Will the Nuclear Powers Please Stand Up?
This week, U.S. political statements and media reports about which
countries possess nuclear weapons have commonly ignored or downplayed Israel's
nuclear weapons capacity. But exclusion of Israel from the list of countries
with nuclear weaponry is inaccurate.
In the interest of accuracy, asking
the Israeli and U.S. governments about the existence of an Israeli nuclear
arsenal would be appropriate for diplomats and journalists.
Prize winner Mairead Corrigan Maguire told the Institute for Public Accuracy
today that it was crucial for Israel and the U.S. to come clean about Israel's
nuclear weapons capacity. She referred to the Israeli whistleblower Mordechai
Vanunu, who in 1986 made public detailed
information on Israel's nuclear weapons capacity via the Sunday Times of London
and was then imprisoned by the Israeli government for 18 years for doing
MAIREAD CORRIGAN MAGUIRE
Nobel Peace Prize
recipient Maguire said today: "I went to Israel in September and attended the
hearings on the continuing restrictions on Mordechai. One of the arguments put
forward was that he has secrets on nuclear weapons which impact the national
security of Israel. Mordechai is not allowed to speak to foreigners or the media
and is restricted to a small area. He has no secrets after 20 years because the
whole world knows that Israel has nuclear weapons.
"The debate about
Israel having nuclear weapons needs to be brought into the Israeli and
international arena -- Israel and the U.S. should acknowledge that Israel has
nuclear weapons and it should sign the Non-Proliferation Treaty. And of course,
we should come clean that the arms race is being led by the U.S. and U.K. The
U.S. should ratify the comprehensive test ban treaty so we can get out of this
nuclear depravity." Maguire founded the Northern Ireland Peace Movement, which
is now known as Community of Peace People.
GERSONAuthor of the forthcoming book
Empire and the Bomb: How the United States Uses Nuclear Weapons to Dominate
the World and With Hiroshima Eyes: Atomic War, Nuclear Extortion, and
Moral Imagination, Gerson said today: "The U.S. government is threatening
nuclear attacks -- against seven countries as per the Bush Nuclear Posture
Review -- while providing military support to Israel, India, and Pakistan -- all
of which developed nuclear weapons outside of the NPT framework.
now widely known, with French assistance following their disastrous 1956
invasion of Egypt, Israel has developed a nuclear arsenal which is estimated to
contain between 200 and 400 of these weapons. Although President Kennedy
attempted to challenge Israel's efforts to build the A-bomb, since the Johnson
years successive U.S. presidents have turned blind eyes to the arsenal whose
existence the Israeli government refuses to confirm or deny. ...
addition to addressing the underlying causes of conflict and tension in the
Middle East, the surest ways to ensure that these conflicts do not spark nuclear
catastrophe is to build on diplomatic proposals to create a Middle East Nuclear
Weapons Free Zone. Such zones exist in Africa, Latin America, Southeast Asia,
the South Pacific and now Central Asia. The refusal of the U.S. and other
nuclear weapons states to honor their Article VI commitment under the Nuclear
Non-Proliferation Treaty to negotiate the elimination of their nuclear arsenals
and the legacies of U.S. nuclear blackmail remain the two greatest forces
driving nuclear weapons proliferation today." Gerson is Director of Programs of
the American Friends Service Committee in New England.
The U.S. government has apparently
never acknowledged Israel's arsenal.
The Director of National
Intelligence, John Negroponte, was recently asked by Sam Husseini of the
Institute for Public Accuracy, "Do you know that Israel has nuclear weapons?"
Negroponte replied "I don't want to get into a discussion about Israel's nuclear
VideoWhen he was
White House press secretary, Ari Fleischer was asked "Does Israel have nuclear
weapons?" He replied: "That's a question you need to ask to
reported on Sept. 22: "More than a dozen Arab countries were blocked by a
Canadian motion in their bid to have a vote on a resolution labelling Israel's
nuclear capabilities a threat on the final day of the International Atomic
Energy Agency's annual meeting."
more information, contact at the Institute for Public
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020; or David Zupan, (541)
... Payvand News - 10/13/06 ... --