Full Text Political Brief March 7, 2012: PM Benjamin Netanyahu Fox News “On the Record with Greta Van Susteran” Interview — Iran’s nuclear weapons a ‘threat to the peace of the world that must be stopped’ — Transcript



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Netanyahu: Heed the ‘jarring gong of danger’ from Iran

Source: Fox News, 3-7-12

– 16:22 –

Uncut: Israeli prime minister warns that Iran’s nuclear weapons threat must be taken seriously by the world before it’s too late

This is a rush transcript from “On the Record,” March 7, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GRETA VAN SUSTEREN, FOX NEWS HOST: It is no secret nations are terrified that Iran is working on a nuclear weapon. Iran has repeatedly threatened Israel, including a threat to wipe it off the map. Is Israel going to do anything about it?

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, here in Washington, meeting with President Obama, and then going “On the Record.”


VAN SUSTEREN: Mr. Prime Minister, nice to see you, sir.

BENJAMIN NETANYAHU, ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER: Thank you. It’s good to be with you again, Greta.

VAN SUSTEREN: And welcome back to the United States.

NETANYAHU: Thank you.

VAN SUSTEREN: We had fun talking — I enjoyed talking to you last fall when you were here.


VAN SUSTEREN: Last night, I listened very carefully to your speech, very carefully. And in fact, I have a transcript of it in front of me. And it says that the international community’s tried diplomacy, that hasn’t worked, that the community has applied sanctions, that hasn’t worked, either, that there are efforts to impose tougher sanctions, but Iran’s nuclear program continues in spite of that.

You said Iran’s goal is to develop nuclear weapons, and as prime minister, you will never gamble with the security of Israel. It sounds like war is inevitable.

NETANYAHU: Oh, I don’t think so. I mean, we’ve seen, in fact, that Iran backed off from its nuclear program, its nuclear weapons program, really only once in the 15, 16 years that I’ve been warning the world about the dangers of a nuclear-armed Iran. And the only time they backed away was in 2003, when they thought there’d be a credible military threat against them.

So in fact, the paradox is that if they actually believe that they’re going to face the military option, you probably won’t need the military option.

VAN SUSTEREN: And I guess that’s why — I suppose that Secretary of Defense Panetta’s statements that military options are on the table and President Obama’s statement, as well, is helpful to discourage Iran.

NETANYAHU: I think these are important statements. I think that the idea that containment vis-a-vis a nuclear Iran is not an option are important statements. Just remember what it means. You try to contain a regime that is fostering terror worldwide, that could use nuclear terror here at any city, any port. That’s a very dubious proposition.

So I think all these things are important, as was the president’s statement of something that is very true about the ethos of what Israel is all about, that Israel, as a sovereign country, must have the ability to defend itself by itself against any threat. And as a sovereign country, we have the right to decide to act in our own defense.

VAN SUSTEREN: Is there anyone that disputes that, though, that Israel doesn’t have a right to defend itself, doesn’t have a right to its sovereignty? I mean, obviously, the sovereignty (INAUDIBLE) but the right to defend yourself.

NETANYAHU: Well, you know, it’s a question of the assessment of when have you to activate that right. I think that’s the real important thing. I think the reiteration of that basic proposition was important. I think it — you can’t repeat that too often.

VAN SUSTEREN: I guess that means a little bit in terms of preemptive, whether you preempt Iran taking nuclear action, building a bomb, is whether you go in there ahead of time? Is that what you mean?

NETANYAHU: Well, I mean that — I mean that the Jewish people were faced often in our history with a situation that people try to destroy us. In fact, they did destroy millions of Jews in the last century. And we could do nothing about it because we had no sovereign state.

Now they still try. They still threaten to destroy us, but this time, there’s a state of Israel, and if necessary, we’ll act in our own defense. And I think it’s very important to repeat that clearly. And obviously, this is something that is perhaps the most — the primary — the supreme responsibility that I, as the prime minister of Israel, have, to — to guarantee that the future of the Jewish state, the Jewish future, is secure.

VAN SUSTEREN: You talk about the Jewish future, but you also touched on last night that if Iran gets a nuclear weapon, obviously you are in the direct line of fire and Ahmadinejad has made very derogatory marks and stated his very ugly intentions towards Israel.

NETANYAHU: Now you are being a diplomat. He said that Israel should be wiped off the face of the earth and they are developing nuclear weapons to do it, for that purpose. Not only for that. They could shut down the Straits of Hormuz. They are threatening that. You are worried about the price of oil today. Think about what it would mean if Iran, this radical regime that chants “Death to America! Death to Israel!” A, they get their hands on atomic bombs. They could use it against any one of us, b, they could give it to their terrorist proxies to use against any one of us, three, they could threaten credibly to block the Straits of Hormuz, which would send the price of oil skyrocketing, not anything that even remotely resembles what we have now, and they will pocket the dough because they are oil producers.

So these are things that could change the world. It could be like a hinge of history. We could live in another time. We have never had since the advent of nuclear weapons a regime that could act with such irresponsibility having those weapons of mass death.

So I think this is something that we should — we should talk about. Everybody talks about the — you know, the costs of taking action, to stop Iran. I think it’s important to start on the cost of not acting to stop Iran, of a world in which the ayatollahs would have atomic bombs. I think that would be catastrophic.

VAN SUSTEREN: Do you have a sense that other nations have that sense of seriousness that you have about this issue? Or do you think many nations think we can talk our out of this a little bit?

NETANYAHU: I think they would like it see Iran agree to the dismantling nuclear program. I think they are trying to press them to do that. The pressures have been applied. They have intensified. The economic sanctions hurt Iran, economically, no question about that. But so far, it hasn’t — these sanctions haven’t achieved the one goal they have, which is to make Iran stop their nuclear weapons program.

VAN SUSTEREN: Do you have any doubt they have a nuclear weapons program?

NETANYAHU: God, I said yesterday, what do you think Iran is doing all of this — developing these underground halls with thousands of centrifuges to enrich uranium, underground nuclear facility. They’re building ICBM, intercontinental ballistic missiles, to carry, what? Medical isotopes? That’s their explanation? They are absorbing these crippling sanctions. And I said yesterday, what are they doing it for? I said yesterday, if it looks like a duck, if it walks like a duck, quacks like a duck — it’s a duck. It’s a nuclear duck.

So I don’t think anyone seriously thinks that Iran is doing all of this, going through all of this huge investment, taking huge risks for anything but a nuclear program, and I think we should recognize that.

And the second thing we should recognize is that so far we have not been able to stop their nuclear program, notwithstanding the tough sanctions that have been applied. They are still going away. And, by the way, that’s not what I am saying. That’s what the International Atomic Energy Agency, the IAEA, just said yesterday. They published a report and said that Iran is continuing and in fact accelerating its program. For god’s sakes, Ahmadinejad is taking people on guided tours of these facilities. People, the international inspectors are actually saying there is material near low enriched uranium for five bombs and they are enriching uranium now at a higher level to give them their nuclear weapons. I think there is no question.

VAN SUSTEREN: I guess I asked because is one of the things that the more we talk and have diplomacy, there is more of a chance to build more, develop more. So diplomacy does have its drawback that way, spending a lot of time talking if they don’t stop the program.

And the other problem too is in 2003, with weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, there was so much certainty and it turned out, our intelligence was wrong on that. So I am trying to balance the two.

NETANYAHU: First of all, there is no question. There is no comparison. In the case of Iraq, I was on the Israeli cabinet when we discussed this issue. We didn’t know. We couldn’t say that they didn’t have a nuclear weapons program, we couldn’t say if they did. In the case of Iran there is absolutely no question. We share all of that information. We know the stockpiling of enriched uranium. We know the development of ICBMs. We know a lot more. And we share this information. I don’t think that’s comparable to —

VAN SUSTEREN: What’s the timeline? How much time do we have?

NETANYAHU: Every day that passes makes it closer and closer.

VAN SUSTEREN: Is it weeks, months, or years?

Israel Political Brief March 7, 2012: Israel cautiously welcomes Western nuclear talks with Iran



Israel cautiously welcomes Western nuclear talks with Iran

National Security Adviser Yaakov Amidror: There will be no one happier than Israel if Iran gives up its military nuclear capability through talks.

Source: Haaretz, 3-7-12

Israel on Wednesday cautiously welcomed the planned resumption of big-power nuclear talks with Iran, insisting that Tehran be denied the means to turn uranium into bomb fuel.

With Israel speaking increasingly loudly of resorting to military action to prevent Iran from gaining nuclear weapons, the talks could provide some respite in a crisis that has driven up oil prices and threatened to draw the United States into its third major war in a decade.

Benjamin Netanyahu March 7, 2012 (GPO) Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at Ben-Gurion Airport after returning from North America trip, March 7, 2012.
Photo by: Amos Ben Gershom / GPO

Tuesday’s announcement of new talks followed a visit by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to the United States, where President Barack Obama said the talks offered a diplomatic chance to quiet the “drums of war”.

“I’m very happy that they are opening discussions,” said Netanyahu’s national security adviser, Yaakov Amidror.

“There will be no one happier than us, and the prime minister said this in his own voice, if it emerges that in these talks Iran will give up on its military nuclear capability,” he told Israel Radio….READ MORE

Full Text Israel Political Brief March 7, 2012: PM Benjamin Netanyahu’s Remarks on Return to Israel from Canada & US Trip



PM Netanyahu’s Remarks upon his Return to Israel from Canada and the US:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu returned a short while ago today from his visit to Canada, where he met with Prime Minister Stephen Harper, and the US, where he met with President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Secretary of Defense US and members of both the Senate and the House of Representatives.

Upon landing, Prime Minister Netanyahu said, “I return from a very important visit to the US and Canada. I was received warmly, we have many courageous friends. We are returning for Purim, and this evening we will read in the Book of Esther about those days in which Jews were not masters of their fate and could not defend themselves. Today we are in a different world and a different era; we have a strong state and army. The threats have not disappeared, but we can defend ourselves. We have very many friends that stand at our side and will do so at all times.”

Video: PM Netanyahu’s Remarks upon his Return to Israel from Canada and the US

Netanyahu says Israel’s friends will stand by her

Source: JTA, 3-7-12

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel has “many courageous friends.”

In remarks after landing in Israel following a visit to Canada and the United States, Netanyahu said, “I was received warmly, we have many courageous friends.”

“We are returning for Purim, and this evening we will read in the Book of Esther about those days in which Jews were not masters of their own fate and could not defend themselves. Today we are in a different world and a different era; we have a strong state and army. The threats have not disappeared, but we can defend ourselves. We have very many friends that stand at our side and will do so at all times.”

On his North American visit, Netanyahu met with President Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta and members of both the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, as well as Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.

At his meeting with Obama on Monday, Netanyahu reportedly gave the U.S. leader a copy of the book of Esther. The leaders’ talks reportedly centered on the Iranian nuclear threat.

Israel Political Brief March 7, 2012: It’s Romney v. Santorum on Super Tuesday — Super Tuesday GOP / Republican Presidential Primaries Results Recap



It’s Romney v. Santorum on Super Tuesday

Source: JTA, 3-7-12

Super Tuesday Republican primaries were a race between Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum, Republicans selected a Jewish veteran for Ohio’s Senate run, and Dennis Kucinich lost his bid for reelection.

Ten states went to the polls Tuesday in what is the biggest election day of primary season.

“Super Tuesday” usually helps determine a frontrunner, but Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator, won decisively in important southern states Oklahoma and Tennessee and appeared headed for a tie with Romney in Ohio. Santorum also picked up North Dakota.

Romney won his home state of Massachusetts and its neighbor, Vermont and as well as Idaho and Virginia.

The former Massachusetts governor faced only Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas) on the Virgina ballot; Santorum and Newt Gingrich failed to place on the ballot…READ MORE

Campaign Buzz March 6-7, 2012: Super Tuesday GOP / Republican Presidential Primaries Results Recap — 10 States at Stake — Mitt Romney Wins 6, Rick Santorum wins 3, Newt Gingrich wins Georgia


By Bonnie K. Goodman

Ms. Goodman is the Editor of History Musings. She has a BA in History & Art History & a Masters in Library and Information Studies from McGill University, and has done graduate work in history at Concordia University. Ms. Goodman has also contributed the overviews, and chronologies in History of American Presidential Elections, 1789-2008, 4th edition, edited by Gil Troy, Fred L. Israel, and Arthur Meier Schlesinger published by Facts on File, Inc. in late 2011.


Mitt Romney greeted supporters in Massachusetts, one of the states he won on Tuesday night.


Super Tuesday represents the biggest day in the race for the Republican nomination so far, with 419 total delegates at stake in 10 states — more delegates than have been awarded in all of the previous nominating contests combined. – CBS News


  • Updates on Super Tuesday Races: Mitt Romney picked up early victories in the Republicans’ Super Tuesday primary contests, but Rick Santorum won in Tennessee and Oklahoma and Newt Gingrich took his home state of Georgia…. – NYT, 3-6-12Live blog: Romney wins six Super Tuesday states — Santorum wins three states: We’re live-blogging results from Super Tuesday, where voters in 10 states cast ballots in the GOP presidential race… – USA Today, 3-6-12 Breaking News: Romney wins Alaska caucuses, AP reports: Mitt Romney won the Alaska Republican presidential caucuses on Tuesday, his sixth victory on Super Tuesday, the Associated Press reported. Ron Paul came in second.
    Earlier, Romney won a narrow victory in Ohio, beating Rick Santorum. Romney also added Massachusetts, Vermont, Virginia and Idaho to his column on the 10-contest night…. – WaPo, 3-6-12
  • Romney takes 6 Super Tuesday states, Santorum nets 3: CBS News projects that Mitt Romney will win Ohio’s key primary contest Tuesday, after a neck-and-neck race with rival Rick Santorum to eke out a victory in the pivotal battleground state.
    With 96 percent reporting in Ohio, Romney has 38 percent support to Santorum’s 37 percent. Newt Gingrich is in third place with 15 percent and Ron Paul follows with 9 percent.
    Mitt Romney has also won primaries in Virginia, Massachusetts and Vermont, as well as the Idaho caucuses. Rick Santorum won primaries in Tennessee and Oklahoma, and in the North Dakota caucuses. In Georgia, Gingrich clinched his first primary victory since South Carolina’s January 21 primary contest.
    Ron Paul did not win any contests on Tuesday, but he did finish second in four states: Vermont, Idaho, North Dakota and Virginia.
    The Associated Press reports that Romney also won Alaska’s Super Tuesday caucuses. According to the AP’s tally, Santorum came in a close second, followed by Ron Paul and then Newt Gingrich. The state’s 24 delegates are allocated proportionally…. – CBS News, 3-7-12Mitt Romney wins Ohio primary: Mitt Romney won Super Tuesday’s grand prize, the Ohio presidential primary, beating out Rick Santorum in a hard-fought battle for the Rust Belt state’s 66 delegates.
    The victory was Romney’s fifth of the night, and promised to give him the lion’s share of delegates overall after 10 states went to the polls Tuesday. The win should cement his status as the man to beat in the Republican presidential contest.
    Santorum’s victories of the night were Oklahoma, North Dakota and Tennessee; Newt Gingrich won his home state of Georgia. Results in the final state that voted on Super Tuesday, Alaska, are due later this morning…. – WaPo, 3-6-12
  • AP, Networks Call Ohio for Romney: Mitt Romney appears to have won the Ohio primary by a razor-thin margin, according to the Associated Press and television networks, barely staving off an embarrassing loss at the hands of his chief rival, Rick Santorum.
    After trailing for much of the night, Mr. Romney moved into the lead in Ohio with a surge of support from the big cities of Cincinnati and Cleveland and their suburbs.
    As night turned to early morning, Mr. Romney extended his lead to more than 12,000 votes, leading the AP to finally call the race at about 12:30 a.m. Wednesday morning…. – NYT, 3-7-12
  • Super Tuesday: Romney starts fast, Santorum hangs tough: Mitt Romney chalked up Super Tuesday wins in Virginia, Vermont and Massachusetts, seeking to fasten his grip on the GOP nomination by dominating the single biggest day of balloting in the hard-fought … – LAT, 3-6-12Super Tuesday: Washington Post covers Republican primary results: … tweeters, columnists and bloggers to help readers make sense of Super Tuesday – the biggest single day in the race for the Republican presidential nomination. More than a half dozen reporters have spread out across the key primary and caucus … – WaPo, 3-6-12
  • Ohio primary results: Too close to call: Rick Santorum and Mitt Romney are headed toward an extremely close finish in the race for the ultimate Super Tuesday battleground, Ohio, after the two candidates divided up Republican primary votes and traded victories in states across the nation…. – WaPo, 3-6-12Mitt Romney takes Idaho, his fourth win of night: Mitt Romney has won the Idaho caucuses, his fourth victory of the night, AP reports.
    Romney was considered the clear favorite, thanks to the state’s heavy Mormon population as well as to the goodwill he earned across the Rocky Mountain region from his work running the 2002 Olympic Winter Games in Salt Lake City.
    The 32 delegates in the state are likely to be awarded winner-takes-all.
    As of 11:45, the only two states that hadn’t picked a winner were Alaska, which didn’t expect results until early morning, and Ohio, which remained locked in a fierce battle between Romney and Rick Santorum. WaPo, 3-6-12
    Santorum claims third win in North Dakota: Rick Santorum has earned his third victory of the night in the North Dakota caucuses, according to the AP.
    Ron Paul had hoped to post his first win in the Republican presidential race with a strong grass-roots effort in the state, but was trailing Santorum in early returns, with Mitt Romney in third place.
    No winner has been declared in Idaho, Alaska or the battleground state of Ohio, where Santorum and Romney were locked in a battle that was still too close to call…. – WaPo, 3-6-12

    Rick Santorum wins GOP primary in Oklahoma: Rick Santorum has won the Republican primary in Oklahoma, according to exit polls, his second victory of the night after Tennessee.
    Oklahoma is a key win over well-funded rival Mitt Romney, signaling that the GOP race is likely to extend long beyond this Super Tuesday. WaPo, 3-6-12

    Rick Santorum wins GOP primary in Tennessee: Rick Santorum has won the Tennessee Republican primary, according to the AP, his first victory of the night.
    The race in this Super Tuesday’s most important battleground state — Ohio — remains too close to call…. – WaPo, 3-6-12

    Mitt Romney wins Massachusetts GOP primary: Mitt Romney has won the Republican primary in Massachusetts, his third victory of this Super Tuesday in the state where he served as governor.
    Romney’s win in Massachusetts, where he has lived for 40 years, followed earlier victories in Virginia and Vermont.
    The only other candidate to win a state so far is former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who won his own home state of Georgia. WaPo, 3-6-12

    Mitt Romney wins GOP primary in Vermont: Mitt Romney has won the Republican primary in Vermont, according to the AP.
    Vermont is the second win of the night for the former Massachusetts governor after he claimed victory in Virginia…. – WaPo, 3-6-12

    Mitt Romney wins GOP primary in Virginia: Mitt Romney has won the Republican primary in Virginia, according to the AP.
    Romney and Texas Rep. Ron Paul were the only candidates on the ballot…. – WaPo, 3-6-12

    Exit polls: Gingrich wins home state of Georgia: Newt Gingrich has won the Georgia primary, taking his home state and winning his second state in the 2012 presidential campaign, according to exit polls.
    Gingrich’s win ends a losing streak that lasted a month and a half. His last and only win came in South Carolina’s primary on Jan. 21…. – WaPo, 3-6-12

  • Romney Appears the Ohio Winner; Santorum Strong: Mitt Romney appeared to pull off a narrow victory in Ohio on Super Tuesday but lost several other states to Rick Santorum, a split verdict that overshadowed Mr. Romney’s claim of collecting the most delegates and all but ensured another round of … – NYT, 3-7-12
  • Romney takes 5 of 10 Super Tuesday contests: Mitt Romney won five of 10 Super Tuesday contests including crucial Ohio, advancing his claim on the Republican presidential nomination without ending questions about the breadth of his appeal within the party…. – USA Today, 3-7-12
  • Super Tuesday: Romney edges Santorum in key Ohio battle: Mitt Romney has won a narrow victory over Rick Santorum in the marquee Super Tuesday battle of Ohio, according to a projection by the Associated Press. Ohio’s primary proved to be the tightest battle of the 2012 Republican … – LAT, 3-7-12
  • Santorum and Romney Split Victories: Mitt Romney extended his lead in delegates on Super Tuesday but voters failed to deliver a decisive victory that could have brought a swift end to the Republican presidential contest…. – WSJ, 3-6-12
  • Super Tuesday impossibly close for Romney, Santorum: Both Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum have three states as they wait for results from Ohio to come in. With 91 percent of the Ohio votes tallied, Romney only has a 5000 vote lead out of the 1.1 million votes that have been counted…. – CS Monitor, 3-6-12
  • Romney adds to delegate lead with Super Tuesday wins; Gingrich, Santorum slip: Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney padded his lead in the race for delegates Tuesday by winning Republican presidential primaries in Virginia, Massachusetts and Vermont. Former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum added delegates by winning … – WaPo, 3-6-12
  • GOP race takes toll on front-runner Romney: Super Tuesday confirmed anew that Mitt Romney remains the favorite to win the Republican presidential nomination, but his slow, unsteady march is coming at a steep price. As he advances toward victory in the primaries, he is losing ground in the … – WaPo, 3-6-12
  • Romney gains in GOP race, but Ohio still too close: Mitt Romney won five of 10 Super Tuesday contests including crucial Ohio, advancing his claim on the Republican presidential nomination without ending questions about the breadth of his appeal within the party…. – USA Today, 3-6-12
  • Romney vows to clinch the nomination: Though there was no winner yet in the crucial state of Ohio, Mitt Romney took the stage in Boston on Tuesday night to claim his victories, including his home state of Massachusetts. “There are three states now tonight under our belt and … – LAT, 3-6-12
  • Romney and Santorum Locked in Ohio Battle With Much at Stake: Once again Ohio lived up to its reputation as a state of deeply divided political passions. Just a week ago, Rick Santorum had a comfortable lead in the polls here, but a victory by Mitt Romney in Michigan last week seemed to give … – NYT, 3-6-12
  • Santorum: We’re winning across the nation: With at least two Super Tuesday victories under his belt, Republican presidential candidate Rick Santorum boasted of his campaign’s wide geographical appeal while taking sharp aim at his main GOP rival Mitt Romney.
    “We have won in the West, the Midwest and the South, and we’re ready to win across this country,” Santorum said from Steubenville, Ohio.
    In Tennessee, with 1,733 of 2,141 precincts reporting, Santorum carried 37 percent of the vote, while Romney had 28 percent and Newt Gingrich took 24 percent.
    And with 1,778 of 1,961 precincts reporting in Oklahoma, Santorum is leading with 34 percent while Romney takes 28 percent and Gingrich 27 percent. Later in the evening, Santorum was declared the winner in the North Dakota caucuses…. – CBS News, 3-6-12
  • Newt Gingrich wins Georgia, but will it help?: A resurgent Newt Gingrich, fresh off a resounding win in his home state, touted “the power of large solutions and big ideas” during a victory speech at his primary night headquarters…. – USA Today, 3-6-12
  • Super Tuesday: Newt Gingrich says he’s a survivor: Newt Gingrich, racking up a Super Tuesday win in the state where he launched his extraordinary political rise, predicted he would win the GOP nomination despite opposition from the nation’s elites because “people power” will trump … – LAT, 3-6-12
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