21 April 2004

Guess Whose Knows Where the Real WMD Is?

An open memo to G.W. Bush:

"Mr. President,
I know where you can find a scary WMD program that represents a clear and present danger to global safety and security. For details, please call Ariel Sharon..."

This morning on BBC News, I saw the story of Mordechai Vanunu who was released from an Israeli prison today. Mr. Vanunu spent nearly 18 years in prison, 11 of those in solitary confinement, for espionage and treason. His crime? He dared to tell the world about Israel's highly secretive (and potentially illegal) nuclear weapons program.

Although he has been released from jail, Mordechai Vanunu remains a prisoner, the Israeli government has forbidden him to travel outside of the country. He is also forbidden to have contact or correspondence with foreigners. Their official position is that Vanunu continues to be a danger to the safety and security of Israel.

Reading this. you're probably wondering which of Israel's blood-thirsty, Islamic extremist, Jihadist enemies did Vanunu sell the information to: Hamas? Al-Qaeda? Would you believe it was London's Sunday Times newspaper?

He gave an interview to the Sunday Times in 1986 about his work at Israel's Dimona nuclear plant. Based on information in the resulting story, analysts concluded that Israel most likely possessed a considerable nuclear arsenal.

Israel has steadfastly maintained a front of "strategic ambiguity" regarding its WMD stores. They have also refused to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, as that would them to present Dlmona (and any similar facilities) for international inspection and scrutiny. Israel famously assured the world: "we will not be the first to introduce nuclear weapons into the Middle East". How misleading.

The really interesting thing about the whole Vanunu-Dimona affair is the fact that by United States law, our government is prohibited from supporting states which engage in proliferation. Calculations based on Vanunu's information revealed that by 1985 Israel was capable of producing up to 12 nuclear warheads a year. Regardless of law, Israel continues to be the number one recipient of US foreign aid- over $91 billon to date, while they continue to accumulate warheads.

Isn't it interesting that "G.W. & Co." have placed over 130,000 U.S. troops in Iraq to hunt for alleged WMD, when we've had hard proof of Israel's stockpile for 16 years? Anyone remember 1981, when the Israeli Air Force flew a "preemptive" strike against Iraq's breeder reactor at Osirak? Most interesting indeed.

Israel is right to fear Vanunu. The U.S. should fear him as well. Why? Because he speaks the truth...


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