Since its announcement last week, the Iran Nuclear Deal has been the focal point of most foreign policy #News. Many have clamored that it is an unprecedented achievement in international diplomacy, and that it will greatly aid preventing Iran from building a nuclear arsenal (it is disputed whether they had any intention of developing one). That may be true, but one of the less explored topics related to this deal is the very real presence of a country in the Middle East which already possesses nuclear weapons: Israel.
"What's the big deal?" you may say. Well, the problem lays in the fact that Israel's nuclear arsenal is completely undeclared, it is not monitored by UN monitoring bodies, and Israel's highest government authorities even negate its existence. Israel is thus one of only four countries in the world to have an undeclared military nuclear capabilities, and it's not in great company: the others are North Korea, Pakistan, and India. Despite this being a little advertised fact, it has been known for at least the past 30 years. It was in 1986 that a young Israeli nuclear technician named Mordechai Vanunu revealed details of Israel's nuclear program. After having done so he was drugged by an Israeli Mossad agent in Italy, brought to Israel, and prosecuted in a closed-door trial. He then spent 18 years in prison, 11 of which in confinement. Since his release he has had numerous prohibitions imposed on him such as not being able to use a cellphone, and has been re-incarcerated numerous times for petty offences in what he labels as a persecution.
While the modern state of Iran has never attacked another country,
Israel's creation was the result of a bellicose war of aggression which
continues to this day. While Iran has no proven military nuclear capabilities,
Israel's are almost a certainty. While Netanyahu has warned that Iran's nuclear
weapons would be ready "in a matter of months" since the 1980s,
Israel has had nuclear capabilities for at least 20 years prior. While Iran has
ratified the Chemical Weapons Convention, Israel has not and is strongly
suspected on having used white phosphorus (a UN-banned chemical warfare
substance) in Gaza. So, why is the U.S. thus making Iran, and not Israel, sign
a Nuclear Treaty? The answer would seem self-evident; Israel, after all, is one
of the United States' greatest ally, particularly given its position in the Middle
East. In fact, since the United States gives roughly US$ 2 billion a year in
military aid to Israel, they could be financing part of the program itself!
If we abide by these presuppositions, it would logically follow that the United States has two sets of rules when it comes to foreign policy: those for itself and its allies, and those for the states they do not particularly like. But if one is to lead by example, it must apply moral standards equally to itself and others, and require that its closest allies do the same. If this and following administrations are serious in a plan for nuclear security in the Middle East, it must include Israel.