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This Purim, Jewish Think Tank Warning America About Iran

Friday, March 14th, 2014

It is not unusual for Jewish or pro-Israel groups to use the holiday of Purim to warn their constituents about the dangers of the modern Persian threat to the Jewish State.

This year, the organization Endowment for Middle East Truth (EMET) is warning America of that danger.

On Wednesday, March 12, EMET released a video warning Americans of the history of the Iranian build-up of nuclear weapons and of its concomitant willingness to misrepresent the truth of its activities to national and international representatives seeking to dissuade the modern Persian leaders from fulfilling what those leaders see as their right.

Sarah Stern, EMET’s founder and president, spoke with The Jewish Press by telephone on Friday morning.

“Purim is very much a holiday in which we look at the masks, but we have to appreciate what lurks behind those masks,” Stern said. “We are drunk on moral relativism all year, but our lives depend on distinguishing between Mordechai and Haman. This Purim we at EMET strip away the mask and help reveal to everyone the true face of Hassan Rouhani.”

EMET wants Americans to be aware of what it calls “the disastrous nature” of the deal with Iran signed this January by the P5+1 nations, including the United States, Russia, China, France, Great Britain and Germany.

“Unfortunately, the six-month interim deal, whose text will not be publicly released by the Obama Administration, will provide Iran with sanctions relief amounting to ‘well more than $20 billion dollars,’ but in return gives little of any real value to the West.”

EMET claims that recent analysis reveals that even if Iran fully complies with its responsibilities under that deal, “its ability to build a nuclear weapon will be delayed for just one month.”

Americans need to take their obligations as citizens of this democratic country and inform their elected representatives in Washington, D.C. that they were elected to protect and defend and respond to their constituents, not to any particular political party or its leader, according to EMET. It is recommending that anyone concerned about the safety of their country contact their representatives in Washington and insist they ensure that Iran is prevented from developing nuclear weapons.

EMET is a Jewish, pro-Israel, non-partisan think tank and policy shop located in Washington, D.C. It is headed by Sarah Stern, who authored an article also released on March 12, “We are Still in the Iranian Crosshairs.”

Here is EMET’s video, “What’s it going to take.”

Peres: Listen to What Rouhani Did not Say

Thursday, January 23rd, 2014

President Shimon Peres found himself in rare agreement with Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu at Davos Thursday in denouncing the speech by Iranian President Hassan Rouhani at the 2014 World Economic Forum.

After the Prime Minister warned everyone not be deceived by Rouhani’s smiles, Peres said at a press conference, “The most significant remarks were the ones he didn’t make – he didn’t express support for peace in the Middle East. He is the only leader I know who didn’t say clearly the time has come to make peace between Israel and the Arabs.

“He excluded the reference to peace and when he was asked if his vision included all countries he said it included only the ones that Iran will accept, that is some definition.

“He didn’t announce that in order to reduce the bloodshed in Syria, he’s going to stop sending arms and money to Hezbollah to the stop the killing. He could have announced that seeing as he doesn’t want a nuclear bomb that he will stop building long range missiles capable of carrying nuclear warheads.

“He didn’t announce that Iran will stop being the center of terror in our time. “

Lest anyone think that President Peres’ vision of the world might have improved, he put them at ease by stating his support for U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. “I believe President Obama is trying to do the right thing and the US has decided not to stop the sanctions fully until they see the results,” Peres declared.” Secretary Kerry is doing an excellent job with dynamism and determination. There are different opinions, different options and it is normal that they are being examined.”

Norman Podhoretz Urges Israel to Bomb Iran

Sunday, December 15th, 2013

Conservative commentator Norman Podhoretz wrote in The Wall Street Journal late last week that Israel should attack Iran now to prevent it from gaining access to a nuclear weapon.

Israel can “put at least a temporary halt, and conceivably even a permanent one, to the relentless Iranian quest for the bomb” he wrote.

“The Obama administration tells us that the interim agreement puts Iran on a track that will lead to the abandonment of its quest for a nuclear arsenal. But the Iranians are jubilant because they know that the only abandonment going on is of our own effort to keep them from getting the bomb,” Podhoretz added.

“Adherents of the new consensus would have us believe that only two choices remain: a war to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons or containment of a nuclear Iran — with containment the only responsible option. I remain convinced that containment is impossible, from which it follows that the two choices before us are not war vs. containment but a conventional war now or a nuclear war later.”

He declared that “the only hope rests with Israel. If, then, Israel fails to strike now, Iran will get the bomb.”

Wall St. Journal: Obama May Compromise on Iran’s Uranium

Tuesday, October 15th, 2013

The Obama administration is considering to back down and allow Iran to retains its uranium enrichment facilities, despite strong objections from Saudi Arabia and Israel, The Wall Street Journal reported Tuesday.

The world’s major powers are scheduled to meet with Iran this week in a new round of negotiations on its nuclear program, which the Islamic Republic maintains is for peaceful purposes despite vast evidence to the contrary.

If President Barack Obama goes head and compromises with Iran, he will face even stronger criticism in Congress, where a large number of bi-partisan members have demanded that sanctions remain unless Iran makes clear and open moves to stop enriching uranium, a key ingredient for a nuclear weapon.

Ten Democratic and Republican senators sent the president a letter on Friday, calling for Iran to agree to a complete freeze on enriching uranium before the United States eases sanctions.

“Iran’s first confidence-building action should be…immediate suspension of all enrichment activity,” said the letter, which was released  on Monday.

Netanyahu, Obama, Address Middle East Threats

Monday, September 30th, 2013

Just days after U.S. President Barack Obama became telephone buddies with new Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, Israel’s Prime Minister urged Obama not to let up on the international sanctions imposed on Iran because even for diplomacy to work, “those pressures must be kept in place.”

The two heads of country met in the Oval Office on Monday, September 30, and discussed several matters including the ongoing discussions between Israeli and Arab Palestinian negotiators, and the crises in Syria and Egypt.

One of the primary topics of mutual concern was whether there has been a sea change in Iran’s dealing with the West – and more importantly, its nuclear weapons program – or if Rouhani is merely better at public diplomacy than was his predecessor.

There was a brief press conference following the meeting.

President Obama spoke first.  He started by mentioning the ongoing negotiations between Israel and the Arab Palestinians, and then turned his attention to the other threats in the Middle East.

The U.S. president stated that he was “clear-eyed” going into the new rounds of negotiations with the Iranians, and he also confirmed that “we take no options off the table, including military options, in terms of making sure that we do not have a — nuclear weapons in Iran that would destabilize the region and potentially threaten the United States of America.”

When it was the Israeli leader’s turn to speak, Netanyahu immediately pointed out, first, that the U.S. has “no better ally, more reliable, more stable, more democratic other than Israel in a very broad, dangerous place,” and second, that “the most important challenge is preventing Iran from developing nuclear weapons.”

Netanyahu spent the bulk of his remarks focused on Iran.

“Iran is committed to Israel’s destruction,” is the way Netanyahu described the situation. In the simplest possible language, and in the present tense, the Israeli prime minister made clear he does not believe a change in the Iranian presidency has altered Iran’s position towards Israel, regardless of the happy holiday message Rouhini sent to the Jewish people and in spite of the condemnation of Nazi atrocities.

For the Jewish State, unless Iran fully and publicly dismantles its machinery for creating nuclear weapons, there is no question that the country remains an existential threat to Israel.  As Netanyahu put it: “the bottom line, again, is that Iran fully dismantles its military nuclear program.”

In praising the U.S. leadership on international sanctions against Iran, Netanyahu explained he believes “that it’s the combination of a credible military threat and the pressure of those sanctions that have brought Iran to the negotiating table.”  He firmly urged Obama and other world leaders to maintain the pressure of those sanctions, and not to loosen them in response to the more cheerful countenance than Ahmadinejad showed throughout his presidency.

The Israeli leader said that it is the position of his country that if it is determined Iran is moving forward on its path to the creation of nuclear weapons, the sanctions should be strengthened.

The most succinct formulation of Netanyahu’s approach to dealing with Iran is, as he put it on Monday, “a credible military threat and strong sanctions, I think, is still the only formula that can get a peaceful resolution of this problem.”

At the end of his remarks, Netanyahu again referred to the negotiations between his country and the Arab Palestinians, and thanked Obama and U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry for helping to “advance peace” between the two peoples.  While stating that he remains committed to that peace, he once again put on the record, that “for peace to endure, it must be based on Israel’s capacity to defend itself by itself.”

What Netanyahu said from the Oval Office on Monday provided language which the Obama team can use to show Netanyahu is grateful for the leadership the Americans have shown.

However, the actual words used by the Israeli leader on Monday made clear he doesn’t trust the new Iranian president any more than he did the last one. And Netanyahu also stated clearly that Israel will not agree to weaken itself in order to abide by demands made by the Arab Palestinians, or by demands made on their behalf.

Italian FM: Israel First on Path to Secure Middle East

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

Italy appears to be standing strong with Israel regarding Iran’s nuclear program.

On Wednesday, during the Herzliya Conference, Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs Giulio Terzi di Sant’Agata told a packed audience that even if Iran acted rationally with nuclear weapons they would pose an unacceptable global threat.

“Under its own nuclear umbrella, Tehran would be free to raise and lower the volume of regional tension as best suits its national interest…” and that “with a nuclear Iran, the rules of the Middle Eastern game would not only change overnight; they would change irreversibly,” stated Terzi.

The Italian Foreign Minister went on to suggest that “in the end, however ‘regional’ the trigger, a nuclear crisis will always have a global impact…Should Tehran acquire nuclear capabilities, others would follow and the Middle East –at the very doorstep of Europe— would enter this new regional nuclear race.”

The Italian Foreign Minister also addressed the ongoing bloodshed in Syria. “We can no longer afford delays in our action. No example is better than Syria to remind us that the Assad regime and its allies do not necessarily act under similar constraints. We are witnessing the emergence of fast-rising economic and military powers, in different regions, which pursue their interest with the power of a State and the flexibility of a non-state actor.”

Terzi concluded by pointing to Israel as a regional stabilizer, stating that “Israel not only lies at their geographical center. It is also at their frontline. As the dust settles, and room grows for new ideas, Israel will be the first and foremost engine of a new path towards a more secure and peaceful Middle East.”

Iran has been an important topic at the Herzliya Conference, the annual forum for addressing Israel’s national agenda by bringing together Israeli and elite international policy makers. Former U.S. Deputy Secretary of Defense, Rudy DeLeon, also announced on Wednesday that President Barack Obama is not bluffing regarding Iranian nuclear attainment. However, DeLeon emphasized that all other options had to be explored first.

“Precisely because America is strong, we are not afraid to talk to our adversaries,” he stated.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/italian-fm-israel-first-on-path-to-secure-middle-east/2013/03/14/

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