November 14, 2011

Gingrich on the Sarkozy/Obama gaffe

Extract from Hugh Hewitt's interview with Republican contender and former House Speaker, Newt Gingrich:

HH: Now let’s turn to the story of most importance. Almost certainly, Iran has nuclear ambitions, and very close to having, if not already in possession, of nuclear weapons. If Israel acts to defend itself by striking at that capacity, what ought the president of the United States, either our current or our next one, to do on the day that strike happens?

NG: We should be supportive of the state of Israel. If the Israelis, having endured the Holocaust and the loss of seven million Jews in World War II, conclude that an Iranian nuclear weapon poses the threat of a second holocaust, because two nuclear weapons on Tel Aviv and Jerusalem would be the equivalent of a second holocaust. If they conclude that is a risk they cannot live with, we should respect their concern for survival. And I think that we should clearly indicate to the world that we would support whatever they think they have to do to survive.

HH: What did you make of the Sarkozy-Obama exchange about Prime Minister Netanyahu, with Sarkozy calling him a liar, and the President not disputing that?

NG: I think the arrogance, and frankly, the sometimes latent anti-Semitism that the Europeans have, that has been tragic over and over again…I mean, you know, here’s a man…Bibi Netanyahu is worried about the very survival of his country. He has in the Palestinian Authority somebody who is a clear public liar, who has said that ultimately, they don’t want a peace agreement, they want to get rid of Israel. He has in Hamas a mortal enemy. He has in Hezbollah a mortal enemy. He has in Iran Ahmadinejad, a dictator who says he wants to eliminate Israel from the face of the Earth. And yet their nasty comments are aimed at Netanyahu? I mean, it tells you just what’s wrong with the elites in Europe, and frankly, the elites in the United States.

HH: Do you think President Sarkozy is anti-Semitic, Mr. Speaker?

NG: No, I’m saying that there is a strain in European culture that blames the Jew, and that that strain in European culture is real, it is deep. It goes back through the aristocracies. And I think if you look at who do they side with, who do they tolerate, who do they forgive, Arafat could lie eternally, and they always found it okay. You wouldn’t have had that conversation with Ahmadinejad. That is very, very unfortunate.

(The full interview transcript is HERE)


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