Your email is not valid
Recipient's email is not valid
Submit Close

Your email has been sent.

Click here to send another


The Israeli Nuclear Issue

Some want ‘ambiguity’ cleared up

Print Email

Since May, Israel’s strategic “nuclear ambiguity”—under which it has not signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, has never publicly tested weapons, and yet is widely known to have nuclear bombs—has come under scrutiny in light of a 1990s U.N. resolution declaring the Mideast to be a nukes-free zone as well as the recent attempts to sway Iran from its path toward nuclear capability.

The little-noticed catch is that a March document signed by NPT signatories—including the United States—urged, in one paragraph buried amid many, that Israel become a signatory as well (which would in turn compel it to give up its weapons).

“Israel believed it had assurances from the Obama administration that it would reject efforts to include such a reference,” the New York Times’s Mark Landler wrote last weekend, “and it saw this as another sign of unreliability by its most important ally.”

Landler continued

In addition to singling out Israel, the document, which has captured relatively little public attention, calls for a regional conference in 2012 to lay the groundwork for a nuclear-free zone in the Middle East. Israel, whose nuclear arsenal is one of the world’s worst-kept secrets, would be on the hot seat at such a meeting.

At the last review conference, in 2005, the Bush administration refused to go along with any references to Israel, one of several reasons the meeting ended in acrimony, without any statement.

This time, Israel believed the Obama administration would again take up its cause. As a non-signatory to the treaty, Israel did not attend the meeting. But American officials consulted the Israelis on a text in advance, which they found acceptable, a person familiar with those discussions said. That deepened their surprise at the end.

After yesterday’s friendly meeting between the U.S. and Israeli heads of state—to say nothing of reports of a secret document committing the United States to continued nuclear cooperation with Israel—this is probably not a front-burner issue right now or in the immediate future. But don’t expect it to disappear entirely, either.

Nudge on Arms Further Divides The U.S. and Israel [NYT]
Earlier: Israeli Nukes Come Under Scrutiny

Print Email

Being a signatory to NPT would not “compel Israel to give up its weapons” – as all five major nuclear powers (the US, UK, France, Russia and China) are signatory to NPT. The only thing which would change would be Israel’s one of greatest secret being opened to World Nuclear Watchdog (IAEA) inspections.

Obama is no fool like John F. Kennedy to question Israel’s 240-400 nuclear bombs while meeting a hardcore Zionist terrorist like Benjamin Netanyahu.

Hershl says:

It’s not a secret that Israel has long had nuclear weapons.

However, if Israel were to openly admit this then it would be pushed into signing the nuclear nonproliferation pact which, in effect, would require it to disarm.

For 62 years Israel has not signed the pact and was backed up by the US.

Now Obama, behind its back, put in language suggesting that Israel should sign.

This a a very dangerous precedent.

See article:

David says:

I’m happy to see that under Tablet’s moderation policy ‘Zionist Terrorist’ is acceptable thing to say around here, but having a center-right view on all things Israel creates a situation where my postings need to wait moderation approval.

sharon says:

If Israel did not have nuclear weapons it would have been wiped off the map years ago. Just as Iran was kept at bay by the threat of Iraq’s nuclear weapons – Israel must keep the Arabs at bay by the same threat. Unfortunately, our total cock up of the unnecessary war in Iraq had unintended consequences – it enabled the Iranians (far more dangerous to the middle east then Iraq) to grab the power they now have. But of course, that is one of the many disasters that the Bush/Cheney cabal has brought down on us. Too bad Obama is following in their footsteps with this war in Afghanistan. Do the words, “grave yard of empires” resonate with anyone.


Your comment may be no longer than 2,000 characters, approximately 400 words. HTML tags are not permitted, nor are more than two URLs per comment. We reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments.

Thank You!

Thank you for subscribing to the Tablet Magazine Daily Digest.
Please tell us about you.

The Israeli Nuclear Issue

Some want ‘ambiguity’ cleared up

More on Tablet:

Kerry Links Rise of ISIS With Failed Peace Talks

By Lee Smith — Secretary of State: ‘I see a lot of heads nodding’