The State of Israel is not the root of the Middle East’s problem and must not be blamed for the region’s troubles, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told the AIPAC conference on Monday.
“Israel’s not what’s wrong with the Middle East. Israel is what’s right about the Middle East,” he said to the cheering audience.
Israel and the US "have forged an enduring friendship not merely between our governments but between our peoples. Support for Israel doesn't divide America. It unites America."
At the beginning of his speech, PM Netanyahu thanked the Jewish lobby members for the “staunch support” they offer the Jewish State. "Israel is America’s indispensible ally," the prime minister said.
Highlights of speech:
Israel and America have drawn from this deep wellspring of common values, We have forged an enduring friendship not merely between our governments but between our peoples.
Support for Israel doesn't divide America,It unites America.
It unites the old and the young, liberals and conservatives, Democrats and Republicans—and yes, Joe Leiberman, it even unites Independents—
This broad support for Israel is a source of great strength for my country.
Since Harry Truman, Israel has looked to American Presidents to stand by its side to meet unfolding challenges of a changing world.
President Obama has spoken about his ironclad commitment to Israel's security. He rightly said that our security cooperation is unprecedented.He spoke of that commitment not just in front of AIPAC, but in two speeches heard throughout the Arab world. And President Obama has backed those words with deeds.
I know these are tough economic times.
So I want to thank the President and Congress for providing Israel with vital assistance so that Israel can defend itself by itself.Thank you for supporting the Iron Dome missile-defense system.
The Truth on Israel:
I will speak the unvarnished truth.
Now, more than ever, what we need is clarity.
Events in our region are finally opening people's eyes to a simple truth - The problems of the region are not rooted in Israel.
The remarkable scenes we are witnessing in town squares across the Middle East and North Africa are occurring for a simple reason, People want freedom, They want progress, They want a better life.
It's time to stop blaming Israel for all of the region's problems...It's time to recognize this basic truth: Israel is not what's wrong about the Middle East, Israel is what's right about the Middle East.
Israel wants peace because we know the pain of terror and the agony of war, We want peace because we know the blessings peace could bring to us and to our Palestinian neighbors.
But if we hope to advance peace with the Palestinians, then it is time that we admitted another truth.
This conflict has raged for nearly a century because the Palestinians refuse to end it, They refuse to accept the Jewish state - This is what this conflict has always been about.
There are many issues that must be resolved between Israelis and Palestinians, We can and must resolve them.
But I repeat. We can only make peace with the Palestinians if they are prepared to make peace with the Jewish state.