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MID-EAST REALITIES - www.MiddleEast.Org - Washington - 7/14/00:

   While Camp David and the "Peace Process" have the ever-compliant mass media preoccupied with the things the political leaders want in the headlines, the Israelis, with their alliance with the Americans, continue to build-up their military forces and weapons of mass destruction in order to control and dominate the Middle East region... come what may.
   Israel's new laser, biological, chemical and nuclear weapons are all still under feverish development and in some cases deployment.
   The Arabs remain backward and outclassed in ever measure and at every turn -- despite a population some 20+ times greater than Israel and all the oil wealth that is so terribly squandered by the "royal" families.
   And so the Israelis, now about to annex the great majority of settlements across the "Green Line" camouflaged by the "peace process" -- and foisting a unique Middle Eastern apartheid scheme on the Palestinians camouflaged by Arafat's disingenuous "Palestinian State" and huge payments (i.e., bribes) to his corrupt regime -- remain supreme.
   It is this overall supremacy of course which explains what is happening at Camp David and why the Arabs are about to be shafted by one more international conference taking place not in their own world but in that of their modern-day conqueror.


                                              By Eric Margolis

LONDON - 2 July:   In 1986, Mordechai Vanunu, a former technician at Israel's
Dimona reactor center, revealed to the `Sunday Times' of London that Israel had
secretly developed 100-200 nuclear warheads, using French and
American-supplied technology. Vanunu was lured to Rome in a classic `honey
trap' and kidnapped by Israeli agents. He was convicted of treason and has
been held in solitary confinement for the past 14 years.

Earlier this month, the `Sunday Times' broke a second major story about
Israel's covert nuclear programs. According to leaked information supplied
to the `Times,' Israel used a newly acquired Dolphin-class submarine to
test a hitherto secret cruise missile designed to carry a nuclear warhead.

The cruise missile is said to have hit a target 900 miles from its launch
point off the coast of Sri Lanka in the Indian Ocean, and may have a
maximum range of 1,200 mile. Israel has become increasingly involved in
Sri Lanka's civil war, supplying the embattled Colombo government with
weapons, munitions, and military advisors to combat Tamil Tigers rebels.

The state-of-the-art, 1750-ton Dolphin diesel subs were supplied to Israel
by Germany as near freebie `guilt payments' because Iraq used some
German-made components in its military programs during the Gulf War.
Revelations that Israel is using the $440 million each subs as nuclear
launch platforms has deeply embarrassed Germany's ardently anti-nuclear
socialist government.

This also raises the fascinating question of how and where the Dolphins
were modified to accept missiles. The cruise missile used by the Israelis
is believed too large to be fired from the Dolphin's 21-inch torpedo
tubes. The original 1990 design called for lengthening the hull to
accommodate a `wet and dry' compartment for frogmen - unusual in an attack
sub- and for `extra torpedo storage.' This was clearly the cover for what
became a missile compartment of four vertical launch tubes.

If true, this suggests full German collaboration in Israel's covert
nuclear program - in spite of Berlin's anguished denials. The United
States was originally to have supplied the subs to Israel, but claimed to
lack the capability to build modern, conventional powered boats, and
bucked the job to German yards, who have a century of experience in
building U-boats. A cynic might suspect the US pressured Germany into
supplying Israel's latest nuclear weapons platforms to escape an
inevitable firestorm of protest by its Arab oil clients.

Israel now has a complete nuclear triad: air-delivered bombs;
intermediate-range Jericho missiles; and now the sea-launched cruise
missile. This important development means Israel has a counter-force
nuclear capability that can ride out any enemy nuclear attack and riposte
with a devastating strike from the sea. Israel will reportedly base one
Dolphin in the Mediterranean, the second in the Red Sea, and the third in
port for maintenance.

The Dolphin `roving launch platforms' also give Israel the ability to
strike almost anywhere on the globe, and particularly against Iran and
Pakistan, which Israel singles out as `long-range' enemies. Israel's
Mossad long claimed Iran would deploy nuclear weapons by 2000. When proven
wrong, Mossad now claims the date is 2002. US intelligence estimates
Tehran will not even have a prototype weapon before 2010, and no
deliverable warhead until 2012-13 - if ever. Iran denies developing
nuclear weapons.

Revelations of Israel's new cruise missile have provoked a storm of
outrage in the rest of the Mideast at an exceptionally delicate time when
regional peace negotiations hang in the balance. One might suspect
Israel's missile test may have been leaked to scupper Arab-Israeli peace

Some defense analysts maintain Israel's sea-launched missiles are actually
a stabilizing factor that eliminated the threat of a decapitating nuclear
attack. Israel's Jericho missile base at Kfar Zachariah near Tel Aviv
lacks hardened silos and is thus vulnerable to a surprise nuclear attack.
The same applies to airbases where nuclear bombs are stored for Israel's
US-supplied F-15E's. Inadequately protected nuclear forces lead to a `use
or loose' mentality in time of crisis.

But the latest revelations about Israel's nuclear arsenal - now the
world's fourth or fifth most powerful - will likely spur the Arab states
and Iran to intensify efforts to acquire a nuclear counter-force, and to
develop `poor man's' weapons of mass destruction to match Israel's
extensive nuclear, chemical and biological arsenal.

This bombshell also comes as Israel faces growing pressure in the UN over
its nuclear weapons. Israel is the only Mideast nation that refuses to
sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty(NPT). Egypt insists Israel must
sign NPT as part of a comprehensive Mideast peace. Cairo is pressing for a
Mideast nuclear-free zone and demands Israel allow inspection of its
nuclear complex at Dimona. Egypt claims Israel's 40-year old,
French-supplied reactor there is unsafe and a hazard - a sort of Mideast

The United States, in an unusual volte face, is quietly backing Egypt's
position. Washington is doubtlessly expressing its growing displeasure
with Israel over recent sales of high-tech Israeli arms and technology to
China, much of them American origin, and over Israeli espionage against
the United States.

The first battery of Israel's `Arrow' anti-missile system just went
operational; THEL, a new laser anti-tactical missile system, follows soon.
Now, sea-launched cruise missiles. What next? An Israeli landing on Mars?

War at the Top of the World - The struggle for Afghanistan, Kashmir and
Tibet - is the new book by Eric Margolis.

For more details about Mordechai Vanunu, Israel's nuclear prisoner of
conscience, go to the MER search engine and type in VANUNU:

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