Photo from Video of Netanyahu’s speech
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has publicly accused Iran of deceiving the world about its nuclear program in a speech broadcast live Monday, exposing intelligence showing that the country worked for years to develop nuclear weapons, even after signing a 2015 nuclear deal.
Standing in front of a large screen displaying a slideshow presentation, Netanyahu revealed masses of evidence underlining the extent and severity of the Iranian program.
Over the course of a twenty-minute presentation at the Defense Ministry headquarters in Tel Aviv, Netanyahu unveiled what must surely rank as one of Israeli intelligence’s greatest ever achievements — laying hands on Iran’s own nuclear weapons program archive. 55,000 pages, and another 55,000 files on 183 CDs, were extracted from the secret facility and brought to Israel. The files detail the progress of Project Amad, Iran’s far-reaching program to build nuclear weapons.
The material, Netanyahu declared, allowed Israel to demonstrate beyond all doubt that the Iranians “brazenly” lied to the world, and that the 2015 agreement was totally undermined by Iranian “deception.”
“Iran lied”, said Netanyahu repeatedly, showing video clips of Iranian leaders claiming that their country has no desire to develop nuclear weapons, and responding, “Yes you did. Yes you do”.
Former intelligence heads noted that the evidence in the archive reaches up to 2015, and so nothing current has been revealed. Nevertheless, many have pointed out that if Iran frequently lied to the world till 2015, then “it has presumably continued to lie since then as well.”
Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely said Netanyahu’s revelation showed a “strong hand” was needed to deal with Iran.
“The nuclear agreement with Iran doesn’t work. Opposite the Iranian fraud, a strong international coalition led by the Americans is needed that will act with a strong hand against a regime that has not abandoned its nuclear ambitions for a moment,” she wrote in Hebrewon Twitter.
Danny Danon, Israel’s envoy to the UN and a former Likud minister, also spoke out, saying that Iran “cannot be trusted.”
Netanyahu conspicuously avoided detailing courses of action Israel and other countries might take. With the Iran deal due to expire in the coming days, will a far more severe agreement be made? Or will this revelation act as a green light for Israel and America to act decisively against Iran? In this regard, Netanyahu was vague, saying only that Trump would do “the right thing — the right thing for the United States, the right thing for Israel, and the right thing for the peace of the world.”