WASHINGTON - A newly published National Security Agency (NSA) document obtained by Edward Snowden, a former CIA employee who was granted asylum in Russia, states that Israel was singled out in 2007 as top spy threat against the US government.

Mass circulation American weekly magazine, Newsweek, reports the NSA’s 2007 Strategic Mission List also identified Israel, India, North Korea and Cuba as threats to the US banking and financial infrastructure.

The threats were listed in the NSA’s 2007 Strategic Mission List, according to the document obtained by journalist/activist Glenn Greenwald, a founding editor of The Intercept, an online magazine that has a close relationship with Snowdenn.

Israel was identified in the document as being a threat of developing weapons of mass destruction and delivery methods of missiles.

Part of the document headed “Foreign Intelligence, Counterintelligence; Denial & Deception Activities: Countering Foreign Intelligence Threats,” lists Israel as a leading culprit of “espionage/intelligence collection operations and manipulation/influence operations…against US government, military, science & technology and Intelligence Community” structures.

The term “manipulation/influence operations” denotes clandestine attempts by Israel to sway US public opinion in its favour. A previously released Snowden document revealed that a US National Intelligence Estimate ranked Israel as third in aggressive intelligence service against the United States  behind China and Russia.

In a series of articles last May, Newsweek reported that “Israel has been caught carrying out aggressive espionage operations against American targets for decades,” an allegation denied by Israeli officials, who insisted that Jerusalem stopped spying on the US after the late 1980s arrest and conviction of its secret agent Jonathan Pollard, a US Naval Intelligence analyst.

Over the weekend, the German magazine Der Spiegel reported that Israel eavesdropped on Secretary of State John Kerry’s cellphone conversations during Middle East peace talks in 2013. (According to a July 20, 2014, piece in The New Republic, “The Kerry team spoke more carefully over cell phones, believing the Israelis might be listening.”)

The State Department had no comment on the Der Spiegel allegations.

Washington’s protective relationship toward Israel is heavily influenced by its close cooperation in intelligence operations against common Middle Eastern threats, such as Iran, Syria, terrorist groups and the Palestinians, tghe magazine said.

Citing NSA documents, Greenwald’s piece in The Intercept says, “The relationship has, on at least one occasion, entailed the covert payment of a large amount of cash to Israeli operatives.” The NSA and its British counterpart also “rely on US-supported Arab regimes, including the Jordanian monarchy and even the Palestinian Authority Security Forces, to provide vital spying services regarding Palestinian targets.

 “Over the last decade,” Greenwald added, “the NSA has significantly increased the surveillance assistance it provides to its Israeli counterpart, the Israeli SIGINT National Unit (ISNU; also known as Unit 8200), including data used to monitor and target Palestinians. In many cases, the NSA and ISNU work cooperatively with the British and Canadian spy agencies, the GCHQ and CSEC.”