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Over the years Israel has sold weapons — and often along with the weapons come Israeli advisers — to Costa Rica, Dominican 1 4 ISRAELI FOREIGN POLICY Republic, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua (under Somoza), Panama, Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Paraguay, Peru, Venezuela, Cameroon, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Liberia, Morocco, Nigeria, Rhodesia, South Africa, Svi^aziland, Tanzania, Uganda, Zaire, Australia, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, New Zealand, Papua-New Guinea, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Iran, and a number of European countries and several non-governmental factions.'*' Sometimes even the least desirable customers have required some softening up: "Greatly detailed stories abound of the huge bribes Israel has used to suborn defense ministries, with the sole objective of nailing down arms deals."'" As time went on an additional problem arose: arms sales became the motor driving Israel's foreign policy.
In times of economic crisis it became the supreme exigency.
Unwilling or unable to order Israel to stop its dealings with South Africa, Carter presided over a cover-up "investigation" of a nuclear weapons test conducted by Israel and South Africa in 1979.
For varying reasons, Israel was largely shut out of the Eastern Bloc, the Arab world and NATO countries.
That left its poten- tial clientele to be found on the peripheries: pariahs such as South Africa and Guatemala, the strong-man regimes of Taiwan, Zaire, and Chile, and the occasional government wary of strings-attached arms purchases from the superpowers.
It was also Ronald Reagan that allowed his administration to be directed by Israeli officials and Americans partial to Israel in the sale of arms to Iran and funneling of funds to the war against Nicaragua.
But even with Reagan, a president with whom Israel enjoyed a "virtual honeymoon that existed over most of..The [pro-Israeli] lobby's intelligence network, having numer- ous volunteer "friendlies" to tap, reaches all parts of the executive branch where matters concerning Israel are handled.