From: Ismail Zayid
To: Globe & Mail
Sent: Thursday, January 05, 2006 8:55 AM
Subject: Israel's own leaders' words.
Jan. 5,2006
The Editor,
The Globe & Mail.
Dear Editor:
S. Cochrane claims, {Letter, Jan. 6}, that "Israel captured these [occupied] territories following an unprovoked attack in in [June] 1967." The falsehood of this claim and the fact that this war was planned and effected by Israel, is clearly exposed by Israel's own leaders at the time who stated:
Yitzhak Rabin, chief of staff of the Israeli 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 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 of Israel" [ Israeli daily Yediot Ahronot, Oct. 18,1967].
Modechai Bentov, an Israeli cabinet minister at the time, stated: " All this story about the danger of extermination [of Israel in June 1967] has been a complete invention and has been blown up a posteriori to justify the annexation of Arab territory" [ Al Hamishmar, 14 April 1972,  and quoted in Le Monde,  3 June 1972].
Menachem Begin, a cabinet minister in June 1967, stated, while prime minister, addressing Israel's National Defence College, on Aug.8,1982, : " In June 1967, we again had a choice. The Egyptian army concentrations in the Sinai did not prove Nasser was really about to attack us. We must be honest with our selves. We decided to attack him" [The N.Y.Times, Aug.21,1982].
I think the call for honesty, advised by Mr. Begin, should be adopted by Israeli apologists.
Ismail Zayid