Netanyahu: The Danger to the World is Not a University in Ariel the Danger is Iran, Syrian Chemical Weapons
Speaking at Ariel University Center of Samaria (West Bank) Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu voiced his support for the university, and deflected criticism of its accreditation, saying:
“I would like to make it clear to the world: The danger to the world is not a university in Ariel. The danger to the world is not that Israel is building neighborhoods in Jerusalem. The danger is Iran, which is building nuclear weapons. The danger is Syria’s arsenals of chemical weapons. I call on the world to take notice. History will judge harshly those who equate democratic Israel, which is establishing a university, and dictatorial regimes that slaughter their people and which hold atomic weapons of mass destruction.”
On Monday night Netanyahu made similar comments at a Taglit-Birthright Israel event, noting international criticism of Israel’s plans for construction in Jerusalem. He also took a dig at critics of Israel, saying, “I believe that it’s time for the rest of the world to wake up.”
In December outgoing Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak gave the order to officially accredit Ariel University Center of Samaria as a full-fledged university, making it the first Israeli university to be located beyond the 1949 Green Line.
Following the United Nations’ upgrade of the Palestinian Authority to observer state status in November, Israel announced it would move ahead with plans to build in the E1 zone near Jerusalem. The announcement was followed by a barrage of criticism from the international community.