Isaac Herzog at the conference
Isaac Herzog at the conferenceOded Karni

Israeli President Isaac Herzog spoke at the Israel Democracy Institute Eli Hurvitz Conference on Economy and Society, noting the recent developments on a potential normalization deal with Saudi Arabia.

"Two days ago, I met with the US National Security Advisor, Jake Sullivan, and heard from him what was officially announced yesterday—that there is an option for normalization with Saudi Arabia," Herzog said. "This is a move that could bring about tremendous change, a historic 'game-changer' that constitutes a victory over the empire of evil."

"I very much hope that this possibility is being seriously considered, as the empire of evil sought on October 7 to destroy the chance for normalization," he stressed.

"Our struggle, in the end, is not only a fight against Hamas. It is a wider, strategic, global, and historic battle, and we must do everything to integrate into the grand vision of normalization."

Herzog noted that Israel's business sector has "powerful, worldwide connections and bridges." He warned, "These connections and bridges are currently threatened by our enemies, who are trying to isolate us in order to harm us."

"The enemy, the evil empire of Iran and its proxies, along with various promoters of boycotts, are attempting in every way to damage these connections through an aggressive, cynical international campaign against us. This was evident yesterday in the outrageous statement by the prosecutor of the International Criminal Court in The Hague, who equated the government of Israel - a democratic state - with the leaders of a murderous terrorist organization. A statement that the entire world, especially the free world, must unequivocally reject and condemn.

"This is ostensibly a legal frontline, but it is a strategic frontline, and it has implications across all sectors: military, diplomatic, and economic."

In addition to strengthening alliances on security and economic matters, Herzog also urged a "a comprehensive, coordinated, precise, and focused campaign" to repel this the threat.

"I want to be clear and emphasize here: anyone who claims that due to the current situation Israel should now adopt a 'people that dwells alone' stance and isolate itself, is making a grave mistake — especially when it comes to the economic flow that is so important to us.

"Despite the difficulties, we are not disconnected from the world, and the world is not disconnected from us. On the contrary, the global and regional front is crucial to us and is a central tool for the security of the state. We all saw this with our own eyes, in the face of Iranian missiles and drones, how a regional and global coalition operated together with us."