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Wednesday, March 25

A Peek Inside the UK's pro-Israel lobby
by The Blogger - 0

Inside the UK's pro-Israel lobby

Through the heavily-securitised doors of London's exclusive Lancaster hotel, several hundred smartly-dressed delegates are milling around drinking coffee or eating kosher sandwiches and snacks. The air is filled with the hubbub of chatter and the clinking of glasses, occasionally punctuated by a security announcement reminding everyone not to disclose their location on social media platforms "for security reasons".
This is the sight that greets me when, after being thoroughly patted down by a security guard, I enter the venue of "We Believe in Israel", a gathering of like-minded individuals and organisations that professes to be the "largest conference to promote support for Israel" in Britain. According to Director's address in the inside cover of the programme, "the overarching aim of the day is to unite as many people as possible behind one simple concept: Israel as a Jewish and democratic state". The sheer absurdity of this double-speak-esque oxymoron – Israel as a 'Jewish" and "democratic" state (as if the declaration of a state based purely on ethnic and religious classification was not antithetical to the very definition of democracy) - perfectly sets the tone for the day. George Orwell must be turning in his grave.
Well attended by a mixture of pro-Israel campaigners and Zionists from both Israel and the UK - the list of delegates is rigorously vetted and the conference organisers retain the right to deny attendance to anyone they consider unfit - the conference offers a glimpse into the inner workings of the UK's pro-Israel lobby, and an opportunity to engage with such groups on their own terms. As well as scheduled talks by all the usual suspects, such as BICOM, StandWithUs, the Zionist Federation and the Henry Jackson Society, there are also sessions run by pro-Israel factions in each of the UK's mainstream political parties, including the recently inaugurated UKIP Friends of Israel.
But beyond simply offering a platform for pushing a Zionist agenda, the conference also has a deeply practical focus, and offers a number of skill-based sessions aimed at "creating a more positive image of Israel in the UK", including talks on effective lobbying, campaigning, dealing with the press, shaping British educational policy, mobilising the grassroots and making effective use of social media platforms. All to teach people how to "develop and support a grassroots network advocating for Israel".
As part of the welcome pack presented to every delegated (I, for one, know that I will cherish my "We Believe in Israel" pen forever) is a "Tool Kit" intended "to give pro-Israel campaigners the essential information and advice needed to campaign for Israel both all-year-round and in the event of a crisis". This 65-page document is broken up into six sections, each tailored around a specific skill, from "How to influence people" to "How to set up a local campaign group" and includes "fact sheets" on key issues such as "Jewishness, Zionism and Israel", "Settlements", "Iran", "Hamas" and "The progressive case for Israel".
Most chillingly, the tool kit makes explicit the strategy potential recruits to the pro-Israel cause should adopt in spreading the Zionist message, proclaiming that "The absolute key to us shifting opinions on Israel is to develop individual personal relationships with people. This will make us better placed to influence them." In other words, instrumentalise your personal relationships and use people as pawns in a larger game of influence and opinion.
Except from conference handout: How to influence people
There are a number of key strategies to remember each time you try to influence someone:
  • Decide exactly what your goal or objective is
  • Define your message
  • Identify your target audience
  • Tailor your message to the audience
  • Identify the most effective delivery mechanism for that message and that audience
  • Execute the communication
  • Evaluate how well it worked - did you shift opinions?
Alongside this document is a tiny, pocket-sized "fact" booklet produced by StandWithUs that reads like a manifesto for radical Zionism; a mind-boggling collection of cherry-picked sources, massaged statistics and downright propaganda. As well as proclaiming that "Jews are indigenous to Israel and have maintained a presence for over 3,000 years" and that as early as 1854 "Jews were the largest religious group in Jerusalem" the booklet is equally dismissive of Palestinian claims to sovereignty and human rights, claiming firstly that 1948 Arabs "accepted Israel's invitation to choose peace and become Israeli citizens" and, amazingly, that "Israel helped set up the first self-government for the Palestinians".
The Palestinians, if mentioned at all, are stripped of all humanity and corporality, reduced to either ungrateful citizens of a peaceful Israeli state, refugees whose plight has been used "as a propaganda weapon against Israel" by other Arab countries, or, predictably, as destitute nomads and backwards tribespeople crying out for the civilising influences of Israel. One page juxtaposes an image of group of huddled figures in a barren desert with a picture of a vibrant cityscape. Under the first image is the caption "Tel Aviv 1909", under the second "Tel Aviv 2009"; one hundred years on, and see how Israel has made the desert bloom. This well-worn and discriminatory trope of Palestinian ineffectiveness and poverty recalls the saying "A land without a people for a people without a land", thus effectively writing the Palestinians out of their own history.
Indeed, throughout the entire day, the Palestinian shadow looms over the conference, present only in its absence; an absent presence that nevertheless haunts proceedings, from the heavy emphasis on security to the increasingly shrill affirmations that "We Believe in Israel [and not Palestine]". The complete lack of willingness of any of the assembled parties to engage in any meaningful discussion of the continued Israeli occupation of Palestinian land and the ongoing human rights abuses perpetrated against Palestinians on an almost daily basis speaks to a deep sense of unease at the heart of the pro-Israel lobby; it is almost as if they know that the entire edifice of their belief system is constructed on shaky foundations, and that to face the hard facts of reality risks bringing the whole thing crashing to the ground. And so they continue to engage in a sort of Orwellian double-think, waxing lyrical about Israel's medical achievements, tolerance for homosexuals, and technological innovations while pointedly ignoring any references to an apartheid state whose very existence depends on the subjugation and repression of hundreds of thousands of human beings.
But however easy it may be to ridicule the biases and fallacies of "We Believe in Israel", it would be a mistake to dismiss the pro-Israel lobby outright, or even to engage in a reciprocal slandering match, as many pro-Palestinian factions have been known to do. Instead, those who truly care for the fate of Palestinians whose very existence has been shaped by the continued presence of the Israeli military in the most intimate spheres of their lives should rather use this opportunity to learn the methods and strategies of the pro-Israel lobby from the inside, so as to better combat their propaganda attempts. In the words of Frantz Fanon: "Fervor is the weapon of choice of the impotent"; only by stepping away from their emotional involvement in the conflict, however difficult that may be, and adopting a calm and rational strategy in the manner of the pro-Israel lobby, will Palestinians succeed in making their voices heard.
The "tool kit" provided by the conference may thus be used by pro-Palestinians, as well as pro-Israelis. One of the most important lessons to be learned from the strategies set out in the booklet is that the most effective method of influencing people and effecting real change is not to engage in heated debates or other activities that may alienate people (armed struggle being a prime example), but to "develop individual personal relationships", moblise your personal and professional networks, "tailor your message to your audience" and, most importantly, "don't underestimate your own influence." If the Palestinians can ultimately use Israel's PR and propaganda strategies against them, and succeed in both exposing the hypocrisy and double-think of the pro-Israel lobby and in turning the tide of international public opinion against Israel, then the battle for an independent sovereign Palestine will already be half won.



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Welcome To Palestine
by The Blogger - 0


Window into Palestine that is associated with the People's Media Group is one of the most popular blogs with the focus on Palestine anywhere Since the Summer of 1996, it has reached out and informed millions of readers from every corner of the globe all across the internet.

The WIP mission has never stopped and will continue to challenge misrepresentation on Palestine by being the source of opinions and news.

Our readers can rest assured that going into the future, our plans include: maintaining our social media independence, as well as fulfilling our quest of having the best blog available and maintained as well as the  a publishing of a book and other materials, as well as to continue along with projects in Canada to educate about Palestine.

As we continue your comments would be helpful so we urge you to send all feedback on what you like and don't like as well as what you would like to see as we roll out updates to this blog as well as other projects.

To do this your help is needed more then ever, as we are far behind in the financial goal we have set to make our goals a reality, we thank those that have provided financial support and hope that they continue along new supporters arrive to help WIP.

Please subscribe to keep updated, as well share our postings online to your friends in Facebook and Twitter as well as the other social media outlets.
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Sunday, March 22

NETANYAHU’S TWO STATE SOLUTION ~~ ONE WITHOUT PEOPLE
by The Blogger - 0

zions mantra in establishing the State of Israel was “A land without a people for a people without a land”.
The mantra of today in reference to a State of Palestine is simply “A land without people”.
The Nakba of 1948 is an ongoing process
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Latuff ~~ The ongoing Nakba
Latuff ~~ The ongoing Nakba
Click on the following links to read what has been happening since Israel’s election …
The illegal settlers and the IDF are working hand in hand
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And President Obama remains silent
"Not my problem"
“Not my problem”
His silence speaks volumes



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Mothers' Day
by The Blogger - 0

Today in Palestine and many parts of the world is traditionally
mothers' day on the first day of Spring. The colorful carpets of
flowers in the fields are the gift of Palestine to the mothers. My own
mother is emblematic of Palestinian mothers. She is 82 years old and
she lost her good friend in Deir Yassin massacre during the ethnic
cleansing that marked the beginning of our Nakba (catastrophe). Her
own mother is from Nazareth. She suffered a lot but never said so and
always kept a positive spirit and love of people and life. From her I
learned to be who I am. To her I owe not just my biological being but
my psychology and all that I accomplished and hope to accomplish. To
my wife (mother of our son) and my three sisters (two mothers, one
grandmother) and to all the mothers out there and all the ladies
whether biological mothers or mothers of others by action and example:
utmost love and respect.

Even though our Palestine Museum of Natural History and its Institute
of Biodiversity and Sustainability did not officially open to the
public yet, we do get visitors regularly (by arrangement). This past
week we got a school from Nablus, farmers and Bedouins from the Jordan
Valley, a women group from Nahhalin, and international visitors. I
also also spoke to a large group of students from Harvard University.
Our dedicated volunteers did field work in places like Beit Qad in
Jenin district and Wadi Qana and Tulkarem. Today we also had a nice
lecture by Bassem Ra'ad at Bethlehem University and I had the honor of
being one of the respondents. He is the author of the highly
acclaimed book "Hidden Histories" (see review here
http://electronicintifada.net/content/book-review-excavating-palestines-hidden-histories/3604
). We discussed how factual history is being suppressed in favor of a
zionist narrative that expropriated Palestinian Canaanitic history as
it had expropriated our land, our natural resources, our religious
sites, and even our food. Ra'ad's recommendation is to do our own
detailed historical research which we in the museum are doing. We are
also learning for the sake of learning. At the end of this month that
is dedicated to the environment, we Palestinians also have "Land Day"
(started 1976) in which we reaffirm our connections to the land as
native people and rejection of colonial activities. We will have
events at the Museum in Bethlehem both on 30 March and 31 March
(volunteerism, educational programs including a science cafe on March
31 about geology and paleontology). We could use volunteers in all
areas from social media to internet to researching material (in
history, languages, nature etc) to field work, to preparing animal and
plant specimens, to photography, to permaculture, to fundraising etc.
Our many volunteers all report satisfying and productive and fun
experiences. Send us an email if interested to join us at
info@palestinenature.org and we can give you detail and also you can
come by any day to the museum (open daily 7 days a week from 9 - 6 but
call to arrange time at (02) 2773553 )

Many of us are tired of governments and are looking to build
sustainable communities. Governments and their intelligence services
and their lack of respect for human rights are wreaking havoc and
promoting fundamentalism around the world (especially here in Western
Asia). The silence of the US-backed government of Afghanistan and not
punishing those who lynched a woman for burning the Quran. The public
executions and torture by the IS-backed government of "Saudi Arabia".
The silence of US media on these and the atrocities of US-backed
apartheid regime here. Most of us Palestinians who follow Israeli
politics were relieved Netanyahu gets to be Prime minister again. Why?
See this by Ali Abunimah on "Why I’m relieved Netanyahu won" (must
read analysis) http://electronicintifada.net/blogs/ali-abunimah/why-im-relieved-netanyahu-won
Yonatan Mendel wrote in the London Review of Books before the
election reflective on real issues and is likewise prophetic. I said
the same thing before every election: we Palestinians prefer Netanyahu
and company over Livni, Peres, Rabin and the like. The oxymoronic
"left Zionists" sort of like "left Nazi" do more damage to native
rights but with a sheep cloak (more like a fig leaf). The "right" has
no such cloak and will move further right as Israel did at every
election. Gideon Levy writing in Haaretz wonders if Israel and
Netanyahu (a lying prime minister whose only accomplishment is killing
Palestinians) actually deserve each other! Now it is up to the
international community to decide how much of apartheid racism will it
tolerate before deciding to give accountability. Or will they wait for
genocide? anyway here are three analysis
Yonatan Mendel http://www.lrb.co.uk/v37/n06/yonatan-mendel/diary
Gideon Levy http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/.premium-1.647555

This video from the Israeli media is beginning to go viral (Netanyahu
and the USA)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6Txrcpl49GQ&t=39

(thoughtful) Reflections By An Arab Jew by Ella Habiba Shohat
“War, however, is the friend of binarisms, leaving little place for
complex identities…”
http://www.bintjbeil.com/E/occupation/arab_jew.html

Mazin Qumsiyeh
Professor and Director
Palestine Museum of Natural History
Bethlehem University
http://palestinenature.org
http://qumsiyeh.org
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Wednesday, March 18

A steep rise in sex crimes within Israel's Citizen's Army
by The Blogger - 0


Number of indictments for sex-related offenses has nearly doubled over the past 2 years, IDF’s chief prosecutor says








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Thursday, March 12

Activist And Former Israeli Bomber Says “I Was Part Of A Terror Organization”
by The Blogger - 0

Former Israeli bomber has left the armed forces and is now speaking against war, and the military industrial complex that employed him for many years. It is people like this who are the true heroes, people who have the courage to stand up against a gang that they are a part of, and speak from a position of experience.
Shapira’s activism began in 2003, when he co-signed a letter with other pilots pledging his support for peace. In a recent interview with The Electronic Intifada, Shapira spoke boldly about his time with the military, saying that he belonged to a terror organization.
Speaking with journalist Ryan Rodrick Beiler, Shapira revealed details of the Israeli government’s assassination policy, which put the lives of many innocent people in danger. Shapira said that “I realized something was rotten when the Israeli government started what was called the “assassination policy” in 2001-2003. Palestinian resistance failed to bring liberation and more extreme attitudes took place, such as suicide bombings and other [forms of] armed struggle. The government thought to assassinate everyone that has to do with armed resistance. Pilots would be sent with missiles to shoot the car of this person. In the beginning, this car could be driving outside of town where just the car was hit. Later they would allow shooting suspects when they are closer to the city. Eventually the assassination would be even if he’s in the middle of the market, or in his house at night with all of the family around.
His story continued:

“In July 2002, Salah Shehadeh, head of the armed branch of Hamas in Gaza, was bombed in the middle of the night with an F-16 dropping a one-ton bomb on his house where he was sleeping with his children and his wife. The bomb killed fifteen people, most of them children, and about 150 were injured. If I needed some answer for my questions and doubts, that was clear: this is a terror attack. And I’m part of a terror organization. The commander of the air force said that everything was done perfectly, and the pilots should sleep well at night. That was an additional thing that helped us: when someone says you can sleep well at night, maybe it’s time to wake up and start to think. For me and several friends, that was the moment we decided to do something.”
Then, on September 24, 2003, Shapira and 28 other pilots published what came to be known as “The Pilots Letter.”
In their letter, the pilots stated that:
“We, veteran and active pilots alike, who served and still serve the state of Israel for long weeks every year, are opposed to carrying out attack orders that are illegal and immoral of the type the state of Israel has been conducting in the territories. We, who were raised to love the state of Israel and contribute to the Zionist enterprise, refuse to take part in Air Force attacks on civilian population centers. We, for whom the Israel Defense Forces and the Air Force are an inalienable part of ourselves, refuse to continue to harm innocent civilians. These actions are illegal and immoral, and are a direct result of the ongoing occupation which is corrupting all of Israeli society. Perpetuation of the occupation is fatally harming the security of the state of Israel and its moral strength.”
This type of resistance is occurring within regimes all over the planet. Just last month, we reported on the story of a US drone operator who also changed his ways and became and activist after he was forced to kill innocent people.

This post is by John Vibes who writes for True Activist and is an author, researcher and investigative journalist who takes a special interest in the counter culture and the drug war. 




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Comparing Zionists to ISIS not so outlandish, after all
by The Blogger - 0

I would say it’s accurate, but who am I to judge?
The head of communications for the Joint Arab List party, Raja Za’atra, caused an outrage on Tuesday when he compared the Islamic State to the Zionist movement and claimed Hamas was not a terror organization.
During a political panel organized by the Bar Ilan University’s student union, Za’atra said: “Where do you think Daesh (Islamic State) learned these things?”
After someone in the audience responded with “From you!”, Za’atra continued: “Look for what the Zionist movement did in 1948. The rape, the looting, the murder… the exact same things.”
* * *
The Zionist Union issued a harsh denunciation of Za’atra’s comments. “We expect the heads of the (Arab) list to immediately renounce these outrageous comment comparing Israel and the Islamic State, as well as his remark that Hamas is not a terror organization,” the party said in a statement. “The comparison between beheaders who have no humanity, to a nation that was reborn and made many contributions to the world, is intolerable and points to ignorance and hatred.”
Meanwhile, over in Herzlliya . . .
Avigdor Lieberman, who has in the past described Israel’s non-Jewish minority as a “fifth column”, sparked controversy during a speech in the coastal town of Herzliya, a week before Israel’s election. “Those who are with us deserve everything, but those who are against us deserve to have their heads chopped off with an axe,” he said.
Who would have guessed? Comparing Zionists to ISIS is not so outlandish after all.




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Getting Past The Issue Of Being Jewish
by The Blogger - 0

 - An Analysis by Professor Lawrence Davidson


Part I - Is Being Jewish the Real Issue?

On 5 March 2015 the New York Times (NYT) carried a front page story about a second-year student at the University of California at Los Angeles (UCLA) named Rachel Beyda. Ms. Beyda, who is Jewish, was seeking appointment as a member on the university’s Judicial Board - a student committee that considers judicial questions in reference to the activities of student government. 

As the story goes, Ms. Beyda’s application was originally rejected because a majority of the board felt that her association with organizations such as Hillel, a group thatuncritically supports Israel’s apartheid-style culture and maintains anti-democratic rules and procedures of its own, would represent a conflict of interest and result in possible bias on her part. Given the tension on many campuses, including UCLA, between those who support and oppose Israeli policies and behavior - tensions which occasionally result in student organizations being disciplined - it was not an unreasonable assumption. Unfortunately, the student board members who questioned Ms. Beyda’s affiliations made it appear that their concerns flowed from her religion and ethnicity.  

Then “at the prodding of a faculty adviser … who pointed out that belonging to Jewish organizations was not a conflict of interest, the students [on the board] revisited the issue and unanimously put her [Beyda] on the board.” 

Of course, the story does not end there. According to theNYT, the episode has “set off an anguished discussion of how Jews are treated” and served to “spotlight what appears to be a surge of hostile sentiment directed against Jews on many campuses in the country, often a byproduct of animosity toward the policies of Israel.”

The Los Angeles-area Zionists have had a field day blowing the incident out of all proportions. For instance, Rabbi Aaron Lerner, “the incoming executive director of the Hillel chapter at U.C.L.A.” told the NYT, “we don’t like to wave the flag of anti-Semitism, but this is different. This is bigotry. This is discriminating against someone because of their identity.” At least on one point Lerner is wrong. Hillel does “wave the flag of anti-Semitism.” After all, Hillel maintains that “Israel is a core element of Jewish life and the gateway to Jewish identity.” The organization follows the Zionist line that those who strongly oppose Israel, oppose the Jews and Judaism per se. 

Lerner’s charge of “bigotry” is harder to evaluate without seeing the recorded video of the board meeting (which has been removed from YouTube.) However, in a letter to the campus newspaper, the students who originally voted against Ms. Beyda apologized for the tack they had taken in their questioning of her. 

The NYT goes on to air the opinions of Rabbi John L. Rosove, senior rabbi of Temple Israel of Hollywood, who called the board incident “insidious”;  Avinoam Baral, the president of student council, who said the board was unfairly suggesting Beyda might have “divided loyalties”; and Natalie Charney, student president of the UCLA chapter of Hillel who complained that this was all the result of an “overall climate of targeting Israel” that has led to the “targeting of Jewish students.” Well, no one can accuse the New York Times of putting forth a balanced interpretation of events.

Part II - What is the Real Issue?

There is certainly something upsetting about this incident. It might very well be that the recent acrimonious struggle that resulted in the UCLA student government endorsing the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement against Israel set the scene for a less than sensitive approach to Ms. Beyda's application to the Judicial Board. Nonetheless, the incident and its repercussions tell us that those who oppose Israeli behavior have to be careful not to fall into the Zionist trap of assuming, or even inferring, that Israel is identical with the Jewish people and that individual Jews cannot do other than support the Zionist state. This is simply not true. 

It seems to me that the mistake the board members made was to focus on Ms. Beyda’s membership in “Jewish” organizations. We can infer that from the faculty adviser’s intervention as described above. If those objecting to her application had thought the issue through, they would have realized that the real problem is not membership in organizations that are Jewish, but rather membership in organizations that support institutional racism and oppression. Focusing on the latter points allows one to get past the issue of being Jewish. After all, there should be a problem if an applicant belonged to any such organization, be it Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, communist, or even pseudo-democratic. 

In the United States we may be approaching a tipping point in the struggle against Zionist racism and Israeli oppression. As such it is extremely important that those involved in this struggle express their feelings in a way that clearly maintains a separation between what is objected to and Jews generally. The struggle is against racism, discrimination, oppression, occupation and illegal colonization because they are evils no matter who perpetrates them. The Israeli case has to be prioritized because Israel and its Zionist allies have bought and bullied our own government and political parties in a corrupting manner. 

Expressed in this way, anyone who applied for the UCLA Judicial Board, regardless of religion or ethnicity, might properly be asked about their attitude toward such issues.


Lawrence Davidson




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Thursday, March 5

The U.S helped Israel with H-bomb - 1980s report declassified
by The Blogger - 0

Conceding to a federal lawsuit, the US government agreed to release a 1987 Defense Department report detailing US assistance to Israel in its development of a hydrogen bomb, which skirted international standards.
Russia Today
The 386-page report, Critical Technology Assessment in Israel and NATO Nations,” likens top Israeli nuclear facilities to the Los Alamos and Oak Ridge National Laboratories that were key in the development of US nuclear weaponry.
Israelis are "developing the kind of codes which will enable them to make hydrogen bombs. That is, codes which detail fission and fusion processes on a microscopic and macroscopic level,” said the report, the release of which comes before Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's March 3 speech in front of the US Congress in which he will oppose any deal that allows Iran's legal nuclear program to persist.

"I am struck by the degree of cooperation on specialized war making devices between Israel and the US," Roger Mattson, a formerly of the Atomic Energy Commission’s technical staff,said of the report, according to Courthouse News.
The report’s release earlier this week was initiated by a Freedom of Information Act request made three years ago by Grant Smith, director of the Washington think tank Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policy. Smith filed a lawsuit in September in order to compel the Pentagon to substantially address the request.
"It's our basic position that in 1987 the Department of Defense discovered that Israel had a nuclear weapons program, detailed it and then has covered it up for 25 years in violation of the Symington and Glenn amendments, costing taxpayers $86 billion,” Smith said during a hearing in late 2014 before Judge Tanya Chutkan in US District Court for the District of Columbia.

Smith described in his federal court complaint how those federal laws were violated by the US in the midst of Israel’s budding nuclear program.
"The Symington Amendment to the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 prohibits most U.S. foreign aid to any country found trafficking in nuclear enrichment equipment or technology outside international safeguards,” Smith wrote.
“The Glenn Amendment of 1977 calls for an end to U.S. foreign aid to countries that import nuclear reprocessing technology."
In November, Judge Chutkan asked government lawyers resistant to the report’s release why it had taken years for the government to prepare the report for public consumption.
“I’d like to know what is taking so long for a 386-page document. The document was located some time ago,” Chutkan said, according to Courthouse News Service.
“I've reviewed my share of documents in my career. It should not take that long to review that document and decide what needs to be redacted.”
image from the report “Critical Technology Assessment in Israel and NATO Nations"
image from the report “Critical Technology Assessment in Israel and NATO Nations"

The government’s representatives in the case -- Special Assistant US Attorney Laura Jennings and Defense Department counsel Mark Herrington -- initially said confidentiality agreements required a“line by line” review of the Defense Department’s report. They later shifted, arguing that its release is optional and not mandatory, as "diplomatic relations dictate that DoD seeks Israel's review."
Smith and the US agreed that the government would redact sections of the report on NATO countries, though the passages on Israel remain intact.
"The capability of SOREQ [Soreq Nuclear Research Center] to support SDIO [Strategic Defense Initiative Organization, or “Star Wars”] and nuclear technologies is almost an exact parallel of the capability currently existing at our National Laboratories," said the report, written by the Institute for Defense Analysis for the Department of Defense.
"SOREQ and Dimona/Beer Sheva facilities are the equivalent of our Los Alamos, Lawrence Livermore and Oak Ridge National Laboratories...[and have] the technology base required for nuclear weapons design and fabrication."
The report’s authors Edwin Townsley and Clarence Robinson found that Israel to had Category 1 capability regarding its anti-tactical ballistic missile and “Star Wars” weapons programs.
"As far as nuclear technology is concerned the Israelis are roughly where the U.S. [w]as in the fission weapon field in about 1955 to 1960,” the report said. “It should be noted that the Israelis are developing the kind of codes which will enable them to make hydrogen bombs."
In a statement on the report’s release, Smith said Thursday, "Informal and Freedom of Information Act release of such information is rare. Under two known gag orders -- punishable by imprisonment -- U.S. security-cleared government agency employees and contractors may not disclose that Israel has a nuclear weapons program."

Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu’s planned address before the US Congress was controversially arranged by Republican leadership without consultation of congressional Democrats or the White House.

The speech will occur weeks before Netanyahu will seek reelection, and is to center around his opposition to any agreement with Iran over its nuclear program, a deal the US -- while levying heavy sanctions on Tehran -- has pursued despite protests from its preeminent ally in the Middle East, Israel.
Tehran’s nuclear program is legal under the terms of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, to which Israel is one of the few United Nations members that is not a signatory.



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