T Nation

U.S. Says Israel Must Give Up Nukes

Rather than post on the “bad news” this week of the intelligence report on WMD’s – I will actually give props to the Bush gang if they’re at all serious about this.

I haven’t seen any other news other than from this Israeli news source, but let me be the first to say - Holy Shit!

The revelation is not just that the US asked them to give them up but that they even acknowledged their existence at all in a definitive tone. Israel has never confirmed or denied they had nuclear weapons but it’s pretty much been an “open secret” that they have quite the arsenal.

We’ll see how much pressure we actually apply because it sounds a little wishy-washy but for now I’ll say it’s a step in the right direction. Judging by this news it may be true that there is a rift forming between the US and Israel because this is a pretty big deal.

Bout freakin’ time.

U.S. says Israel must give up nukes
By Amir Oren
HAARETZ
03/04/2005

The State Department yesterday called on Israel to forswear nuclear weapons and accept international Atomic Energy Agency safeguards on all nuclear activities.

This is the second time in about two weeks that officials in the Bush administration are putting the nuclear weapons of Israel, India and Pakistan on a par.

The officials called on the three to act like Ukraine and South Africa, which in the last decade renounced their nuclear weapons.

The similar phrasing used by the officials refers to Israel’s military nuclear capability, as distinct from “nuclear option,” which is to be rolled back, although not necessarily in the “foreseeable future.”

The rare use of these terms contradicts the custom of senior administration officials to avoid any possible confirming reference to Israeli nuclear weapons.

The officials, who hold middle-level and lower ranks, are Jackie Wolcott Sanders, ambassador, Conference on Disarmament and special representative of the president for the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons, and Mark Fitzpatrick, acting deputy assistant secretary for nonproliferation.

Sanders was quoted yesterday in the State Department’s Electronic Journal, published ahead of the Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT) review conference scheduled in New York at the beginning of May.

Fitzpatrick spoke on March 17 at a security conference of the Organization of American States (OAS).

On March 7 President George Bush called for a strengthening of the NPT regime and thwarting the efforts of rogue states and terrorists to obtain weapons of mass destruction. Bush devoted his statement to enforcing NPT clauses on treaty regime members (like North Korea and Iran) and ignored non-member states (India, Pakistan, Israel and Cuba).

In the past six years, since the Wye conference in 1998, presidents Clinton and Bush repeatedly promised then prime ministers Benjamin Netanyahu and Ehud Barak and also Ariel Sharon that Israel’s strategic capability to protect itself will not be harmed.

Israeli experts on Bush’s nuclear policy say that the president is focusing on objecting to the nuclear process of North Korea and Iran, and even approves aid to India - in nuclear energy among other things - and to Pakistan (selling F-16 planes), while far lower ranks abound with verbal formulas to excuse the withdrawal of the NPT regime during the Bush era.

Sanders and Fitzpatrick refrained from calling on Israel, India and Pakistan explicitly to renounce their weapons. The expectation of these three states was phrased in terms of a vow - a verbal pledge to forswear, rather than real action. Nor was this demand accompanied by a time table, conditions and sanctions.

An official known for his sympathy for Israel, Robert Joseph, has been nominated undersecretary of state for arms control and international security, and has been serving in a similar position on the staff of the National Security Council. His predecessor in the post is UN ambassador-designate John Bolton, also known for his sympathy for Israel.

Sanders and Fitzpatrick hold more junior ranks in the administration.

In her statement yesterday Sanders said: “The Conference should also reinforce the goal of universal NPT adherence and reaffirm that India, Israel and Pakistan may join the NPT only as non-nuclear-weapon states. Just as South Africa and Ukraine did in the early 1990s, these states should forswear nuclear weapons and accept IAEA safeguards on all nuclear activities to join the treaty. At the same time, we recognize that progress toward universal adherence is not likely in the foreseeable future. The United States continues to support the goals of the Middle East resolution adopted at the 1995 NPT Review and Extension Conference, including the achievement of a Middle East free of weapons of mass destruction.”

According to the Israeli experts, the American administration does not want to expand nuclear proliferation to additional states in the region and agrees that in time it would be preferable to have the Middle East nuclear free, but disagrees with the immediate adoption of a policy which would prevent American forces like the Sixth Fleet ships and airplanes from carrying nuclear warheads in bombs and missiles as well.

This is the seventh time that the Review Conference is convening, to mark the 35th year of the NPT’s establishment. The conference, held every five years, will end at the end of May, shortly before the IAEA governing council meets in Vienna in June to elect a director general. The U.S. has not decided yet whether to support incumbent IAEA Director General, Mohammed ElBaradei for another term.
http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/objects/pages/PrintArticleEn.jhtml?itemNo=560047

What incentive does Israel have for giving up anything in their arsenal? Not exactly conducive to their survival as a nation…

As we try to strengthen ties to the Arab world, it makes sense to ask Israel to do this.

We do not need Israel setting off a nuke in a Saudi oil field and screwing up oil production!

It may be a bit naive to expect them to comply.

Yeah, that’s a good point…we wouldn’t want our oil supply compromised just for the sake of an allies security…

It doesn’t hurt to ask but I don’t think they would ever give them up.

They will never rely on any one country for their security. Not even us. Most US presidents would defend them. Who knows what the future holds.

I don’t think we would ask Iran to give them up if they were not so radical, anti-US and an official state sponsor of terrorism. I think Israel has restraint and judgement. Their likely opponents have anger and a determination to destroy them.

I think Israel’s nuclear arsenal and powerful military is its only practical deterrent to the many forces that wish it dead. I support Israel and would never want it weakened-- I agree that they show restraint and should be considered differently.

Hmm, perhaps an opening move in an interesting chess game involving Iran and North Korea?

Gather up your pieces, this could be some of the most interesting maneuvering we’ll see in our lifetime, at least if it is part of the ongoing strategy we’ve seen unrolling so far.

AT LEAST AT THIS POINT

This seems more like public posturing…much like we did publically when the Dimona Nuclear facility was being built in the Negev desert…

Rest assured that Thermonuclear devices will be lying in-wait beneath the Negev Desert for when, (and if) they are needed…

Mufasa

Correction…

This IS public posturing…

Mufasa

FYI - We gave the nukes to them and we alone can keep them safe with our own nukes that stationed in submarines and on planes at bases in the region.

The other incentive is the $10+ billion per year given to Israel from United States in assistance.

This will do nothing to relieve nuclear tensions in the region as the US has a very heavy presence and we are armed to the teeth with everything imaginable.

Erm I dunno about this for sure but I was fairly certain the US gave the Israelis their nukes??

Also why does every country have to give up Nukes if the US themselves do not? What gives them the World Authority?

[quote]ConorM wrote:
Erm I dunno about this for sure but I was fairly certain the US gave the Israelis their nukes??

Also why does every country have to give up Nukes if the US themselves do not? What gives them the World Authority?[/quote]

Thank god the irish are chiming in. Shall we discuss ireland?

[quote]ConorM wrote:
Erm I dunno about this for sure but I was fairly certain the US gave the Israelis their nukes??

Also why does every country have to give up Nukes if the US themselves do not? What gives them the World Authority?[/quote]

And you think your country was anything more than a front in that transaction?

Yes, let’s discount opinions because of geography. That’s the intelligent thing to do!

[quote]vroom wrote:
Yes, let’s discount opinions because of geography. That’s the intelligent thing to do![/quote]

OK, I will now discout all of your opinions because you are Canadian. Wait, too late!

The Israelis developed a nuclear weapons program of their own, much like the South Africans. Though we certainly helped them along. Read Seymour Hersh’s “The Samson Option” if you get a chance. And yeah, no way they give it up.

Come on guys, Jews pretty much developed the Nuclear program for the US and then moved to Israel (Unfortunately, they also gave the secrets to the Russians).

Israel developed its own Nuclear program - I proudly served in the Israeli Defence Forces and can understand how Americans think anything outside of the USA is inferior – this is called patriotism. I wish Canada had more…

Ok so I post some opinions and they aren’t valid because I am irish. Americans think the world begins and ends at their borders, no you are not ‘right’ about everything. You wonder why other countries hate you, well its for reasons such as this. Half you guys claim to be friggin Irish, yet you are hated here.

You guys are all for the war, ignoring the fact you were decieved by a shameful government. The arguments being mainly that it was ‘humanitarian intervention’ or something in that ilk. SO it was ok to be deceived? And surely the ‘intervention’ was nonsensical being that the main human rights violations in Iraq where against the Kurds in 88 and after the Gulf war and not ongoing.

Don’t try to belittle me, or people from other nations, all it does is make your own opinion less valid.

Bah, if you aren’t simply kidding, you are a retard.

[quote]Marmadogg wrote:
FYI - We gave the nukes to them and we alone can keep them safe with our own nukes that stationed in submarines and on planes at bases in the region.

The other incentive is the $10+ billion per year given to Israel from United States in assistance.

This will do nothing to relieve nuclear tensions in the region as the US has a very heavy presence and we are armed to the teeth with everything imaginable.[/quote]

Marmadogg - We didn’t give Israel nuclear weapons - only the means of delivery. As far as relieving nuclear tensions it will somewhat just because all of Europe considers Israel to be a bigger threat to world peace than any other country - including North Korea. Not something the average American citizen knows about our “greatest ally”.

Side note:
Selling US Weapons To China
22 July 1998

Israel has illegally re-exported advanced US defense technology to China. The problem was first recognized in 1992 when the State Department’s inspector general reported that there was “overwhelming” evidence of a “systematic and growing pattern” of transfers. Israel has been the primary supplier of advanced defense technology to China since 1989. China has received technologies from Israel that the United States and other Western countries have not been willing to supply. Known transfers of technology include the Lavi fighter, the J-10 airborne radar systems, tank programs, variety of missiles, STAR-1 cruise missile technology, and the most lethal air-to-air Python-4 missile. It is also suspected that Israel has provided China with surface-to-air missile technology. These transfers are a direct violation of the Arms Export Control Act.
http://www.nti.org/db/missile/1998/m9808627.htm

US ‘anger’ at Israel weapons sale
BBC
Dec 16, 2004

The Israeli defence ministry has confirmed that it faced questioning by Washington over arms sales to China. (again)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/4101961.stm

It’s always good to know our “greatest ally” sells our weapons technology to China - could you imagine the reaction if the French did that!? Oui… Bill O’Reilly and the rest of the gang would flip their beanies and this would be the top news story for the next 6 months.

As far as money and weapons go, 30% of ALL U.S. foreign aid goes to Israel - a country the size of New Jersey - and the sixteenth wealthiest country in the world. (BTW, China says thanks.)

Some would argue they need the protection from neighboring countries - that may be partially true but for one - they bring a lot of that on themselves. You can’t unlawfully occupy, build and expand on territory (for 40 years) that isn’t yours and not expect repercussions.

A brief rundown of Israel’s capabilities can be found here:

Israeli nuclear forces, 2002
By Robert S. Norris, William Arkin, Hans M.
2002 Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

It is Israeli policy to neither confirm nor deny that it possesses nuclear weapons, although it is generally accepted by friend and foe alike that Israel has been a nuclear state for several decades. Its declaratory policy states: “Israel will not be the first country to introduce nuclear weapons in the Middle East,” but its actual deployment and employment policies are secret. A January 2001 Pentagon report, Proliferation: Threat and Responses, omits Israel from its review of the Middle East, but a 1991 U.S. Strategic Air Command study lists Israel, India, and Pakistan as “de facto” nuclear weapon states. Estimates of the Israeli nuclear arsenal range from 75-200 weapons, comprising bombs, missile warheads, and possibly non-strategic (tactical) weapons.