Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses the weekly cabinet meeting in Jerusalem, December 7, 2014..
(photo credit: EMIL SALMAN/POOL)
In an apparent reference to the air strike on the Syrian side of the Golan Heights last month that killed Hezbollah’s Jihad Mughniyeh and a ranking Iranian general, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Sunday that Israel has proven “nobody is immune from our intention to foil attacks against us.”
Taking action against those planning to attack Israel has been the government’s policy in the past and will continue to be how Israel will act in the future, he said. This was the closest Netanyahu has come to admitting Israeli involvement in the June 18 air strike.
Hezbollah last week retaliated for that attack, killing two IDF soldiers and wounding seven others along the Lebanese border.
Netanyahu, speaking at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting, ignored the current scandal accusations swirling around him and his wife and said Israel faces security threats from numerous directions.
“The State of Israel is threatened on many fronts,” he said.
Referring to the terrorist attacks in Sinai over the last few days that have killed at least 30 Egyptians, the prime minister said Israel is witnessing how the terrorist organizations are working just beyond its southern border.
“We also have seen Iran’s attempts to open another front against us on the Golan Heights in addition to the one it operates against us in southern Lebanon,” he added.
In a related development, Intelligence Minister Yuval Steinitz told reporters before the cabinet meeting that the Iranian nuclear issue is critical to Israel’s security and future, and for that reason Israel is obligated to make its voice heard on the matter.
Steinitz was referring to the controversy surrounding Netanyahu’s invitation to address a joint session of the US Congress in March.
Steinitz said the claim that the circumstances surrounding the invitation is causing irreparable damage to US-Israel ties is about as serious as the brouhaha over Sarah Netanyahu’s alleged cashing in on bottled- drink deposits.
“In another two months, after the elections when Netanyahu forms the next government, you will see that there was no reduction in the friendly strategic, defense intelligence ties with the US and that they will be what they were despite the commotion that some are trying to create during the election campaign,” he said.