Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Slip of the Tongue

The Israeli government has always refused to confirm or deny that they have a nuclear weapons programme, in fact they have claimed that they will not be the first country to introduce the bomb to the Middle East. In an interview seven years ago, Shimon Peres was questioned about the possibility of a nuclear weapons in Israel:

You have been repeatedly quoted as saying that "Israel will not be the first country to introduce nuclear weapons into the Middle East." It is now an established fact that Israel does possess nuclear weapons -- or at least capabilities to produce 200 nuclear bombs. So what does this assertion of yours exactly mean? Do you mean that Israel will not be the first country to "use" nuclear weapons?

No, I mean to introduce. Israel has not tested any nuclear weapons, and without the test, you cannot even introduce. It is a commitment that Israel gave to the world and the United States of America and we are very serious. Israel said that we are ready to sign the ban on nuclear tests. Not only did we not do a nuclear test, but we are not going to have one. These are guarantees that Israel is not going to introduce nuclear weapons to the Middle East.

But now, we have this from Olmert:

"Iran, openly, explicitly and publicly threatens to wipe Israel off the map. Can you say that this is the same level, when they are aspiring to have nuclear weapons, as America, France, Israel, Russia?"

A slip of the tongue? Or something more malevolent?