A version of this letter was published in the Financial Times today under the headline:' A route out of Iran crisis to a Middle East peace'
Your news report and John R Bradley’s Commentary (Mail, 1st May) on Israeli Prime Minister’s Netanyahu high profile multi-media presentation live on Israeli on Iran’s alleged covert nuclear weapons programme did not make any mention that Israel is itself a nuclear armed state, with intelligence analysts claiming it has some 200 operational nuclear weapons.(“‘Last Secret’ of 1967 War: Israel’s Doomsday Plan for Nuclear Display, “ New York Times, June 3, 2017; https://www.nytimes.com/2017/06/03/world/middleeast/1967-arab-israeli-war-nuclear-warning.html)
Interestingly, on April 19th the United States Government issued a working paper to the preparatory committee for the Review Conference of the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT) currently ongoing in Geneva, entitled “Establishing regional conditions conducive to a Middle East free of weapons of mass destruction and delivery systems,” http://reachingcriticalwill.org/images/documents/Disarmament-fora/npt/prepcom18/documents/WP33.pdf).
This seven page paper asserts: “Over the course of recent decades, a number
of regional States, including Iraq, Iran (Islamic Republic of), Libya and the Syrian
Arab Republic, have all pursued undeclared weapons of mass destruction -related
programs and activities, in violation of arms control obligation.”
It also omits to make mention of Israel, the only nation in the region possessing nuclear weapons, and which refuses to join the N.P.T.
The Trump Administration argues that a regional WMD-free zone would best be achieved outside the auspices of the N.P.T.
Just such an initiative was floated nearly ten years ago in a now nearly forgotten in the Paris Summit of Mediterranean countries, held on July 13, 2008, under the co-presidency of the French Republic and the Arab Republic of Egypt and in the presence of Israel, which was represented by its then Premier Ehud Olmer.
Signed by the then Israeli premier, it concluded supporting "regional security by acting in favor of nuclear, chemical and biological non-proliferation through adherence to and compliance with a combination of international and regional nonproliferation regimes and arms control and disarmament agreements.." and added "The parties shall pursue a mutually and effectively verifiable Middle East Zone free of weapons of mass destruction, nuclear, chemical and biological, and their delivery systems.” (http://www.consilium.europa.eu/ueDocs/cms_Data/docs/pressData/en/er/101847.pdf)
This is surely an agreement all parties, Iran included, could build upon constructively.