[News] CIA documents reveal Israeli stockpile of chemical weapons

Anti-Imperialist News news at freedomarchives.org
Wed Sep 11 12:27:41 EDT 2013


  CIA documents reveal Israeli stockpile of chemical weapons

author Wednesday September 11, 2013 00:27author by Saed Bannoura
http://www.imemc.org/article/66095

    A newly-discovered document of the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency
    revealed Monday by Foreign Policy magazine shows that the U.S.
    agency had decisive evidence dating back to at least the 1980s that
    Israel had a stockpile of chemical and biological weapons.

Israeli nuclear and chemical weapons manufacturing facility at Dimona 
(image by sodahead.com)

The revelation comes in the midst of the reported use of chemical 
weapons by the Syrian government on August 21st, although there is still 
no clarity as to whether the regime or the rebels carried out the 
attack, or whether it was an accident.

While U.S. President Barack Obama threatened to go to war with Syria 
over the attack, the Syrian government has denied responsibility, and 
has agreed to a proposal by the Russian government to open its stores of 
chemical weapons to international inspection and destruction.

The document revealed by Foreign Policy magazine on Monday shows that, 
in addition to building up a nuclear stockpile of an estimated three 
hundred nuclear weapons during the 1960s and 70s, the Israeli military 
also developed an extensive stockpile of chemical and biological weapons.

The 1983 document stated that U.S. spy satellites had identified "a 
probable CW [chemical weapon] nerve agent production facility and a 
storage facility... at the Dimona Sensitive Storage Area in the Negev 
Desert. Other CW production is believed to exist within a well-developed 
Israeli chemical industry."

"While we cannot confirm whether the Israelis possess lethal chemical 
agents," the document adds, "several indicators lead us to believe that 
they have available to them at least persistent and nonpersistent nerve 
agents, a mustard agent, and several riot-control agents, marched with 
suitable delivery systems."

The single page of a larger CIA report was discovered at the Ronald 
Reagan Library in California in its unredacted form -- the report had 
been released several years ago to the National Archives, but was 
heavily censored.

According to the Foreign Policy report, "Israeli historian Avner Cohen, 
in his 1988 book Israel and the Bomb, wrote that Israeli Prime Minister 
David Ben Gurion secretly ordered that a stockpile of chemical weapons 
be built at about the time of the 1956 war between Israel and Egypt. The 
CIA, on the other hand, believed that Israel did not begin work on 
chemical weapons until either the late 1960s or the early 1970s.

The article included the following assessment from the 1983 CIA report: 
"Israel, finding itself surrounded by frontline Arab states with budding 
CW [chemical weapons] capabilities, became increasingly conscious of its 
vulnerability to chemical attack. Its sensitivities were galvanized by 
the capture of large quantities of Soviet CW-related equipment during 
both the 1967 Arab-Israeli and the 1973 Yom Kippur wars. As a result, 
Israel undertook a program of chemical warfare preparations in both 
offensive and protective areas."

The Israeli government has harshly criticized the Syrian government for 
its alleged use of chemical weapons three weeks ago, and has encouraged 
President Obama's pledge to respond militarily.

Israel did sign the Convention to Ban Chemical Weapons, but the Israeli 
Knesset (Parliament) never ratified the treaty. Israel has never opened 
its nuclear facility or its chemical weapons stockpile to international 
inspections.

-- 
Freedom Archives 522 Valencia Street San Francisco, CA 94110 415 
863.9977 www.freedomarchives.org
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