Israeli Nukes????? …Finally the issue is being brought forth.


One of the side effects of the Iran Deal debate is that Israel’s nukes are also being discussed. There are signs of pressure on Israeli nukes inside the US media and government. In this article, Phil Weiss will summarize the recent news, and Grant Smith, the lead investigator of the Institute for Research Middle East Policy, follows with a report on a gag order affecting disclosure of US federal information about the Israeli nuclear program. Weiss first.

Last week the State Department released historical documents that detail Nixon-era attempts to get Israel to join the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty.

The Jerusalem Post speculated on the State Department’s fascinating timing in a piece saying that Israel is said to have as many as 100 nuclear warheads (maybe more, others say).

The State Department’s publication of documents on Tuesday detailing US-Israel discussions on the Jewish state’s nuclear program comes amid public disagreement between the allies over the Iran nuclear deal….

The publication of the documents comes as part of a routine release of historical information by the State Department. However, the timing of the revelations against the background of the disagreement between Israel and the US over the nuclear deal with Iran, lends them extra meaning.

There are those who would claim that the timing of the release is not a coincidence, and is in fact intended to embarrass Israel, which staunchly opposes the deal with Iran, and embarrass Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who continues his efforts to challenge the Obama administration and influence Congress to reject the deal.

According to the documents, which cover events from 1969 to 1972, Israel was asked to provide a written obligation neither to arm its [ten newly produced] missiles with nuclear warheads nor to deploy them.

The documents show that Israel was trying to skirt American demands re its nuclear program, and the U.S. was going in on the hypocrisy. It was leaving Israeli actions up to the Israelis’ “conscience,” according to this report to President Nixon from national security adviser Henry Kissinger in 1969:

The Israelis had promised in signing the Phantom contract “not to be the first to introduce nuclear weapons into the Middle East.” [Ambassador to the U.S. Yitzhak] Rabin had informally defined “introduce” to mean“not test and not publicize.” [Under Secretary of State] Elliot Richardson on July 29 asked him to accept our definition of “not introduce” as “not possess.” … [Richardson] defined “possess” for our own internal purposes as “Israeli activity short of as- sembly of a completed nuclear explosive device.” In short, we tried to put ourselves in a position where we could act as if we assumed the Israelis do not have completed weapons while leaving to the Israelis’ conscience the stage short of completion where they would stop… Instead of accepting our words “not possess,” Rabin simply says they “prefer” to say they will “not become a nuclear power. When I asked how a state could become a “nuclear power” without “possessing” nuclear weapons, he simply said they “prefer” their formulation.

Last week, too, Lobelog published “The Next Middle East Nuclear Challenge: Israel,” an eloquent piece by Peter Jenkins, a career British diplomat, saying that the P5+1 should now start working to get Israel to give up its nukes.

[T]he five permanent members of the UN Security Council and the EU High Representative, fresh from their diplomatic achievement of consolidating Iran’s commitment to the NPT, embark on a similar process of engagement with Israel.

The goal of the process would be to define an action plan that would enable Israel to feel confident that acceding to the NPT would not entail any compromise to Israeli security.

The Israeli government may well say that it does not wish to engage the P5 and EU on such an issue. If so, the P5+1 would be wrong to take “no” for an answer. They pride themselves on having “brought Iran to the negotiating table.” They should look for ways of bringing Israel to the table. It would be surprising if they needed to resort to measures as drastic as those employed in Iran’s case.

Middle East states deserve the security that NWFZs [nuclear weapon free zones] have brought to Latin America, Africa, South East Asia, the Pacific, and Central Asia.

Two weeks back Grant Smith’s Institute for Research Middle East Policy continued its effort to undermine the official hypocrisy, picking up a radio interview in which Colorado Congressman Jared Polis said, “everybody knows [Israel] they have nuclear capabilities, not declared for some technical reason.” Polis is undeclared on the Iran Deal.

And last March, William Greider echoed Smith’s exasperation over the hypocrisy in the Nation:

While the Washington press corps obsessed over Hillary Clinton’s emails at the State Department, reporters were missing a far more important story about government secrets. After five decades of pretending otherwise, the Pentagon has reluctantly confirmed that Israel does indeed possess nuclear bombs, as well as awesome weapons technology similar to America’s.

Early last month the Department of Defense released a secret report done in 1987 by the Pentagon funded Institute for Defense Analysis that essentially confirms the existence of Israel’s nukes. DOD was responding to a Freedom of Information lawsuit filed by Grant Smith, an investigative reporter and author who heads the Institute for Research: Middle East Policy. Smith said he thinks this is the first time the US government has ever provided official recognition of the longstanding reality.

Now here is Grant Smith’s report on his experience: “The secret federal gag order that prohibits informed debate about Israel’s nukes”

On August 20, 2015 the Department of Energy released under the Freedom of Information Act its “Guidance on Release of Information Relating to the Potential for an Israeli Nuclear Capability.” (PDF)  The Orwellian title of the year 2012 document, designated WNP-136, seems to suggest that Israel might not yet even have nuclear weapons.  This is in stark contrast to the public opinion of 63.9 percent of Americans polled who believe it does.   Interestingly, it covers only Israel and not the other non-signatories to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty such as India, North Korea and South Sudan.

The official reason for promulgating the gag order, its history and development, bureaucratic champions and most of its redacted contents remain unclear.   What is clear is that it is one of the reasons federal employees and government contractors, and sometimes even the President, equivocate and run for the exits whenever they are asked to make substantive remarks.  The Israel nuclear gag order answers the question posed last week by McClatchy, “Why is Israel’s nuclear arsenal not mentioned in Iran deal debate?” Because any federal employee who does can be summarily fired and possibly go to prison.

Los Alamos National Laboratory nuclear analyst James Doyle wrote candidly about Israel’s nuclear weapons for a magazine in 2013. After a congressional staffer read the article, which had passed a classification review, it was referred to classification officials for a second review. Doyle’s pay was then cut, his home computer searched, and he was fired.

Aside from prohibiting any informed input in the run-up to the September congressional vote on the Iran nuclear deal, the secret gag order has a far more costly function—it makes enforcement of the Symington and Glenn Amendments to the 1961 Foreign Aid Act impossible.

Time has cracked the edifice of silence.  State Department documents (PDF) released this week add color to previous accounts about the maneuvering of Henry Kissinger in the early 1970s, functioning as Israel’s lawyer, to secretly exempt the arsenal from safeguards demands the US and international community imposed on others—as well as Nixon’s intense fear of an Israel-lobby backlash.

In February this year the Pentagon released its chartered study from 1987 about how Israel’s nuclear weapons development facilities already paralleled American national laboratories even as the country raced for hydrogen bomb capabilities. However the gag order outlaws any current releases about the true nuclear balance of power in the Middle East when it would matter most.  This buttresses Israel and its lobby’s attempts to keep a focus on Iran, but harms Americans positioned outside of the Israel affinity ecosystem.

The Symington and Glenn laws prohibit US foreign aid to any country found trafficking in nuclear weapons technology outside the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.  An estimated (considering inflation and assumed value of US intelligence support) $234 billion in taxpayer-funded aid has been delivered to Israel since their passage.  But absent unencumbered, informed and authoritative public information from the federal government on the state of Israel’s nuclear weapons infrastructure, the law is impossible to enforce.

Whether such subversion of taxpayer rights and foreign aid laws is the gag order’s core intent remains to be seen in the upcoming FOIA appeal and public interest legal actions.

Grant Smith is now undertaking that FOIA appeal process.

Pace e Bene…the Nonviolent Life

Thursday, August 27, 2015

“Why are we stirred so deeply?  What is it we feel?  What are we hoping for? I cannot answer for you.  For me, it is as if the “No Exit” sign is about to come down from our age; it is as if a door is opening in a wall where there was no door.”

—  Lillian Smith – Behind the Sit-ins

Tiffin workshop: Peace Leadership in Difficult Times

Paul Chappell photoJoin us November 7-8 in Tiffin for Paul Chappell’s workshop, Peace Leadership in Difficult Times. Click here to download the event flyer for complete registration information.

Paul K. Chappell is a West Point graduate, Iraq war veteran, former army captain and Director of Peace Leadership for the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation.

Sat: Nov. 7 (10:00am-5:30 pm. Registration 9-10) Sun. Nov. 8: 1-5:30

St. Francis Spirituality Center, Tiffin


  1. The Foundations and Skills of Peace Leadership
  2. Conflict Resolution in a Workplace or Social Movement
  3. How to Combat Deception and Dehumanization
  4. How to Be Persuasive and Go Beyond Preaching to the Choir
  5. Learn the Power of Waging Peace

Sr. Paulette is now accepting registrations.

Sat: Nov. 7 (10:00-5:30 pm. Registration 9:-10) Sun. Nov. 8: 1-5:30

Overnight: $100.00; program/meals/lodging; Commuters: $60 program/meals

Make check out to Project Peace and send to:

Project Peace, 200 St. Francis Ave., Tiffin, OH 44883 % Sr. Paulette

UN calls for immediate freeze to West Bank home demolitions

<p> A member of the Adgluni family watching his house being demolished by Israeli authorities, East Jerusalem, January 27, 2014. The Israeli authorities claimed the house was built on lands that do not belong to the family.</p>

A member of the Adgluni family watching his house being demolished by Israeli authorities, East Jerusalem, January 27, 2014. The Israeli authorities claimed the house was built on lands that do not belong to the family

JERUSALEM (Ma‘an) 19 Aug — UN officials on Tuesday slammed a recent spate of Israeli home demolitions east of Jerusalem and called for an immediate freeze on demolitions across the occupied West Bank. Israeli forces on Monday demolished 22 structures belonging to the Jahalin Bedouin community in eastern Jerusalem, leaving 78 Palestinians homeless, including 49 children, the UN Office for the Coordinator of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) and the UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) said in a joint statement. “According to UN records, this is the largest number of Palestinians displaced in the West Bank in one day in nearly three years,” the statement said. The demolitions all took place in the E1 corridor — a large tract of land between East Jerusalem and the illegal Israeli settlement of Maale Adumim that Israel has earmarked for annexation.

See more at:

Imagine! 500 Peacemakers living in Tiffin area


It seems almost impossible, but it’s true! The Seneca County Fair with all its amazing preparations and hype to lure people to “come and see”—is all in the past now. What loud applause we need to extend to the many workers and planners of this well -organized week!

Project Peace and Pax Christi set up booths to share with all passers-by the efforts each organization makes to promote a culture of peace here and beyond. Children were excited when they saw the huge mysterious spider web covering the back wall of our booths. They looked with curious eyes and then wrote their own message, telling other visitors how they want to be a part of this “web” of peace. They got it! Every act of peacemaking spreads to others outside our circle. They received their peace tattoo and left with the admonition to believe in themselves, believe that they also have a part in making this county, this town, this world a better place to live. They were urged to spread kindness freely like candy and treat all people and the earth and its animals with real respect. We tattooed at least 500 children! I see 500 children making efforts to share kindness and respect, building good relationships here in Seneca County.

Mahatma Gandhi, who was standing as a cutout in the middle of the two adjacent booths said that in order to have peace in the world, we must start with the children. Through this week—in meeting so many children–it was easy to see why he believed in that premise. Kids’ hearts are usually soft, able to sense an injustice very easily. Kids instinctively know deception–something that is unfair. They mostly show their pain easily and don’t mask the pain with some kind of toughness. They respond easily when they see someone needs their help.

Paul Chappell, whom I’ve introduced before in this column, and who is a leading teacher of nonviolence in the U.S., insists that human beings are NOT naturally, violent. Perhaps he was thinking especially of the children. In Palestine I sometimes witnessed the children asking the soldiers “Why did you kick that boy?” “He didn’t hurt you.” They were not afraid to say the truth. They didn’t worry about possible negative consequences to their truthful questions.

At one demonstration in Palestine, the children of a village headed straight toward a row of armed Israeli soldiers and stood like a short but mighty brick wall as they chanted: “We want to sleep! We want to sleep!” The soldiers had been breaking into their homes during the night, tipping over furniture, throwing dishes on the floor, making lots of loud noise.   The last thing the kids could do was sleep. Some forms of resistance are stronger than guns.

School is now facing us, and children will soon be scurrying along, eager to meet the other kids and teachers after a long summer. Their hopes are high these first days. They want to believe that they are important in the school and to the people outside the school. They will appreciate any encouragement we can give them to aim HIGH, work HARD, enjoy their time with their friends. I shall be stressing with them to try new things, meet new kids, don’t be afraid to move out of their comfort zones in exercising their gifts and kindness. They need us to reassure them.

Good luck all you peacemakers: children short and tall, young, and older. With your efforts you not only help your school and your town, but INDEED you give hope to all of us when you help make our world a world of greater peace. Thanks, kids. We need you.

Join Us to say NO to all Nuclear Weapons

Actions will be happening around the world to commemorate the past; and to change the future!    Join us on this historic 70th anniversary of the first use of an atomic weapon in war. Make your voice count for the abolition of all nuclear weapons throughout the world.  Not only does this apply to Iran  but to the United States which has the most nuclear weapons, then to Russia, Israel, India, Pakistan, China, etc….all nations with plenty of warheads to destroy the world many times over.
Please join us at the Courthouse Square corner, Tiffin, OH at 4:30- 5:00, Thursday, Aug. 6.
nuclear blast