“Israel must reserve the right to defend itself and after all, that’s the very purpose of the Jewish state to, restore to the Jewish people control of our destiny,” said Netanyahu, who is meeting with the president in advance of his speech later today before the American Israel Public Affairs Committee’s annual policy conference.Israel reserves the right to strike Iran if need be, Netanyahu said.In advance of today’s meeting with Netanyahu, Obama has faced renewed criticism from pro-Israel groups over his handling of the U.S.-Israel relationship, including the release of Daylight a documentary produced by the Emergency Committee for Israel highlighting his administration’s strained ties with the closest U.S. ally in the Middle East.
President Barack Obama appealed to Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday to give sanctions time to curb Iran's nuclear ambitions, but the Israeli prime minister offered no sign of backing away from possible military action, saying his country must be the "master of its fate."
The two men, who have had a strained relationship, sought to present a united front in the Iranian nuclear standoff as they held White House talks. But their public statements revealed differences over how to prevent Iranfrom developing nuclear weapons.
Behind closed doors, however, Netanyahu confirmed to Obama what the president has already stated publicly - that Israel has yet to decide whether to hit Iran's nuclear sites but retains the right to resort to military action, a source close to the talks said.
They remain far apart on any explicit nuclear "red lines" that Iran must not be allowed to cross, and they have yet to agree on a time frame for when military forces might be needed.
There was no sign from Monday's talks that Obama's sharpened rhetoric against Tehran and his calls for restraint by Israel would be enough to delay any Israeli military plans against Iran, which has called for the destruction of the Jewish state.
US Presidentreportedly on Monday gave Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu a copy of the Book of Esther in honor of the Jewish holiday of Purim, which is celebrated on Thursday and Friday this week.
Netanyahu took the opportunity to draw a parallel between the narrative in the Book of Esther – wherein the wicked Haman seeks to destroy the Jewish people throughout the Persian Empire – with Israel's modern day conflict with Iran..
Iranian leaders – including President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad – have repeatedly called for the destruction of the Jewish state, referring to Israel as a "one bomb state."
Iran is geographically Persia and the Iranians are descendants of the ancient Persians.
The exchange took place at the end of the meeting between the two leaders, which lasted approximately 3 hours.After the meeting, Netanyahu told reporters that Obama understood that Israel has full right to take its future and security into its own hands to defend it against its enemies, and has the
It was also reported US intelligence officials believe Israeli leaders have already decided to attack Iran, barring significant change in Iran's nuclear posture in the coming weeks or months.