-one year old man Nashaat Melhem, who's family had close links with the Israeli security services. Exactly one week after the event he was located in his north Israel home town of Arara and shot dead. It appears unlikely he was given the opportunity to surrender to arrest. However, a careful examination of the details gives rise to serious concerns regarding the incident and Melhem's part in it. The article below uncovers serious flaws in the evidence against him, as well as many inconsistencies and familiar indicators of contrived 'False Flag Operations'. The question that remains is was this a genuine 'terrorist incident' as Israel wants the world to believe and was Melhem guilty of the act of which he stands accused?


On or about 2.20 pm on Friday 1st January, 2016, as if perhaps to fulfill a new year resolution, a gunman struck at a pub - come cafe - on Dizengoff Street, one of the main thoroughfares of Israel's capital, Tel Aviv. The Times of Israel reports, “Footage from a security camera released Saturday showed Milhem walking calmly along Dizengoff Street minutes before the attack.” As we shall see this creates a very real problem.

The official story suggests the chief suspect Nashaat Melhem (31) walked casually to the scene, entered the adjacent store, pretended to buy items of food and then on his way placed his backpack on some empty trolleys and removed from it a semi-automatic weapon, which he then immediately proceeded to spray bullets (estimate 15) mainly into the street but killing two people and injuring seven or eight.

The two victims killed in the attack were named as Alon Bakal of Karmiel, 26, the manager of the pub where the shooting began, and Shimon Ruime of Ofakim, 30, who was attending a birthday party for a friend at the establishment.

Following this is is said he ran off (the firing itself lasted less than a minute – in fact only seconds) down a nearby alley way and commandeered a taxi in nearby Ibn Gabirol Street. which he took north, shooting the taxi driver Amin Shaaban dead on leaving it outside the Mandarin Hotel near it is said a bus stop! You will have to make your own mind up how convincing this sounds, particularly as the driver was also of Arab descent.

What professional 'terrorist' leaves his escape so much to chance and public transport not to mention such an obvious location to assassinate the driver? See

From CNN we have this:

Subsequently we learn from CNN ( that heavily armed Israeli para-militaries went house-to-house Saturday in Tel Aviv, searching for the man police identified as Nasha'at Melhem, 31, an Arab-Israeli who lives in northern Israel. In fact it seems clear, again following a common recent pattern, the intention was to shoot him dead if found.

“What authorities called "units specializing in locating and neutralizing perpetrators" were on the scene, police said in a statement. All of our emphasis at this moment in time is finding that suspect and all the different organizations -- security organizations here in Israel -- are working together to find that man," police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld told CNN.
The news outlet 'i24' reported police partially lifted a gag order on Saturday, naming the suspect shooter as Nashat Melhem, 31, from the Arab village of Arara in northern Israel. They distributed his picture and encouraged public vigilance, as a massive manhunt continued. Melhem's family and lawyer described the suspect as "mentally deranged", noting that he had a history of mental illness and drug abuse including extensive use of cocaine and speed.

From i24

Here we see the common feature of undermining the suspects character in any way possible. This is important psychological preparation for subsequent events including capture, incarceration or even death. Who cares about a violent man with mental and drug problems? Except none of it may be true.  Except when it suits public bodies conflicting character assessments can be produced. The official added that the discovery of the mobile device and the investigation of the family "has not helped us or led us to a breakthrough."

In addition to Nashat's father, his brothers and sister have been arrested not only to gain evidence but also clearly to increase pressure on him to give himself up presumably.
From the Israel Times A senior security source told Channel 2 Monday that the terrorist’s mobile phone found by a citizen in the front yard of an apartment building on Ramat Aviv’s Reading Street on Friday, had not given the investigation any leads. A second brother of Milhem was arrested Monday, three days after his brother Juadat was arrested Friday on suspicion of involvement in the crime. The official added that the discovery of the mobile device and the investigation of the family "has not helped us or led us to a breakthrough."

Three videos of the incident are relevant and the reader is recommended to view them prior to reading this article. In particular you may wish to apply a certain degree of critical assessment to them, not least to see if you later agree or disagree with mine.

The alleged assailant 'approaching the scene' and a clip from the adjacent store from where he emerges: (Interestingly the second clip is edited to delete the actual shooting phase but another angle of this is caught on the next one)

A view of the shooter in action:
By 4.00 pm in Jerusalem CNN is transmitting a full dramatic account to America here: (Note description “All in black in black balaclava” not supported in above videos. )

A better shop CCTV image is provided in this one: (Rather strangely for this type of equipment there is no time or date imprint. Note in this he appears to be wearing dark glasses but no 'balaclava'. Study the character carefully to compare later with the issued photos of the wanted man.)

This MSNBC American report is timed at 8.45 am (ET) Given that Tel Aviv is seven hours ahead, this means that within an hour and a half of the incident America was getting the basic information. This report claims 'one killed and eight injured'. At two minutes in he annouces the local Tel Aviv time as 3.47 pm confirmed by his colleague.

By 9.52 am (ET) 'Mox News' clip which uses a 'MSNBC' feed, has this: The reporters says just before 3 o'clock local (Tel Aviv) time the attack happened. In fact the time of the event was actually even earlier just before 2.30 pm and the first report by police to journalists was at 2.53 pm. So within about an hour and a half of the incident an individual with I-phone footage (leave aside for the moment what he was aiming at nothing in particular but just enough to capture the critical action) has managed to the news agency and get it transmitted to prime time American breakfast audience. That takes some doing! Also by now the City Mayor has determined this is a terrorist event rather that the earlier police position of not being sure what the underlying cause was. This of course is also just in time for the American breakfast audience the West Coast being two hours behind. What perfect timing and yet again on a Friday, perfect for the weekend.

Now before we leave this particular video, take a look at 9.10 mins into it. There is here the briefest side view of the shooter. There is no shooting before so this must be the moment portrayed in the earlier shop video Look carefully from 2.10 mins in. The man in the former is hooded whereas in this one at the very same point at which he starts shooting, he is definitely bare-headed. One or other therefore must be fake!

Initial Observations – Parallels with other Recent Events

As with so many of these events that get world-wide attention by the international media, perhaps in contrast to many much worse events elsewhere, I was struck by the parallels both as to the crime, the way in which information was issued to the press and thence to the public; the way it was treated by police and government in statements; the apparent failures of prevention and detection; and many anomolous and contradictory features common to many of these so-called terrorist events, most recently in Paris.

The features of the Tel Aviv attack, many of which have been replicated elsewhere, may be summarised as follows:

  • gunman carries out what appears to be random street shooting
  • using semi-automatic weapon
  • firing about fifteen (15) shots
  • killing two and injuring eight innocent victims
  • at a street pub/restaurant in a large city
  • caught in part on CCTV but not as to be clear or to reveal other elements
  • subsequently taxi driver shot dead, blamed on same man
  • happens Friday afternoon (for maximum coverage?)
  • police immediately issue the name of chief suspect
  • story about how they find out (father recognises and informs) dubious
  • suspect is known (controlled?) by police
  • suspect has criminal/mental history/possible motivation
  • uninvolved wider family/contacts are arrested (as pawns/colateral?)
  • reported details conflict
  • published identity photographs don't appear to match
  • timings don't appear to correlate (in fact appear to prove the opposite!)
  • gun details don't match
  • ages vary widely, names spelt differently, number injured changes
  • unlikely identity failures by perpatrator – in this case a mobile phone and back-pack abandoned with links
  • strange absence of police and security allowing attack to take place
  • failure to immediately arrest or locate the perpatrator
  • immediate evidence of security/intelligence services on site
  • strange anomalies with regard to the crime scene
  • event used as a reason/excuse to flood the area with heavily armed police/militia, raid homes, arrest targets, introduce elements of marshall law
  • use the event for propaganda purposes world wide concentrating on bloodied bodies, tearful faces, children weeping, vivid descriptions, candles and flowers, mass gatherings, religious ceremonies, patriotic references, group blame
  • political involvement presence (always photographed suitably solemn, moved, empathetic, determined)
  • speeches by same with proposed actions, usually discriminatory, inhibitory, or even aggressive. Legislative changes invarible follow in a predictable direction
  • intimation is given that the aim is to kill not arrest the identified attacker (who in fact may not be)
  • all of which plays to a strengthens a certain agenda of fear and hatred towards another (usually these days Muslim) group whilst denying this is the intention.

False Flag Event?

The classic false flag terror event appears to have become more common in recent years that suggests an agenda is being played out. It usually consists of an outrageous event employing the use of explosives and/or other weaponry causing multiple deaths and/or destruction. The chosen target appears to have evolved from military to unsuspecting civilians often just engaged in innocent social pursuits. The false flag event is distinguished from the true terrorist operation by tell-tale signs such as parallel emergency exercises taking place, premature announcements, confusion over details and timings, the death by police or others of operatives to ensure secrecy is maintained, inexplicable or highly unlikely coincidences and identity giveaways, the use of suspect video footage, the use of crisis actors and so on. All of this fitting neatly into a current chosen narrative in support of government intentions, domestic or foreign.

So let us, as far as the reported/published information permits, look a little closer at some of these, what might be called, to greater or lesser extent, suspicious indicators of something else at play on the part of unidentified centres of power. This may or may not point to what is termed a False Flag Operation, i.e. an activity intended to bring an opposition party into serious disrepute to influence public opinion and enable the government to take action (often military or social) not otherwise possible. It may also be used as a distraction from other events elsewhere.

The Location and Scene

The attack occurred at about 2.20 pm on Friday 1st January, 2016 at a bar come cafe called Simta, on the corner of Dizengoff (named after a former Mayor) and Gordon Streets in central Tel Aviv. The two killed in the attack were said to be Alon Bakal, 26, a manager at the pub, and Shimon Ruimi, 30, a resident of Ofakim. They were both laid to rest without delay on the following Sunday. Whether their bodies were subject to medical examination or postmortem is not revealed.

A Haaretz You Tube presentation (complete with fades and dramatic music) can be found here: If both videos are taken together it is clear that the shooting was very brief and largely onto the street. How the two people were shot fatally is therefore difficult to explain, especially as Bakal was said to be the manager and there is no sign of such outside during the shooting.

At no stage were any shots fired into the premises. That all the shooting is captured is proved by reference to the reaction of the customers who can be seen startled by the first shot and within literally seconds were confident to emerge. This in no way approximates to a genuine 'terrorist attack' as claimed by the government, obviously intent on making it so. This alone is a very suspicious feature.

Of course with the disparity between the two videos I mention above, indicating one or other or both are fake, not too much interpretive reliance can in fact be placed on any of them. Yet again we have to note however, because the government places reliance on them as if they were genuine must mean it is in on the fraud and what must be a plot to deceive.

If the shop video is reliable, his behaviour of buying nuts and plastic bags in the adjacent shop immediately prior to the firing likely. This man has all the indications of amateur following instructions to cause a bit of a panic, than a serious and desperate terrorist.

It is claimed that his father recognised him from the video but which video, because this one looks nothing like an earlier one of him allegedly walking towards the scene nor does his age or stature appear to fit?

This commentator highlights the phone up-load from inside of the building but does not refer to the absence of anyone in the line of fire.

As soon as government latches on to an untenable explanation and uses it for a political purpose – in this case no less a figure than Prime Minister Netanahu insisting Arabs must support Israel – you can be sure you are in murky territory, and that literally nothing coming from the authorities can be taken automaticaly as truthful.

I reproduce some photographs below that I immediately noticed are very similar to those taken after the Paris attacks. It certainly raises the question whether this was an attempt to replicate a 'successful' exercise on Israel territory – except that it wasn't. It's amazing how a few overturned chairs can give the impression of a chaotic event having taken place. Sitting in the midst of what in any jurisdiction would be an important crime scene sits a woman and her dog, which a later image reveals is being interviewed by a policeman. This immediately gives the lie to how seriously forensic parameters were being followed which include the basic one of 'everyone out', 'don't touch anything'.

Incidentally from the video there is no suggestion of overturned tables. Indeed one 'survivor' appears from one. So why in these images are they all overturned? Surely they haven't been subsequntly overturned to give the impression of greater chaos?

I am adding this one just to provide an additional view. The empty stretcher is worth noting.


In many other cases I have pointed to the fact that official accounts of terror events, often have seeded in them problems of timing that undermine their reliability, or in extreme cases prove they cannot be true. Once falsehood is proved in any important aspect, the whole official story is cast into doubt, and deceit for whatever reason is suggested. We appear to have such an example in the Tel Aviv shooting.

The Israili authorities were quick to put out a video, which they claimed showed their chief suspect, identified they said by his father, walking towards the crime scene intent on the act that would kill two people and injure 'eight' – reduced to 'seven'. It is reproduced on the CNN programme that can be viewed here:  There are many other versions on Youtube.

I hope some one has copied it because it is very significant. It purports to show the alleged shooter, by which his father identified him, walking along a street carrying a back pack. Helpfully whoever is operating the camera follows him until he disappears behind a bollard proving that it is indeed 2016. Therefore if this is him and before the attack it must be on the 1st – i.e. the day of the attack. The fact that the camera follows him is of course a touch suspicious after all why would they? He presents no obvious danger, is not engaged in any anti-social or suspicious activity and it leads nowhere. This certainly suggests an element of staging or pre-planning.

However much more important is the information embedded on what we must assume is a security camera, of which there must be plenty in the centre of Tel Aviv. (In passing the absence of any other informative footage of the shooting or the shooters escape should be noted. This also is a very familiar feature of suspicious events where all cameras apparently fail when they might have been of greatest use. Perhaps I will list them as a footnote if you are not aware)

As can be seen the video reads “2016.01.01 Camera 3”. However there is one very BIG problem. The video shows clearly the time as 4.23.43 and runs for a further 13 seconds (4.23.56) until he disappears out of view. This of course is some two hours after the shooting. Either the video timing is unreliable, which I would suggest is highly unlikely, or the details have been interfered with in some way or if this is indeed Nashat Milhem the chief and only suspect, he could not have carried out the shooting as described unless he had returned to the street and casually walked down it two hours later!

The thing is if the timing is right there are other anomalies. Remember at this time police operations were at their height yet there is no evidence of this.

So what are we to make of the video so confidently broadcast purporting to show the very man the police were seeking, on his way to the killing, yet containing this damning element?

One possible explanation is that it is a contrived piece of 'evidence' previously prepared and immediately circulated to media outlets to support a time-table that actually went wrong. If the shooting was planned for shall we say for 4.30 pm or there abouts, this video fits perfectly and the timing works. But what if the shooter, who of course is not Nashat Milhem decides for whatever reason to turn up almost two hours early? What then?If the prepared video purporting to show Milhem approaching the scene is already out there or the embedded mistake not noticed, it is too late to correct the damage. Just let's hope no-one notices.

This rather bizarre explanation is not unsupported by reported developments. In an article by Ben Hartman in the Jerusalem Post timed and dated 17.02 on the 3rd January 2016, (i.e. two days after the event) he raises idiosyncratic timing issues himself, suggesting it pointed to significant communication failures on the part of the police. He observes (quote):

Friday didn’t witness the greatest display in the history of the Tel Aviv district police spokesman’s branch either. Its first message about shots fired went out to crime reporters on WhatsApp at 2:53 p.m., and then the police went silent until 3:12 p.m., only to report that there were people shot outside a bar/restaurant/ café and some were hurt. They added that paramedics were working the scene, and that it was unclear if the incident was a terrorist attack or criminal.

The first comprehensive report went out finally at 5:52 p.m., almost three hours later. While it is important in such hectic stories to be careful and know what they are reporting, the police seemed lost, unable or unwilling to answer questions in real-time.

I don’t know whether to chalk up the police’s failure to the mass confusion and the fact that the attacker hasn’t been caught – unlike in the Panorama attack – but there was something disconcerting about the whole display” END QUOTE.

“Disconcerting” might be an appropriate term in the circumstances but clearly at the time of writing he hadn't seen the video. However if my hunch is correct, and there had been a major disruption to the plan for a 4.30 pm event, the delay and confusion in reporting it becomes easier to explain. If correct one can imagine the consternation in some back-room planning office. It might have gone something like this don't you think?

What the hell? That fool has done the shooting two hours early. Has it been reported yet? Well tell the police to zip it until we decide what to do. Where's Milhem by the way? Looks Like now he knows he's been set up to take the fall, he's done a runner.”

Confirmation of the 2.20 pm time for the shooting is given in a CNN report here as follows (quote):

Attack captured on surveillance video

The surveillance videos aired by Israeli news media appear to show the attacker before and during the 2:40 p.m. shooting, hours before Shabbat, Judaism's day of rest that starts on Friday evening.
Further video of the shooter can be viewed here, but again as is typical in such cases the clips are very short and view obscured.

Source: I am adding this one just to provide an additional view. The empty stretcher is worth noting.

So to recap. The inconsistent information on the timing of the event is as follows:

2.20 pm Shooting takes place. Lasts probably less than a minute. Shooter immediately makes his escape.

2.53 pm First reports by police to local media that there has been an ill-defined shooting.

3.12 pm Next police report to media giving a few extra details of shooting outside cafe and people hurt

3.45 pm (8.45 am EST in US) News was being broadcast to the American TV audience.

4.23pm Chief suspect Milhem recorded on security CCTV walking towards the scene of the crime, purportedly on his way to carry it out.

4.45pm (9.45 am SET in US) Announced this was a 'terrorist event' and home-made I-phone video of the gunman shown constantly in America (and presumably the rest of world).

5.52pm First comprehensive report put out by police who appeared 'lost, unable or unwilling to answer questions in real-time.' In other words, in common with other such events, the political leader (the Mayor) had announced it was a terrorist event well before the police themselves had made up their minds what it was!)

If I am right, and this was a fraudulent event that didn't go according to plan, and Milhem was not responsible, we may speculate that someone other than the accused was persuaded - or forced - to act out his role. Is it possible that whoever it was not only attempted to do as little harm as possible, but set out to positively sabotage the plan he had been entrusted with? Or was this person actually Milhem trying his best to do as little damage as possible but bringing forward the time to allow his escape knowing if he did it at the agreed time he himself would be 'neutralised'. 

I realise this is speculative but if accurate there is little doubt that it would have sealed his fate for undermining the operation. Later it was announced that a taxi driver, Amin Shaaban, had been shot dead by the escaping Milhem, but if the evidence – some of which has been discussed above – points to Milhem being set up and being innocent of the charge – effectively a 'Patsy' – then a different explanation would be required for the taxi drivers death. I will allow you to imagine what that might be.

Amin Shaaban, a taxi driver who's body was found a short while after a shooting spree in central Tel Aviv.

The Alleged Assailant

Almost immediately following the event, confident assertions were being made about the likely suspect based upon it was said information from his father, who recognised him from the video. Given all the contradictions and limitations of the video, and Nashat's father's involvement with the police (and probably Shin Bet) is it likely that he would be taken in or provided the implicating information about son? Isn't it more likely that Nashat was chosen specifically because of his and his father's background and that his father was presented with a non-negotiable option either to comply with the story already worked out, or be implicated with his family in a terrorism plot - or indeed perhaps leaking his earlier complicity in anti Palestinian under-cover work. Mahammad may indeed have been between a rock and a hard place.

Early certainty of the perpetrator is classic 'Patsy' territory and highly suspicious as are the additional claimed circumstances that father and son talked together following the event and that the firearm was stolen from the father, which itself raises many questions. Reference is made to stealing the 'firearm' which rather suggests this was a revolver. However on the video someone says 'Ouzzi'. It is certainly a semi-automatic of some description. We are asked to believe that the father of a son, jailed for attacking a policeman, was allowed to keep an official semi-automatic at home?

Further confusion is provided by this quote: "The father told police that he received an anonymous phone call from someone who told him to check if his licensed firearm, which he uses as a guard in a security firm, was in possession at his home. He checked and found his firearm but then realized that it may have been his son, the suspected shooter, who made the anonymous call." All highly suspect I would say. Wouldn't a father immediately recognise his son? Why would a son ring his father to pass on this bit of information? Would the Israeli authorities let an Arab, not actually in the employ of the state, keep a semi automatic weapon anyway? A side arm possibly but not a semi automatic, particularly as his family included those with serious convictions and therefore a potential threat.

A common theme in such cases is that the alleged perpetrator is well known to the police and security services. Individuals have responsibilities that are used to ensure compliance. Another is real or trumped up charges that are used as bargaining chips to get the co-operation of the individual, effectively as a 'snout' or asset, to provide intelligence. The fact that the whole family has been arrested is a clear sign that these tactics are being employed to make Melhem give himself up. Melhem on the other hand probably knows that would lead to almost certain death or a long prison sentence for a fabricated crime of multiple murder. He is in a very unenviable position needing to protecting himself whilst feeling responsible for his family.

For his part, Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan, who was interviewed Monday on the Knesset’s television channel said Nashat Melhem “was more sophisticated than [people] think. He is not naïve and eccentric.” As an indication of the suspect’s sophistication, Erdan said Melhem deliberately avoided bringing his cellphone to the scene of the crime “to make it harder to locate him,” since law enforcement can trace the whereabouts of mobile phones.
read more:

The father’s lawyer, Nechami Feinblatt, said his client had been in touch with his son after he carried out the attacks. The elder Milhem was remanded for two days earlier in the day as a suspected accessory to the killing, and for allegedly obstructing the investigation. Five other suspects, including several other relatives, were also remanded by the Haifa Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.
Muhammad Milhem at the Haifa Magistrate's Court on Tuesday, January 5, 2016 (Channel 2 screenshot)
Muhammad Milhem (father of the suspect) at the Haifa Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday, January 5, 2016 (Channel 2 screenshot)

Speaking to Channel 10 Tuesday evening, Feinblatt — who noted he has been representing Mohammed Milhem for years — said police and the Shin Bet were aware of the phone call.
“I know the father did call a certain number, and told police about it,” his attorney said. “Without elaborating, there was some contact, which the police and Shin Bet are aware of.”
Feinblatt told the TV station that his client had “certainly not” helped the suspected shooter escape. He said Mohammed Milhem’s communication with his son was known to police on Friday, though he was freed before being rearrested Tuesday.

“The truth is, the Shin Bet is desperate,” he said, and “when there is such a crisis in the agency,” they arrest people to gather information. Feinblatt said family members of the suspected killer maintain they are innocent. He said the family was clinging to the hope that Nashat Milhem was hired to kill the bar patrons by Israeli criminals, and that the shooting wasn’t a terror attack.

Why we might ask is Shin Bet 'desperate'. Could it be that one of their carefully laid plans to mimic and extend the 'terrorist threat' to Israel from France for reasons probably obvious to all, had gone seriously arigh? The individual who was to be blamed and shot dead in a dramatic stand-off, instead cunningly escaped capture and has still not been located.

The father told police that he received an anonymous phone call from someone who told him to check if his licensed firearm, which he uses as a guard in a security firm, was in possession at his home. He checked and found his firearm but then realized that it may have been his son, the suspected shooter, who made the anonymous call.

Identity Parade

Below are the official photographs of the accused Nashat Milhem. I think the first was taken when he was previously charged with an offense of attacking a policeman. Earlier his bother had been shot dead by police apparently. However compare this with what I assume is a later picture. Can these relate to the same person ? I do not believe so. The shape of the head is quite different, the former longer and thinner than the relatively round one of the latter. I have to say the second photo could fit the the video of the person in the food shop but there is still an issue as to why these different images claiming to be the same person, when they clearly are not, have been put out? 

Clearly one is clean shaven and wearing glasses whereas the former is bearded and doesn't need them. The man in the shop video appears to have just a tuft of a beard on his chin and wears dark glasses, which may or not be optician prescribed. In any event he appears on the short side (5' 8''?) and rather thick set whereas I would wager the former is taller and slimmer of build. What is going on here? They surely can't be both the same man as been suggested by whoever put them out to the media with that assertion? 

Suspected perpetrator of the shooting attack in Tel Aviv on January 1, 2016. (photo credit:screenshot)

This assessment I think is confirmed by the third image circulated below. This I would suggest is the younger image of the man above. However this is clearly quite distinct from the person in the top image. The difference cannot be attributed to age alone, or differences of angle or facial hair. These certainly appear different people although we are assured they are the same. If the same how could his face have changed so much? 

Perhaps it should also be noted that early reports spell his name differently and give him three different ages (19, 29 and 31) This appears somewhat surprising given the fact that he was so well known by the police and security services. It should also be noted that his name was being circulated with confidence in less than 24 hours. This contrasts starkly with the apparent ineffectiveness they have displayed to locate him subsequently, despite the best informer network in the world. Either his disappearance was intentional or he had a very good plan or he has some influential friends or perhaps all three.

The suspect, named on Saturday as Nashat Milhem, 31, is believed to still be armed with the submachine gun he allegedly used in the attack, and to pose a clear and present danger to the public.

The two victims killed in the attack were named as Alon Bakal of Karmiel, 26, the manager of the pub where the shooting began, and Shimon Ruime of Ofakim, 30, who was attending a birthday party for a friend at the establishment.

They added that the investigation is still ongoing, and called on the public to be on alert for the suspect, described by witnesses as a rather short man with somewhat dark skin, who was wearing all black and dark shades during the attack.

Speaking to The Jerusalem Post on Saturday, the attorney said the man’s father – Mohammed Milhem, Sami’s cousin, was a volunteer police officer in the past and that the entire family “has enlisted to help the police find him and condemns this attack entirely.”

The attorney said the man is not mentally well, and that he does not believe he was linked to the attack or influenced by Islamic State or other Islamist groups, despite reports stating this in the Israeli press.

I hope that they find the person who did this, he has brought a disaster upon this entire family,” Milhem said.
The submachine gun used in the attack reportedly belonged to Milhem’s father, a former volunteer police officer who had kept it in a safe at the family home.

Sami Melhem, an Israeli Arab lawyer, said the shooter was a relative of his, whose father, a police volunteer, had come forward to identify him to authorities after the security footage aired. The 28-year-old suspect's name was withheld from publication under a court gag order.

Speaking to Channel 2, Melhem said he had previously represented the suspect in a case where he was jailed for assaulting an Israeli soldier. But Melhem described him as mentally unstable rather than politically militant.

"This man is not sane, to the best of my knowledge since I represented him," Melhem said. "He has received treatment. He is receiving treatment. Recently he has been going around in the street as an insane person." The suspected gunman is known to Israeli security forces since he had been arrested and sent to prison for attempting to steal an IDF soldier's gun. Authorities continue to hunt the suspected gunman, a native of the Israeli Arab village of Arara. Those from the Wadi Ara community who know the gunman told Israeli media that the individual "experienced a number of traumatic events in his life."

One of the fatalities of Friday's shooting attack in central Tel Aviv was identified as Alon Bakal, 26, a shift manager at the 'HaSimta' pub which took the brunt of the gunfire on Dizengoff Street. The other fatality in the attack was Shimon Roemee from Ofakim. In camera footage of the attack, the gunman was seen pulling his weapon from a backpack and aiming the rifle at passersby and at pub patrons.

The father told police that he received an anonymous phone call from someone who told him to check if his licensed firearm, which he uses as a guard in a security firm, was in possession at his home. He checked and found his firearm but then realized that it may have been his son, the suspected shooter, who made the anonymous call.

Channel 10 reported that the suspect's cousin was killed in a police raid some ten years ago when he was found to be storing weapons. The suspect himself also has a criminal past and was known to security authorities. He previously served a four-year jail sentence for fighting with a soldier and trying to steal his weapon.

A copy of the Koran was reportedly found inside the gunman's backpack which he left at the the health food store he visited
 immediately before he carried out the attack, according to Channel 10. 

The Separate unreported Killing

In a separate incident on Friday afternoon, a taxi driver was shot to death in northern Tel Aviv. The victim was identified as resident of the central Israeli town of Lod. The police were reported to be investigating the circumstances of the killing.


near north Tel Aviv's Mandarin Hotel 
the third victim of 19-year-old Nashat Melhem, the suspected perpetrator of a shooting. Police were initially unsure if the murder of Amin Shaaban, the cab driver, was linked to the shooting.

Authorities also arrested on Monday a second, initially unidentified family member of Melhem whose attack on the pub left two Israelis dead and seven others wounded. Juadat Melhem, the brother of Nashat Melhem, was arrested on Friday in connection to the attack.

Amin Shaaban, a taxi driver who's body was found a short while after a shooting spree in central Tel Aviv.

Police and Shin Bet investigators said Sunday Melhem wasn't planning to return alive from the killing spree, and were investigating if he had an accomplice who knew of his plans in advance.

Simta bar, on the corner of Dizengoff and Gordon Streets in central Tel Aviv. The two killed in the attack were Alon Bakal, 26, a manager at the pub, Shimon Ruimi, 30, a resident of Ofakim. They were both laid to rest Sunday.

The BBC says Police have named a 29-year-old Israeli Arab as the suspect. No motive has been established for the shooting.

Visiting the bar in Dizengoff Street, Mr Netanyahu praised Israeli Arab leaders for condemning the killings - but said Israel was in danger of becoming "a state of law for most citizens, and a state within a state with Islamist incitement and illegal arms that are often used in weddings, celebrations and criminal incidents", the Jerusalem Post reports.
He said his government would "bolster law enforcement efforts in the Negev, the Galilee, the Triangle, everywhere". This would include building new police stations and recruiting more police officers.
Candles and statements

The two victims have been identified as Alon Bakal, 26, who was a manager at the bar targeted, and Shimon Ruimi, 30.

From the Israel Times A senior security source told Channel 2 Monday that the terrorist's mobile phone, found by a citizen in the front yard of an apartment building on Ramat Aviv’s Reading Street on Friday, had not given the investigation any leads. A second brother of Milhem was arrested Monday, three days after his brother Juadat was arrested Friday on suspicion of involvement in the crime.

Nashat fled the scene of the shooting on Dizengoff Street on foot and hailed Amin Shaaban’s cab on nearby Ibn Gabirol Street. The vehicle drove to north Tel Aviv, where Milhem worked. There, Milhem is alleged to have killed Shaaban outside the Mandarin Hotel.

He then drove the cab to Namir Road, where he abandoned it near a bus stop. Namir is a major north-south artery in north Tel Aviv, from which Milhem could have caught a public bus or other transportation out of the city.
Footage from a security camera released Saturday showed Milhem walking calmly along Dizengoff Street minutes before the attack.

From i24
The official added that the discovery of the mobile device and the investigation of the family "has not helped us or led us to a breakthrough." Israel Army Radio, meanwhile reported that another brother of Melhem was arrested on Monday and will be brought before a court in Haifa to extend his detention. On Sunday, Melhem's sister was taken in for questioning by Israeli police as Israeli security forces pressed a manhunt for Melhem himself.
Police partially lifted a gag order on Saturday, naming the suspected shooter as Nashaat Melhem, 31, from the Arab village of Arara in northern Israel. They distributed his picture and encouraged public vigilance, as a massive manhunt continued. Melhem's family and lawyer described the suspect as "mentally deranged", noting that he had a history of mental illness and drug abuse including extensive use of cocaine and speed.

Concluding Summary

So to summarise what are the reasons I have serious reservations about the version of events in this case? I will remind you of them here. Yet again I would argue we have evidence of the manipulation of world-wide opinion using violent outrages as a tool. Perhaps the planners of them are getting sloppy or we are getting wise to them. Either way I believe there are far more sceptics now than were around after 9/11 which is a hopeful development at least.

1. The speed at which the suspect was identified and publicised is suspicious.
2. He is said to be filmed approaching the scene prior to the attack. The video is suspicious in that it follows him for no reason and the time stamp puts it about an hour and a half after the attack either proving his innocence or the unreliability of the 'evidence' of the video.
3. The two available videos of the shooting itself are contradictory as in one the assailant has hood where as in the other his head is clearly uncovered. One at least therefore has to be unreliable and probably staged.
4. However in both he is seen shooting mainly into the street. There is no indication of aiming it at people. How two people were shot dead needs to be clarified in detail which hasn't happened.
5. Neither of the videos support the contention that who ever it was intended serious harm to the individuals who appeared 'sitting ducks' should he have wanted to. If terrorism this was definitely 'gesture terrorism'.
6. The identity of of the alleged assailant is not at all clear. Indeed the images of Nashat Mihem do not appear to match. Pictures of him court do not match in the slightest other identity pictures put out by police.
7. The story surrounding his father do not convince in the slightest nor the way his father, brothers and wider family have been arrested and harassed suggest the contrived story is holding. These are indeed desperate measure to retrieve a desperate situation.
8. Nor does the story of using his father's gun which is full of inconsistencies. The fact that the weapon appears to have disappeared is a further question to be answered.
9. The death of the 'taxi driver' that has been put at the door of Milhem is equally unconvincing. Where is the CCTV of his escape. Where is the evidence of the taxi driver raising the alarm (I am sure they have secret code words for such situations) Why would he shoot his helper and fellow Palestinian Arab? Why in such a public place. From Kennedy on this is also a classic indicator in a plan to frame someone but carried out by someone else.
10. The 'discovered' telephone and back-pack are classic little implicators of a plot. As if a serious terrorist would make these obvious errors. Of course we have had the same giveaways in all the recent outrages.
11. The way the event was subsequently used politically to threaten Israeli arabs by Netanyahu is another. Few surely can be taken in by his respectful visit to the site with the now obligatory candles?

and now as a postscript 12. That he has been hunted down and shot dead on Friday 8th January 2016, precisely, and almost too neatly, a week to the day after the initial incident. 


I now discover as I had predicted, that Nashaat Melhem has been located and killed by Israeli forces. Ynet News published 8th Jan., 2016 (See:,7340,L-4750398,00.html ) has this: 

"It's our only solace, and the happy thing is that none of our own were scratched in the raid. I had no doubt that they'd reach him." So said Dudu Bakal, whose son Alon Bakal was murdered by Nashat Melhem in the Friday attack at the Simta bat in Tel Aviv, after he heard that security forces had killed Melhem."

"Bakal added that he and his family were certain that the terrorist would be killed by security forces quickly. "I didn’t doubt it for a moment," he emphasized. "I was sure that this evil person would be taken down. I was very very happy to hear that none of our own were scratched. All of our guys came home intact and he got the strike he deserved. Everyone needs to learn from this, and know that if they scratch one of Israel's people, their end will be the same. It's good to know that he got his."!/image/431631042.jpg_gen/derivatives/headline_609x343/431631042.jpg

"Nashat Melhem, killed in firefight with security forces outside his hideout in hometown Arara, December 8, 2015."

Here is another composite one. The upper one of the two replicates the photo above whereas the lower one differs in a number of important respects. Notice the body is in a different position. In the top one he lies on his back with arms outstretched on either side. In the lower one he lies in what is generally referred to as the 'recovery position' to his left.  A sub-machine gun can be seen to his left and may just be detectable in the upper picture behind vegetation. He is wearing what appears to be dark blue or black clothing, the track suit bottoms have a dramatic white multi-stripe and logo to them which significantly do not match in any way those he (or someone else) was wearing in the health food shop video. 

It is impossible to determine the order the photos were taken in but it is reasonable to assume the lower one was taken first. A head injury is clearly suggested by the colour and blurring of the photograph. The position of the hand with thumb to the RHS in the photo proves this is his right arm twisted so that the palm is uppermost. 

So we may deduce that in the upper photograph the body has been turned onto its back but not only this it has also been dragged latterly perhaps a foot or two. If it had just been turned onto his back where he would have been in the shrubbery but the upper photo shows a gap of perhaps a couple of feet between his body and it, so it must have been dragged sideways a couple of feet. His bare midriff in the upper photo might suggest they used his jacket to facilitate this. 

Slightly strange is the fact that what appears to be a large pot or bucket close to his left arm in the upper photo cannot be detected in the lower one, so it is possible in addition to being turned onto his back, he was also dragged a short distance up the path. 

Although it is difficult to see the weapon in the lower photo, given all these necessary movement of the body it appears likely that his gun was also moved and put down again merely from the fact that it would have been in the way. 

There is clearly no evidence of blood to the body which with the other information referred to above points strongly to a head shot. That is rather unusual and distinctive as a retreating or threatening standing person would always be targeted on the upper torso and never the head. A head shot is far more suggestive of a marksman. 

Finally in the lower photo a number of legs can be observed wearing what appears to be fatigues not the blue of policemen. There appear to be just two but of course there may have been more out of the picture. You do get the feeling these are the huntsmen first on the scene to inspect their 'kill'. Could it be these are indeed be the "units specializing in locating and neutralizing perpetrators" referred to euphemistically at the top of the article? 

From Haaretz we have this quote: "Police also deduce that Melhem had accomplices who supplied him with food and clothing. "Melhem didn't look like someone who was in hiding for a week without contact with anyone," sources in the police said on Friday.  Police sources say that there wasn't an implicit order to shoot Melhem, but when the gunman saw the officers coming he tried to run and opened fire toward them, leaving them no choice but to shoot him dead. A neighbor described Melhem's attempted escape: He left through the back door and ran a few meters, reaching another neighbor's yard before being shot."
read more:

How much reliance can be placed on the police account that "he tried to run and opened fire towards them" yet they say "he left through the back door and only ran a few meters." Those two accounts are difficult to reconcile. Then we have the statement "there wasn't an implicit order to shoot Melhem". No of course not. He was shot in purely self defence it is plain to see.

It is what may be called a fait accompli. This is the new trend demonstrated in Boston, London and Paris based on what I think is an Israeli model: that the judicial process is dispensed with altogether, and unconvicted individuals are just hunted down and shot but not before the situational PR is properly and thoroughly addressed so that no one will really mind if and when the inevitable happens.

Of course apart from a primitive retribution, it also has the advantage that the target is silenced and can never reveal the truth, including the very real possibility that he might have been innocent and/or set-up. With the target dead there is no need need to test the evidence to see if it stands up. Of course those who have lost loved ones do not question the official version. If the government says he has done it he must have mustn't he? So no one cares if an innocent man might have lost his life. In fact the majority applaud it. 

There is one small reservation however, if he didn't do it, or even was forced into doing it, it means the real killers and culprits remain at large, emboldened and encouraged to act again. Mr Cameron in a recent speech has given notice he too wants to put aside any legal niceties and ethical reservations and go for the kill rather than seek surrender, arrest and legal process. Can anyone doubt that we are entering a new phase of totalitarian brutality that at some secret level has been agreed between Britain, America, France and Israel, and we are seeing the manifestation of it? This is a new era in which the the militarised police will be able to shoot at will and the categories where they are able to so gradually extends. This is a very slippery slope and we have already gone some way down it.END.


  1. Note the totally false information put out in this report if the above photo evidence is genuine, which it appears to be. Different location (sorry I can't make it out) That he was hiding in a Mosque and was shot there - clearly false. Another indicator of script going wrong?

  2. This comment on FB with some additional useful observations on the discrepancies in the video of the shooting. "Ian Davis Yep there are some clear anomalies. Most obviously the hood/no hood but also the lack of parked scooter and running bystander. Totally agree with timestamp problems and nonsensical elements of the official story (Taxi etc.) Tim Veater really well researched."

  3. From:

    "Balad MK Haneen Zoabi accused Israeli security forces of unnecessarily shooting and killing the Israeli Arab man who perpetrated the shooting attack in Tel Aviv last week which killed two Israelis.

    "The shooting and killing of Nashat Milhem is an execution. In spite of the fact that the security forces could have arrested him, they were directed to execute him, because the matter at hand is the reputation of the police state. The goal is to satisfy public opinion. We need to put on trial those who shot and killed him," Zoabi said Tuesday in an interview she gave to the Palestinian channel "Musawa."

    Zoabi's comments came in the wake of the shooting and killing of suspected terrorist Milhem after a week-long manhunt. Milhem fled to his home town of Arara after opening fire on a Tel Aviv pub with a semi-automatic weapon, and later killing an Israeli Arab taxi driver. Israel Police said that security forces shot Milhem in self-defense after he had opened fire at them, a claim that Zoabi appeared to reject.

    "What is important now is the Palestinian dialogue, that is to say that all of the Palestinians in Israel need to self-reflect. We are emphasizing again that we have explicitly chosen the political struggle, and that violence is not our way," highlighted Mk Zoabi. "Our way is political struggle. We do not need to provide testimonial of good character. All of the television news agencies in Israel are putting us on trial, and they are forcing us to provide a testimonial of good character, to the point of self-humiliation."

    Zoabi added that "we do not know the background of the attack that was carried out by Nashat Milhem. Maybe it was criminally motivated, maybe it was motivated by his mental state. Someone wants to close the file on this case. It is in our interest that this case be opened. Where is the security footage from the cameras near the cafe in Tel Aviv? I would have thought that the Shin Bet (Israel Security Agency) would have wanted to arrest him alive, after a week-long manhunt, in order to understand how he succeeded in evading the police and the Shin Bet who can usually apprehend anyone they want."

    The MK addressed efforts to repossess illegal arms, saying, "The Israel Police started to address the illegal arms concerns in the Arab sector only after a Jew was wounded and there was use of a weapon in Tel Aviv. Hundreds of times weapons have been used in the Arab sector, and in one of the villages in the northern cluster of Arab towns in Israel, commonly referred to as "The Triangle," 70 people were murdered in recent years, and only one perpetrator has faced a trial. Over all these years, the weapons problem and surging violence in the Arab sector has been met by apathy because it has forced us to deal with our own issues rather than fight for our rights. How many times has the Arab leadership requested that the police come into Arab towns and seize the illegal weapons, and nobody blamed them for their incompetence in dealing with crime in the Arab sector. It has become evident that it is not in Israel's interest to seize these weapons. Netanyahu speaks of two nations, and I am speaking about two interests: The concerns of the Jews and the concerns of the Arabs.""

  4. I have posted this response to the article: Like other similar 'terrorist events' before it, the Israeli official account is NOT CREDIBLE. It contains demonstrable lies which suggest more. There are also many classic signs of a False Flag Operation (FFO) planned and initiated by the Israeli secret services themselves to encourage hatred, sectarian and ethnic division and to allow yet more repressive laws and actions directed against Israeli Arabs and Palestinians.
    Zoabi in this article raises the question of the absence of CCTV. It is a valid one replicated in many such incidents world-wide. They always appear to fail or go missing just when they are needed or might provide useful information. But this also places greater focus on the video clips that ARE released and relied upon by officials to support their narrative. These it should be noted in passing, in contrast to the former, appear in international media with almost miraculous speed, almost as if they had been prepared earlier, though that of course would be quite impossible. However if the official videos are shown to be fraudulent, nothing in official narrative can be taken seriously either, and EVERYTHING about it must be critically examined and if necessary challenged.
    Such is the case here where three videos have been circulated, all of which purport to show the accused, Nashaat Melhem approaching the scene and shooting the semi-automatic weapon. The trouble is rather than condemn him, they do quite the opposite! I am not in a position to say whether two of them accurately portray this individual or not. Apparently the father has agreed it is him but we do not know what pressure he was under to do so or how much reliance can be placed on it.
    What we do know however, is either the videos are unreliable or prove his innocence.
    In the first, said to prove him walking towards the scene of the crime, is timed a full two hours AFTER it took place. The shooting by general agreement happened at 2.20 pm local time. The video is timed at 4.23 pm (lasting a further 15 seconds). The conclusion is obvious: either the video was pre-recorded and interfered with or it provides Melhem with an unassailable alibi unless it is argued he casually returned to the scene two hours later!
    Then we have an unsurmountable problem with the remaining two clips, one claiming to be taken inside the bar, the other from inside the health food shop, the former on a hand held i phone the latter on security CCTV. Both include what purports to be the identical moment, as there is only one very brief burst of fire by only one assailant - Melhem (sic)
    The trouble is the two clips show a DIFFERENT individual! In the former only a very brief side-on glimpse of the man is observed emerging from behind the intervening wall but sufficient to see he is HOODED, whereas the latter shows clearly he starts firing with no headgear at all. He is bare-headed and wearing dark glasses. There are also other incompatibles such as a man running past and a parked motor scooter observed on one but not the other. However perhaps we should also note that in neither clip is there evidence that the gunman shot inside either premises or that anyone was shown injured - indeed unless in the street, it is difficult to see how they could have been if either of the videos were genuine.
    One or other (or both!) video clips therefore MUST be fraudulent and unreliable. If these are, the whole story is. Of course there are many more points of concern regarding the official account up to and including that of Melhem's death, which of course has all the makings of a planned assassination. See:


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