From: Ismail Zayid
To: Washington Report
Sent: Sunday, August 26, 2001 10:54 PM
Subject: Who planned and started the 1967 war?
26 Aug. 2001
The Editor,
Dear editor:
In reference to Mr. Albert Doyle's letter [WRMEA,Aug./Sep. issue], countering the claims by Israel's apologists and Zionist propaganda that President Nasser was planning to invade Israel in June 1967, and Israel was threatened with extermination, the best testimony is Israel's leaders' own words:
Yitzhak Rabin, Chief of Staff of Israel's army at the time, stated : " I do not think Nasser wanted war. The two divisions he sent to the Sinai would not have been sufficient to launch an offensive war. He knew it and we knew it " {Le Monde, Feb. 28. 1968}.
Prime Minister ,at the time, Levi Eshkol stated: " The Egyptian layout in the Sinai and the general military build up there testified to a military defensive Egyptian set-up, south to Israel" { Yediot Ahronot, Oct. 18, 1967}.
General Ezer Weizmann, Commander of Israeli Air Force at the time, stated: " There was never any danger of extermination" { Maariv , April 4, 1972}.
Mordechai Bentov, cabinet M\minister during the June war stated: " And this story about the danger of extermination has been a complete invention and has been blown up a posteriori to justify the annexation of new Arab territories" { Al Hamishmar, April 14, 1972 [ quoted in Le Monde, June 3, 1972] }.
General Matitiahu Peled, stated: " The thesis that the danger of genocide was hanging over us in June 1967 and that Israel was fighting for its physical existence is only a bluff, which has been developed after the war" { Haaretz, March 19, 1972}.
Menachem Begin, while Israel's Prime Minister in 1982, addressing Israel's Defence College on Aug. 8, 1982, stated : " In June 1967, we again had a choice. The Egyptian army concentrations in the Sinai did not prove that Nasser was really about to attack us. We must be honest with ourselves. We decided to attack him" { The New York Times, Aug. 21, 1982}.
Alas, there is a need for some honesty, and Israel's apologists need to remember that.
Yours sincerely,
Ismail Zayid, MD.