Israel has reportedly received an assurance by US President Barack Obama that it would not be pressured into accounting for its alleged nuclear arsenal or signing the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).
In a meeting with, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu obtained President Obama’s guarantee that the White House would continue a 4-decade-old secret deal to allow Israel keep a nuclear arsenal without opening it to international inspections, The Washington Times reported on Friday quoting officials familiar with the matter.
"The president gave Israel an NPT treaty get out of jail free card," said a Senate staffer speaking on the condition of anonymity. "What this means is that the president gave commitments that politically he had no choice but to give regarding Israel’s nuclear program."
"However, it calls into question virtually every part of the president’s nonproliferation agenda."
Israel, which has allegedly introduced nuclear weapons in the volatile Middle East, maintains a policy of deliberate ambiguity and has so far refused to sign the NPT- a treaty which seeks to limit the spread of such weapons of mass destruction.
The tacit agreement prolonged the nuclear understanding reached between President Richard Nixon and Prime Minister Golda Meir in 1969.
In a reference to the May meeting with President Obama, the Israeli premier said in an interview with Israel’s Channel 2 last week he had received "an itemized list of the strategic understandings that have existed for many years between Israel and the United States" regarding the nuclear arsenal.
"It was not for naught that I requested, and it was not for naught that I received [that document]," Netanyahu said.
Avner Cohen, author of the revelatory Israel and the Bomb, which has drawn upon thousands of documents and tens of interviews on the Israeli nuclear firepower, said the accord amounted to "the United States passively accepting Israel’s nuclear weapons status as long as Israel does not unveil publicly its capability or test a weapon."
In 1958, Israel began building its suspected plutonium and uranium processing facility near Dimona in the Negev desert. The regime claims the facility – which was originally revealed as "textile factory" – is a "research reactor."
In early June, George Washington University’s National Security Archives declassified a 1960 report by the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) which had explained how Tel Aviv was to benefit from a nuclear arsenal.
"Possession of a nuclear weapon capability, or even the prospect of achieving it, would clearly give Israel a greater sense of security, self-confidence and assertiveness," the documents said.