Dimona, the Middle East’s time bomb
David Ben-Gurion, the founder and first prime minister of the Israeli regime in 1954, presented to his Cabinet a plan called the Strategic Defense Plan which was then approved by all members of the Cabinet.
Under the plan, the Zionist regime of Israel would, through land and air aggression, seize parts of the territories belonging to Arab countries neighboring occupied Palestine to expand its geographical sphere.
Israeli first-generation leaders believe the scheme can ward off the consequences of a possible Arab strike against Israel, and push the flashpoint of an all-out war away from occupied Palestine to Arab countries.
Ben-Gurion’s plan also envisages the construction of several nuclear power plants for mass production of atomic arms as well as weapons of mass destruction (WMDs).
Ben-Gurion was of the conviction that the production of WMDs could tip the balance of power in favor of the Israeli regime because the population of Arab nations was ten times that of Israel.
Other first-generation Israeli leaders, including Moshe Dayan, Shimon Peres, Isaac Shamir, Isaac Robin, Ariel Sharon, Golda Meir and Yigal Allon, vowed not to forswear Ben-Gurion’s defense strategy under any circumstances.
Under the plan, Israel and France held talks on the construction of a secret nuclear facility in Negev Desert in southern occupied Palestine. Finally, France began work to erect the Dimona power station in 1958.
The power plant became operational in 1962 secretly and under tight security measures.
Hundreds of Israeli nuclear experts and scientists who had passed numerous training courses in France and the United States began producing nuclear weapons.
In an interview with the British daily The Sunday Times in 1986, Israel nuclear scientist Mordechai Vanunu divulged shocking secrets about Tel Aviv’s nuclear activities.
The Moroccan-born Jewish scientist was kidnapped later in Italy by Mossad’s special agents and sentenced to 18 years behind bars.
Vanunu revealed in his interview that Dimona’s walls had been cracked due to wear and tear, and would cave in at the slightest earthquake.
Later investigation showed nitrate dust, a byproduct of plutonium production, would leak out of the plant’s worn-out walls and pollute the environment up to a radius of 50 kilometers.
A rise in the number of cancer patients in Gaza, Negev and other localities has sounded the alarm for the international community, especially the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), to do something about Dimona’s environmental hazards.
Moreover, unofficial reports suggest Israel abducts migrant Palestinian children in Negev Desert and conducts nuclear tests on them.
Despite pressures by the international community, particularly by Muslim and Arab countries as well as the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM), to make Israel become a signatory to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), the Israeli regime continues to defy international will.
Tel Aviv has, over the past four decades, built another nine power plants in Negev Desert which collectively produce 30 tons of nuclear waste annually.
Eighty-four percent of the nuclear waste is dumped in an area south of occupied Palestine, and the remaining 52 percent is disposed of in the Mediterranean Sea.
Such huge amounts of nuclear fallout can result in an unpreventable environmental disaster in the Middle East. Western environmental experts have repeatedly warned against such disasters.
The US, European Union and International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) have not yet adopted any binding measures to make Israel open up the Dimona nuclear facility to inspections.
That said, and as predicted by Arab nuclear experts, the Dimona power station is a time bomb ticking in the Middle East, jeopardizing the future of regional states.
Should an explosion occur at Dimona, at least five million people are predicted to be exposed to radioactive radiation due to the high population density in occupied Palestine.
Therefore, the international community should renounce its double standards on the nuclear activities going on it the world and hold Israel accountable for its atomic work.