Defense Minister Ehud Barak called Israel an island of security for all Jews and referred to himself as not only the defense minister of Israel, but also the defense minister of all the Jewish people. Barak's comments came in an address he made to the Jewish Federations of North America's General Assembly in New Orleans on Sunday.
The defense minister stated that the campaign to delegitimize Israel internationally posed as great a danger to the Jewish State's future as Hamas or Hizbullah.He said that a historic opportunity to make peace exists currently because of the whole world's interest in an end to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He said that a peace agreement is now seen internationally as an important part of combating violence, extremism and terrorism.
Barak said that if Iran comes to possess nuclear weapons it will begin an arms race among all of the nations of the region. In addition, a nuclear Iran would bolster terrorist organizations all over the world, including al-Qaida and the Taliban. He added that Israel is leaving all options on the table in relation to Iran and he suggested that other countries do the same.