The international community understands that the world cannot tolerate a nuclear Iran, but the price is not yet clear enough.
Address by Speaker Dalia Itzik to special Knesset session in honor of Chancellor Merkel (18 March 2008):
"Now, at this very time, Iran is preparing weapons of mass destruction. Against whom, against what? Here is my answer: Against us. To destroy us. To annihilate us. The world leaders say to us: "Don’t worry! They won’t manage it; they won’t succeed in building weapons of mass destruction. It will take another three years, or four – don’t worry."
Our friends from Germany – we are worried. Only 60, 70 years after that bitter experience, we are not willing to take risks. We cannot calm down when we are told: They won’t manage to do it and it will take a long time, don’t worry. We have had very bitter experience, so did you. From here, from the home of the survivors, I call on you to hold out your hand to us and to all of humanity in an effort to remove this death sentence from the world – To do everything possible and even more, to withhold from Iran that terrible weapon against us.
On behalf of the millions of children in Israel and their mothers, on behalf of the fathers who do not want war, I turn to you again and ask you: Rise up and take action, do not remain silent! From here, from the podium of the Knesset Speaker, on my own behalf, on behalf of my colleagues, Members of Knesset from all parties, on behalf of the State of Israel, I call on you, I ask you, when you return home to Germany, to stand at the head of the European camp that will do everything necessary to prevent Iran creating a nuclear bomb. Do not deny us this request.
Our lives depend on your intensive efforts. If you fail, if we fail, no one will be able ever again to claim innocence. No one will be able to say: We didn’t know. We didn’t think of it. It never occurred to us that it would be like that."
PM Olmert after meeting with German Chancellor Merkel (17 March 2008):
"Both Germany and Israel view Iran’s continued steps to obtain nuclear weapons in a similar manner and with great concern, and we also share the recognition that there is a need to continue implementing a series of steps which will lead to the cessation of this process."
FM Livni after meeting withi German FM Steinmeier (17 March 2008):
"The Security Council decision is important, but actions against Iran must be increased. Israel hopes that Germany will continue its activities in this regard, and encourage additional actions in Europe. Moderate Arab states, themselves threatened by Iran, will perceive hesitation by the international community as weakness, which may encourage affiliations with Iran, a fact which will dramatically change the map of coalitions in the region."
FM Livni addresses special session of the Massachusetts House of Representatives (12 March 2008):
Today we see very structured organizations like Hamas, Hizbullah, and Islamic Jihad, who enjoy the support – in the form of finance, training and equipment – of Iran. These organizations are more than terrorist organizations – they have an extreme religious ideology that they want to spread. These extremists exploit our very own values to promote an agenda of hate. They do not fight for any legitimate right, but to deprive others of their rights.
There are many who would like to see the flames of fire in the Middle East grow higher. When the Iranian regime denies the Holocaust, calls for a destruction of a fellow state, supports terror and violence – while pursuing a nuclear weapon – it must be stopped.
The truth is – no matter how much all of us may want peace and no matter how much we may be willing to sacrifice for it – we will not achieve peace unless we also have the courage to confront its enemies.
There are still many tools in the tool box that the international community has at its disposal. But the clock is ticking. The United Nations and the international community at large have recognized that economic sanctions on Iran, especially on Iran’s energy sector, are the best means to persuade Iran to change its dangerous course.
We must increase the pressure on the Iranian leadership now, if we want to avoid difficult dilemmas in the future. And each and every one of us has the responsibility and the capability to do something.
FM Livni in Washington (10 March 2008):
"We see that the international community understands that the world cannot tolerate a nuclear Iran, but the price is not yet clear enough. In the Middle East, any hesitation is perceived as weakness. The countries in the region are testing the international community’s behavior. Iran can become a dangerous regional and international player prior to obtaining nuclear weapons – if the Arab and Moslem world perceives that the West has given up its struggle against a nuclear Iran."