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Benjamin Netanyahu: 'I will not be silent' on Iran

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Despite criticism from the Obama administration and some in his own country, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Sunday he will not be silent about the deal between the United States and Iran while at a Hanukkah candle-lighting at the Great Synagogue in Rome.

"In contrast to others, when I see that interests vital to the security of Israel's citizens are in danger, I will not be silent,” he declared.

“It is very easy to be silent. It is very easy to receive a pat on the shoulder from the international community, to bow one's head, but I am committed to the security of my people. I am committed to the future of my state and in contrast to periods in the past, we have a loud and clear voice among the nations and we will sound it in time in order to warn of the danger,” he added.

Netanyahu's comments came shortly after his predecessor, Ehud Olmert, accused him of declaring war on the Obama administration.

"We've declared war on the United States administration,” Olmert said Sunday at the Institute for National Security Studies. "That cannot be disputed."

"First and foremost,” he added, “we must steer clear of anything that might give the impression that we want to lock horns with our biggest ally."

He also said that while he would also disagree with the administration, he would do it in private.

Obama administration officials, Israel National News said, also lashed out at Netanyahu, calling him "desperate and weak."

“His pronouncements show a lack of self-confidence,” the officials reportedly said. “We are not perturbed by his vocal opposition.”

Obama has also asked Netanyahu to "take a breather" from his criticism.

But Netanyahu isn't backing down, calling the Iranian regime the "most dangerous" in the world that threatens "not only Israel but also Italy, Europe and the entire world" with its desire to acquire a nuclear weapon.

"As we have warned, and I say this with regret, the sanctions regime has started to weaken and very quickly. If tangible steps are not taken soon, it is liable to collapse and the efforts of years will vanish without anything in exchange. But at the same time, I tell you and promise in the spirit of the Maccabees, we will not allow Iran to receive a military nuclear capability," he added.

After the deal was struck, Netanyahu called it a "historic mistake" and said Israel was not bound by it.



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