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The Angel: The Egyptian Spy Who Saved Israel

The Angel: The Egyptian Spy Who Saved Israel

by Uri Bar-Joseph


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THE BEST INTELLIGENCE BOOK for 2017 by The American Association of Former Intelligence Officers

A gripping feat of reportage that exposes—for the first time in English—the sensational life and mysterious death of Ashraf Marwan, an Egyptian senior official who spied for Israel, offering new insight into the turbulent modern history of the Middle East.

As the son-in-law of Egyptian president Gamal Abdel Nasser and a close advisor to his successor, Anwar Sadat, Ashraf Marwan had access to the deepest secrets of the country’s government. But Marwan himself had a secret: He was a spy for the Mossad, Israel’s intelligence service. Under the codename “The Angel,” Marwan turned Egypt into an open book for the Israeli intelligence services—and, by alerting the Mossad in advance of the joint Egyptian-Syrian attack on Yom Kippur, saved Israel from a devastating defeat.

Drawing on meticulous research and interviews with many key participants, Uri Bar Joseph pieces together Marwan’s story. In the process, he sheds new light on this volatile time in modern Egyptian and Middle Eastern history, culminating in 2011’s Arab Spring. The Angel also chronicles the discord within the Israeli government that brought down Prime Minister Golda Meir.

However, this nail-biting narrative doesn’t end with Israel’s victory in the Yom Kippur War. Marwan eluded Egypt’s ruthless secret services for many years, but then somebody talked. Five years later, in 2007, his body was found in the garden of his London apartment building. Police suspected he had been thrown from his fifth-floor balcony, and thanks to explosive new evidence, Bar-Joseph can finally reveal who, how, and why.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780062420107
Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date: 08/02/2016
Pages: 384
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.30(d)

About the Author

Uri Bar-Joseph is Professor of Political Science at the University of Haifa. He is the author of six books about intelligence, Israel’s national security strategy, and the Arab-Israeli conflict. His coming book, Intelligence Success and Failure: A Comparative Study (with Rose McDermott), is forthcoming from Oxford University Press.

Table of Contents

Cast of Characters vii

Prologue: The Funeral and the Mystery 1

Chapter 1 Cairo, 1944-1970: Beginnings 7

Chapter 2 London, 1970: Contact 33

Chapter 3 April 1971: Enter Military Intelligence 55

Chapter 4 May 1971: Liftoff 76

Chapter 5 The Dream of Every Spy Agency on Earth 100

Chapter 6 Sadat's Emissary for Special Affairs 133

Chapter 7 Egypt Girds for War 152

Chapter 8 Final Preparations and an Intermezzo in Rome 176

Chapter 9 Signing at Sundown on Saturday 194

Chapter 10 Dovecote: Warning and War 219

Chapter 11 The Rise and Fall of Ashraf Marwan 237

Chapter 12 An Angel in the City, a Son-In-Law Exposed 269

Chapter 13 Fallen Angel 298

Acknowledgments 327

Notes 331

Bibliography 347

Index 357

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