Israel is widely believed to be the only nuclear-armed power in the Middle East, having between 100 and 300 warheads. It refused to sign the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty or to allow international surveillance into its Dimona plant in the Negev desert.
Israel’s illegal and dangerous nuclear program has been a serious threat to world peace and security, drawing criticism by many world leaders, politicians and intellectuals.
Gunter Grass, the German Nobel prize-winning author and one of Germany’s most influential intellectuals, published a new work critical to Israel and its nuke activities.
In his new poem "A Hero in Our Time", recently published in a collection of 87 poems, entitled Eintagsfliegen, Grass praises Mordechai Vanunu, an Israeli who blew the whistle on Israel’s nuclear program to a British newspaper.
The writer describes Vanunu, the former worker at the Dimona nuclear facility as a “hero” and a “model”, admiring his decision to disclose Israeli nuclear secrets to the UK’s Sunday Times in 1986.
An Israeli court convicted the whistle-blower of espionage and sentenced him to 18 years in jail. Vanunu was released in 2004 but banned from travel or contact with foreigners without prior permission.
Meanwhile, Grass has been barred from entering Israel, and considered as persona non-grata because of his anti-Israel writings.
Earlier this year, the 84-year-old German writer steered a wave of outrage in Israel after publishing a poem entitled "What Must Be Said" , in which he asserted that the Zionist entity of endangers world peace.
In the poem "What Must Be Said", Grass says that he risks the danger of being called an anti-Semite because of his saying:
Aged and with my last ink,
That the nuclear power of Israel endangers
The already fragile world peace?
Because it must be said
What even tomorrow may be too late to say…
According to him remaining silent over these dire circumstances is irresponsible and dangerous, so Gunter Grass decides to break the silence saying:
I am silent no longer
Because I am tired of the hypocrisy
Of the West…
In another poem, the German poet also points finger at his own country for providing nuclear submarines to Israel:
Now, though, because in my country
Which from time to time has sought and confronted
The very crime
That is without compare
In turn on a purely commercial basis, if also
With nimble lips calling it a reparation, declares
A further U-boat should be delivered to Israel,
Whose specialty consists of guiding all-destroying warheads to where the existence
Of a single atomic bomb is unproven, (referring to Iran)
But through fear of what may be conclusive,
I say what must be said.