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Digital Archive International History Declassified

March 18, 1964

MEMORANDUM, EXECUTIVE SECRETARY BENJAMIN READ, US DEPARTMENT OF STATE, 'ISRAEL'S ASSURANCES CONCERNING USE OF ATOMIC ENERGY'

This document was made possible with support from the Leon Levy Foundation

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    This memorandum from Executive Secretary Benjamin Read of the Department of State to National Security Advisor McGeorge Bundy provides a valuable chronology of the US discovery of the nuclear reactor project at Dimona and the pledges made by the Israelis in response to requests from the United States. Included in the chronology is an item about a meeting on 25 May 1963 where senior French diplomat Charles Lucet told CIA director John McCone that even though the French had helped build the Dimona reactor, “there might be a nuclear complex not known the French.” Lucet further stated that the Israelis had tried to purchase “safeguard-free” uranium from Gabon but that the French government stopped the sale through preemptive purchases.
    "Memorandum, Executive Secretary Benjamin Read, US Department of State, 'Israel's Assurances Concerning Use of Atomic Energy'," March 18, 1964, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, National Archives of the United States (NARA), Record Group 59, Bureau of Near Eastern and South Asian Affairs, Records of Office of Country Director for Israeli and Arab-Israeli Affairs, Records Relating to Near Eastern Arms Initiative, box 1, Talbot in Spring 1964 & Exchange of Letters. Obtained and contributed by William Burr and Avner Cohen, and included in NPIHP Research Update "Israel's Quest for Yellowcake." http://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/117053
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