Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivered a no-nonsense address to the United National General Assembly on Monday — presenting himself as the leader of a “proud and unbowed” nation, charged with the “awesome responsibility” of ensuring his much-threatened people’s future in a brutal, unstable region.
The truth, as further set out by the prime minister, is that the most potent such example of globally ambitious militant Islam is what he took pains to call “the Islamic state of Iran,” which has been seeking to export its revolution for 35 years and must be denied the nuclear weapons to further its radical cause. Just as world powers would not let IS enrich uranium, build a heavy water reactor or develop intercontinental ballistic missiles, so Iran must not be allowed to “do those things either,” he insisted. “To defeat ISIS and leave Iran as a threshold nuclear power is to win the battle and lose the war,” he declared — a point he considered so fundamental that he repeated the sentence.
The truth, Netanyahu asserted too, is that Israel has faced “libelous charges” of deliberately killing civilians in its war against Hamas terrorism this summer, when in fact “no other country and no other army in history” had gone to greater lengths to avoid casualties among the civilian population of their enemy. The IDF, he declared, “upheld the highest moral values of any army in the world… Israel’s soldiers deserve not condemnation but admiration. Admiration from decent people everywhere.”
It is Hamas, said Netanyahu, that committed war crimes. It is Hamas, not Israel, that the Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas should have singled out for castigation from the same UN podium last Friday, and it is Hamas that the UN should be investigating. Indeed, by focusing its bias on Israel, he charged, the UN’s Human Rights Council was “sending a clear message to terrorists everywhere” — to use civilians as human shields. The UN Human Rights Council “has thus become a terrorists’ rights council,” he lamented.
For Netanyahu, that UN bias was just one dire manifestation of another awful truth — the revival of the disease of anti-Semitism, as reflected in calls from “mobs in Europe” for the gassing of Jews, and some national leaders making foul comparisons of Israel to the Nazis. “This is not a function of Israel’s policies. It’s a function of diseased minds. And that disease has a name. It’s called anti-Semitism,” he said. “It is now spreading in polite society, where it masquerades as legitimate criticism of Israel.”