Israeli Defense Minister Issues Warning to Iran

24 January 2006: On Saturday, Israeli Defense Minister Shaul Mofaz asserted that Israel will not accept a nuclear Iran, adding that his country is prepared to “defend itself” if Iran does not halt its nuclear research program. Speaking an annual gathering of politicians and academics at the Herzliya conference, Iranian-born Mofaz addressed the Iranian people saying: “Ahmedinejad, his hallucinatory statements, his criminal actions and his extreme views will bring disaster upon you. Do what you understand needs to be done in order to prevent this.”

Mofaz said Israel will take diplomatic action to convince Iran to give up its nuclear program, but said the country was preparing for any eventuality and had the “capability to defend itself.”

Speaking in Hebrew, Mofaz, said Ahmedinejad should look at historical examples of others who tried to destroy the Jewish people.

“You, who are leading your country in an ideology of hatred, terror and anti-Semitism. You had better take a glance at history and see what became of tyrants like you who tried to annihilate the Jewish people. They only brought destruction upon their own people,” he said.

He also accused Iran of directly funding Palestinian terror, including last week’s suicide bombing in Tel Aviv. Mofaz stated that “Money is the fuel which drives terror. The annual financial support to [Lebanon-based] Hizbollah stands at some $100 million.” He added that in the last year, Islamic Jihad, an Islamic terrorist group sworn to Israel’s destruction based in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, had received over $10 million of Iranian money compared to about $5 million the year before.