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Israeli DM Barak: U.S. Still 'Chief Ally' Despite 'Red Line' Dispute

Israeli DM Barak: U.S. Still 'Chief Ally' Despite 'Red Line' Dispute

On Tuesday, Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak said America was still Israel’s “chief ally” even after the United States rebuffed Israel’s request for a “red line” to be placed before Iran to prevent it from developing nuclear weapons.  

“We must not forget that the U.S. is Israel’s chief ally,” Barak said. “The U.S. and Israel have intimate intelligence relations, and the U.S. is Israel’s main supporter in security matters.”

Barak noted that relations between America and Israel “are based on many years of friendship and shared values between Israel and the American people” and, “despite the differences, and Israel’s freedom to act in a manner to defend itself, we must remember the importance of our relationship with the U.S., and that it must not be harmed.”

“Israel reserves the right to defend itself and will take responsibility as needed for its security and future,” Barak added. “The United States respects this. Despite our common goals, the U.S. and Israel do have different positions on a number of matters. We will work out these differences in open talks, but privately.”

On Sunday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told a Canadian television station that Israel and the United States were in discussions about setting a red line, and Iran “doesn’t see a red line from the international community.”

In response, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said on Monday the United States would not be setting any deadlines. 

At a press conference on Tuesday, Netanyahu then said “those in the international community who refuse to place red lines before Iran have no moral right to place a red line before Israel.”

“If Iran knows that there are no red lines or deadlines, what will it do?,” Netanyahu asked. “Exactly what it does today – continuing to work to acquire a nuclear weapon without and interference. The world tells Israel to wait because there is time, and I ask, ‘Wait for what?'”

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