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15 November 2017


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Hersh, Samson Option
The most memorable moment for Ben-Gurion came when
he was leaving the hotel room. Kennedy suddenly walked him
back inside to tell him "something important." It was a politi-
cal message: "I know that I was elected by the votes of Ameri-
can Jews. I owe them my victory. Tell me, is there something I
ought to do?" Ben-Gurion had not come to New York to haggle
with the President about Jewish votes. "You must do whatever
is good for the free world," he responded. He later told his
aides: "To me, he looks like a politician." Ben-Gurion, known
to his associates as B.G., made similar complaints to Abe Fein-
berg. "There's no way of describing the relationship between
Jack Kennedy and Ben-Gurion," Feinberg said, "because
there's no way B.G. was dealing with JFK as an equal, at least
as far as B.G. was concerned. He had the typical attitude of an
old-fashioned Jew toward the young. He disrespected him as a
youth." There was an additional factor: Joseph Kennedy. "B.G.
could be vicious, and he had such a hatred of the old man."
. . .

There was one major concession by Washington. Dimona did
not have to be inspected by the International Atomic Energy
Agency. Ben-Gurion had insisted in his private exchanges with
Kennedy that such inspections would violate Israel's sover-
eignty. The White House eventually agreed to send a specially
assembled American inspection team into Dimona. That agree-
ment was further softened by a second concession that, in es-
sence, guaranteed that the whole procedure would be little


more than a whitewash, as the President and his senior advisers
had to understand: the American inspection team would have
to schedule its visits well in advance, and with the full acquies-
cence of Israel. There would be no spot checks permitted.

Ben-Gurion took no chances: the American inspectors — most
of them experts in nuclear reprocessing — would be provided
with a Potemkin Village and never know it.
there is a lot more, and worse here:


Remember back in 2007, when Israel bombed Syrian building in the desert that Israel and Bush/Cheney claimed was North Korean nuclear reactor?
Well, they lied, it was not a reactor, and they knew it. So what was really going on? Israel thought it was a missile storage building for HezB, and Israel tried to get USA to bomb it. And Cheney wanted everyone to believe it was a North Korean nuclear reactor because Cheney wanted to terminate the diplomacy that Sec/State Rice was engaging with North Korea.
Gareth Porter explains here:


Well Hersh did break new ground in highlighting JFK's clashes with Ben Gurion over Israel's development of nuclear weapons, which Avner Cohen later further fleshed out with 'Israel and the Bomb'. Of course it wasn't just the nuke issue but JFK's foreign policy in MENA in general. Perhaps RFK's instructions to the ZOA to register under FARA was copied from Ike as just a negotiating tactic to pressure Israel over nukes, perhaps not though, it was after all an action entirely in line with his privately expressed opinions and policies enacted once in office.

English Outsider

"Actually, the unprincipled and vulgar Steele has been a perfect choice for the task."

I don't know about perfect, but as ever you have to take what you can get. I doubt any normal professional, ex or not, would have touched the job. As with Hamish de Bretton-Gordon in another area I suspect the choice was limited. Hope it was, anyway.

That's all an outsider can do mostly. Suspect. The thing may have been done quite differently. But even an outsider can get away from "suspect" sometimes and move to firmer ground. It's firm ground to say that publicly backing Steele's findings when they finally made it to public view was stupid. That was what was done and unless it was misreported we let it be known that we gave him a safe house for refuge just to underline the message. It's an unprecedented snake pit, American politics at present, and it was an error of judgement for the UK government to have taken sides in it. It's easier to make enemies than friends.

Thank you for the links. I read one and skimmed the other - there's only so much one needs to see of a man trying to get away from reporters. As you say, that's a sorry picture there too but bent movers and shakers in the House of Lords or the Commons are two a penny. That's taken for granted. The UK press regularly digs them out. So the Polak/Patel affair was bad all right but I doubt it raised many eyebrows.


As someone commented elsewhere, US-supervised SDF forces have recently taken over the Kibar site. Funnily enough there was no immediate announcement of the discovery of nuclear materials, or indeed anything at all.


Luke Harding used to be correspondent in Moscow. He is known to be very anti-Russian. More important was the speech of Theresa May, on, I think, 13th November, accusing the Russians, no doubt influenced by the book. This speech was taken as an attempt to divert attention away from May's current Brexit problems. It didn't work. In that sense, Harding's accusations have disappeared into the ether in Britain. They're all too obsessed by Brexit.


Sorry, that post should have been laguerre

English Outsider

Brexit. The only expert I've come across on Brexit, possibly the only man in England who understands the subject in all its eye-glazing detail, is Dr Richard North. He's very gloomy. Apparently no one on our side understands the ins and outs of separation. I'll link to his site and a glance at it will confirm we've got a lot to be gloomy about.

Deal or no deal it's likely to be a mess, therefore. There doesn't seem to be a lot of brotherly love around either. Not at the moment. Brotherly love's bound to be in short supply when a chunk of failing empire decides to wander off by itself. Looking at it from the German point of view we're letting them down badly and can expect no favours. In fact, judging from a surprisingly frank BBC report on the German negotiating position I heard recently, Berlin's quite prepared to cut off its nose to spite its face if that'll teach us a lesson. It probably will.

But all is not lost. Not quite. However much of a mess we make of Brexit - and Dr North predicts a shambles of monumental proportions - it can't be as bad as if we'd stayed in.

In a quite different context I suppose it's the same as with Trump. He's having immense difficulty making headway at the moment; but however it goes that also can't be worse than what was there before.


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