Dan Shapiro 370.
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
US Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro said on Tuesday that his country would not
permit Iran to acquire a nuclear weapon, and reiterated America’s “unshakable”
alliance with the Jewish state and its “shared commitment” to countering mutual
He was speaking at a memorial ceremony marking the 11th
anniversary of the 9/11 attacks – in which terrorists crashed planes into New
York City’s Twin Towers and the Pentagon building in Washington, killing
thousands of people – hosted by the US Embassy and Keren Kayemeth
LeIsrael-Jewish National Fund at KKL-JNF’s Living Memorial monument, which
commemorates 9/11, in the Arazim Park outside Jerusalem.
“The US takes
pride in its alliance with Israel,” Shapiro said, adding that the alliance
“remains unshakable and includes a shared commitment to counter today’s
The ambassador went on to list some of those threats: “The
threat of terrorist organizations which fire missiles at civilians, the threat
of extremists who seek to wreck peace treaties and perpetuate conflict, and the
threat of the terrorist- sponsoring regime in Iran acquiring a nuclear
Regarding the last, Shapiro said: “An Iran armed with a nuclear
weapon is an unacceptable threat and we will not permit it to be
Turning to the events of September 11, 2001, he said the
attacks were felt by Americans as a permanent wound.
“The pain of knowing
how our friends, neighbors and fellow citizens died and the pain of watching
helplessly as the towers crumbled, the pain of watching families trying to carry
on in the face of unimaginable heart break” will never disappear, he
The ambassador noted that the Living Memorial was the only monument
to 9/11 outside the US to bear the names of all the victims, and also recalled
the five Israelis killed in the attacks: Daniel Lewin, Leon Lebor, Hagai Shefi,
Shai Levenhar and Alona Avraham.
Also present at the ceremony was Labor
MK Isaac Herzog.
Drawing on the words of US president Franklin D.
Roosevelt after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, he said 9/11 was “a day
that should be remembered in infamy.”
Herzog talked of the “sense of
utter shock at the brutal, violent, despicable act of war against the United
States of America” and said it served as “a wake-up call to all those who ignore
evil forces and tend to forget lessons of the past.”
He also referenced
the Iranian nuclear program, saying the world was yet again “in confrontation
against a major source of evil, against Iran, a nation which spreads terror all
over the world and vows to destroy Israel and the values with which every
American is brought up.”
The MK said that dealing with the problem
requires intimate cooperation between the US and Israel, the removal of external
distractions “and the understanding that we are dealing with a stubborn,
manipulative and vicious enemy” that should not be allowed to acquire nuclear
weapons “even if it takes the use of military force to reach this objective.”