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Friday, 14 March, 2003, 17:47 GMT
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Israel's Secret Weapon was broadcast on BBC Two on Monday, 17 March, 2003 at 2320 GMT.
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Vananu may be a traitor or a courageous activist for peace in the Middle East, but his treatment is inhumane and degrading and should not happen in a modern civilised world.
It highlights the double standard that exists in the world today. We have just fought a war with Iraq for possibly possessing WOMD that we are certain that Israel has. Israel is certainly not any more democratic than Iran is, for example, so democracy is not an excuse for this double standard.
Excellent and revealing programme giving insight into the very worrying situation in Israel with its unacceptable nuclear policy. We are full of admiration for Mordechai Vanununu and horrified at the treatment he has received from officials in this so-called democracy.
To compare Israel to Iraq is to draw fallacious similarities between the two countries. One is a democracy fighting to protect its citizens from the scourge of terrorism, the other is a terrorist dictatorship. This is not the same thing, and to suggest that it is reeks of anti-Semitism.
Your programme, "Israel's Secret Weapon", was a brilliant documentary that lifted the lid on the violent secrecy that has surrounded Israel's nuclear capability which
has hitherto remained outside the bounds of international law and
inspection. I want to say a big thankyou to the producers of the programme for their courage, honesty and integrity.
Why is it that one can not criticise Israel without being labelled anti-Semitic? When people criticise Pakistan or any other Muslim nation they are not charged with being Islam phobic - One can dislike the actions of Israel without being anti-Semitic.
I have no strong objections to Israel having these weapons but, to consider themselves as part of Western democracies, they should be honest about them and, at least, let inspectors in to check safety factors.
Does every country that has nuclear weapons have to agree to inspections? I know Iraq is subject to inspections, but that's a result of the invasion of Kuwait and the Gulf War of l99l. Britain has nuclear weapons, but does anyone from abroad inspect them? If not, why the question on Israel, I wonder.
I am astonished that your programme could be broadcast on national television.
I find it very distressing to know that my taxpayer's money goes towards paying / financing a documentary that is instrumental in fomenting racial hatred and in particular to rekindle the flame of old anti-Semitic prejudices. Film making offers a far too easy, and dangerous, opportunity to show one-side of a coin and omit the flipside of it. The editorial body of Correspondent and the supervisory bodies of the BBC who allowed the broadcast will have on their conscience the next anti-Semitic attacks in this country.
It is encouraging that someone is still trying to remind the world that the country that has nuclear arms in the Middle East is Israel and not Iraq (at least not yet) - all weapons of mass destruction in the area must be treated equally.
This programme demonstrates the level of hypocrisy that exists in the West. It clearly exposes the duplicitous nature of foreign policy with regard to the Middle East. This is the root cause of Islamic fundamentalism which we all abhor. It totally nullifies our stance on Iraq; the spurious claims about Iraq's WOMD and the urgent need for military action. The net effect is that we are being turned from illegitimate to legitimate targets of anger and frustration of the dispossessed in the region.
A typical conspiracy!
Why is it so terrible that Israel has nuclear weapons? - America has them, and so does Britain! They are not attacked for it - Israel needs nuclear weapons to deter undemocratic nations such as Iraq from attacking them, as they did in the Gulf War. America knows that Israel has atomic capabilities, but feels no need to disarm her, because they know that Israel never has and never will pose a threat to world peace, democracy and freedom, unlike Iraq.
We haven't all forgotten Mordechai Vanunu as stated in your programme last night. Years ago I asked Amnesty International to intervene on his behalf, apparently he wasn't worthy of such intervention not being a prisoner of conscience. It was however interesting to see that Israel unlike any other country except Iraq and Russia uses toxic gases on its' people. I guess they are not really people though are they, because they are Palestinians, like the Kurds in Iraq and the Chechens in Russia. How quick they forget how much their people suffered and inflict similar suffering on others.
To compare Israel to Iraq is to draw fallacious similarities between the two countries. One is a democracy fighting to protect its citizens from the scourge of terrorism; the other is a terrorist dictatorship. Such comparisons do not encourage those many, many Israelis that do want to live in peace with her Arab neighbours.
Thank you for the courage in airing the truth about the nuclear capabilities and weapons programme in Israel. It is an absolute disgrace that Vanunu's story has been smothered for so long. People need to know the hypocrisy that is going on.
So this proves that Israel has weapons of mass destruction, does that mean that the US along with the British and other countries that are for war ...will they invade Israel, basically do what they are doing in Iraq? ....
The UN Security Council regularly calls on Israel 'urgently to place its nuclear facilities under the safeguards of the International Atomic Energy Agency.' Israel has signed but not ratified the Chemical Weapons Convention, but is one of only four countries in the world - with Cuba, India and Pakistan - not to have signed the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty .But of course, supported by the US, Israel is not prone to inspections by the UN.
As far as we the Israelis are concerned, Vanunu should remain forgotten, abandoned and rotting in jail for eternity!! As for the rest of the world, hear this: We are a peace seeking people who just wish to be left to live but don't let that fool you as to our very serious intention to remain alive and by that we mean a free people in our promised land!
The only reason that Israel needs to defend itself is because it has pursued a policy of taking land by stealth for many years.
Stuart Shillington, Canada
UN inspectors should search for weapons of mass destruction in Israel as it is doing in Iraq. Israel is a threat to Middle East and world peace
So many people, the world over, see this as glaring double standards in disarmament in the Middle East. Many people are baffled by the fact that this issue has not yet been addressed throughout all the turmoil surrounding disarming Iraq. Hypocrisy?
Israel is democratic, Iraq is a dictatorship. Another difference is that if Iraq had a nuclear bomb they would use it (we have to thank Israel for bombing the Iraqi nuclear plant back in 1981). Israel has nuclear bombs for defensive reasons as they are surrounded by sworn enemies.
Enough Israel bashing. Arab nations have been calling atomics the "sword of Islam" for years. The Muslim world still preaches conversion by force to Islam. You never hear Israel calling nuclear weapons the sword of Judah. Britain has Nuclear weapons too. If you're all so keen on seeing Arabs with Nukes why don't you give them some.
We're in a rough neighbourhood - you have to protect yourself. We already counted on Europe once. Six million of us died.
Although not supporting the treatment of Vanunu, there is no evidence to even suggest Israel has ever used their weapons. To compare Israel to Iraq is a dangerous and inflammatory comparison to make and only fuels those who have ulterior and racist motives. I look forward in the near future to a 'Correspondent' breakthrough story on how the 'Protocols of the Elders of Zion' are here amongst us!
Iraq - Sadam - Israel - We have the only democracy in the Middle East - this the only difference
I do appreciate your deep and genuine concern for Mr. Vanunu, but would like to enquire - why don't you protest against nuclear force in the hands of the UK for example?
War is being orchestrated against Iraq, as it is accused of holding weapons of mass destruction [WMD], though there is no convincing evidence for this. On the other hand, Israel has hundreds of nuclear weapons as well as chemical and biological weapons. Yet we hear nothing of war or sanctions being used against Israel. Is there no limit to this practice of double standards?
Even if Israel does have nuclear power, it will never be a threat like Iraq is. Besides, without having any deterrents Israel has no chance of surviving. Do you care about it?
It was unfortunately necessary to postpone the billed programme "Israel's Secret Weapon" on Sunday night due entirely to the overrun of an unscheduled news bulletin about the Azores summit.
It is sometimes necessary to make last minute scheduling changes, and with events around the Iraq conflict so fluid at present, this is particularly the case.
The programme was transmitted at the first available opportunity and the BBC trailed and promoted the new schedule to direct audiences to the programme from Sunday night and through Monday.
There is no suggestion that any political pressure affected a scheduling decision by the BBC.
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