International Perspectives: 'Putin Played the Israel Nuclear Bomb Card'
According to Tallinn University international relations lecturer Toomas Alatalu, last week's major event was Russian President Vladimir Putin saying that Syrian chemical weapons program was set up to counter Israel's nuclear weapons.
Speaking to ERR today, Alatalu said that the Israeli nuclear bomb program has been taboo for decades - despite Israel's nuclear capabililty being general knowledge, few talk about them officially.
Putin said that Israel's military capabilities far exceed that of its neighbors and the nation's nuclear capacity has turned it into a target for others, adding that the region should be turned into a nuclear-weapon-free zone.
Since Putin played the "card," Iran has been more favorably disposed toward negotiations, as the topic of Israel's nuclear capability is now being openly talked about, Alatalu said.
Alatalu said that Israel could have acquired the bomb either from France in 1960 or from South Africa in 1979; at any rate, he said, confirmation that Israel had the bomb came in 1986 from a rogue Israeli scientist.