There are many who believe the state of Israel has yet to completely live up to its reputation as a democracy. New evidence has been uncovered by a researcher studying the close relationship between Israel and the apartheid regime in South Africa which indicates in the 1970s there was discussions between the two countries regarding the sale of nuclear devices by Israel. For years, Israel has argued that it is a “responsible power” that would not misuse nuclear weapons and thus is not subject to investigation by UN inspectors. A new book by Sasha Polakow-Suransky, “The Unspoken Alliance,” cites documentary evidence that in 1975, Israel offered to sell to the racist South Africa, “some of the nuclear capable Jericho missiles in its arsenal.” South African General RF Armstrong, responded to the offer by insisting his nation also required access to nuclear weapons. South Africa decided to pursue the purchase due to cost factors.
It is time for Israel to live up to its reputation as a democratic society and work for peace with Palestinians. Instead of citing past failures at compromise, it must pursue the path of hope. If the past is a factor in determining success today, what is one to make of a past in which Israel was willing to sell nuclear weapons to a racist nation?