OUR MAN IN DAMASCUS: The Story of Elie Cohn, Israel's Greatest Spy by Eli Ben-Hanan

OUR MAN IN DAMASCUS: The Story of Elie Cohn, Israel's Greatest Spy

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KIRKUS REVIEW

In 1965, the Syrian government discovered that Kamal Tabat (millionaire, Moslem, friend of the regime) was actually Elie Cohn, an Israeli spy. He was summarily tortured, tried, and hanged in Martyr's Square in Damascus. The case had attracted world interest, and despite strong outcries for clemency, the execution was televised and the body was allowed to hang in public view for six hours. All the facts of Cohn's initiation to intelligence, his careful training in Argentina, and his infiltration into the Syrian elite are described. Conversations are reconstructed, and details of torture are surmised. The author stresses the rancor (and surprise) the Syrians felt to discover their betrayal and points out that Cohn's infiltration allowed Israel to counter the Syrian plans to divert the Jordan and wipe out military catacombs along the border. The author is an Israeli journalist and businessman who tells his essentially true story in a glossy, occasionally lurid, fashion; it is already a bestseller in Israel.

Pub Date: April 17th, 1969
Publisher: Crown