Be your Own Detective: Investigate the Dubai Hit - a Timeline

Dubai is a Middle Eastern crossroads of arms dealers, espionage, oil money, and a much underachieving Dubai police force.

The operation was amateurish. The suspects used bad disguises — glasses, wigs, and moustaches. They also used the same room to change their disguises. Two of the suspects who followed Mabhouh to his hotel room who were dressed in tennis outfits didn’t seem to know what they were doing.

He was the main dealer between Hamas and Iran for weapons-smuggling operations into Gaza, Mr. Mabhouh had a lot of enemies: He had a warrant for his arrest issued by Israel for the kidnapping and killing of two soldiers in 1989; his rival Palestinian faction, Fatah greatly hated him,he was on Jordanian intelligence’s watch-list he spent all of 2003 in jail in Egypt, The man had already survived several assassination attempts.

Does it really take 27 agents(well 29 counting 2 Palestinians who assisted) in cheap wigs and fake beards to kill one Hamas smuggler?

Was this the work of an Israeli hit squad? Think about it - why did three of the team leave on a boat bound for Iran? And why would they use at least 10 of the stolen identities came from Israelis with dual citizenship. Nice way to hide who you are. This is obviously an Arab plan to poit towards Israel and easy when the Police Chief of Dubai is an anti-Semite.

Let’s look at the timeline:

Jan 19 3:15PM Mahmoud Abdul Raouf Mohammed Used a fake name and passport and landed at Terminal 3 of Dubai’s international airport he went through immigration unabated, later he entered a Toyota Land Cruiser in the taxi line.

At 3:48 p.m. he walked into the lobby of the Al Bustan Rotana hotel Where he asked for a suite with sealed windows and no balcony. He was given two card keys to Room 230 (this should be noted as it is unusual for a single tenant to get 2 keys). A tall guy in a tennis outfit followed Mabhouh to his room. He notes the room 230 and 237 which is across the hall. Mohmoud showered, changed, put some documents in the room safe, and exited the hotel – heading to the Dubai Mall “to buy some sneakers.” It is unknown if he went to Dubai’s Iranian consulate for a meeting or if he meet anyone.

Later that day, a bald man using the name of “Kevin Daveron” soon arrived at the Rotana front desk, checked into Room 237, and took the keys – only to hand them off to “Gail Folliard,” who was carrying an Irish passport and whose hair looks like a red wig in the footage. She goes to Room 237. Three other men soon join her. Soon, seven of the team were gathered in Room 237, waiting.

At 8:24 p.m., Mabhouh walked slowly down the second-floor hallway of the Rotana toward his room. He slipped his electronic key in the slot, on the third try it clicked open. He was seen standing by the window inside, he likely checked out the pool area and the road to the airport beyond and the closed the curtains.

8:30 p.m. “Folliard” is seen she is waiting outside Room 230 with the bald man. Right then, inside the room, Mabhouh was being killed.

8:46p.m., exactly 22 minutes after Mahbouh entered his room, a security camera caught four men leaving the room, affixing a “Do not disturb” sign on the doorknob. Half an hour later, Note: Forensic tests would show he was suffocated after first being injected in the leg with a muscle relaxant.

9:36pm Mahbouh’s wife in Damascus called his cellphone according to the missed call.

Jan 20: lunchtime: Mahmoud Abdul Raouf Mohammed was discovered by a cleaner, who called a member of hotel security when she couldn’t get in. The door was latched from the inside. They found Mahbouh under the bedsheets wearing only a pair of black shorts.

Hamas announced that day that their comrade had died of cancer in a hospital in the Emirates. But even at the time, few believed it.

A few hours later, Folliard checked out of the hotel – paying her bill in cash – and boarded a flight with the bald man – now wearing a wig – to Paris. Others filed out the next morning, getting on flights to Hong Kong and South Africa before doubling back to Europe.

Feb 15: Lt. Gen. Dhahi Khalfan Tamim - Dubai’s Police Chief since 1980 called a press conference He claimed detectives had identified 11 European-passport holders believed to be directly behind Mahbouh’s assassination. He showed names, photos, and video footage of the assassins at work. The list included six people with British passports, three with Irish passports, and one each from France and Germany. He even released a narrated, 27-minute video of the suspected assassins’ activities in Dubai. Note: this is a common “tool of evidence” in Islamic nations as they have a much different perspective of what evidence is in a court of law.

The suspects, or rather some of the people with the names of the suspects, woke up the next morning with reporters camped out on their doorsteps, and Interpol started circulating “red notice” warrants worldwide with the request to arrest them.

It turned out that it was very clear this was premature as the legitimate passport holder’s were in no way involved in the crime.

A week later, to save face, Tamim, an Arab nationalist who has long voiced opposition to the quiet tolerance of Israelis in the Emirates, decided to blame Israel. He called another press conference to announce 15 more people suspected of involvement in Mabhouh’s killing (one more was identified March 1, bringing the total to 27). Three, he said, used Australian passports and the rest, English, Irish, and French ones.

In addition, there were two Palestinian suspects who worked for a real estate firm belonging to Mohammed Dahlan, a senior official in Hamas’s rival movement, Fatah. They were arrested for facilitating renting of cars and hotel rooms (and this is an Israeli plot - yeah right).

Tamim boasted to reporters that the Dubai police had “648 hours of video” on the suspects. He added that their disguises – beards, floppy hats, sunglasses, wigs – were “naive” and “archaic.”

March 3: The police chief called for the arrest of Israeli Prime Minster Benjamin Netanyahu and Mossad chief Meir Dagan. “I am 99 percent, if not 100 percent, sure [it was the Mossad],” said Tamim, when the case first opened.

End of Timeline:

Tamim made it clear that any travelers suspected of being Israeli will not be allowed in at all. Perhaps only the Dubai police chief knows if more information about the case will become public. But there remain many questions about an assassination that took 29 suspects. If Palestinian members of Fatah “collaborated with Israel” (which is highly unlikely), will this widen the divide between Hamas and Fatah? You may ask how long will it take Hamas to replace its key arms smuggler with Iran? – Probably done the same day he was killed.

This is a story that shows how easy it is to blame Israel for any hit. Perhaps Israel did hire a contract team – but this sloppy work in no way looks like a professional Mossad operation. What is more interesting is that an Arab paper in London believes it is the work of an Arab State.



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