Netanyahu, U.S. Lawmakers Agree on Need To Stop Iran's Nuclear Program

By Haaretz Service

Published May 19, 2009.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Israel and the United States agreed on Tuesday that Iran must not be allowed to continue its contentious nuclear program, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. lawmakers said Tuesday following talks in Washington.

“I was assured by President [Barack] Obama [on Monday] that the U.S. is committed to preventing that from happening,” Netanyahu said a day of meetings with several U.S. lawmakers, including prominent Jewish members of Congress.

Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Republican Minority Leader John Boehner told reporters following their meeting with Netanyahu that they are committed to ensuring Iran is unable to develop a nuclear weapon. “It is important for all of us to work together to be sure that Iran does not develop a weapon of mass destruction,” Pelosi said after emerging from the meeting with Netanyahu.

Netanyahu said a nuclear-armed Iran would post a threat to Arab countries in the region as well as the United States, warning Tehran could provide terrorists with a nuclear device.

“The consequences could be unimaginable,” Netanyahu told Pelosi and Boehner.

Obama said Monday after his first official talks with Netanyahu that the U.S. would not have talks forever on stopping Iran’s enrichment of uranium.

Meanwhile, Defense Minister Ehud Barak on Tuesday said that Israel’s public backing of a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict would not cause Iran to abandon it’s nuclear program.

“These… words will not cause Iran to stop its centrifuges. Israel has already said in the past ‘two states for two peoples’ and this didn’t cause the Palestinians to fall into our arms and reach all the tough decisions that are required,” said Barak during a tour of the Israel Defense Forces Central Command.

Barak’s comments came amid mounting international pressure on Netanyahu to declare support for a Palestinian state, which the prime minister has refrained from doing.

Barak added that Israel was not ruling out any course of action against Iran’s nuclear program, and that he advised other countries to do the same.

“Israel is not taking any option off the table and we recommend others not to take options off the table,” he said.

The statement was apparently directed toward the United States, which has embarked on a new diplomatic policy toward the Islamic Republic under President Barak Obama.

In comments published Sunday, Obama said he understood Israel’s fears over Iran’s nuclear ambitions, but added that he wanted to offer the country an opportunity to align itself with international norms and international rules.

Barak said he had spoken with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who had updated him on his meeting with Obama on Monday.

“I think that we have begun a serious dialogue with the Americans,” he said. “It will take time and it will encompass all of the subjects.”






Find us on Facebook!
  • What does the Israel-Hamas war look like through Haredi eyes?
  • Was Israel really shocked to find there are networks of tunnels under Gaza?
  • “Going to Berlin, I had a sense of something waiting there for me. I was searching for something and felt I could unlock it by walking the streets where my grandfather walked and where my father grew up.”
  • How can 3 contradictory theories of Yiddish co-exist? Share this with Yiddish lovers!
  • "We must answer truthfully: Has a drop of all this bloodshed really helped bring us to a better place?”
  • "There are two roads. We have repeatedly taken the one more traveled, and that has made all the difference." Dahlia Scheindlin looks at the roots of Israel's conflict with Gaza.
  • Shalom, Cooperstown! Cooperstown Jewish mayor Jeff Katz and Jeff Idelson, director of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, work together to oversee induction weekend.
  • A boost for morale, if not morals.
  • Mixed marriages in Israel are tough in times of peace. So, how do you maintain a family bubble in the midst of war? http://jd.fo/f4VeG
  • Despite the escalating violence in Israel, more and more Jews are leaving their homes in Alaska to make aliyah: http://jd.fo/g4SIa
  • The Workmen's Circle is hosting New York’s first Jewish street fair on Sunday. Bring on the nouveau deli!
  • Novelist Sayed Kashua finds it hard to write about the heartbreak of Gaza from the plush confines of Debra Winger's Manhattan pad. Tough to argue with that, whichever side of the conflict you are on.
  • "I’ve never bought illegal drugs, but I imagine a small-time drug deal to feel a bit like buying hummus underground in Brooklyn."
  • We try to show things that get less exposed to the public here. We don’t look to document things that are nice or that people would like. We don’t try to show this place as a beautiful place.”
  • A new Gallup poll shows that only 25% of Americans under 35 support the war in #Gaza. Does this statistic worry you?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.