Monday, April 3, 2017

This is a very important article that was sent to me by OIC member Tom Cahill. It is basically a synopsis of what happened between JFK and the state of Israel during his short administration, and particularly in the months leading up to his assassination. It was written for the 50th anniversary in 2013, and it was authored by  Laurent Guyenot. 

And I learned some things from it. For instance, I have long known that Israeli Prime Minister David Ben Gurion resigned over his disgust with Kennedy's adamant refusal to help Israel go nuclear. But, I always wondered: why did he resign? Why didn't he stay and just try to fight Kennedy? Well, the reason he resigned is because Kennedy sent him a demanding letter- that the Dimona Nuclear Facility be subjected to rigorous and regular inspections, starting immediately, or else U.S. aid to Israel was in jeopardy. Ben Gurion resigned so that he would not receive the letter, that it would just be sent back. JFK had to wait until a new prime minister was in office to send it again.

And that is exactly what happened. Let's look at the timeline: Kennedy sent the original letter on June 15, 1963. Ben Gurion resigned on June 16, 1963, "thus avoiding receipt of the letter" (Guyenot). Kennedy sent the same letter to the next prime minister, Levi Eshkol, on July 5, 1963.  That letter, presumably, was received. A month later, on August 5, 1963, the first nuclear test ban treaty was signed with the Soviet Union. 

Here is how Guyenot summed it up:

Kennedy’s death a few months later eased the pressure on Israel. Johnson chose to turn a blind eye on the activities at Dimona. John McCone, the CIA director appointed by Kennedy, resigned in 1965, complaining of Johnson’s lack of interest in the subject. Israel acquired its first bomb around 1967, without ever admitting it. Nixon was just as unconcerned as Johnson, while his National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger privately expressed his satisfaction at the idea of having friendly Israel as a nuclear ally.

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