Monday, February 11, 2013

'Americans See Netanyahu as the Churchill of Our Day'

“I hope [Obama] will reassure the people of Israel that there is absolutely no way that America will stand by and let Iran develop a nuclear weapon. He needs to say that loudly, clearly and without equivocation,” former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee told The Times of Israel, during a visit to Jerusalem.“It needs to be an absolute line in the sand so that there is no ambiguity and that there’s no doubt on the part of the Iranian government that there is a line that cannot be crossed.” 

Huckabee said Obama should not pressure Israel to return to the negotiating table with the Palestinians. “I think the United States should push Palestine, the Palestinians, to recognize Israel’s right to exist. I’ve never felt that there’s any basis for moving forward until that very fundamental threshold is met,” he said. “Why would the Israelis believe they can move forward with an entity that does not even accept their existence, much less their right to exist?” 

Huckabee, who hosts a popular television talk show in the US, also had praise for the Prime Minister, indicating the rocky relationship between Netanyahu and Obama does not reflect the adoring warmness Americans have for Netanyahu.  “I would say [Netanyahu] is one of the most popular political figures in the US… I think many people see him as the [Winston] Churchill of our day, because he has a clarity about what security threats are faced not just by Israel but by the rest of the world. He has an uncanny historical perspective of why all of this matters and what the background is and Americans generally appreciate him.” 

Echoing a slogan from the Likud party’s election campaign, Huckabee added: “When he speaks, Americans listen.”