Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu explained Tuesday that his government is certain that Iran’s intent is to become a nuclear threat to Israel.
In a Jerusalem interview that aired on CNN’s “Outfront,” Erin Burnett asked Netanyahu how he knows what Iran is doing with its nuclear program. The prime minister gave an emphatic response.
“We know,” he said. “We know, and others know, and we share what we know. This is not the case of the questions that people had about Saddam Hussein.”
Netanyahu scoffed at the possibility that the Iranians were developing nuclear technology for medical purposes, pointing to the type of technologies and underground by which they are being developed. However, Netanyahu would not comment on the possibility of a nuclear war between Israel and Iran because he declined to confirm his nation’s capabilities.
“When it comes to militant Islamic regime, I wouldn’t be too sure,” he said. “Because unlike, say, the Soviets, they can put their ideology before their survival. So I don’t think you can bet on their rationality.”
“I hope it’s resolved and I hope it’s resolved peacefully,” Netanyahu said. “So many in the international community is putting a lot of pressure, making clear that its nuclear program must stop. If it stops with sanctions — the combination of sanctions and diplomacy, other pressures — I, as the prime minister of Israel, will be the happiest person in the world.”
But he also said he is unconvinced that the economic sanctions that are in place against Iran will do anything to stop their progress toward becoming a nuclear power. (RELATED: More on Israel’s prime minister)
“They are certainly taking a bite out of the Iranian economy but so far they haven’t rolled back the Iranian program or even stopped it by one iota. I mean, I hope that changes, but so far, I can tell you the centrifuges are spinning. They were spinning before the talks began recently with Iran. They were spinning during the talks, they are spinning as we speak. So, if the sanctions are going to work, they better work soon.”