Everyone knows that chemical weapons were used to kill hundreds, maybe thousands, in Syria. The world is so up in arms that Barack Obama is trying to get the American people to back him on a military strike (and failing miserably). So what is currently the number two story at Foreign Policy’s website?
Israel has chemical weapons, too. (Note: You may need to go to bugmenot because FP demands registration.)
Syria’s reported use of chemical weapons is threatening to turn the civil war there into a wider conflict. But the Bashar al-Assad government may not be the only one in the region with a nerve gas stockpile. A newly discovered CIA document indicates that Israel likely built up a chemical arsenal of its own.
And why is this relevant? Because: Israel.
Fact: Israel has never used chemical weapons in any war.
Fact: Israel has never used chemical weapons as a response to any attack by terrorists.
Fact: Israel has never used chemical weapons, ever.
But Foreign Policy finds it relevant to say, “hey, Israel has them, too!” when the world is protesting Syria’s use of chemical weapons against civilians. Oh, also? There’s no hard evidence.
“While we cannot confirm whether the Israelis possess lethal chemical agents,” the document adds, “several indicators lead us to believe that they have available to them at least persistent and nonpersistent nerve agents, a mustard agent, and several riot-control agents, marched with suitable delivery systems.”
Whether Israel still maintains this alleged stockpile is unknown. In 1992, the Israeli government signed but never ratified the Chemical Weapons Convention, which bans such arms. (The Israeli embassy in Washington did not respond to requests to comment on this article.) The CIA estimate, a copy of which was sent to the White House, also shows that the U.S. intelligence community had suspicions about this stockpile for decades, and that the U.S. government kept mum about Israel’s suspected possession of chemical weapons just as long.
So let’s get this straight. This report is three decades old. It is not confirmed that they exist. Israel has never used them. Israel has signed, but not ratified the treaty never to use them. Israel has never threatened to use them. But hey, let’s pound Israel for chemical weapons, because: Israel. The author breathlessly gives you all of the information with zero actual evidence other than the CIA saying it thinks Israel had chemical weapons in the 1980s. And Israel never ratified the treaty! ZOMG! CHEMICAL WEAPONS! ISRAEL HAS THEM!
The author’s conclusion, if you manage to make your way all the way there, is actually unintentionally hilarious.
This all may be a tempest in a teacup. It is possible that at some point over the past 30 years the Israelis may have disposed of their stockpile of mustard gas and nerve agents. These weapons need constant maintenance, they require massive amounts of security, and the cost for the upkeep of this stockpile must be extraordinarily high. Still, the Israeli government has a well-known penchant for preserving any asset thought to be needed for the defense of the state of Israel, regardless of the cost or possible diplomatic ramifications.
Translation: I have no proof, but ISRAEL! MIGHT! HAVE! CHEMICAL! WEAPONS!
There is nothing that the anti-Israel media will not use to paint Israel in the worst light possible. Thirty-year-old CIA analyses? Got ‘em. No named sources? Got that. Breathlessly reporting that Israel may have WMDs? Yep.
The fact that Israel has never used them? Irrelevant. Syria is being pounded for it. Let’s show that Israel has to be pounded, too.
Your anti-Israel media, hard at work.