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Saturday, May 05, 2012

Former Israeli Prime Minister Blasts Sabre-Rattling American Israel-Firsters

Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert was booed and taunted with cries of “Neville Chamberlain” when he told an American audience that Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has “messianic feelings” regarding Iran and that unilateral military action against the Islamic republic would be a mistake.

Speaking at a conference sponsored by the Jerusalem Post, Olmert sarcastically told the hostile crowd:

As a concerned Israeli citizen who lives in the state of Israel with his family and all of his children and grandchildren, I love very much the courage of those who live 10,000 miles away from the state of Israel and are ready that we will make every possible mistake that will cost lives of Israelis.

The New York Times also reported:

But Mr. Olmert went much further. Drawing boos from a largely American audience in New York, he fired off a wide-ranging broadside against Mr. Netanyahu’s foreign policy, saying that the prime minister was unprepared to offer meaningful compromise to Palestinians….

Olmert is just the latest prominent Israeli to express opposition to Netanyahu’s belligerent stand against Iran. “Gabi Ashkenazi, the former chief of staff of the Israeli Defense Forces, and Eliezer Shkedy, the former air force commander, told the conference on Sunday that an international approach to Iran was preferable,” the Times reported.

Several former Israeli intelligence chiefs have stated that Iran has not decided to build a nuclear weapon, echoing the judgment of U.S. intelligence agencies. Israeli Defense Force Chief of Staff Lt. Gen. Benny Gantz has described the Iranian regime as “composed of very rational people,” adding that it will not acquire a bomb. “I don't think [Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei] will want to go the extra mile,” Gantz said.

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