Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Wednesday compared Iran’s violent and expansionist aspirations in the Middle East to the Nazi campaign to conquer Europe during World War II.
He excoriated the US-led world powers for capitulating to Iran, and allowing it to maintain key elements of its nuclear program in the deal currently being negotiated, even as Tehran seeks to acquire weapons of mass destruction and destroy the Jewish state.
World powers are “comatose” and “delusional” in the face of today’s Nazis, Iran, he charged.
“The main lesson of the Second World War, for democracies, is that they cannot turn a blind eye to tyrannical regimes,” Netanyahu said during a ceremony at the Yad Vashem museum to mark Holocaust Remembrance Day.
“Appeasement towards these regimes increases their aggressiveness,” the Israeli leader continued. “If this aggressiveness is not curbed in time, humanity may find itself in far greater wars in the future.”
Netanyahu noted that “ahead of World War II, the world attempted to appease the Nazis. They wanted quiet at any price, and the terrible price did come.” Six million Jews were murdered, as were millions of others. The lesson was clear, he said: Only standing firm in the face of violent, tyrannical regimes could ensure the future of humanity. But that lesson, he said, had evidently been forgotten.
Just as the Nazis sought to destroy Europe, Netanyahu said, so does Iran seek to wreak havoc in the Middle East and beyond, and to annihilate Israel.
World leaders utter the words “Never again” but don’t mean them, he charged.
He said he wished he could believe that the world had learned the lesson of the incomprehensible horrors wrought by the Nazis, but that “the threats to humanity are multiplying.”
He cited the slaughters of innocents by Islamic extremists, and then focused heavily on Iran.
The prime minister asserted that the framework nuclear deal which was reached earlier this month between Iran and the P5+1 world powers proves that the international community has failed to learn the lessons of the Holocaust.
“The Iranian regime represses its people,” Netanyahu said, “and plunges the Middle East into a tide of blood and suffering.”
Just as the Nazis sought to destroy civilization, install the Aryan race and wipe out the Jewish people, he said, so too do the Iranians intend to take over this region and destroy the Jewish state.
Iran was following two paths, he said, seeking nuclear weapons and the missiles to deliver them, and “exporting the Khomeini revolution to many lands via the massive use of terrorism and widespread conquest in the Middle East.”
“The danger is there for all to see… and yet the blindness is vast,” he asserted. “The West is capitulating in the face of Iran’s aggressive actions…
“Iranian leaders are exporting death and destruction. The world is not listening to the calls in Iran urging Death to Israel, Death to America,” Netanyahu said.
Instead of demanding the significant rolling back of Iran’s facilities, and instead of conditioning the lifting of sanctions on the end of its aggression, “the world powers are withdrawing.”
The new deal leaves nuclear capabilities in the hands of a nation that says openly that it wants to kill Israel’s six million Jews, Netanyahu complained. The civilized world is “comatose, gripped by delusion,” he charged.
“The democratic states made a terrible mistake” when failing to confront the rise of Nazism, “and they’re making a terrible mistake now.”
The prime minister vowed to protect the Jewish state at all costs, even if no other nation stands by Israel’s side. “We will continue to insist on the truth, and to try to open the closed eyes,” he promised, predicting “testing times ahead.”
“Even if we are forced to stand alone, we will not falter,” he said. Israel’s leaders would “ensure our right and capacity and determination to defend ourselves.” While the Jews had no power 70 years ago, “today we can make ourselves heard and we are determined to ensure our existence and our future.”
Vowed Netanyahu: “We will not allow the State of Israel to become a passing phase in the history of our people.”