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August 16, 2015 8:39 pm

Ambassador Dermer on Israeli Support for Netanyahu on Iran Deal: Moses Didn’t Have Those Numbers

avatar by David Daoud

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An an interview with Fareed Zakaria, Ron Dermer said that Prime Minister Netanyahu had more Jewish support in opposition to the Iran deal than Moses did during the Exodus. PHOTO: CNN/Screenshot.

An an interview with Fareed Zakaria, Israeli Ambassador Ron Dermer said Prime Minister Netanyahu has more support from Israelis in opposition to the Iran deal than Moses had from Israelites during the Exodus. PHOTO: CNN/Screenshot.

Israel’s Ambassador to the United States, Ron Dermer, said on Sunday that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has more support in the Jewish state for his opposition to the Iran nuclear deal than Moses had when he led the Israelites out of Egypt.

Dermer’s comment was made in an interview with CNN‘s Fareed Zakaria in response to a question on whether it was prudent policy for Israel to oppose the Obama Administration on the Iran deal, given the importance of Washington’s support for Israel’s security.

Acknowledging the centrality of Israel’s relationship with the United States, Dermer said that ensuring the State of Israel’s survival was more important, and that, “the Prime Minister of Israel and the head of the [opposition] agree that this is a very bad deal that endangers Israel’s security.” He continued, “in Israel this view is shared by the Prime Minister, by the head of the opposition [Isaac Herzog], by 30 out of 33 members of our Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee. Moses didn’t have those kind of numbers.”

Dermer also said he believed that President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry were sincere when they claimed that the Iran deal would make both the United States and Israel safer, but, “We just disagree with their judgment. We think this deal will endanger Israel’s security.”

He also said that while Israel is not directly lobbying U.S. lawmakers to vote down the deal, “We are telling them that this is a bad deal that endangers Israel’s security.”

Zakaria shot back saying that the former head of Israel’s Mossad, Meir Dagan, supported the deal, to which Dermer responded that in a Jewish and democratic state it is impossible not to have differences of opinion.

Zakaria also questioned Dermer on Netanyahu’s continued warnings over the past twenty years that Iran was two to three years away from a bomb, yet decades later Tehran had still not produced an atomic weapon. “Why has he been wrong about Iran for twenty years,” asked Zakaria, “is it possible that you don’t completely understand Iran?”

Dermer responded, “I think the Prime Minister of Israel understands Iran better than almost any leader in the world because he’s been focusing on this issue for twenty years,” and said the reason why the Prime Minister’s predictions did not materialize was American and Israeli action.

“Had the United States and Israel done nothing over the last fifteen years, they would have had a bomb maybe ten years ago but the United States and Israel have worked together to prevent Iran from becoming a nuclear power and we should continue to work together to prevent Iran from having a nuclear weapons capability,” said Dermer.

He added that the Iran deal, “closes the nuclear file, not by blocking Iran’s path to the bomb, but by ceding to them a nuclear weapons capability and a nuclear arsenal, at best delaying it for a few years.”

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  • anita todras

    i was really shocked and dismayed by Fareed Zacaria’s treatment of Ron Dermer. i have listened to Zacaria’s show and totally enjoy it and him. But he was rude and dismissive of Ron Dermer. I happen to agree with Mr.Zacaria’ view of the deal – somewhat because of listening to him over time but now i question my view. I have stopped listening to Meet the Press after Chuck Todd took over because his treatment to the Dems; perhaps i will be forced to do the same with Mr.Zacaria – I wish that i could share my feelings directly with him since i thoroughly enjoyed his show but perhaps I never really knew who he really is until this show – could he be anti-Semitic? Or is just that he is not able to have his views challenged.

  • Milhouse

    Is this the equivalent of the time the Beatles claimed to be “bigger than Jesus”?

  • Atilla

    No Israeli politician should legitimize that despicable piece of excrement Zakaria and CNN by trying to engage it in an impartial debate.

  • Anton K

    Moses separated and saved the Jews from Egyptians and relocated them to the east. Netanyahu… need to do the same save and maybe relocate them from the Arabs,but where to send the people to save this time…west..? Moshiach or messiah… will not need to send the people east or west…but up..not just Jews but all people of the world and up means to start rebuilding all planet,the temple that humans destroyed everywhere and is now so down with all humans…

  • Mickey Oberman

    Mr. Zakaria,
    Is it beyond reason to believe that Iran yet again is lying?
    Is it not vaguely possible that they already have a stockpile of nuclear weapons?
    Is it not possible that you blurt out these ridiculous statements in order to cover up the truth?

    • Jack

      “[L]ying”, not lying… who cares.
      If Iran wants the bomb nothing short of war will stop them.
      Why waste the time until we find out if they can be responsible.
      More likely would be regime change, and by that I mean a change of style of government, in Iran.
      It puts all the costs and responsibilities on Iran,
      We will have enough costs, tho none extraneous, as it is.
      The trick is to keep your powder dry until you need it.
      After all, Pakistan lied to Great Britain and Canada by building the bomb after getting a free reactor from them. (You know, A.Q.Khan).
      IF, and that is a big “IF”, Iran builds a bomb,(we think they will),they will probably be responsible with it.
      If not, it would be like a mongoose trapped in a tiger’s cage.
      In short, it would be the end of Iran as we know it.

  • Kassaye Haile,Mr.

    A professional and experienced diplomatic leader.

  • marlene

    Netanyahu also has more support from Israelis than obama has from Americans. Obama demeans himself with his petty, jealous outbursts against Netanyahu – and embarrasses us. Yes, Netanyahu is a true statesman and in our opinion, the greatest leader in the free world.

  • Lawrence

    I partially agree with Dermer. The support Netanyahu has should be accepted throughout Israel. After all, an Iranian state that possesses nuclear weapons would have a direct impact on Israel’s survival. But, I disagree with the notion that Kerry and Obama care about Israel’s security. If this was the case, Obama would have continued with sanctions instead of moving forward on a proposal in which a rogue regime would have the ability of developing nuclear weapons. I have come to the conclusion that Obama has a deep seeded psychological issue that can only be satisfied by appeasing Iran and much of the rest of the Arab world in the middle east. I know the Iranians are Persian not Arab. But, this applies to the Arab countries in the region as well. Right now, I believe Israel is going through the process of figuring out what options they have available to them, implementing what course of action should be taken based on the threat of a nuclear Iran, and how to move forward in a way that will be most effective, while limiting the damage as much as possible. The disrespect, hostility, and disdain exhibited by Obama and Kerry is not only shocking, it’s appalling as well. Israel should and must do whatever is necessary to eliminate an Iranian attack.

    • Sarah Olsen

      Well said!!! Completely agree

  • HP Benson

    Fareed needs to quit…….his accent makes him barely understandable. This is not bias. It is not bigotry. He is in a field where oral diction of English is a central issue.

  • Doesn’t Dermer know that Zacharia is an Obama sycophant?
    He wasn’t acting as a journalist but as an Obama operative, with venom in his voice.

    On a related mater, shame /shonda on the Hollywood Jews who signed the open letter in support of the deal. Kudos to Schindler List producer Gerald Molen for condemning those Obama Court Jew Toadies. They are a disgrace. I will bet you they don’t even know what is in the agreement.

  • Ephraim

    And giving them hundreds of billions of dollars to make it possible.

  • Scott

    Dermer’s spot on!