(Hillel Maeir/TPS)
Defense MinisterAvigdor Liberman

The Iran nuclear deal is like the disastrous 1938 Munich Agreement, made in an effort to appease Hitler, Israel’s defense minister said.

By: Yona Schnitzer/TPS

“The West has lost the energy to resist, it lost its political will and decided to appease the plague of the 21st Century – Radical Islam. Just as they did with Hitler,” Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said Thursday.

In an interview with the Russian news website Komersant, Liberman said the 2015 Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, otherwise known as the Iran nuclear deal, is like the 1938 Munich Agreement, where European powers agreed to the Nazi annexation of parts of Czechoslovakia. British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain notoriously said the agreement signalled “peace for our time,” but German forces invaded Poland less than a year later to usher in World War II. The Munich Agreement is widely viewed as a last-ditch effort to appease Hitler and to avoid war.

Today,  Liberman said, the West is tired and is trying to appease Iran, just as it did with Hitler 80 years ago.

“In the end, (the West) paid a very heavy price. In the end, we will get a nuclear Iran, and in order to stop them, we’d have to pay a much heavier price,” he added.

Liberman added that the Iranian documents exposed by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday, “unequivocally prove” that Iran is pursuing nuclear weapons.

“Iran acted not only to enrich uranium, but to manufacture nuclear weapons. They just temporarily froze their program in order to get the maximum they can out of the deal,” says Liberman.

Israel Not Seeking Confrontation with Russia

Speaking about Israel’s relations with Russia and the tensions surrounding Moscow’s large military presence in Syria, Liberman said that “Israel is not seeking any confrontation with Russia, on the contrary – in recent years, we have established an open and transparent dialogue with Russia, and even when we are in disagreement, we hold a candid dialogue, without hiding a thing.”

“In recent decades, we established a special relationship with Russia, which is very efficient and transparent. We very much appreciate our relations with Russia,” Liberman continued. “Even even our close allies put pressure on us, like in the case of sanctions against Russia, we did not join them. Recently, many countries have expelled Russian diplomats. Israel did not join that initiative. We take Russia’s interests into consideration, and we expect understanding of our interests from their end,” he added.

When asked about tensions between Israel and Syria surrounding Israel’s ever-expanding military activity in Syrian airspace, Liberman said that “as far as I am concerned, Assad is a war criminal, responsible for the deaths of over half a million of his own citizens, but we do not intend to interfere with Syria’s internal matters.

“What we will not tolerate are Iranian attempts to convert Syria into a front post against Israel. Any such attempt by Iran will be thwarted. It would be wise of Assad not to intervene,” he warned.