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From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Arther Miller) Newsgroups: alt.politics.org.cia,alt.politics.org.fbi,alt.politics.media,alt.politics.usa Subject: FlashBack: ISRAEL'S NUCLEAR PRISONER OF CONSCIENCE Date: 29 Jun 2003 20:41:44 -0700 Organization: http://groups.google.com/ Message-ID: <email@example.com> NNTP-Posting-Host: 184.108.40.206 NNTP-Posting-Date: 30 Jun 2003 03:41:45 GMT _______ ____ ______ / |/ / /___/ / /_ // M I D - E A S T R E A L I T I E S / /|_/ / /_/_ / /\\ Making Sense of the Middle East /_/ /_/ /___/ /_/ \\ www.MiddleEast.Org ISRAEL'S WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION AND THE NUCLEAR PRISONER OF CONSCIENCE __________________________________________________________________ News, Information, & Analysis That Governments, Interest Groups, and the Corporate Media Don't Want You To Know. TO RECEIVE MER REGULARLY EMAIL TO: INFOMER@MiddleEast.Org ------------------------------------------------------------------- MORDECHAI VANUNU - ISRAEL'S NUCLEAR PRISONER OF CONSCIENCE MER - Washington - 20 March 1998: While the Americans force disarmament on Iraq -- with sponsored client-regimes controlling the region while boycotts and embargoes are used to constrain all who refuse to submit -- Israel remains the regional Goliath. Indeed, Israeli military power is said to be more than 7 times greater than all of the Arab armies combined; and that's before the ever-present backup of the American superpower! Of course it is precisely Israel's super weapons of mass destruction that are at issue. No country has violated more U.N. resolutions, defied the international community, and refused to sign international treaties and allow international inspection than Israel. American hypocrisy and duplicity are overwhelmingly obvious After 12 years Mordechai Vanunu remains imprisoned in Israel after being internationally seduced and kidnapped by the Mossad. The fact that he is no longer held totally in solitary confinement is positive, but only a very small victory in the struggle to free Vanunu. It was back in 1986 that Vanunu first told the world about Israel's then secret arsenal of nuclear weapons. In the article below, Peter Hounam of THE SUNDAY TIMES in London, recalls what happened. ********************************************************************** Last year, MER-TV made a series of programs specifically about Mordechai Vanunu. These programs show the yearly Vanunu demonstration at the Israeli Embassy for Vanunu, scenes from a BBC documentary about Vanunu, and exclusive interviews with the leaders of the free Vanunu movement in the U.S., Europe and Israel. For information how to obtain these videos: http://www.MiddleEast.org/vanunu.htm or Email to INFOCURRENT@MiddleEast.org ********************************************************************** London Sunday Times - March 15, 1998 Peter Hounam recalls how and why Vanunu broke the story to him WHISTLEBLOWER WITH A CONSCIENCE THE tragedy of Mordechai Vanunu began on the other side of the world, when he made the fateful decision to disclose details of his country's clandestine nuclear program. Shaking with trepidation, he recounted to me how he had worked in Israel's most secret military establishment, making nuclear warheads in an underground factory. The account suggested that Israel had become the world's sixth biggest nuclear power. But was it true? Exhaustive checks confirmed that Mordechai was a classic dissident - motivated partly by dissatisfaction with the way he had been dismissed from his job, but mostly by a conviction that his country had taken an insane course. He eventually paid a terrible penalty for warning the world but, even today, his correspondence shows he is unrepentant. He firmly denies that he was a spy or a traitor. "The truth is important," he told me in a recent letter. "I will not let them change my mind." As the facts unfolded in our initial conversations, it grew easier to comprehend Mordechai's decision to become a whistleblower. He said he would have understood if, back in the 1960s, his country had decided it needed a small number of atomic bombs - perhaps half a dozen to deter the hostile Arab states on its borders. Instead, it established a nuclear plant near Dimona in the Negev desert including a state-of-the-art, French-supplied plutonium separation plant in a building that extended six floors underground. Here the weapons-grade material for making bombs was chemically separated from the fuel rods of a nearby reactor. As he was often in charge of supervising this immense and complex process, it was evident to him that its purpose was to build several hundred warheads. Over and over again, he said to me: "Why do they want all these bombs. Are they planning to fight with them and destroy the Middle East?" During his shifts, Mordechai pondered these issues, pacing the floor of a control room with instrument panels stretching 30 yards. He was often alone. During quiet periods in the dead of night he explored other floors and found rooms in which the plutonium was machined into bomb parts. He knew this meant Israel had taken the ultimate step. It was making thermonuclear weapons capable of destroying a city. On October 5, 1986, Mordechai's testimony was published in The Sunday Times across pages one, two and three, with the headline "Revealed: the secrets of Israel's nuclear arsenal". Israel immediately adopted a posture of no comment, as did France. The United States, Israel's ally, came under hard questioning from a number of Arab states, but Mordechai's reaction was impossible to gauge. He saw The Sunday Times article while manacled in an Israeli cell, following a calamitous error of judgment on his part. One day, while walking in London, he had met an American tourist called "Cindy". Five days before the story was published, she persuaded him to fly to Italy. He realised she was a Mossad agent only when he entered a flat in Rome and was thrown to the floor by two men. They chained him up and he was injected with a sedative. Several days later he was "home" in Israel. Within weeks, he had been charged with "helping the enemy" and espionage, and branded his country's worst-ever traitor. It was this cataclysmic development that put him on the front pages of newspapers around the world and prompted a campaign by a small but dogged group of supporters to secure his release. The news that the nightmare of his solitary confinement had ended brought the first glimmer of hope that he may soon be a free man. Israel, however, must be concerned about how he will react on his release, and what further light this might shed on the nuclear issue. The Dimona plant is still functioning, with the capacity to produce scores of nuclear weapons every year. Unlike Iraq, Israel seems immune from any sanctions or even pressure. Mordechai's letters make it clear he will not be silenced until this issue is resolved. __________________________________________________________________ MID-EAST REALITIES is published a number of times weekly and the MERTV Program shows weekly on Cable TV. M I D - E A S T R E A L I T I E S (c) Copyright 1998 MER may be freely distributed by email and on the Internet so long as there is no editing of any kind. For any print publication, permission in writing is required. MER@MiddleEast.Org / Fax: 202 362-6965 / Phone: 202 362-5266 =++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
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