Ladies and gentlemen, tonight, I’d like to talk to you about a subject that no
one has been talking about recently… Iran.
Every day, I open the
newspapers and read about these red lines and these timelines. I read about what
Israel has supposedly decided to do, or what Israel might do.
not going to talk to you about what Israel will do or will not do, I never talk
about that. But I do want to talk to you about the dangers of a nuclear-armed
Iran. I want to explain why Iran must never be allowed to develop nuclear
US President [Barack] Obama has reiterated his commitment to
prevent that from happening.
He stated clearly that all options are on
the table, and that American policy is not containment.
Well, Israel has
exactly the same policy – We are determined to prevent Iran from developing
nuclear weapons; we leave all options on the table; and containment is
definitely not an option.
The Jewish state will not allow those who seek
our destruction to possess the means to achieve that goal.
armed Iran must be stopped.
Amazingly, some people refuse to acknowledge
that Iran’s goal is to develop nuclear weapons. You see, Iran claims to do
everything it’s doing, that it’s enriching uranium to develop medical
Yeah, that’s right.
A country that builds underground
nuclear facilities, develops intercontinental ballistic missiles, manufactures
thousands of centrifuges, and that absorbs crippling sanctions, is doing all
that in order to advance... medical research.
So you see, when that
Iranian ICBM [intercontinental ballistic missile] is flying through the air to a
location near you, you’ve got nothing to worry about. It’s only carrying medical
Ladies and gentlemen, If it looks like a duck, walks like a
duck, and quacks like a duck, then what is it? That’s right, it’s a duck. But
this duck is a nuclear duck. And it’s time the world started calling a duck a
Fortunately, President Obama and most world leaders understand that
the claim that Iran’s goal is not to develop nuclear weapons is simply
Yet incredibly, some are prepared to accept an idea only
slightly less preposterous: That we should accept a world in which the
Ayatollahs have atomic bombs.
Sure, they say, Iran is cruel, but it’s not
crazy. It’s detestable but it’s deterrable.
My friends, responsible
leaders should not bet the security of their countries on the belief that the
world’s most dangerous regimes won’t use the world’s most dangerous
And I promise you that as prime minister, I will never gamble
with the security of the State of Israel.
From the beginning, the
Ayatollah regime has broken every international rule and flouted every norm. It
has seized embassies, targeted diplomats. It sends its own children through mine
fields; it hangs gays and stones women; it supports Assad’s brutal slaughter of
the Syrian people; it is the world’s foremost sponsor of terrorism: it sponsors
Hezbollah in Lebanon, Hamas in Gaza and terrorists throughout the Middle East,
Africa, even South America.
Iran’s proxies have dispatched hundreds of
suicide bombers, planted thousands of roadside bombs, and they fired over 20,000
missiles at civilians.
Through terror from the skies and terror on the
ground, Iran is responsible for the murder of hundreds, if not thousands, of
In 1983, Iran’s proxy Hezbollah blew up the marine barracks in
Lebanon, killing 240 US Marines. In the last decade, it’s been responsible for
murdering and maiming American soldiers in Afghanistan and in Iraq.
a few months ago, it tried to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United
States in a restaurant just a few blocks from here. The assassins didn’t care
that several senators and congressmen would have been murdered in the
Now this is real chutzpah: Iran accuses the American government
of orchestrating 9/11, and that’s as brazen as denying the Holocaust, and they
do... Iran calls for Israel’s destruction, and they work for its destruction –
each day, every day, relentlessly.
I say all this to make one point clear
– this is how Iran behaves today, without nuclear weapons. Think of how they
will behave tomorrow, with nuclear weapons. Iran will be even more reckless and
a lot more dangerous.
There’s been plenty of talk recently about the
costs of stopping Iran.
I think it’s time we started talking about the
costs of not stopping Iran.
A nuclear-armed Iran would dramatically
increase terrorism by giving terrorists a nuclear umbrella. Let me try to
explain what that means, a nuclear umbrella.
It means that Iran’s terror
proxies like Hezbollah, Hamas will be emboldened to attack the United States,
Israel and other countries because they will be backed by a power that has
atomic bombs. So the terrorism could grow tenfold.
A nuclear-armed Iran
could choke off the world’s oil supply and could make real its threat to close
the Straits of Hormuz.
If you’re worried about the price of oil today,
imagine how high oil prices could get once a nuclear-armed Iran starts
blackmailing the world.
If Iran gets nuclear weapons, it would set off a
mad dash by Saudi Arabia, Turkey and others to acquire nuclear weapons of their
The world’s most volatile region would become a nuclear tinderbox
waiting to go off.
And here’s the worst nightmare of all, with nuclear
weapons, Iran could threaten all of us with nuclear terrorism.
put a nuclear device in a ship heading to any port or in a truck parked in any
city, anywhere in the world.
I want you to think about what it would mean
to have nuclear weapons in the hands of those who lead millions of radicals who
chant “Death to America” and “Death to Israel.” When you think about that you’ll
reach a simple conclusion: for the sake of our prosperity, for the sake of our
security, for the sake of our children, Iran must not be allowed to acquire
nuclear weapons! Of course, the best outcome would be if Iran decided to abandon
its nuclear weapons program peacefully. No one would be happier than me and the
people of Israel if Iran dismantled its program.
But so far, that hasn’t
happened. For 15 years, I’ve been warning that a nuclear-armed Iran is a grave
danger to my country and to the peace and security of the entire
For the last decade, the international community has tried
It hasn’t worked.
For six years, the international
community has applied sanctions.
That hasn’t worked either.
appreciate President Obama’s recent efforts to impose even tougher sanctions
against Iran. These sanctions are hurting Iran’s economy, but unfortunately,
Iran’s nuclear program continues to march forward.
Israel has waited
patiently for the international community to resolve this issue. We’ve waited
for diplomacy to work. We’ve waited for sanctions to work. None of us can afford
to wait much longer.
As prime minister of Israel, I will never let my
people live in the shadow of annihilation.
Ladies and gentlemen, some
commentators would have you believe that stopping Iran from getting the bomb is
more dangerous than letting Iran have the bomb.
They say that a military
confrontation with Iran would undermine the efforts already underway; that it
would be ineffective; and that it would provoke an even more vindictive response
I’ve heard these arguments before. In fact, I’ve read them
before – in my desk, I have copies of an exchange of letters between the World
Jewish Congress and the United States War Department.
Here are the
letters: The year was 1944.
The World Jewish Congress implored the
American government to bomb Auschwitz.
The reply came five days later. I
want to read it to you.
“Such an operation could be executed only by
diverting considerable air support essential to the success of our forces
and in any case, it would be of such doubtful efficacy that
it would not warrant the use of our resources…” And, my friends, here’s the most
remarkable sentence of all, and I quote: “Such an effort might provoke even more
vindictive action by the Germans.”
Think about that – “even more
vindictive action” – than the Holocaust.
My friends, 2012 is not 1944.
The American government today is different. You heard it in President Obama’s
But here’s my point: The Jewish people are also
different. Today we have a state of our own. And the purpose of the Jewish state
is to defend Jewish lives and to secure the Jewish future.
will we not be masters of the fate of our very survival.
That is why Israel must always have the ability to defend itself,
by itself, against any threat.
My friends, we deeply appreciate the great
alliance between our two countries.
But when it comes to Israel’s
survival, we must always remain the masters of our fate.
gentlemen, Israel’s fate is to continue to be the forward position of freedom in
the Middle East. The only place in the Middle East where minorities enjoy full
civil rights; the only place in the Middle East where Arabs enjoy full civil
rights; the only place in the Middle East where Christians are free to practice
their faith; the only place in the Middle East where real judges protect the
rule of law.
And as prime minister of Israel, I will always protect
Israel’s democracy – always. I will never allow anything to threaten Israel’s
democratic way of life, and most especially, I will never tolerate any
discrimination against women.
Ladies and gentlemen, this week, we will
read how one woman changed Jewish history.
In synagogues throughout the
world, the Jewish people will celebrate the festival of Purim. We will read how
some 2,500 years ago, a Persian anti-Semite tried to annihilate the Jewish
And we will read how that plot was foiled by one courageous woman
In every generation, there are those who wish to destroy the
In this generation, we are blessed to live in an age when
there is a Jewish state capable of defending the Jewish people.
are doubly blessed to have so many friends like you, Jews and non-Jews alike,
who love the State of Israel and support its right to defend itself.
as I leave you tonight I thank you for your friendship. Thank you for your
Thank you for standing up for the one and only Jewish
Thank you all and happy Purim.