Monday, June 11, 2012

President Nixon Deserves Credit

He deserves credit for coming to the aid of Israel during their 1973 Yon Kipper war with Egypt and Syria. Israel was nearing the end of having sufficient military equipment to continue. General Moshe Dayan advised Prime Minister Golda Meir that they were approaching the point of last resort i.e. the nuclear option. Henry Kissinger learned of this the morning of October 9. That same day President Nixon ordered the commencement of Operation Nickel Grass, an American airlift to replace all of Israel’s losses. 8,755 tons were received before the end of the war. Supplies were provided by airlift and by sea, a total of over 112,000 tons including F-4 fighters, A-4 attack airplanes, 12 C-130 Cargo planes, and every other type of equipment requested by Israel. It ended by the end of December at a total cost in today’s dollars of $4.19 billion dollars. As a sidelight to all this, only two European countries allowed our planes landing rights; Portugal and the Netherlands, so much for NATO support in time of need. Another sidelight was Henry Kissinger demanding that Israel not conduct a first strike as they had done in 1967. He said Israel would not receive “so much as a nail”. I am sure Israeli losses were much greater by waiting until attacked by Egypt and Syria. Had President Nixon not acted with such powerful full out support, it is conceivable that Israel might have been forced to use tactical nuclear weapons. What the consequences of that might be is open for conjecture. He did the right thing while in the middle of the Watergate investigation. I say give him the credit deserved. Jack B. Walters June 11, 2012

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