American Jewish Groups Praise Netanyahu Speech at United Nations
Major American Jewish groups lauded Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s address to the United Nation’s General Assembly on Monday, with one hailing it as “speaking truth to power,” and another calling his remarks, “a vision of the hope for a better future.”
In the 34-and-a-half-minute address, Netanyahu opened by saying that while “the people of Israel pray for peace,” the Jewish state’s “hopes and the world’s hope for peace are in danger. Because everywhere we look, militant Islam is on the march.”
The American Jewish Committee (AJC), The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) backed Netanyahu’s words to the hilt.
Drawing a parallel between diverse groups of “militant Islamists,” Netanyahu charged that “Boko Haram in Nigeria, Al-Shabab in Somalia, Hezbollah in Lebanon, An-Nusrah in Syria, The Mahdi Army in Iraq, and the Al-Qaeda branches in Yemen, Libya, the Philippines, India and elsewhere … all share a fanatic ideology. They all seek to create ever expanding enclaves of militant Islam where there is no freedom and no tolerance – Where women are treated as chattel, Christians are decimated, and minorities are subjugated, sometimes given the stark choice: convert or die.”
“Prime Minister Netanyahu powerfully spoke truth to power to the other 192 members of the United Nations,” AJC Executive Director David Harris said.
ADL National Chair, Barry Curtiss-Lusher, and National Director, Abraham Foxman characterized Netanyahu’s address as an “unvarnished and sobering catalog of the challenges of militant Islam and its pursuit of global primacy, the hypocrisy of the U.N. Human Rights Council and the dangers of allowing Iran to reach the threshold of a nuclear weapons breakout capability.”
Calling his words “an eloquent and forceful message to the international community about the urgent threat of militant Islam,” an AIPAC statement said Netanyahu “rightfully singled out the Iranian nuclear weapons program as the gravest threat to world peace and security.”
“There is only one responsible course of action… Iran’s nuclear military capabilities must be fully dismantled,” Netanyahu said. “To defeat ISIS and allow Iran to remain a threshold nuclear power is to win the battle and lose the war.”
According to Netanyahu, “the Islamic Republic is now trying to bamboozle its way to an agreement” that would lift sanctions while leaving in place thousands of centrifuges to enrich uranium, according to the AJC.
“In the future, at the time of its choosing, Iran, the world’s most dangerous regime, in the world’s most dangerous region, would obtain the world’s most dangerous weapons,” Netanyahu warned.
Addressing the representatives of member states who half-filled the plenum, the PM stressed that “Israel’s fight against Hamas is not just Israel’s fight. It is your fight,” and declared that, “Israel is fighting a fanaticism today that your countries may be forced to fight tomorrow.”
Positing a nightmare scenario where the Islamic State, ISIS, possessed chemical weapons, Netanyahu asked, “Now imagine how much more dangerous the Islamic state of Iran would be if it possessed nuclear weapons.”
Harris, in his statement, said he hoped that Netanyahu’s “clear, crisp and compelling messages are heard,” concluding that, “…the security of individual nations and the region are very much at stake. May his eloquent speech serve as a clarion call for the dangers that lurk – and also for the opportunities at hand.”