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June 27, 2013 8:21 am

Netanyahu: Peace Agreement Won’t Eliminate ‘Wild Defamation of Jewish State’

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Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu lays a wreath at the tomb of Theodore Herzl, June 27, 2013. Photo: Israel GPO.

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Thursday that he desires peace, but that no agreement with the Palestinian Authority would silence critics of the Jewish state.

“Let no one among us delude him or herself that if we make a peace agreement with the Palestinians, that this agreement would eliminate the wild defamation of the state of the Jews. What has been the lot of the Jews beforehand, for generations, today is the lot of the state of the Jews,” Netanyahu told an audience during a State Memorial Ceremony for Zionist leader Theodor Herzl in Jerusalem.

Netanyahu further added that any peace must be based, first and foremost, on security.

“It is not based on goodwill and legitimacy as is believed. It is based, first of all, on our ability to defend ourselves. Without security, without the army, the establishment of which Herzl called for, we will be unable to defend the peace, we will be unable to defend ourselves if the peace frays. A basic condition for the existence of peace, for achieving it and for preserving it is security,” he said.

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Speaking at the same ceremony, Israel’s President Shimon Peres echoed Netanyahu’s call for peace, saying it is  necessary to avoid becoming a bi-national state.

“Peace is a moral foundation of Judaism; it is an existential need of the Jewish state. A binational state contradicts the vision of Herzl; it endangers the Jewish and democratic state of Israel. There is a chance to renew the peace process, and it is not to be missed,” he said.

The comments came just hours before Netanyahu was scheduled to meet with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, who is in the region in an effort to renew peace talks.

While in Kuwait on Wednesday, Kerry called on Israelis and Palestinians to renew talks before it was too late.

“The time is getting near where we need to make some judgments. Last time I was here, I said it’s time for leaders to make some hard decisions,” he said. “That stands. It is time. Why is it urgent? It’s urgent because time is the enemy of a peace process.”

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  • “The establishment of which Herzl called for”,,,,, Bibi you are confused just as Herzl was as to where this Zionist entity should be.

    • Paul Winter

      With respect Mr Lun, the confused person would seem to be your own good self. “… this Zionist entity…” is the nation state of the Jewish people and it is called Israel. Further, Jews have lived in that part of the world since biblical times and history, archeology and genetics confirms that. It is the right of all people to return to their ancestral homeland and self-determination is the right of all unique peoples, even if they are Jews. And native Jews have a superior right to live in Israel – if they choose to exercise it – to invading or recently immigrating Arabs. Unlike you, Herzl was, and Netanyahu and Peres are, aware of those points.

  • Dafna Yee

    If Netanyahu really wants peace then he needs to let go of his idea of having a “demilitarized Palestinian state.” Even if Abbas would agree to that condition (and that’s a big “if”), there is a 100% likelihood that he would break such an “agreement” as soon as he could! Peace is not possible through negotiation unless both partied want peace and only have to work out the ways and means to achieve it. The fact is, whether Netanyahu, Peres or Kerry believe it, that Abbas does NOT WANT PEACE WITH ISRAEL!! He has always made his aims abundantly clear, at least to the Arabs, that he intends to eradicate Israel and totally replace ALL of Israel with Palestine! I simply can’t understand how Netanyahu can see that Rouhani is not a “moderate” yet can’t see that Abbas is not now, nor has he ever been, a “moderate” either. I really wish that Netanyahu would make some demands that Abbas actually do something instead of begging Abbas just to talk with him!

    • Sonia Willats

      I agree with you, Dafna.

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