Friday, September 25, 2009

Netanyahu at the UN

Here are the main points and links to the entire text and video of Prime Minister Netanyahu's stirring speech at the UN yesterday.

Israel to the UN: The Jewish People Are Not Foreign Conquerors in the Land of Israel (Prime Minister's Office)

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the UN General Assembly on Thursday:

Nearly 62 years ago, the United Nations recognized the right of the Jews, an ancient people 3,500-years-old, to a state of their own in their ancestral homeland. Yesterday, the man [Ahmadinejad] who calls the Holocaust a lie spoke from this podium. To those who refused to come here and to those who left this room in protest, I commend you. You stood up for moral clarity and you brought honor to your countries.

The Iranian regime is fueled by an extreme fundamentalism that burst onto the world scene three decades ago. The struggle against this fanaticism pits civilization against barbarism, the 21st century against the 9th century, those who sanctify life against those who glorify death. If the most primitive fanaticism can acquire the most deadly weapons, the march of history could be reversed. The greatest threat facing the world today is the marriage between religious fanaticism and the weapons of mass destruction, and the most urgent challenge facing this body is to prevent the tyrants of Tehran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

A recent UN report on Gaza falsely equated the terrorists with those they targeted. For eight long years, Hamas fired from Gaza thousands of missiles, mortars and rockets on nearby Israeli cities while not a single UN resolution was passed condemning those criminal attacks. In 2005, hoping to advance peace, Israel unilaterally withdrew from every inch of Gaza. We didn't get peace. Instead we got an Iranian-backed terror base fifty miles from Tel Aviv. Life in Israeli towns and cities next to Gaza became a nightmare.

All of Israel wants peace. If the Palestinians truly want peace, I and my government, and the people of Israel, will make peace. But we want a genuine peace, a defensible peace, a permanent peace. In 1947, this body voted to establish two states for two peoples - a Jewish state and an Arab state. The Jews accepted that resolution. The Arabs rejected it. We ask the Palestinians to finally do what they have refused to do for 62 years: Say yes to a Jewish state. The Jewish people are not foreign conquerors in the Land of Israel. This is the land of our forefathers.

We recognize that the Palestinians also live there and want a home of their own. We want to live side by side with them, two free peoples living in peace, prosperity and dignity. But we don't want another Gaza, another Iranian-backed terror base, abutting Jerusalem and perched on the hills a few kilometers from Tel Aviv. The Palestinians should have all the powers to govern themselves except those handful of powers that could endanger Israel.

Video: View Netanyahu's UN Speech (YouTube)

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