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Posts Tagged ‘nuclear weapon’

Senate Overwhelmingly Endorses ‘Capability’ Red Line on Iran

Monday, September 24th, 2012

The U.S. Senate overwhelmingly endorsed language that sets a red line for Iran “nuclear capability.”

The non-binding resolution, introduced in February by Sens. Bob Casey (D-Pa.), Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.), says that “it is a vital national interest of the United States to prevent the Government of Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapons capability.”

The resolution passed late Friday by a vote of 90-1, with only Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) voting against.

The language is in line with Israel’s red lines and goes further than the Obama administration, which has set as a red line Iran’s acquisition of a nuclear weapon.

It is not precisely clear what “capability” entails. A number of experts believe Iran already has crossed that threshold and is capable of manufacturing a nuclear weapon. Iran insists its nuclear program is strictly peaceful.

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee praised the resolution’s passage.

“AIPAC applauds the Senate for rejecting a policy of containment of an Iranian nuclear weapons capability and calling for an increase in sanctions against the world’s leading state sponsor of terror,” the group said in a statement.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed similar language in May, and the term “capability” has made it into other legislation, including the most recent sanctions legislation.

JTA

Israeli Minister: Iranian Crisis Will Culminate in Coming Months

Monday, June 18th, 2012

Last Friday the Israeli newspaper Ha’aretz published a lengthy interview with Moshe ‘Boogie’ Ya’alon, Israel’s Minister for Strategic Affairs.

Most of the interview dealt with Iran and the possibility that Israel will launch a military strike on the nuclear facilities of the Islamic Republic.

Ya’alon is a member of Israel’s security cabinet and was Chief of Staff of the IDF during the Second Intifada. During the interview Ya’alon stated that when Israel has to choose between Iran having a (nuclear) bomb and bombing Iran, it will opt for the latter.

He also made clear that for Israel the red line is Iran’s capability to produce a nuclear weapon and not Khamenei’s order to produce a bomb. He also told Ha’aretz that there is disagreement with the US administration on this issue. Ya’alon added that Israel is not bluffing when it comes to decisive action to stop Iran and does not need an American ‘green light’ for a military strike .

Ya’alon furthermore predicted that the Iranian crisis will culminate in the coming months.

Yochanan Visser

Romney Says Obama Prefers Letting Iran Have Nukes to Letting Israel Attack

Saturday, June 16th, 2012

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney on Saturday revved up his attacks on President Obama’s Mid East policy, suggesting the president fears that Israel might attack Iran more than he fears that Iran will develop a nuclear weapon, the Los Angeles Times reported.

Earlier this year, Romney said during a Republican debate on ABC: “If we reelect Barack Obama, Iran will have a nuclear weapon. And if we elect Mitt Romney, they will not have a nuclear weapon…”

Speaking to members of the evangelical Christian political organization Faith and Freedom Coalition, Romney responded with ridicule when asked what he would do, as president, to strengthen U.S.-Israel relations.

“I think, by and large, you can just look at the things the president has done and do the opposite,” Romney said, to laughter and applause from his audience. “You look at his policies with regards to Iran, he’s almost sounded like he’s more frightened that Israel might take military action than he’s concerned that Iran might become nuclear.”

His audience of 250 in the ballroom of a Washington hotel responded with extended applause and cheering.

Romney’s stump speech on Iran seeks to position that country’s nuclear aspirations as marking Obama’s greatest foreign policy failure:

“What he should have done is speak out when dissidents took to the streets and say America is with you and work on a covert basis to encourage the dissidents. Number two, he should have put in place crippling sanctions against Iran. But instead of getting Russia, for instance, to agree to those crippling sanctions, he gave Russia what they wanted, their number one foreign policy objective, and got nothing in return…

“… Finally, the president should have built a credible threat of military action and made it very clear that the United States of America is willing, in the final analysis, if necessary, to take military action to keep Iran from having a nuclear weapon.”

Romney spoke over a video link from an outdoor site in Pennsylvania, against the background of his campaign bus. This was his second day of a six-state swing.

Romney said he plans to “forge a strong working relationship with the leadership in Israel. I would make it very clear that for us, as well as for them, it is unacceptable for Iran to become a nuclear nation and that we’re prepared to take any and all action to keep that from happening.” Once again, prolonged applause followed his words.

Romney said he would encourage countries like Turkey and Saudi Arabia to arm “the insurgents” in Syria.

“But perhaps overarching is this: I would not want to show a dime’s worth of distance between ourselves and our allies like Israel. If we have disagreements, you know, we can talk about them behind closed doors. But to the world, you show that we’re locked arm-in-arm,” he said.

Jacob Edelist

Panetta Announces $70 Million for Iron Dome

Friday, May 18th, 2012

The Obama administration said it would rush $70 million to Israel in order to enhance its Iron Dome missile defense system, with more money in the pipeline.

Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta said Thursday, after meeting with his Israeli counterpart Ehud Barak, that he was directed by President Obama to meet Israel’s needs for the system as indicated by Barak.

“My goal is to ensure Israel has the funding it needs each year to produce these batteries that can protect its citizens,” Panetta said. “That is why, going forward over the next three years, we intend to request additional funding for Iron Dome based on an annual assessment of Israeli security requirements against an evolving threat.”

Legislation under consideration in Congress, shaped in consultation with administration officials, would deliver $680 million to Israel for the system, which earlier this year successfully intercepted rocket fire from the Gaza Strip.

The system was funded in part by $205 million transferred by the United States to Israel in 2011.

Barak, in a statement, said he “greatly appreciated” the announcement, adding that “This additional funding for the Iron Dome system comes at a crucial time for the Israeli people.”

Barak is in Washington to discuss with Panetta and Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton efforts to keep Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon.

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee also praised the Obama administration for its announcement.

“This funding will enable the Jewish state to better protect its citizens, thus preventing a wider conflict,” AIPAC said in a statement. “Missile defense programs are a cornerstone of U.S.-Israel cooperative programs. The two allies work together to develop innovative technologies that advance the security of both nations.”

JTA

Peres to AIPAC: ‘Iran Will Not Develop a Nuclear Weapon’

Sunday, March 4th, 2012

Israeli President Shimon Peres used his speech to the AIPAC Policy Conference to declare that Iran “will be stopped” and insist that Israel has “a friend in the White House.”

In a wide-ranging speech, Peres also spoke of Israel’s unremitting duty to continue pursuing “a peace based on a Two State Solution,” despite the fact that the Middle East was being rocked by a “storm” of change. He said that the principle of the “The Two State solution” was “a paramount Israeli interest.”

The dovish President also peppered his speech with harsh words about Iran, continuing the rhetorical battle that has picked up frequency and intensity in recent months. He spoke of “Iran’s ambition is to control the Middle East, so it can control a major part of the world’s economy.”

“It must be stopped. And it will be stopped.” Peres proclaimed.

“Peace is always our first option,” he continued. “But, if we are forced to fight, trust me, We shall prevail…The United States and Israel share the same goal – to prevent Iran from developing a nuclear weapon. There is NO space between us. Our message is clear: Iran will not develop a nuclear weapon.”

Peres also spoke reassuringly about US President Obama, saying that his “commitment to Israel is deep and profound.” To the audience, Peres insisted: “We have a friend in the White House.”

On a personal note, the Israeli president reminisced about his grandfather, Rabbi Tzvi Melzer, who had accompanied Peres to the train station on his way to Israel. Peres said that his grandfather “whispered in my ear only three words, ‘Shimon…. stay Jewish.'” Not long after, his grandfather and the remaining Jews were murdered by the Nazis.

“What remained was my Grandfather’s legacy, His last words to me ‘Stay Jewish.'”

Rafi Harkham

Santorum: Obama Wants a Nuclear Iran

Monday, February 20th, 2012

The Associated Press  reports that Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum accused President Barack Obama of actively seeking ways to allow Iran  to gain a nuclear weapon and suggested that the administration had betrayed Israel by publicly disclosing what may be a plan to attack the Muslim nation.

“We’re throwing Israel under the bus because we know we’re going to be dependent upon OPEC,” Santorum said during a speech in Oklahoma City. “We’re going to say, ‘Oh, Iran, we don’t want you to get a nuclear weapon — wink, wink, nod, nod — go ahead, just give us your oil.’ Folks, the president of the United States is selling the economic security of the United States down the river right now.”

On Sunday, appearing on “CBS This Morning,” Rick Santorum said the U.S. should issue an ultimatum to Iran to dismantle its nuclear program and “take out those facilities” if that demand goes unmet.

The former Pennsylvania senator chided the Obama administration for not doing enough to thwart Iran’s nuclear ambitions. “Every time we’ve seen something brought up to try to curb Iran and their ability to develop that nuclear weapon, he’s opposed it or grudgingly gone along,” he said.

Later Santorum told CNN that Defense Secretary Leon Panetta is divulging sensitive information about Israel’s plans to strike Iran and then inviting scorn upon the Jewish state from the rest of the world.

The Washington Post published a column last week saying that Panetta has concluded that an Israeli strike is likely before summer, but Panetta has declined to comment on that assertion.

In a speech in Greenville, South Carolina, two weeks ago, Santorum warned that Tehran would first destroy Israel and then turn its sights on the United States. “They cannot have a nuclear weapon, because you, in Greenville, will not be safe,” he said, according to the Washington Examiner.

Yori Yanover

48% of Likely US Voters Say US Should Help Israel if it Attacks Iran

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012

According to a survey of 1,000 likely American voters, 48% of respondents want the US to assist Israel if it decides to launch a military attack on Iran.

Rasmussen Reports also found that 83% believe it is at least somewhat likely Iran will develop a nuclear weapon in the near future.

The national survey was conducted February 4-5, and has a 3% margin of error.

 

Jewish Press Staff

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/48-of-likely-us-voters-say-us-should-help-israel-if-it-attacks-iran/2012/02/07/

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