From: Ismail Zayid
To: Globe & Mail
Sent: Monday, March 26, 2001 10:12 AM
Subject: Israel's Use of Biological Weapons

The Editor
The Globe & Mail
March 26, 2001
Dear Editor:
                                           ISRAEL'S USE OF BIOLOGICAL WEAPONS
Mathew Kalman's report {"Israel scoffs at weapons tales" March 26} is not as outrageous as it may appear. In 1998, Uzi Mahnaimi and Marie Colvin reported in The Sunday Times, in London, on research work  to develop an "ethnic bomb" that "would kill Arabs and spare Jews". The report stated that :"The programme is based at the biological institute in Nes Tziyona, the main research facility for Israel's clandestine arsenal of chemical and biological weapons. The report went on to say that :" A scientist there said the task was hugely complicated because both Arabs and Jews are of semitic origin", but he added : "They have,however, succeeded in pinpointing a particular characteristic in the genetic profile of certain Arab communities, particularly the Iraqi people". "The disease could be spread by spraying the organisms[genetically modified bacterium or virus] into the air or putting them in water supplies. The research mirrors biological studies conducted by South African scientists during the Apartheid era and revealed in testimony before the the Truth and Reconciliation Commission". Dedi Zucker, a member of Knesset ,the Israeli parliament, denounced the research stating: "Morally, based on our history,and our tradition and our experience, such a weapon is monstrous and should be denied." The report went on to say:" A Pentagon report warned last year that biological agents could be genetically engineered to produce new lethal weapons. William Cohen,the[then] American defence secretary, revealed that he had received reports of countries working to create "certain types of pathogens that would be ethnic-specific". A senior Western intelligence source confirmed that Israel was one of the countries Cohen had in mind. The report stated that "The idea of a Jewish state conducting such research has already provoked outrage in some quarters because of parallels with the genetic experiments of Dr. Joseph Mengele, the Nazi scientist at Auschwitz". This Sunday Times report was reproduced in The Calgary Herald and in The Sunday Herald in Halifax, Nov. 15, 1998.
It is interesting to note that the Nes Tziyona  Institute for Biological Research in Israel was actively involved in the Israeli El Al plane carrying imported toxic and poisonous gases from the USA, which crashed in Amsterdam, killing and injuring scores on the ground { "Netherlands begins inquiry in 1992 crash with secret cargo: Flight said to be carrying toxic chemicals that made thousands of workers sick" The Globe and Mail, Feb. 8, 1999}.
It is also interesting to note that some Israelis were expressing concern this week about the demographic threat resulting from the high fertility of Palestinians in The Gaza Strip.
Yours sincerely
Ismail Zayid, MD., FRCPC.