[Marxism] Appeal on behalf of Mordechai Vanunu

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Mon Jul 19 16:35:03 MDT 2010

Open Letter of Appeal to the Jewish people

Dear Friends,

  I write to ask for your help in gaining the freedom of a good man, a 
man of peace, and a man of conscience.

In the Jewish scriptures there is great emphasis on justice and freedom 
and it is for such, for one man, that I write to seek your help.

He will not be aware that I am writing this Appeal, but I do so in the 
hope that, with your help, it will produce his freedom, and not (and 
this I must risk) cause yet more punishment and cruelty to be inflicted 
upon him.

However, I feel when I tell you the story, it will touch your hearts and 
there will be those amongst you who will be able to help him gain his 

In May, 2010, this man was returned to prison to serve three months for 
allegedly breaking his prison release restrictions and speaking to 
Foreign Media.  On Sunday llth July, 2010, he had his first visit in 
seven weeks.  His brother, Meir, was granted a 30 minute visit. There 
was a glass window between them and they spoke via the phone. He wore a 
prison uniform. He is held in the hardest prison section there is in the 
prison. It has the most notorious criminals in the country, well known 
hard murder cases. All about a dozen are in severe isolation conditions. 
He is in a cell by himself for 24 hours a day, no window but a small 
wire covered crack at the top part of one wall. He has about an hour’s 
walk a day in a very tiny yard. He was simply thrown in a cell by the 
security agents, the door locked, and left to suffer there all alone. He 
has not spoken to anyone in all the seven weeks and this visit was 
(apart from a short visit of his lawyer 6 weeks ago) the first 
conversation he had in seven weeks. His food is limited in quality and 
quantity, and his reading material two books he has with him. Of course 
his spirits are down as a result of being put in such harsh, inhuman and 
cruel conditions.

His name is Mordechai Vanunu, and he is in an Israeli prison cell. 
Mordechai is no stranger to prison. In l986 Mordechai Vanunu told the 
world that Israel had a Nuclear Weapons Programme and he was given 18 
years imprisonment for doing so. He is the Israeli Nuclear whistle 
blower and 24 years later continues to be punished for trying to warn 
the Israelis and protect both Israel and the world from a Nuclear 
weapons disaster.  Mordechai Vanunu served the full 18 years of his 
sentence (eleven years in solitary ) and upon release, instead of 
allowing him to leave Israel, the Israeli Government put severe 
restrictions upon him, including forbidding him to leave Israel and not 
to speak to foreign media. It was the allegedly breaking of these 
restrictions and speaking to Foreign media, which resulted in Mordechai 
being returned to prison for 3 months.  He has 6 weeks left to serve in 
these harsh prison conditions, and even upon release from prison will 
still have to remain in Israel until next April, 2011 when the 
restrictions will be reviewed and probably renewed yet again, as they 
have been renewed each year for the past 6 years.  Some people say 
Vanunu will never be allowed to leave Israel but will die there, if 
indeed in the meantime his spirit is not broken by his ill treatment and 
he losses his sanity. The Shabak continues to tell the Israeli 
Government he is a security risk and must not be released and the 
Israeli Judiciary and Government obey them and keep him imprisoned. 
Vanunu is no risk to Israeli National Security. He has no nuclear 
Secrets. I have asked some Israelis why they think Israel refuses to 
allow Mordechai Vanunu to leave Israel.  Various reasons are given but 
the most frequent answer is they feel the Israeli Government does not 
trust its citizens and holding Mordechai Vanunu, forever, if necessary 
sends out the signal to Israeli Citizens to behave themselves.

It seems, if this is so, that the strategy is working. To date only a 
few courageous Jewish people have raised their voices against such 
cruelty and injustice perpetrated upon Mordecai, and called for him to 
be allowed to leave Israel. But I don’t believe Mordechai will never be 
allowed to leave Israeli and will die in Jerusalem.  I have met 
Mordechai many times since he was released from prison on 2lst April, 
2004.  He is a good man, a man of peace, and a true Gandhian spirit. 
Instead of punishing him, Israel should be proud of Mordechai Vanunu, 
and I believe that future generations of Israelis will look back and 
realize that there lived amongst them a great visionary and man of 
peace, not only for Israel, but for the human family. It was with great 
joy I nominated him several times for the Nobel Peace Prize, as did many 
other prominent names during the past 24 years. He richly serves the NPP 
as he lives and acts in the true spirit of Alfred Nobel, who left his 
prize for those who would work for peace and disarmament.

However, it is with the deepest sadness that I acknowledge that in spite 
of world campaigns by many, including Amnesty International (and 
personal letters from myself to President Obama, President Shimon 
Peres,) Mordechai Vanunu continues 24 years later to be most cruelly 
imprisoned and punished by Israel.  Most Political and Spiritual 
leaders, and International Bodies, of our time are silent in the face of 
Israel’s abuse of Vanunu’s basic human right to freedom of speech and 
liberty, which is in violation of many International Laws.

However, I have hope that he will be free and I place my hope in those 
Jewish people who read this story and are moved to right a wrong 
continuing to be done to Mordechai Vanunu, and they will demand that 
their Government give him his freedom, and allow him to leave Israel.

Shalom, Mairead Maguire Nobel Peace Laureate www.peacepeople.com 14.7.2010

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