18 March 2016 Current Affairs: Meir Dagan, former Chief of Israel’s intelligence agency Mossad, passed away on 17 March 2016 due to cancer. He was 71.Dagan served as Director of the Mossad from 2002 until his retirement in 2011.Meir Dagan born on 30 January 1945, Dagan was recruited into the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) in 1963.In the early 1970s, he commanded an ad hoc undercover commando unit, known as Sayeret Rimon, whose task was to combat the increasing violence in the Palestinian territories. In 1971, he received a Medal of Courage for tackling a wanted terrorist who was holding a live grenade.During the 1982 Lebanon War, he commanded the Barak Armored Brigade, and was one of the first brigade commanders to enter Beirut.In the 1990s, he held a series of high-level positions in the IDF command, eventually reaching the rank of Major General. He retired from the army in 1995.Later, he served as a counterterrorism adviser to Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.He also initially served as a National Security Adviser to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, who appointed him Director-General of Mossad in August 2002.As Mossad director, he was responsible for intelligence, counter-intelligence, and counter-terrorism activities outside of Israel and the Palestinian Territories.Under his watch, Mossad tripled its recruitment efforts, launching a website where people can apply to join.Mossad is the national intelligence agency of Israel.It is one of the main entities in the Israeli Intelligence Community, along with Aman (military intelligence) and Shin Bet (internal security).Mossad is responsible for intelligence collection, covert operations, and counterterrorism.It is also responsible for bringing Jews to Israel from countries where official Aliyah (immigration of Jews from the Diaspora to the Land of Israel) agencies are forbidden, and protecting Jewish communities.
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