In his speech before the UN General Assembly on Tuesday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, hailed what he called a “revolution” in Israel’s acceptance around the world and warned that despite Iranian threats “the light of Israel will never be extinguished.”
“This is happening because so many countries around the world have finally woken up to what Israel can do for them,” Netanyahu explained. “Those countries now recognize what brilliant investors like Warren Buffet and great companies like Google and Intel, what they’ve recognized and known for years: That Israel is the innovation nation – the place for cutting-edge technology in agriculture, in water, in cyber security, in medicine, in autonomous vehicles – you name it, we’ve got it.”
Netanyahu added that Israel doesn’t just give the world the technology to improve lives, but the information needed to save lives, “Israel has provided intelligence that has prevented dozens of major terrorist attacks around the world. We have saved countless lives. You may not know this, but your governments do, and they are working closely together with Israel to keep your countries safe and your citizens safe.”
After noting that hundreds of foreign dignitaries visited Israel in the past year, Netanyahu said, “After 70 years, the world is embracing Israel, and Israel is embracing the world.”
Despite the positive changes, the Prime Minister also noted that Israel still isn’t fully accepted, a problem that, he observed, was apparent at the UN.
Last December, the UN Security Council “passed an anti-Israel resolution that set back the cause of peace,” Netanyahu said. This past May the World Heath Organization approved a Syrian-sponsored resolution that condemned Israel for health conditions in the Golan Heights even as “Syria has barrel bombed, starved, gassed and murdered hundreds of thousands of its own citizens and wounded millions more, while Israel has provided lifesaving medical care to thousands of Syrian victims of that very same carnage.” And UNESCO created some “fake history” when it declared the Tomb of the Patriarchs to be a Palestinian heritage site.
However, Netanyahu credited Secretary General António Guterres, for stating explicitly that “denying Israel’s right to exist is anti-Semitism, pure and simple.” He also expressed his hope that Israel’s better relations with individual nations would lead to better relations “in this hall of nations.”
Netanyahu thanked the United States Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley and President Donald Trump for the support they give is at the UN.
Though Netanyahu didn’t menion it, Israel’s ambassador to the UN was recently elected to be vice-president of the General Assembly.
The Israeli prime minister then seized on Trump’s judgment from earlier in the day that the nuclear deal with Iran was an “embarrassment.”
Iran vows to destroy my country every day, including by its chief of staff the other day. Iran is conducting a campaign of conquest across the Middle East and Iran is developing ballistic missiles to threaten the entire world.
Two years ago, I stood here and explained why the Iranian nuclear deal not only doesn’t block Iran’s path to the bomb, Iran’s nuclear program has what’s called a sunset clause. Let me explain what that term means: It means that in a few years, those restrictions will be automatically removed – not by a change in Iran’s behavior, not by a lessening of its terror or its aggression. They’ll just be removed by a mere change in the calendar. And I warned that when that sunset comes, a dark shadow will be cast over the entire Middle East and the world, because Iran will then be free to enrich uranium on an industrial scale, placing it on the threshold of a massive arsenal of nuclear weapons.
He also warned that North Korea developed nuclear weapons despite assurances that negotiations would prevent them from doing so, and that in the case of Iran “unfortunately, if nothing changes, this deal will turn out exactly the same way.”
“I warned that when the sanctions on Iran would be removed, Iran would behave like a hungry tiger unleashed,” Netanyahu recalled, “not joining the community of nations, but devouring nations, one after the other.”
But despite the threats posed by Iran’s increased aggressiveness and improved armaments, Netanyahu said addressing Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, “the light of Israel will never be extinguished.”
Despite his threats to the regime ruling Iran, Netanyahu said to the people of Iran, “you are our friends,” promising that one day, “the friendship between our two ancient peoples will surely flourish once again.”
After expressing his hope that Israel would soon be at peace with its Arab neighbors, Netanyahu expressed his pride in “the remarkable contributions Israel will continue to make to all nations.”
You look around you and you will see those contributions every day – in the food you eat, the water you drink, the medicines you take, the cars you drive, the cell phones you use, and in so many other ways that are transforming our world.
You see it in the smile of an African mother in a remote village, who, thanks to an Israeli innovation, no longer must walk eight hours a day to bring water to her children.
You see it in the eyes of an Arab child, who was flown to Israel to undergo a life-saving heart operation.
And you see it in the faces of the people in earthquake-stricken Haiti and Nepal who were rescued from the rubble and given new life by Israeli doctors.
[Photo: United Nations]