The police helicopters have been droning overhead for a couple of days here in Washington DC, as scores of world leaders sit with Pres. Obama at the ‘Nuclear Security Summit’.
(But not Netanyahu. We’ll come back to him later.)
This morning I was having a meeting with a prominent former U.S. diplomatist who recalled how, back in the first months of the GWB administration, Secdef Rumsfeld had been making a huge issue out of the need for ballistic missile defense, convening summits and the like.
“But then,” my friend said, “it turned out that a bunch of Saudis had discovered that an airplane full of fuel could be even more deadly than a ballistic missile– especially if it had a guidance system as sophisticated as that provided by the human mind… It’s the same thing today. They’re all barking up this nuclear security tree, when there are so many other potentially very lethal materials lying around.”
Oh well. I guess Obama and his people have been trying to make a point… including by convening this gathering to which everyone except Iran, Syria, and North Korea gets invited.
But actually, isn’t that rather a childish “point” to seek to make? “We’ve got more friends than you have! Nanny-nanny-boo-boo!”
… Well, and then speaking of potentially very dangerous actors on the world scene who might one day get hold of the ingredients for nuclear weapons, there is of course Israel.
Oops! My silly mistake! Israel of course already has an advanced nuclear arsenal that may well be one of the three most deadly on the planet.
Just a couple of days ago, I blogged here that, just as the ‘elephant’ of the undue influence that dedicated pro-Israeli political appointees have long had on the making of U.S. Mideast policy is now coming ponderously out of the room of silence in which it was previously caged, then surely it must be time that that other big ‘elephant’ of which no-one in U.S. polite company like to speak– the fact of Israel’s own massive nuclear arsenal– should also be brought into the light of day.
Little did I know that that very evening, veteran Israeli commentator Yaron London was putting finishing touches to an op-ed in which he made exactly that same argument. (English translation here, thanks to Didi Remez.)
London was writing that it is time for Israel to end its long-pursued policy of “nuclear ambiguity”:
- Who are those interested in maintaining the ambiguity? The United States, with which, according to foreign sources, we have reached an agreement that it keep its wide eyes shut, and the Arab countries, which are unenthusiastic about getting drawn into a nuclear arms race.
But the value of ambiguity has long since passed. Iran is certain to become nuclear, or will perhaps be stopped “half an inch before tightening the screws” from actually getting the bomb. The argument that Iran should not be denied a nuclear weapons so long as this is not being denied from Israel — if we are to believe foreign sources — has found a receptive international audience.
…The age of nuclear ambiguity is coming to an end and it will be followed by an age of open debate. It is time that more people be allowed to take part in the debate which is most critical to our very existence.
One source that London linked to was this news report in Yediot Aharonot on April 10, which quoted a recent Jane’s report on the topic in these terms:
- the Israeli strategic force could be deployed by the Jericho 2 missile, which has a range of up to 4,500 kilometers (2,800 miles), or the five-year-old Jericho 3, which reaches up to 7,800 kilometers.
It is also believed to be able to deploy by air, using F-16 fighter jets, and even by sea through its submarine fleet, providing an opportunity for a second strike if its land systems are attacked.
Israel acquired three diesel-powered Dolphin-class submarines in 1999-2000 which are capable of launching adapted Harpoon cruise missiles fitted with nuclear warheads.
In addition, Jane’s says some observers believe Jerusalem has developed tactical nuclear weapons such as landmines and artillery shells.
Oh, and then I can’t help but juxtapose that sobering report with the photo in this news report today from Maan News in Bethlehem.
The report starts:
- Israel’s military said the bodies of two “heavily armed” Islamic Jihad operatives were found in the Gaza Strip late Tuesday, hours after they were killed in clashes near the Al-Bureij refugee camp…
Okay, so the IOF had apparently gone into the Gaza Strip after killing these two guys (and maybe beforehand, as well, in order to kill them?) But anyway, the photo, which was provided by the Israeli military, shows the “heavy armaments” it said it found on their bodies.
Of course, there is absolutely no way of verifying that the men were ever armed with these items, which seem from the photo to include only two folding-stock Klashen’s, eight Klashen bullet-magazines, and some other unidentifiable objects. We have to take IOF’s ‘say-so’ on this.
But even if they were carrying these weapons– let’s think about the armaments the IOF invasion force no doubt had at its command!
What, no pictures of those items?
And then, not far away, is the nuclear facility in Dimona…
How much longer do Israelis think that westerners will continue getting taken in by all their extremely dishonest arguments? Do they think we’re all idiots?