Dr Mike Evans

Netanyahu presents vision for ‘New Middle East’ during UN speech

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu delivered an address to the 78th United Nations General Assembly in New York, drawing upon historical and biblical references to emphasize the world’s critical choices today.

Netanyahu invoked the words of Moses, recounting the ancient tale of two mountains, Gerizim and Ebal, symbolizing the choice between blessings and curses. He paralleled this biblical choice with the current global decision the world must make.

He discussed the enduring threat posed by Iran, characterizing it as a curse affecting not just its own people but the entire region and the world. The Prime Minister highlighted the stark choice: between enjoying the blessings of historic peace and prosperity or suffering the curses of war, terrorism, and despair.

Netanyahu reflected on his past speech at the UN, where he had warned about the dangers of Tehran. He emphasized how the common threat of Iran had led to a remarkable shift in the Middle East. He praised the emergence of peace agreements between Israel and several Arab states, celebrating the blossoming friendships that had defied earlier pessimism.

The Prime Minister rejected the notion that Israel’s peace with Arab nations depended on a prior resolution with the Palestinians. He argued that while pursuing Palestinian peace was essential, it shouldn’t hinder Israel’s efforts to make peace with other Arab states. Netanyahu believed that expanding peace with Arab neighbors could benefit Palestinians by offering a broader regional context for negotiations.

Netanyahu emphasized the need for a change in Palestinian attitudes and their abandonment of the unrealistic goal of destroying Israel. He argued that when Palestinians saw most of the Arab world reconciling with Israel, they might be more inclined to embrace genuine peace.

He recounted the challenges faced when his approach to peace was initially dismissed by experts, who advocated a different path. However, he pointed to the success achieved in 2020 when Israel, with the assistance of the United States, secured four historic peace agreements with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Sudan, and Morocco.

These agreements, known as the Abraham Accords, marked a turning point in history, bringing about significant economic, trade, and diplomatic cooperation between Israel and its new peace partners.

Read the full text of Netanyahu’s speech at https://www.facebook.com/IsraeliPM/