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New Book Gives Credence to US Ambassador’s Claim That Israel Tried to Assassinate Him in 1980

US Ambassador to Cambodia John Gunther Dean (at right) carries the American flag from the US Embassy in Cambodia as he arrives at Utapao Air Force Base in Thailand following the evacuation from Phnom Penh by helicopter and aircraft carrier. PHOTO: New York Daily News/Sal Veder/AP

By Philip Weiss | 22 August 2018

MONDOWEISS — John Gunther Dean, now 92, and a former American ambassador to five countries, has long maintained that Israel was behind his attempted assassination on August 28, 1980, in a suburb of Beirut, which was attributed to a right-wing Lebanese group. Dean and his wife and daughter and son-in-law were in a motorcade and narrowly escaped serious injury.

Dean said that he was targeted because he was doing something regarded as antithetical to Israel’s interest: consulting with the Palestine Liberation Organization and its head, Yasser Arafat, at a time when such contacts were the third rail in US politics. He was also outspokenly critical of Israeli attacks on Lebanon.

A new book offers backing to Dean’s claim. But while that book has been highly-publicized, the question of whether Israel attacked our ambassador has gotten no attention in the press. That is not a surprise; for Dean has asserted that the case itself was never thoroughly investigated by the U.S. government. […]

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