Translation of Maariv article 4/7/2010 on Dimona nuclear scientists
NRG/Maariv reports today that workers at the Dimona reactor who submitted
VISA requests to visit the United States for ongoing University education in
Physics, Chemistry and Nuclear Engineering — have all been rejected,
specifically because of their association with the Dimona reactor. This is a
new policy decision of the Obama administration, since there never used to
be an issue with the reactor’s workers from study in the USA, and till
recently, they received VISAs and studied in the USA.
Israeli Defense Officials have stated that these reactor researches have no
criminal background in Israel or in the USA, and yet they are being singled
out purely because of their place of employment at the reactor.
Professor Zeev Alfasi, the head of Nuclear Engineering at Ben-Gurion
University in the Negev stated that “the United States doesn’t sell anything
nuclear-related to the Dimona reactor, and that means absolutely nothing.
Radiation detectors, for example have to be purchased now in France because
the USA refuses to sell these to Israel.”
Israel’s Dimona nuclear reactor’s employees have told Israel’s Maariv daily
that they have been having problems recently getting visas to the United
States where they have for years attended seminars in Chemistry, Physics and
Nuclear Engineering (link in Hebrew, Hat Tip: BA Wilson). They also complain
of being treated in an ‘insulting manner’ by President Obama’s people. Until
recently, employees of the Nuclear Research Center routinely traveled to the
United States for seminars and courses.
But reactor employees also complain of an American refusal to sell them
reactor components that have routinely been sold to them by the United
States. Instead, the components are being purchased from… France. This is
from a Google translation that I’ve tried to fix up a little bit.
Professor Zeev Alfasi, the Chairman of the Nuclear Engineering Department
at Ben – Gurion University, who is aware of what is going on, describes the
deterioration of the American attitude regarding the nuclear reactor. “Some
of our people did not receive visas to the United States because they are
employees of Nuclear Research Center,” explained Professor Alfasi, “The
United States does not sell anything nuclear to the Nuclear Research Center,
and this includes everything. For example, the Nuclear Research Center in
Dimona is buying radiation detectors in France, because the Americans are
not selling to the Nuclear Research Center’s employees. ”
Prof. Alfasi added that “the Americans want to know for what each item of
equipment is used. They sell to universities, but they refuse to sell these
same items of equipment to the Nuclear Research Center. I do not whether
they will sell the same items that they refuse to sell us to Iran.” The
Nuclear Research Center refused to comment on the claims.