Blair to Israelis: Your security is our security

Quartet Middle East envoy says Iran not just Israel's but the world's problem; adds restarting PA talks of paramount importance.

June 21, 2012 09:26
2 minute read.
Quartet Mideast envoy Tony Blair

Quartet Mideast envoy Tony Blair 311 (R). (photo credit: REUTERS/Luke MacGregor)


Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user experience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Report and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew - Ivrit
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief


Quartet Middle East envoy Tony Blair on Thursday asked the Israeli public to trust that the international community is doing everything in its power to ensure that Israel remains safe and that Iran does not achieve nuclear weapons capability.

"Your security here is [the international community's] security," Blair said in an interview with Army Radio. "This is not just Israel's problem. It's our problem too- the international community."

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.

"I've made it clear all along that when we say it's unacceptable for Iran to have nuclear weapons capability, we should mean it," Blair said. "We have to be clear that all actions, including the military option, must remain on the table."

But Blair also hinted a warning against a premature military strike on Iran. "The consequences of action on Iran are unpredictable and very serious indeed," Blair said. "This is a choice between two options, both of which are ugly."

Turning to the subject of stalled negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, Blair placed paramount importance on restarting talks. "We desperately need a viable and strong political process," he said.

Asked what is lacking in negotiations thus far, Blair said "the trust that each leadership has in the other is very low," adding: "My plea is for us to find a way to get back in a serious, proper negotiation."

Specifically referencing Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu's willingness and motivation to make peace, Blair said "in order to [make peace], you have to spend a certain amount of political capital and to take a certain amount of political risk. And that is very difficult."


Click here for full Jpost coverage of the Iranian threat

Blair also said outright that he believes Israel's prime minister is committed to the peace process. "I'm sure that Netanyahu has not given up on peace. I see him very regularly, probably two times a month. He has a desire to put a proper negotiation back in place and to achieve something."

The quartet envoy added that restarting negotiations is vital to restore a modicum of stability to a vastly unstable Middle East. "This is a region of chronic instability, in Syria, Lebanon... and in Gaza," Blair said. "It's strongly in Israel's interest to try to put this Palestinian issue in a more benign circumstance."

Blair is in Israel for the ongoing Facing Tomorrow conference, and on Tuesday spoke on a panel with President Shimon Peres and former US secretary of state Henry Kissinger on the key foreign relations and security challenges facing the Middle East and the world.

Join Jerusalem Post Premium Plus now for just $5 and upgrade your experience with an ads-free website and exclusive content. Click here>>

Related Content

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
August 31, 2014
Prime minister to Channel 1: I’ll be running again in next election

By Gil Stern Stern HOFFMAN