1 October, 2009 — MEDIA LENS: Correcting for the distorted vision of the corporate media
On September 19, the Irish Times reported:
“Israel has rejected the call by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to join the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and open up its atomic sites to international inspection.” (Mark Weiss, ‘Israel spurns nuclear watchdog’s call to open atomic sites to inspection,’ Irish Times, September 19, 2009; www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/world/2009/0919/1224254860406.html )
The IAEA, which met in Vienna on September 18, adopted a resolution expressing concern about “Israeli nuclear capabilities” and called on agency chief Mohamed ElBaradei to work on the issue. The motion was adopted by 49 votes to 45, with 16 abstentions. Russia and China, both permanent members of the UN security council, voted in favour. The United States and the European Union initially tried to block the vote, and then voted against it. David Danieli, deputy director of Israel’s atomic energy commission, said: “Israel will not co-operate in any matter with this resolution.” (english.aljazeera.net/news/middleeast/2009/09/2009918173136830771.html )
Despite this defiance, despite Israel’s appalling record of violating international law, despite its record of waging and threatening war in the region, and despite possessing as many as 400 nuclear warheads, no Western journalist suggested that Israel should be bombed or blockaded as a result. Indeed, apart from the tiny left-wing Morning Star newspaper and a couple of wire agencies, it appears the Irish Times was the only English-language media outlet to cover this story.
Israel is one of three countries, along with India and Pakistan, which is not a signatory to the NPT. The treaty is intended to prevent the spread of nuclear weapons, but Article VI constitutes a specific obligation on nuclear-weapon states like Britain and the United States to disarm themselves of nuclear weapons, an obligation they have conspicuously failed to meet.