Israel Aiding Saudi Arabia in Developing Nuclear Weapons

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Written by Whitney Webb; Originally appeared at MintPress

Saudi interest in developing nuclear weapons dates back to the 1970s, when the kingdom learned of major steps taken by both Israel and India in the development of nuclear armaments.

The Israeli government has begun selling the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia information on how to develop nuclear weapons, according to a senior official at the Israeli military organization iHLS (Israel’s Homeland Security). Ami Dor-on, a senior nuclear commentator at the organization — which is partially funded by U.S. weapons-giant Raytheon – came forward because of his concern over the emerging nuclear arms race in the region. The cooperation between the two countries in helping the Saudis to develop a nuclear weapons program is just the latest sign of their warming relationship, with Israel recently calling the Saudi crown prince “a partner of Israel.”

Israel Aiding Saudi Arabia in Developing Nuclear Weapons

Israel has been a nuclear power for decades, though its nuclear arsenal is undeclared and the country has refused to sign the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. Estimates of its arsenal vary, with most suggesting that Israel possesses from 100 to 200 nuclear weapons. Israel was aided in the development of its nuclear program by Western powers, particularly France. Much of the Western “help” Israel received, however, was the result of covert thefts of nuclear material from countries such as the United States and Belgium.

While Dor-On, speaking to news outlet Arabi21, did not elaborate on the details of the information being exchanged, he stated that the sharing of this information was likely to be just the beginning of Israeli involvement in a future Saudi nuclear weapons program, which would likely see Israel “take the initiative to develop Saudi Arabia’s effort to acquire nuclear weapons” as a result of “the growing Saudi-Israeli relations.”

Both Israel and Saudi Arabia have justified their acquisition of nuclear weapons by citing concerns about Iran’s nuclear capabilities. However, Iran — unlike Israel — has never developed any nuclear weapons and its capacity to develop one is virtually nil under the conditions set by the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JPCOA). Though the U.S. recently left the deal, Iran has since announced that it would continue to abide by the agreement if the other signatories also agreed to do so.

Dor-On additionally expressed his concern over the Saudis’ acquiring of nuclear weapons and a wider nuclear arms race in the region, stating that “this information should shock us as we see the world is changing for the worse, following the race for the possession of nuclear weapons that pass right over our heads in the Middle East.”

He also noted that Israel’s decision to begin sharing nuclear secrets with Saudi Arabia was motivated by a similar offer recently made by Pakistan to the Saudis — in which Islamabad had announced its ability to transfer nuclear-weapons expertise to the Gulf kingdom “within a month” — stating that the Israeli government did not want to “leave it [the development of a Saudi nuclear program] solely to Pakistan.” Pakistan’s offer was likely related to the fact that the Saudis have long been widely viewed as the chief financier behind Pakistan’s nuclear program.

Saudi nuclear weapons progress and status not clear

While the announcement that the Saudis may soon develop nuclear weapons with the help of Israel and other regional players will likely cause concern throughout the international community, it is hardly the first indication of Saudi ambition to acquire weapons of mass destruction. Indeed, Saudi interest in developing nuclear weapons dates back to the 1970s, when the kingdom learned of major steps taken by both Israel and India in the development of nuclear armaments.

Not long after financing the Pakistani program, the Saudis procured a Chinese ballistic missile system capable of carrying nuclear warheads — warheads that Pakistan had made for the Saudis in 2013 and were awaiting delivery, according to a BBC report published at the time. Three years later in 2016, former CIA Operations Officer Duane Clarridge confirmed this to FOX News — stating that, through their financing of the Pakistani nuclear program, the Saudis had access to several nuclear bombs. Clarridge declined to comment on whether those nuclear weapons that had been “sitting ready for delivery” in Pakistan a few years prior had since been delivered to Saudi Arabia.

Watch | Former CIA Officer Duane Clarridge Tell FOX News that the Saudis had several nuclear weapons back in 2016:

More recently, Saudi Crown Prince Muhammad bin Salman publicly announced this March, during an interview with CBS News, that the country would seek to develop nuclear weapons, were Iran to do so. In that interview, the Crown Prince stated that “Saudi Arabia does not want to acquire any nuclear bomb; but, without a doubt, if Iran developed a nuclear bomb, we will follow suit as soon as possible.” However, he did not make reference to the claim that the Saudis had already acquired access to such weapons years prior.

Furthermore, around the same time as the Crown Prince’s interview, reports surfaced claiming that the Saudis had asked the United States for permission to enrich uranium with the goal of producing a nuclear weapon.

Would Saudi nukes find their way into the hands of terrorists? A very real concern

The possibility that the Saudis already have access to nuclear weapons, and hope to soon develop them domestically, has been met with concern by analysts, particularly given the kingdom’s documented history of funneling weapons to terrorist groups such as Al Qaeda, Daesh (ISIS), and Jaish al-Islam, among others. Were the Saudis to domestically produce their own nuclear weapons, it is very much a possibility that the kingdom would include them in its future weapon shipments to the radical Wahhabist groups they actively support.

Another area of concern is the kingdom’s disrespect for civilian life and tendency to wage total war when embroiled in a military conflict. For instance, in Yemen, where the Saudis have been attempting to oust the Houthis from power since 2015, the Saudi-led coalition has repeatedly bombed civilian infrastructure and imposed a blockade of the country that has prevented food, medicine and fuel from reaching the majority of Yemen’s population of around 28 million. As a result, 18.5 million Yemenis are expected to face starvation by this December and a “preventable” cholera epidemic of historic proportions continues to claim innocent life.

The Saudis’ willingness to inflict such misery on a civilian population as part of a military conflict is yet another indication of the danger inherent in their acquiring the ability to manufacture nuclear weapons.

Top Photo | Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu and Saudi Arabia’s King Salman

Whitney Webb is a staff writer for MintPress News and a contributor to Ben Swann’s Truth in Media. Her work has appeared on Global Research, the Ron Paul Institute and 21st Century Wire, among others. She has also made radio and TV appearances on RT and Sputnik. She currently lives with her family in southern Chile.

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  • Hrky75

    Selling nuke info to Saudis only to be able to brand them an “existence threat” and nuke them once the oil runs out – but long before they ever manage to make the bomb.Most probably the “nuke secrets” are in fact a load of crap. Because not even Bibis right wing nutcases are stupid and/or blind enough to miss the fact that Saudi Arabia will turn Medieval on itself the second the oil cash runs out. But even before that, chances are that some of the 1000s of batshit crazy Wahhabi preachers that operate in the area might pull off a coup, chop off a few “princely” heads and take over. I don’t believe the Zios are betting everything on the possibility that those morons decide to nuke Tehran instead of Tel Aviv…

  • Garga

    Someone wrote a comment and I made this reply. The problem is, the original comment disappeared (it was talking about Israeli plot to fool Saudis into trying to make an N-bomb and then justifying destroying them, as soon as their oil dries up. I hope the original comment returns. It seems our resident Hasbara are furiously clicking on the flag button on the comments they don’t like)

    —–

    You may be right. It depends on how stupid the Saudis are and if you ask me, the answer is very much.

    That reminds me of the CIA/Israeli plot to trap Iran by selling them the [slightly changed] plans and blueprints to build a nuclear trigger device, so after the “sales” leaks they can “prove” Iran is indeed after the nuclear weapon and at the same time, be sure that the resulted Iranian device doesn’t work, because of the changes.

    That was a good plan if it didn’t so miserably fail. For two years they tried to convince Iran to bite which of course didn’t happen (why? I don’t know, maybe because of the fact that Iran’s nuclear program was never to build a weapon, perhaps?). Finally out of frustration they left the documents in the mailbox of the Iran’s embassy in Vienna, in the vain hope that Iranians are stupid enough to fall for it.

    Imagine their faces when Iran delivered the documents to IAEA with a report containing of all their attempts to sell the blueprints! :))

    • Jonathan Cohen

      I sure hope he is right since the Saudi abortion banning terrorists certainly deserve to be provoked and attacked!

    • chris chuba

      The real plot is that Netanyahu will present all of the evidence of the Saudi nuclear weapons program to the U.N. but say its Iranian.

    • Hrky75

      The comment was mine, but somebody immediately flagged it as spam of all things. Resident Hasbara police of vice and virtue working double shift…

  • Jonathan Cohen

    NO NUKES FOR ABORTION BANNING SAUDI TERRORISTS!

    • ruca

      WTF is up your corn shoot? This is the only comment you ever make!

  • Fayez Chergui

    They will give it to them to complete the dirty job.

  • Sinbad2

    When you look at the pic of the 2 leaders, it’s obvious they are related.

  • #’~A*QXm(>NRmm]w?dU4v!=^

    Thus the nuclear arms race in the ME has started. With the JCPOA now as good as dead, it is high time Iran gets on with its own program to make sure it has a nuclear deterrent as credible as North Korea’s to those rabidly anti-Iran psychopaths/war criminals in Washington, Jerusalem, and Riyadh at bay.

  • AM Hants

    Now what could go wrong?

    • Daula

      Well let’s be honest. We’re all going to be dead soon anyway.

      • AM Hants

        Well, we all arrive with our sell by date. Only thing you can guarantee, just don’t know the end page.

  • JustPassingThrough

    “The Israeli government has begun selling the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia information on how to develop nuclear weapons,”

    you just can’t make this up.

  • Cheryl Brandon

    Phillip Giraldi- Americas’s JEWS are driving
    Americans to wars.” Retired CIA agent.

    Iran Haters Groups in the USA.

    David Frum/Max Boot/ Bill Kristol/ Bret Stephen and
    Robert Kagan-Non JEWS

    INFLUENTIAL JEWS who drive the Iran Haters Groups in
    the U$A.

    Mark Dubowitz/Michael LEDEEN/ Reuel Marc
    Gerecht-Foundation for the Defense of “Democracy”/ Daniel Pipes-Middle East
    Foundation/ John Podhoretz Commentator for another idealogue media/ Elliot
    Abrams-Council on Foreign Affairs/ Meyrav Wurmster-Middle East Research
    Institute-MERI/Kimberley Kagan-Institute for the study of War Making/Frederick
    Kagan/Danielle Pletka/ David Wurmster-American Enterprise Insitute/

    AIPAC-LOBBY ON BEHALF OF ISRAHELL. AIPAC is the final recipe starting back in
    Switzerland as ; The JEWISH Agency in 1929 which became the American Zionist
    Emergency Appeal between 1939-1943. Helped by the United Jewish Appeal which
    morphed into AZEC and then AZC9 American Zionist Council). We know what
    happened in 1963 when 2 Kennedy brothers tried to enforce the FARA Laws by
    getting these aforementioned organisations to register as “Foreign Agents”. The
    court matter was handled by SIMON RIFKIND lawyer and, who knew JFK quite well.
    After the 2 brothers were assassinated, the matter was not pursued by any President.

    WINEP-The Washington Institute of Near East Studies

    Hudson Institute owned and operated by JEWS.

    Phillip Giraldi;
    “ Americas Jews are driving American Neo Conservative ideology”

  • Smaug

    1) Israel doesn’t even sell tanks to outsiders, why would they sell share nuclear secrets with a country that still has deep rooted anti-Semitism?
    2) Saudi policy with Israel is officially live and let live, and that is fairly new. Relations have warmed up astronomically well if this is to be believed.
    3) NATO would never approve of this.
    4) None of Saudi Arabia’s neighbors would approve of this.
    5) How would anyone find this out, anyway?
    6) The US is the main source of NATO technology, while our allies can afford to be more choosy. We aren’t giving nuclear secrets to no one so why would Israel?
    7) Screw MintPress and everything it stands for. This is obviously a conspiracy theory going full TDS on two things the author hates.
    Come on, South Front, you’re better than this!