The Campaign Spot

Will Obama Try to Get Israel to Declare Its Nuclear Arsenal?

Eli Lake finds another scoop, this one revealing a dangerous rift in the United States’ traditional alliance with Israel:

President Obama’s efforts to curb the spread of nuclear weapons threaten to expose and derail a 40-year-old secret U.S. agreement to shield Israel’s nuclear weapons from international scrutiny, former and current U.S. and Israeli officials and nuclear specialists say.

The issue will likely come to a head when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu meets with Mr. Obama on May 18 in Washington. Mr. Netanyahu is expected to seek assurances from Mr. Obama that he will uphold the U.S. commitment and will not trade Israeli nuclear concessions for Iranian ones.

Assistant Secretary of State Rose Gottemoeller, speaking Tuesday at a U.N. meeting on the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT), said Israel should join the treaty, which would require Israel to declare and relinquish its nuclear arsenal.

“Universal adherence to the NPT itself, including by India, Israel, Pakistan and North Korea,  . . . remains a fundamental objective of the United States,” Ms. Gottemoeller told the meeting, according to Reuters.

Strange, Joe Biden didn’t mention this potential change of policy in his speech at AIPAC, did he?

I would note, however, that when Helen Thomas tried to trap Obama during his first press conference, asking which countries in the Middle East have nuclear weapons, Obama said he “didn’t want to speculate” as to which ones.

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