According to an article in Haaretz, secret funding from the CIA was channeled by American trade unions to Israel's labor federation to finance, among other things, the posting of Mossad agents in African states.
In August 2009, Haaretz had an article entitled: Israeli arms dealers join Lieberman's entourage to Africa.
On 14 september 2009, there was a news story entitled: Israel eyes big arms sales in Africa
Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has recently visited Ethiopia, Kenya, Nigeria, Ghana and Uganda.
According to an 'Israeli intelligence specialist', this is about building up intelligence links and selling arms.
Israeli officials are hoping for African arms contracts worth hundreds of millions of dollars.
Yossi Melman, an expert on Israel's security services, wrote in Haaretz that the "less publicized" aspect of the tour was boosting "defense exports," such as the arms deals worth $500 million that Israel has signed with Nigeria in recent years.
Melman wrote that an "even more secretive" goal was "the hope of developing intelligence ties and cooperation in the effort against ...Iran..."
Israeli intelligence has operated in Africa for many years.
Israelis have been active in training Africa armies, with weapons sold by Israel.
Melman wrote: "Secret funding from the United States Central Intelligence Agency was channeled by American trade unions to (Israel's) Histadrut labor federation …to finance various activities.
"Among other things, the money was used to post an impressive array of Mossad agents in the African states."
These activities, Melman wrote, "gave Mossad agents and Israeli Defense Forces officers an excuse to be involved in the internal affairs of African regimes."
Israelis were reportedly involved in military coups in Uganda and Zanzibar.
Israeli agents operate in countries such as Ethiopia, Kenya and Sudan.
Ethiopia and Sudan control the Red Sea shipping lanes to Eilat.
Taken by w:he:משתמש:אברהם אמיר in 1965
The Israelis have close intelligence links with Ethiopia, which is currently propping up the government in Somalia.
Melman wrote: "It is a sad truth that … almost all Israeli activity on the African continent is related to weapons exports.
"The 'ugly Israeli' in the guise of the arms dealer (mostly former intelligence and military officials), who promotes weapons sales on behalf of Israeli military industries, with the backing of the defense establishment, has given Israel a bad name worldwide.
"Israelis have been involved in civil wars (in Angola, Liberia, Sierra Leone and the Ivory Coast) and in aiding dictatorial regimes such as in Equatorial Guinea and the two Congo republics."