Netanyahu Had Nothing New to Say

Netanyahu Had Nothing New to SayNetanyahu Had Nothing New to Say

US President Barack Obama has reacted scathingly to a speech by the Israeli prime minister that castigated his policy towards Iran.

In a speech to the US Congress, Benjamin Netanyahu warned that a deal under discussion on Iran’s nuclear program could “pave Iran’s path to the bomb” rather than block it, BBC said.

But Obama said Netanyahu had offered no viable alternative. Other senior Democrats also criticized Netanyahu.

The Israeli leader’s visit was controversial from the start, because the Republican speaker invited him without consulting the White House.

The US president announced he would not meet Netanyahu, who is fighting in a closely contested national election in just two weeks’ time.

Talks on Iran’s nuclear program are nearing a critical late-March deadline for an outline agreement to be reached.

  Bravery in Adversity

In a speech to the US Congress, Netanyahu depicted Iran as a “threat to the entire world”. He insisted Iran had proven time and time again that it could not be trusted.

Netanyahu went on to criticize the likely contours of the deal currently being negotiated in Switzerland, where Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif met US Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday. “We’ve been told that no deal is better than a bad deal,” he said. “Well this is a bad deal, a very bad deal, We’re better off without it.”

Netanyahu mixed the politics of fear with the politics of bravery in adversity. It was a direct intervention in American politics. Netanyahu wants the Congress to do all it can to block an agreement with Iran, if one is made. Iran, he said, must change its aggressive behavior before any deal.

Netanyahu’s critics say he’s manipulating the close relationship between Israel and the US for political advantage. Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi said she was close to tears during the speech – because it was condescending and insulted the intelligence of Americans.