Defense Minister Yoav Gallant on Thursday said that Israel and its air force power will force Iran to withdraw from its close fighting with Jerusalem back thousands of kilometers to its borders.
Speaking from the Air Force Officers Graduation Ceremony, Gallant said, “We will not come to terms with attempts by Iran to go wild in our area. We will act against them and strike them and send them back to their land of origin thousands of kilometers east from the State of Israel.”
The defense minister repeated past statements that “all options are on the table” to prevent the Islamic Republic from acquiring a nuclear weapon.
Iran's 'capital of terror' meeting
Gallant also emphasized Tehran’s global role in terror, noting a recent meeting in Iran with top Hamas terror leaders and terror leaders from various other organizations.
“This was a meeting of terror in the capital of terror” to bring terror against Israel and the entire world.
At the same ceremony, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that Israel would prevent Iran from smuggling precision weapons close to its borders.
Likewise, Netanyahu said that the IDF would not allow Iran to develop a nuclear weapon and that it would defend Israel even if the West signed a new potential nuclear deal with Tehran.
He called the new graduates, “the guardians of our skies,” saying that Israel “has a talent advantage…along with technology, but technology does not end humanity’s relevance,” noting that a core aspect of the Israeli air force’s strength is its personnel.
Netanyahu repeated recent messages he has emphasized slamming any IDF reservists who have protested his judicial overhaul by calling on their fellow reservists to refuse to serve.
IDF chief-of-staff Lt. Gen. Herzi Halevi said, “the air force is a huge part of the IDF’s power and enables us to carry out precision strikes with power, flexibility and the ability to act decisively.”
Halevi said that the coming decades are unpredictable for the air force, but “there will for sure be security threats to the State of Israel, against which we will need to remain strong. There will be disagreements, which is the sign of a healthy and involved Israeli society.”
Despite internal disagreements, “we will always defend ourselves and the mission of maintaining security” must be above any of those disagreements.
Israel Air Force Chief Maj. Gen. Tomer Bar surveyed decades of operations in which the air force made a decisive difference, saying he knew the new graduates would carry on this tradition.
Bar warned against recent efforts “to disrupt the orchestra” of the air force by some protesting reservists, saying that all air force personnel must answer the call to duty regardless of their personal ideologies.