Isabel does her job

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"Israel Denies It Offered South Africa Warheads"

By ISABEL KERSHNER Published: May 24, 2010

JERUSALEM — The office of Israel’s president, Shimon Peres, strongly denied Monday that Mr. Peres, as Israel’s defense minister, offered to sell nuclear warheads to South Africa in 1975, as reported by The Guardian.

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60 Responses

  1. annie
    May 25, 2010, 8:50 pm

    “known liar denies allegations”

    • Chaos4700
      May 25, 2010, 9:02 pm

      Which is funny, because once you have the actual documentation? It’s not really merely allegations any more, even.

      I’d like to think this will be remembered as the beginning of Israel’s Nuremberg. It’s one thing to turn a blind eye to what Israel does to the Palestinians, but I don’t think the world will (or can, really) ignore outright nuclear proliferation.

    • James Bradley
      May 25, 2010, 9:03 pm


      Confidential documents from the South African government with Shimon’s signature, eye witness testimonies, etc is just not enough.

      But then again, Israel will probably deny this until the whole thing blows over then eventually admit to parts of it, just like they did with the Organ Trafficking scandal.

      • Chaos4700
        May 25, 2010, 9:04 pm

        As atrocious as organ trafficking is, nuclear proliferation is several orders of magnitude more immense to the rest of the world.

        I don’t think this is going to blow over.

      • James Bradley
        May 25, 2010, 11:20 pm

        I’ll admit Chaos, this is on an order of magnitude far greater than even something as despicable as organ trafficking.

        Nonetheless, I find it ridiculous that had any other country did this (particularly a Muslim country) the entire media would be all over it all day non stop.

        Remember what happened to Pakistan when the AQ network was discovered…

      • yonira
        May 25, 2010, 11:33 pm

        yeah, it was in the news for a week and fluttered away.

        Chaos doesn’t have a clue what the AQ network is either, don’t bring up things like that, you don’t want to overload his little mind.

      • Chaos4700
        May 25, 2010, 11:51 pm

        What, you mean the Pakistani nuclear scientist who is considered the father of the Pakistani nuke and who was largely responsible for proliferating nuclear technology to, among other places, North Korea. Whose been under house arrest in his home country and they refuse to even let our government investigators talk to him?

        Gee, yeah, never heard of him.

      • traintosiberia
        May 26, 2010, 6:11 am

        Who is in house arrest for establishing Isareli neuclear connection to South Africa ? Vanunu!

  2. Chaos4700
    May 25, 2010, 9:03 pm

    So the NYT is reporting the denial but did the even bother with the real lead story in any great detail in the first place?

    • potsherd
      May 25, 2010, 9:06 pm

      You can’t report the denial without mentioning the charge.

      • annie
        May 25, 2010, 9:14 pm

        generally reports of denials follow the story. nyt didn’t do that. they opened w/the denial.

    • yonira
      May 25, 2010, 11:06 pm

      The guardian, aka the mouthpiece for Hamas, did the exact same thing Chaos, read their headline.

      Guardian: Israeli president denies offering nuclear weapons to apartheid South Africa

      Haaretz: Peres denies charges of arms sales to apartheid regime

      Globes: Israel strongly denies report of South Africa nuclear talks

      Ynetnews: President’s Residence denies Guardian report Peres denies SA nuke talks

      AP: Israel’s Peres denies offering South Africa nukes

      Reuters: Israel denies report on nuclear arms sale offer

      Notice a pattern? They were all reporting a story which originated in the Guardian with the headline ” Israeli president denies offering nuclear weapons to apartheid South Africa”

      • James Bradley
        May 25, 2010, 11:21 pm

        The Guardian is the mouthpiece of Hamas???

        Please tell me your joking.

      • Chaos4700
        May 25, 2010, 11:51 pm

        Yonira is a right wing kook, Mr. Bradley.

      • James Bradley
        May 26, 2010, 12:20 am

        Oh I’m well aware of it Chaos, but the ridiculous statements still cease to amaze me.

      • lareineblanche
        May 26, 2010, 10:54 am

        “…the ridiculous statements still cease to amaze me.”
        Yes, they’ve ceased to amaze me too. They’ve become par for the course…

      • Shingo
        May 26, 2010, 12:06 am

        “Notice a pattern? They were all reporting a story which originated in the Guardian with the headline ” Israeli president denies offering nuclear weapons to apartheid South Africa””

        Yes Yonira there is a pattern.  You’ve produced an example of 7 news outlets quoting Peres denying the deal.

        How many news outlets do you think quoted Clinton saying he did not have sex with that woman?

      • yonira
        May 26, 2010, 12:18 am

        You really don’t get it Shingo? The original story was posted by the guardian, the subsequent news stories were reporting about a story originating in the Guardian. The Guardian used the same exact headline as the NYT, you guys are critical of the NYT but not of the original source, the guardian, if that is hogwash, i don’t know what is.

      • James Bradley
        May 26, 2010, 12:21 am

        uhm… okay? whats your point again?

      • thankgodimatheist
        May 26, 2010, 12:27 am

        Go figure!

      • yonira
        May 26, 2010, 12:27 am

        if the hypocrisy isn’t apparent to you James, it’s really not worth explaining again. keep up with the delusions dude.

      • Chaos4700
        May 26, 2010, 12:31 am

        That’s rich coming from the guy who sees a picture of a slain Palestinian child and has the reaction, “It’s a FAAAAKE!

      • yonira
        May 26, 2010, 12:39 am

        way to stay on topic and address YOUR hypocrisy Chaos.

        I don’t trust a website that profits from Palestinian and Jewish suffering in the Holocaust.

      • Chaos4700
        May 26, 2010, 12:42 am

        So instead you turn to right-wing anti-Muslim hate blogs and PR outlets run by Israeli government officials and intel agents? Yeah, that isn’t profiting off of suffering to the tune of $7 million a day in American taxpayer money — and more.

      • Shingo
        May 26, 2010, 1:12 am

        “You really don’t get it Shingo?   The original story was posted by the guardian,  the subsequent news stories were reporting about a story originating in the Guardian.  The Guardian used the same exact headline as the NYT,  you guys are critical of the NYT but not of the original source,  the guardian,  if that is hogwash,  i don’t know what is.”

        Ummm, no it’s you that doesn’t get it Yoni.

        The guardian posted documents as evidence of the deal, complete with Peres’ signature.

        Furthermore, the NYT has clearly censored the story to be gentle of Israel, the same NYT that all to willing to employ hyperbole when they discuss Iran, so yes, we are critical of the NYT.

        You’re smart enough to know this Yoni, sop why play dumb?

      • Shmuel
        May 26, 2010, 1:14 am

        Hebrew Haaretz had a different headline (24/5/10):
        Secret documents reveal: Israel offered to sell nuclear warheads to South Africa – A month ago, Haaretz published the arms trading story, the secret minutes were revealed yesterday

        Peres’ denial appears toward the end of the article. (Haaretz didn’t bother with all the other denials Kershner seems to have felt were the essence of her story.)

      • sherbrsi
        May 26, 2010, 1:15 am

        Furthermore, the NYT has clearly censored the story to be gentle of Israel, the same NYT that all to willing to employ hyperbole when they discuss Iran, so yes, we are critical of the NYT.

        It’s a deliberate act of framing.

        When the Chomsky story broke out, the NYT was noticeably late in featuring a report on the story. Then its resident Hasbara writer Bronner finally broke the silence, and couched the entire affair with firm excuses and statements from Israeli officials calling it a mistake.

      • Chaos4700
        May 26, 2010, 1:15 am

        You’re smart enough to know this Yoni, sop why play dumb?

        I think you are being too kind in the interests of establishing a dialog that will never amount to anything other than yonira shouting profanities and hate speech at you.

      • braciole
        May 26, 2010, 3:27 am

        Actually, yonira, although you probably already know this since you a behaving in your usual disingenuous manner, it is you are wrong because the original story was not Israeli president denies offering nuclear weapons to apartheid South Africa published on Monday 24 May 2010 at 23.13 BST but the earlier articles Israel and apartheid: a marriage of convenience and military might and The memos and minutes that confirm Israel’s nuclear stockpile published on Sunday 23 May 2010 at 21.00 BST.

        You can work out that 21.00 BST on Sunday 23 May 2010 is earlier than 23.13 BST on Monday 24 May 2010? I now hope that you will do the honourable thing and admit that you a lying shit and then that you will apologize to all the people you have maligned in this thread. However, since most Zionists are dishonourable lying shits, I have little expectation that you will.

      • braciole
        May 26, 2010, 3:53 am

        yonira – I hope you got the note from your senior officer in the Habara Brigade not to go down the usual route of claiming that the US, UK, France and South Africa all supplied nuclear materials to a rogue state for the construction of nuclear weaapons so why shouldn’t Israel do so as well and anything less would be anti-Semitic and a precursor to the next Holocaust™ in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

      • annie
        May 26, 2010, 4:20 am

        thank you braciole!

      • eGuard
        May 26, 2010, 12:44 am

        Not exactly, y. The Presidents reaction in the Guardian was just a follow up. The original story is Revealed: how Israel offered to sell South Africa nuclear weapons.
        Not linking to the original publication is misleading NYT behaviour. Misleading.

      • tree
        May 26, 2010, 1:23 am

        Yes, exactly, eGuard. Not only does the NYT story spend much of its copy interviewing people, who were not involved but willing to deny the allegation, or cast doubts on it, rather than give the details of the Guardian article, it links, not to the original Guardian article, but to the follow up article of the Guardian on Peres’ denial.

        Very misleading.

      • traintosiberia
        May 26, 2010, 6:15 am

        You can deny in future for writing here on Mondoweiss and the press will report that.

        Notice that Press reports only Peres who established the Textile business in the Dimona of Negev and Israel which planned to create a ‘kaffir bomb” meant to annihiltae blacks only

  3. braciole
    May 25, 2010, 9:26 pm

    It all depends on how you parse Peres’ statement. Kershner claims the Peres didn’t offer to sell warheads to the South Africans, that could mean either that the South Africans asked to buy nuclear weapons or that Israel offered to barter nuclear warheads. Israel had already traded 30 gms of heavy water (tritium probably bought from the British or Norwegians) for 500 tones of uranium yellowcake, so why not trade warheads for something else.

    Yet again the Zionists delegitimize Israel.

  4. stevelaudig
    May 25, 2010, 10:04 pm

    Okay. These are not for “sale” but we’ll trade or how about we just give them to you and then someday you will give us something back. Dershowitz would have been on O.J.s defense team too. If the nukes to fit, you must acquit.

  5. stevelaudig
    May 25, 2010, 10:04 pm

    oops “If the nukes don’t fit, you must acquit.” big fingers, little keys.

  6. Elliot
    May 25, 2010, 10:16 pm

    Dan Meridor’s wise-ass comment is in the same vein as Israeli officials’ response to the Dubai assassination.
    “I wasn’t in business then” is not an answer. As the cabinet minister in charge of the atomic program he surely has access to the Israeli copies of the memoranda that the Guardian published. It’s the cutesy attitude of ‘I don’t really need to give an answer to the question because this conversation doesn’t really matter anyway.’
    It’s not that Israel nurtures an aura of ambiguity on the nuclear weapons questions rather that it flaunts an attitude of impunity.

  7. demize
    May 25, 2010, 10:58 pm

    Who ya gonna believe, me, or your lying eyes, Oh and the signed top secret minutes that have been published. I love the excuse, its essentially the dog ate my homework.

  8. thankgodimatheist
    May 26, 2010, 12:04 am

    “Isabel does her job”
    It’s not a job, it’s a pleasure! Zionists do not do things because it’s a job, or very rarely. They’re a zealous bunch. All devout to the cult of death and destruction called Israel.. It’s a form of worship/whoreship..

  9. Amar
    May 26, 2010, 12:17 am

    Would Israel ever admit something that is bad for PR if they can deny it? Lying is always the option of first resort if they think they can get away with it. To say that Peres denied it is as reassuring as Baghdad Bob saying that the American forces were not able to enter his city.

    • James Bradley
      May 26, 2010, 12:31 am

      This is exactly how all atrocities are covered up these days.

      For example, when the US military goes in and kills a few dozen Afghan nationals at a wedding party the media and military spokesmen go into damage control which consists of a few stages.

      Stage 1: Deny, deny, deny.

      Stage 2: Wait a couple weeks when the headlines have died down then say your going to do an investigation into the matter.

      Stage 3: Start the investigation but ensure that it remains a private military affair, and that the only information the Press will get on the issue will come from Military issued Press Releases read out loud by military spokeswomen (its the new trend to have a woman be the spokesperson for the military these days; I think they honestly believe that massacres and mass murder are easier to swallow if a woman says it).

      Stage 4: Continue to claim that an investigation is under way, while denying the reports coming from the investigation taken by the victims themselves.

      Stage 5: Wait a few months, release a small press release stating that the military was cleared of all wrong doing for and call the case closed.

      Stage 6: Once several years go by and nobody cares anymore (except for the victims and human rights groups of course) release a small press release admitting to the crime but absolving yourself of all guilt by citing a technicality.

      Of course it doesn’t always go down like this and sometimes you may even have to give a few soldiers community service for their “negligence in a stressful combat situation.”

      • demize
        May 26, 2010, 1:57 am

        I think you forgot the stage where they cannot comment because its currently under investigation. That burns up at least a month or two

  10. eGuard
    May 26, 2010, 12:18 am

    Noticed the word nuclear didn’t make it into the NYT headline. That would, of course, draw attention. Which is not what a newspaper is about.

  11. Miss Dee Mena
    May 26, 2010, 12:47 am

    As I said in a previous post. It was known amongst South Africa’s intelligentsia, liberals and the media back in the seventies that Israel had helped the country with its nuclear bomb. Just as it was known that Israel purchased uranium from South Africa for its own clandestine nuclear programme.

    As for Shimon Peres he is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. He comes across as this benign and wise old ex-diplomat. But in reality he is as hawkish as Lieberman but with the added thick saccharine coat of hypocrisy. He seems to revel in his self-delusional self-assessment as one of the world’s elders who espouses wisdom and influence to the queues of international politicians and leaders whom he is sure are just waiting for an audience with him. He makes me want to barf. At least Lieberman is frank about being the racist goose-stepper that he is.

    • droog
      May 26, 2010, 1:40 am

      And our last Labour Government in its infinite wisdom and humanity choose to give the bastard a knighthood, it even let him get away with the preach of royal protocol when the news was leaked whilst the ‘descision’ was in process. If/when they offer me my knighthood I’ll be refusing to accept on principle.

      • Shmuel
        May 26, 2010, 1:59 am

        If/when they offer me my knighthood I’ll be refusing to accept on principle.

        Nickle Resolution notwithstanding, I will be turning down my K as well. Should we start a facebook group?

    • Shmuel
      May 26, 2010, 1:55 am

      He comes across as this benign and wise old ex-diplomat …

      Anyone else notice how Kershner felt the need to refer to him (completely gratuitously) as “an elder statesman”? Almost made me lose my breakfast.

    • Taxi
      May 26, 2010, 8:05 am

      Like my grandmother used to say:

      Never trust an old man with too much make-up on.

  12. tree
    May 26, 2010, 1:30 am

    I was looking at the Reuter’s story on the denial and came across this little tidbit:

    Speculation about Israeli-South African nuclear cooperation was raised in 1979 when a U.S. satellite detected a mysterious flash over the Indian Ocean.

    The U.S. television network CBS reported it was a nuclear test carried out by the two countries. But the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency, in a document written in 1980 and released in 2004, said the United States could not determine “with certainty the nature and origin of the event.”

    link to

    Anyone here recall this?

    • eGuard
      May 26, 2010, 1:54 am

      Yep. So someone could get away with a nuclear explosion, without the CIA (USA) knowing. What are they for then?

      • Walid
        May 26, 2010, 6:22 am

        The Guardian story came out in February 2006 but it didn’t cause any ripples back then. Now it’s 4 years later and it’s the same story and the same sources but this time around, it is making news. What is different and why all this attention?

      • traintosiberia
        May 26, 2010, 6:21 am

        Indian explosion in 1998 was not detected by US .

  13. marc b.
    May 26, 2010, 8:43 am

    Kershner doing her part to promote Israel’s longstanding policy of nuclear ambiguity, neither confirming nor denying that it has nuclear weapons, though it is widely believed to have developed a large arsenal. And a policy of ‘ambiguity’ is not synonymous with a policy of secrecy. It is imperative that Israel’s nuclear arsenal is a practical fact, while its existence is officially undetermined. Kershner’s simultaneous bland acceptance of the existence of the policy of ambiguity and uncritical publication of denials promotes the policy.

    Mr. Peres, an elder statesman, was responsible for establishing Israel’s nuclear program with help from France in the 1950s.

    Curious. So it was France, and France alone, apparently that helped ‘establish Israel’s nuclear program’ in the 1950s. No mention of American assistance. No mention of Edward Teller advising Israel on both technical and policy matters, to include the ‘policy of ambiguity’.

    And this from Lawrence of Cyberia, with a revealing Le Monde Diplomatique article from 1978: (Apologies if it has already been linked elsewhere).

    link to

    • marc b.
      May 26, 2010, 10:42 am

      An article on the ADL’s apparent involvement in intelligence gathering efforts against anti-apartheid groups in the US. And now they try to smear Goldstone for his position as a judge in SA. Big . . . brass . . . balls.

      link to

  14. MRW
    May 26, 2010, 1:35 pm

    Isabel and the NYT flunk their job
    South Africa this week released signed Shimon Peres 1975 arms agreement doc with Botha.
    link to
    ,blockquote>This week, newspapers around the world received reports and signed documents from South Africa. The reports said that, in 1975, Israel agreed to sell South Africa nuclear weapons. South Africa then released an arms agreement signed by current Israeli President Shimon Peres. This is the document “heard round the world.”
    Meetings being held in New York to set up a conference for 2012 to guarantee that the Middle East is nuclear free. Israel has been informed that it will not be able to hide behind denials and that the nuclear arsenal put on the sale block by Israel in 1975 and nobody knows how many times since, has to go. When Israel was finally caught, it changed at least one part of a game, but the game will go on. South Africa’s willingness to come forward has shocked the world only because of the selfless honesty of the act, something unseen, something clean and decent. Imagine, the fall of Israel at the hands of an innocent.

    What does it mean? Neither South Africa nor Israel are admitting that the nukes were delivered. General beliefs are that they were, a real shock to Nelson Mandela when he took office, from prisoner of apartheid to commander of a nuclear power. What is proven by this is that Israel was, even 35 years ago, a nuclear state, in direct violation of numerous international treaties. It also proves that Israel offered nukes to South Africa, a rogue nation under sanctions that covered not only any weapons but trade as well. This made Israel a criminal state and Mr. Peres a war criminal.

    • eGuard
      May 26, 2010, 3:22 pm

      While his signature, below Apartheid PW Botha’s, was all over the internet, his denial is a bit thin.

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