'What we did in Syria can't be done in Iran'

Former PM at Jerusalem Post conference: If Israel makes peace with the PA, there will immediately be peace with 10 Arab countries.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Ehud Olmert
Ehud Olmert
Marc Israel Sellem

Former Prime Minister Ehud Olmert spoke on Sunday at the Jerusalem Post conference in New York and discussed, among other things, the Israeli strike on the nuclear reactor in Syria which took place during his time in office in 2008.

"What we did with Syria cannot be done with Iran. Syria is relatively close, there was one structure, one nuclear reactor and that was the whole thing. When it was destroyed, their entire nuclear capabilities were destroyed until they decide to build a new one and that will take years,” he said.

"In Iran the situation is completely different. The distance is greater," Olmert explained. "Second, the structures are scattered in different locations, especially underground. Israel's ability to destroy Iran's potential for nuclear weapons is much smaller. It requires a different kind of capability.”

"When I was prime minister, Israel did a lot of unusual things by any standard, that you will not hear about for many years, in order to ensure we were not under the threat of a nuclear Iran," said the former prime minister.

Regarding a possible peace agreement with the Palestinian Authority, Olmert said that "if there is peace between us and the Palestinians, then overnight there will be peace between Israel and 10 Arab Muslim countries and Israel will become the capital of the Middle East and all the money coming to the region will pass through Tel Aviv.”

"They see Israel's potential and power and many of them want to be part of a Middle East that Israel is leading, but they are waiting for a peace agreement with the Palestinians for that. They will not accept open relations with Israel without an agreement. Therefore, an agreement between us and the Palestinians is necessary not only to create stability between us and our neighbors, but also to achieve significant economic and political progress," he continued.

Olmert also addressed the investigations of Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, saying that "no matter what decision he makes, and I do not know all the details, I always suggest that he honor of the post of prime minister of Israel. This is his decision and he is the one who has to decide whether to resign or stay.”

"I do not hide the fact that I'm not one of his greatest supporters. I do not support him or his policy, I think he is wrong on many things and I criticize him explicitly. In this delicate situation I only hope that he will remember that the position of the Israeli prime minister is more important than anyone who is in this position at any given moment.”