Catherine Perez-Shakdam

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"independent journalist"
Person.png Catherine Perez-Shakdam   TwitterRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
Cathrine Shakdam.png
NationalityFrench, Israeli?
Alma materUniversity of London
Member ofAmerican Herald Tribune, Henry Jackson Society, MintPress News
A suspected Israeli spy who infiltrated Iran under journalistic cover. To create a legend, she got herself hired by among others the independent media outlets MintPress News and American Herald Tribune.

Catherine Perez-Shakdam is a suspected Israeli spy who infiltrated Iran under journalistic cover. To create a legend, she got herself hired by among others the independent media outlets MintPress News and American Herald Tribune. Perez-Shakdam denies she preformed any intelligence work.[1]


Shakdam was born into a secular Jewish family in France.[2] She has a bachelor's degree in Psychology and two Master's degrees in finance and communications from University of London. During her studies at University of London she met a Muslim man from Yemen and later converted to Sunni Islam during their marriage. She later became a Shia Muslim and wrote several books and many articles about Shia Islam. She divorced from her husband in 2014 and has custody of her two children. For her professional life, she had hidden her Jewish origins. [3]


Prior to becoming a full time journalist, she worked for Wikistrat, an Israeli semi-private intelligence company for seven years.[4]Although technically a private company, its upper ranks are filled with former Israeli government intelligence officers connected to Unit 8200.[5]

In 2017, Wikistrat co-founder Joel Zamel met with the Trump administration and members of the Saudi government for a series of meetings to, create a "multi-pronged strategy for eroding, and eventually ending, the current Iranian regime—including economic, information, and military tactics for weakening the Tehran government."[6]


In her professional life, she wrote articles denouncing Israeli and Saudi crimes, and supporting armed Palestinian[7] resistance and the Iranian government. She also became a frequent contributor to independent media outlets like American Herald Tribune and MintPress News, something that likely bolstered her anti-imperialist credibility.[1]

MintPress founder and CEO Mnar Adley said:

Just finding out that she could be an Israeli spy made me feel violated because I feel like she used MintPress as a means to get through to people who are sympathetic with Iranians and others who have been victims of U.S. sanctions and constant threats of war…It’s pretty disturbing. Like, who can you trust?”
I believe she used her experience working with MintPress to give herself clout in infiltrating the anti-war movement and to get close to people who are sympathetic with resistance movements in the Middle East. I do feel confident that she is a spy.[1]

By 2017, she had managed to use her work in the independent press into becoming an important player in Iranian media, and was welcomed into the highest echelons of Iranian society. That year, she was granted special access to travel with presidential candidate Ebrahim Raisi, following him on the campaign trail and recording an exclusive TV interview with him. Raisi, already a powerful figure, would lose the election, but would later win the presidency in 2021. Perhaps most notably, however, she became a regular writer for, the official website of Iran’s supreme leader.[8]


Perez-Shakdam revealed her true identity in a series of articles published in The Times of Israel, detailing how she was able to "walk right into the belly of the Beast" – i.e. Tehran. "Keen to be let in, I neither argued nor revealed my true motivations. I realized pretty early on that if I was to witness first-hand what it is that the region is really about I’d better blend in and listen," she wrote.[9]

Alan Macleod, editor of MintPress News, told how "MintPress spoke with a number of sources close to Perez-Shakdam. One said that she approached them, offering them life-changing money in a deal that seemed too good to be true. The source claims Perez-Shakdam offered them thousands of dollars per month in exchange for going to certain precise urban Middle Eastern locations and providing her with photographs and videos of the area, the buildings and the surrounds. Perez-Shakdam supposedly indicated that the money for this was coming from the U.S".[1]


In summer of 2022, Perez-Shakdam was appointed a fellow at the deep state Henry Jackson Society[10][11]

Her Wikipedia page was created in March 2022[12]. There is a theoretical possibility she might have had Wikipedia page before, that might have been censored and deleted when the Wiki-editors were under the impression she was an independent journalist.