Fundamentally Freund: Netanyahu speaks for us all

When Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ascends the podium to warn Congress about the threat of a nuclear Iran, he will be bearing the weight of history and the course of destiny on his shoulder

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu  (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu
We are about to witness a seminal event, a moment that could prove fateful for the entire Jewish people and all of Western civilization.
The critics and naysayers can rant and rave all they wish, but when Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu ascends the podium today to warn Congress about the threat of a nuclear Iran, he will be bearing the weight of history and the course of destiny on his shoulders.
Seven decades after Germany sought to destroy the Jewish people, the would-be Hitlers of Persia are racing to construct an atomic Auschwitz designed to finish what the Nazis began. Indeed, less than 1,000 miles east of Tel Aviv, the mullahs are building the machinery of mass murder. Instead of gas chambers, they are installing centrifuges. In place of Zyklon-B gas, their agent of choice is now uranium.
All of us are in their crosshairs, all of us are potential victims of the ayatollahs and their fanatical, apocalyptic world-view.
See the latest opinion pieces on our page
It is therefore essential that the premier deliver his discourse, and with it a simple and unambiguous message to America and its leaders: Iran must be stopped now, before it is too late.
Don’t let the talking heads in the media fool you. This is a speech that Netanyahu should not have to give, and most certainly does not wish to deliver. After all, Israelis go to the ballot box in two weeks in a tightly- contested election, and there is plenty of hard campaigning still to do. And if Washington had not dallied and dithered for years in seeking to stymie Iran’s nuclear program, Israel would not find itself in the position in which it now is.
But like his Democratic predecessor Franklin Delano Roosevelt, US President Barack Obama prefers to blithely ignore the warning signs, refusing to take the necessary steps to prevent the possible extermination of the Jewish people.
Consider the events of 1944, when various Jewish leaders began urging the US and its allies to intervene to stop the mass killing of Jews at Auschwitz.
Pleas were made to FDR and other officials to bomb the railway tracks over which hundreds of thousands of Hungarian Jews were being sent to their deaths, or even to attack and bomb the gas chambers and crematoria themselves to slow the pace of the slaughter.
But as historian David S. Wyman noted in his 1984 book, The Abandonment of the Jews: America and the Holocaust 1941-1945, the Roosevelt administration refused to do so, even though massive American bombing raids were taking place within 50 miles of the death camp.
In retrospect, shouldn’t everything possible have been done to pressure FDR to act? Knowing what we do, would anyone now berate those who “violated protocol” or “insulted Roosevelt” by seeking to compel him to do something to save Jews? This is the situation in which Netanyahu now finds himself: under attack because he is putting Israel’s future ahead of Obama’s feelings.
Only someone ignorant of the threat that Iran poses could possibly hold it against the premier for choosing to buck the criticism and go to Congress.
Barely two weeks ago, the International Atomic Energy Agency issued a report which said that Tehran is not cooperating with nuclear inspectors and is hiding “nuclear-related activities involving military-related organizations, including activities related to the development of a nuclear payload for a missile.”
And the Iranians continue to violate six United Nations Security Council resolutions passed since July 31, 2006, which require them to “suspend all enrichment- related and reprocessing activities, including research and development.”
Does anyone really believe that they can be trusted with anything less than the complete dismantling of their nuclear program? Is this something that you would be willing to risk the future of your family, your country and your people on? Hence, the drama surrounding the premier’s address is neither overblown nor exaggerated.
After years of diplomacy and delays, and countless inspections, the saga of Iran’s nuclear program is about to reach its climax, one which will result either in capitulation or containment.
In his speech, Netanyahu will be putting the world on notice, trying to shake it out of its slumber so people will realize the alarm bells are ringing and there is no time to lose. This is not just Israel’s battle, he will surely tell them, it is everyone’s war. And we will not allow Iran to perpetrate a second Holocaust.
Not now. Not ever.
So instead of criticizing the premier, we should all be lining up behind him and showing our support, trusting that he will be guided from Above with wisdom and acumen.
Like him or not, Netanyahu will be speaking in the name of the entire Jewish people. This isn’t a matter of his personal political future. It is about our collective fate. So let’s stand together, united, and pray that he succeeds.