Mordechai Vanunu 8

As the mad brinkmanship proceeds in the Middle East, it is worth bearing a few things in mind.

1) There is only one country in the Middle East that has nuclear weapons, and it is a highly aggressive racist state that visits untold misery on its neighbours and illegally occupies their land. It is called Israel.

2) Making a nuclear weapon takes a lot of time and material. Both Syria and Iran are many years away, even if they are trying to produce a nuclear bomb – which they probably are. Given Israel’s nuclear bomb, and given what the US did to Iraq, I can quite understand their desire to go nuclear for protection. Bombing them just makes this worse.

3) A nuclear free Middle East, including Israel, and a withdrawal of all US military forces from Iraq, is the path to peace and agreement. Everything else is a build up to a big war – which is what some people want, of course.

4) Bombing someone else’s country is plain illegal outside of formal war. Even then, there are limits on what is legitimate.

5) My fellow University Rector, Glasgow’s Mordechai Vanunu, is still effectively imprisoned for telling us about Israel’s nuclear weapons programme. He should be released immediately.

Allowed HTML - you can use: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

8 thoughts on “Mordechai Vanunu

  • Strategist

    Yes, yes, yes, yes & yes.

    BBC Newsnight's coverage profoundly shameful (as ever). Can you imagine what the Beeb's coverage of its mirror image, a Syrian bombing of Israel, would have been?

    How's the academic boycott of Israel going up at Dundee?

  • writeon

    By nature I think I'm actually an optimist, or maybe I'm just fantastically resilient – in spite of the world, and the seemingly inexorable slide towards more war and the new barbarism!

    I too think a nuclear-free Middle East would be a good idea, but I fear it may be a long way off. I also support the idea of a one-state solution for Israel/Palestine while we're talking in semi-utopian terms!

    I wonder if educated and thoughtful people felt the same way in the build-up to the second world war? One could see enormous and incrdibly powerful forces moving towards disaster, and yet, realistically there was nothing one could do to stop them, short of a revolution. Unfortunately our revolutions seem to occur during or after the wars and not before them!

    If we lived in a functioning and real democracy I'd be more inclined to believe stopping the coming attack on Iran was possible, but we don't. The will of the people will be ignored and or political representatives don't represent us, they serve the interests of a ruling elite, most of whom don't even live in the UK. In a sense most of our politicians are 'Americans' as the rest of us are becoming. Our passivity and acceptance of American rule and leadership makes us complicit and responsible for the crimes purportrated by the US elite. We can no longer hide and say that we're not part of the rapacious empire, because we increasingly take America's side and stand shoulder to shoulder with them on the battlefield. We are 'citizens' of the empire, unless we somehow break with it and choose to go our own way.

    I think Iran may be a pivotal moment in history. Sounds grand I know, but how we deal with the crisis will say a lot about who we are and where we are going as a civilization. Is there a way back from 'barbarism' after an attack on Iran? Already the 'war on terror' and the 'rape of Iraq' have depraved us and degraded our values in the eyes of the world. Can we 'survive' yet another unprovoked attack on an innocent country that just happens to be sitting of resources we need? Will we end up with so much blood and guts and gore on our hands that it will be impossible to ever wash them clean?

  • Tonys Akiller

    Don't forget; It was the UK that supplied Israel with heavy water to help make its nuclear holocaust in waiting. It was the UK that decreed Palestine to the Zionist followers of Herzl and the King David Hotel terrorists (who killed British civillians). and it is the UK which to this day protects its bastard child.

  • Boss

    Considering that nuclear weapons are politically unacceptable, expensive, and militarily make no sense, it would be hard to see why Iran would want to be a painted target, awaiting a pre-emptive first nuclear strike from the insane Imperial US?

    Facts before us, are indicative of the lack of any desires on the part of Iran to posses a nuclear weapon. Those engaged in the current words of war, have somehow managed to shift the debate, in even more irrational direction of the reasons necessitating for warmongering.

    The insanity of talking about wars of aggression, pale to insignificance in comparison to even more insane explaining away the need for these wars.

    Noting that at the start of Bush presidency, way back in peaceful days in 2000, when Bush took office, gold was $273 per ounce, oil was $22 per barrel and the Euro was worth $.87 per dollar. Then Bush did his voodoo, that he has done the best all his life, he simply crapped out everything. Resultant of the steady hand of a dry alcoholic on the helm is reflected in current prices of gold, which is over $700 per ounce, oil which is over $81 per barrel, and the Euro which is nearly $1.40 per dollar.

    Notwithstanding, Bush track record in running any company associated with him into the ground, and finding outright criminals to partner with in various fraudulent ventures, usually ending in court cases that somehow always are suspended, along with the relevant partners' early demise, and death by suicide.

    Our political leadership, deciding to jump on the band wagon of Empire by proxy, found in Bush the user of exotic substances, and drinker of copious amounts of moonshine an amiable Texan Gun slinging Emperor. Hence the poodling of Untied Kingdom, and our contribution to the greater game of geopolitics hatched in the neo con think tanks, whom invariably have played on the ego, and greed of the US networks, while pandering to the needs of Israel, by portraying this colonial outpost as the bulwark against insecurity of oil supplies.

    In this Alice in Wonderland world, failure, is in fact a success awaiting to happen, fear, anxiety of general populations are in fact security blanketing around them, devaluation of currency are signs of wealth and prosperity, and bank runs are the fault of irrational depositors, whom are not leaving their meagre savings to go up in smoke of bankruptcy (who put the bank in ruptcy?).

    Hence it comes as no surprise to find the degree of ignorance, and singular poverty of thought so apparent in the debate, that fails to question the insanity of those in charge, whom are evidently incapable of organising a knees up in a brewery. These ineffective, and inane operators whom surrendered Vanunu, and have failed to bring Israel to heel, resulting in probable 400 Israeli nuclear, and thermonuclear weapons, along with delivery vehicles, ranging from tactical, to intercontinental ballistic missiles, as well as secondary retaliatory (that is after Israel has been obliterated) capabilities afforded by the free German made Dolphin class submarines. Of course it is well known that the last time British government sent an observer to report back on Israeli Nukes, they found Michael Israel Davids, a reliable enough operator, to go to Israel, and check it all out. Although minister in charge at the time one Anthony Wedgwood Benn, in his memories, and later on in his interviews has indicated that he did not know any of the efforts, in the direction of handing over the 20 tonnes of heavy water to Israelis at discounted prices, and supplying them with lithium six ions just for good measures too.

    The simple facts over looked about Iranians quest for nuclear power are as follows;

    A- Saddam enjoying the full support of the International Community (shorthand for US, UK, Germany, Holland, France) conducted a brutal war against Iranians, using chemical weapons, and cluster bombs to kill one million Iranians, while systematically bombing the Iranian oil, and energy infrastructures, refineries included.

    B- After the end of Saddam's hostilities, various contractors charged with rebuilding the refineries, and the oil, and energy infrastructures in Iran. These have met with conduct, in the fashion after our own home grown builders, these get the money dig up some holes, and lay few bricks, up sticks and walk away, due to pressures from US imposing unilateral and unofficial sanctions.

    C- Iranians, having been let down by these various European, Japanese, etc. contractors, have been reduced to importing their own fuel oil derivatives from outside sources. In other words the crude they sell, in fact has to be reimported as petrol, etc.

    D- Faced with the energy crunch, and the vulnerability of their energy infrastructure, and expensive imports of fuel oil derivatives. With little recourse to refining technologies, they embarked on going nuclear, with a view to super cheap energy production, as well as security of knowing that no mad idiot will ever bomb their reactors. The reason for such a sound decision lies in wholesale contamination of any potential attackers in case of any attacks on their reactors. Hence the reactor is built along the Persian Gulf, and in open view of all and sundry.

    F- Nuclear reactors do not run on cow dung, and biofuel, these need enriched uranium to run. However, IAEA, is yet to set up a fuel supply chain, after some twenty years of working on it. Further, those whom can enrich in return are busy price gouging, therefore for a feasible and reliable source of fuel Iranians, whom happen to have uranium mines in their own lands, need to enrich their own fuel.

    E- The prospect of Iranians becoming self sufficient in their energy needs, as well as enjoying the derivatives from nuclear industry in medicine, agriculture, and wider industries, as well as becoming a fuel exporter, is the reason for strangulations of the embryonic nuclear industry.

    The ugly notions of technology used as a control construct to stifle, and destroy any and all competitors, somehow cannot be explained away as protectionism, but an active vandalism of human progress, which in turn is to afford the vacuous, and incapable operators to masquerade as leaders, protecting the interests of those few handful whom find any progression of humanity as threat to their supremacy, and their rule for another day.

  • C S

    If the Iranians "are probably" out to make a nuclear bomb as you say, they have a funny way of doing it since they have repeatedly offered to place verifiable limits and restrictions on their nuclear program that exceed their legal obligations and would prevent the manufacture of nukes (for example by renouncing plutonium reprocessing, their heavy water reactor at Arak is simply incapable of even theoretically being used to make nukes.)

    The Iranian Amb. Javad Zarif has listed some of Iran's offers in an editorial in the International Herald Tribune:

    These and the other 8 or so compromie offers by the Iranians would have addressed any real concern about nuclear proliferation but they have been brushed aside and simply ignored by the US/EU3. Instead, we are repeatedly presented by the pundits with a false choice fallacy, according to which Iran must be bombed/sanctions or else it inevitably will go nuclear. Nonesense! Why isn't the same said about Argentina or Brazil or the 40 other states that have the technology capability to build nukes if they so desire? The answer is pretty obvious: the nuclear issue is really just a convenient pretext for a regime-change policy.


  • BrianB

    Craig, the idea that Israel's nuclear weapons represent a threat to its neighbours seems to me extremely far-fetched; I can't conceive of a remotely plausible scenario in which Israel uses a nuclear weapon against any other country in the region unless in retaliation for a nuclear attack on Israel. It would not be possible to say the same thing about a nuclear weapon in the hands of Iran or Syria if Israel did not possess nuclear weapons itself. IOW, Israel's nuclear weaponry is useful only as a deterrent, just as the nuclear weaponry of the US, UK and France was useful only as a deterrent in the cold war. Mutually Assured Destruction is a horrible doctrine, but it worked well for decades in Europe and there's no reason to suppose that it won't work in the middle east, if and when yet more countries in the region acquire nuclear weapons. If I were an Israeli citizen, I would sleep more easily in my bed in the knowledge that my country possesses a nuclear deterrent; and paradoxically the Israeli deterrent also provides some reassurance to (e.g.) Syrian and Iranian citizens. But I don't expect you to agree!

    However I entirely agree about Vanunu.



    Brian, why don't you just consider the inconsistencies of what you're saying. Surely if Israel is allowed to possess a deterant, then you grant the right for other middle eastern nations to possess that deterent. It sounds like you're in favour of a fully nuclear middle east to prevent any further wars? Its an unusual position to have in any case! Also you're comments about Syria and Iran's propensity to pre-emptive attack are quite ludicrous and bordering racist. Its Iran that's been on the wrong end of US aggression since 1979. I take it Israel's repeated invasions of Lebanon, and various illegal military occupations make her a responsible nuclear power?

Comments are closed.