PNN / Bethlehem
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the Munich Security Conference on Sunday, raising concerns of the growth of Iranian influence in the region and attempts by the international community to ‘appease’ the regime, namely the 2015 Nuclear Agreement.
In his speech, Netanyahu drew on the historical significance of Munich and the Munich Agreement in the rise of Nazism in the 1930’s and the attempts made by world powers at the time to appease the regime under Adolf Hitler.
‘Let me be clear; Iran is not Nazi Germany,’ said Netanyahu. ‘There are many differences between the two… One advocated a master race; the other advocates a master faith.’
‘Iran openly declares it intention to annihilate Israel,’ he continued.
Netanyahu likened the Munich Agreement to the Nuclear Agreement signed in 2015 by the P5+1 with the Iranian regime to curb its nuclear program for a period of time in lieu of lifted trade restrictions and economic sanctions.
‘Its unleashed a dangerous Iranian tiger in our region and beyond,’ said Netanyahu, criticising the Nuclear Agreement.
‘This (Iranian nuclear armament) is in my judgement the greatest threat to our world. Not just to Israel. Not just our Arab neighbours. Not just to Muslims far and wide. But to you as well (the crowd). Because once armed with nuclear weapons, Iran’s aggressions will be unchecked.’
Netanyahu made direct threats to the Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Zariff and to Iran itself during his speech in which he called on world leaders to act against mounting Iranian influence and what Netanyahu referred to as attempts to ‘colonize’ Syria.
‘Later today you will hear from Mr Zariff. He’s the smooth-talking mouthpiece of Iran’s regime’, Netanyahu said. ‘I gave Mr Zariff credit. He lies with eloquence.’
Netanyahu produced what he alleged to be a piece of the Iranian drone shot down in Israel airspace last week in an episode that sparked international concern as the prospect of war breaking out between Israel and Iranian forces in Syria and its proxy, Hezbollah, in Lebanon, ballooned.
‘I brought it here, so you can see it for yourself. Mr Zariff, do you recognise this? You should. It’s yours?’ said Netanyahu.
‘You can take back a message to the tyrants of Tehran, do not test Israel’s resolve.’
FM Zarrif was reportedly in the audience at the time.
Netanyahu also lauded the positive effect that Iranian aggression has had on uniting regional powers.
‘There has been one positive consequence to Iran’s growing aggression in our region. It’s brought Arabs and Israelis closer together as never before. In a paradoxical way this may pave the way for broader peace and even Israeli/Palestinian peace,’ he said.
Under Crown Prince Mohammad Bin Salman, Saudi Arabia has reportedly been strengthening its ties with Israel and making progress towards normalizing relations in light of growing Iranian influence.
Saudi Arabia has ramped up its rhetoric against Iran since Bin Salman, commonly referred to as MBS, assumed the position of Crown Prince late last year. Saudi Arabia has also faced a spate of missile launches directed towards its territories in recent months, launched from areas of Yemen under the control of the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels.
The Munich Security Conference is an annual meeting of world leaders and security experts.