German Nobel literature laureate Günter Grass says Israel is a threat to world peace in his poem What Must Be Said.
German Nobel literature laureate Günter Grass labelled Israel a threat to “already fragile world peace” in a poem published on Wednesday that drew sharp rebukes at home and from Israel.
In the poem, titled What Must be Said, published in German daily Sueddeutsche Zeitung and Italy’s La Repubblica among others, Grass criticises what he describes as western hypocrisy over Israel’s own suspected nuclear programme amid speculation it might engage in military action against Iran to stop it building an atomic bomb.
The 84-year-old Grass said he had been prompted to put pen to paper by Berlin’s recent decision to sell Israel a submarine able to “send all-destroying warheads where the existence of a single nuclear bomb is unproven”.
“The nuclear power Israel is endangering the already fragile world peace,” he wrote. His poem specifically criticises Israel’s “claim to the right of a first strike” against Iran.
Grass also called for “unhindered and permanent control of Israel’s nuclear capability and Iran’s atomic facilities through an international body”.
Grass did not mention calls for the destruction of Israel that have been made by President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, but obliquely referred to the Iranian people being “subjugated by a loudmouth”.
Israel is widely believed to have an arsenal of nuclear weapons but has never admitted it, pursuing instead an official policy of “ambiguity” to deter potential attackers.
Click here to read the rest of this story