The global landscape is changing before our eyes. If we use old maps to navigate these new challenges of peace and security, we will end up nowhere. Israel is deeply concerned with the security and stability of states facing the scourge of terrorism.
Before I begin, I would like to bring to your attention, an attack on Israeli citizens that occurred just this afternoon. A Palestinian terrorist shot and killed a couple. When you hear about this on the news, you’ll hear "Israeli settlers", they were an Israeli couple. Naama and Eitam Henkin driving with their children, 9-year old, 7-year old, 4-year old, and 4-month old baby, who were themselves injured in the attack. This just one day after Mahmoud Abbas declared in the UN, "we are working on spreading the culture of peace and coexistence between our people and in our region."
Ali Salem, an Egyptian writer and playwright who was a courageous voice of friendship between the Egyptian and the Israeli people, died last week in his home at the age of 79.
In an interview soon after the September 11th attacks on the United States he said, and I quote, "There is no first world, there is no second or third world; there is a village called this planet." In our world today, disease, terror, and conflict are no longer local. They are collective challenges that must be met by collective action.
As we sit here today, nation-states are disintegrating before our eyes- Libya, Syria, Yemen, Iraq. Bashar Assad continues to slaughter his own people with chemical weapons and barrel bombs. Waves of refugees arrive on European shores. ISIS, Boko Haram, the Taliban and al-Shabab are on the offensive.
And yet, too often the focus of too many in this institution is on flag poles and false promises.
The time has come to ring down the curtain on these political theatrics, and roll up our sleeves for the challenges ahead.
No longer can this organization give a free pass to regimes that restrict freedom of religion, that violate human rights, and that suppress free speech and free expression. The only place where these countries permit any exercise of freedom of speech is here, at the United Nations and they use it to deflect responsibility, to defame Israel, and to degrade the work of this organization.
The global landscape is changing before our eyes. If we use old maps to navigate these new challenges of peace and security, we will end up on the road to nowhere.
This week, we’ve heard many world leaders talk about the need to fight ISIS. In this chamber, I want to pay a special tribute to the brave Kurdish men and women who are courageously fighting on the frontlines, and on a daily basis, against the vilest form of extremism and terrorism. The international community must embrace their cause, support their efforts, and recognize Kurdish aspirations.
We were all moved by the statement of President Muhammadu Buhari of Nigeria in the General Debate this week. To paraphrase President Buhari, the war against terrorism is a war between the values of democracy and the rule of law on the one hand, and chaos and oppression on the other.
From Garissa in Kenya to Gao in Mali, violent Islamic extremism has destabilized states across Africa and terrorized innocent civilians. This past summer, we saw terrible attacks by Al Shabab and Boko Haram targeting innocent civilians who simply strive for stability and seek a brighter future, for themselves and for their families.
As the one country with a land border with the continent of Africa, and as an ally and partner of many African countries, Israel is deeply concerned with the security and stability of states facing the scourge of terrorism.
It is a threat they will not face alone. We know, all too well, the devastating impact of terror on families and communities. Israel stands shoulder to shoulder with our African friends, and stands ready to continue sharing our counter-terrorism expertise in every area, from aviation security to border protection.
This past year, we were reminded that the stability of states is threatened not only by large-scale violence, but also by the smallest of nature’s organisms. Tragically, we witnessed how diseases like Ebola can devastate entire countries.
The Ebola experience taught us many lessons, not the least that in our global village, a united front can stop a deadly disease.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
Terrorism is a deadly disease. Only if we join together, and fight, can we defeat the disease of terrorism.
A threat to peace and security, whether it be human terror or microscopic terror, whether in Cona-kry or Maiduguri , is a threat to all of us.
This week, the Jewish people celebrate the festival of Sukkot, when we remember the 40 years that the Israelites wandered through the desert on the way to the Promised Land. It’s been 70 years since the UN charter, and we are still wandering on the way to the promise of peace and security for all. Let us refocus the direction of this institution, and live up to the commitment of the charter, to quote "save succeeding generations from the scourge of war".
Thank you Mr. President, merci beaucoup.