Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke to a joint session of Congress earlier today to oppose a nuclear deal with Iran. The speech has been controversial due to a breach of protocol that occurred when Speaker of the House John Boehner extended the invitation to speak without consulting President Obama. Many Members of Congress boycotted the speech, but many more came to hear what Prime Minister Netanyahu had to say.
Also in attendance was RAC Director Rabbi Jonah Pesner, who issued a statement in response to the speech,
“I was grateful to hear from Prime Minister Netanyahu. The issue of Iran’s nuclear capability is of critical concern to Americans, Israelis and people around the world. This morning, Prime Minister Netanyahu made his case before the U.S. Congress and the American people. In so doing, he also clearly and rightly made an effort to address and ameliorate the partisan tensions that surrounded the speech and detracted from the real issue, which is Iran. He acknowledged the long-standing commitment of President Obama to the concerns of Israel that so clearly coincide with our own nation’s security needs and values.”
There were many different reactions to the speech, from The New York Times editorial board finding PM Netanyahu’s reasoning “unconvincing”, to the American Jewish Committee calling on world powers to “heed Israel’s warnings.”
The rest of Rabbi Pesner’s statement can be found on our website, along with our other work combatting Iranian nuclear development issues.