Tasnim – A former US government adviser dismissed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s recent claims about “Iran’s nuclear weapons program” and said the only time Netanyahu is not telling lies is “when he is asleep”.
“Netanyahu and his government are well known for disseminating lies and fabricating false evidence, as they did for the purpose of pushing the US and NATO to intervention, war and regime change in Iraq, Egypt, Libya, Syria, and other countries,” Paul Larudee from San Francisco said in an interview with the Tasnim News Agency.
“The only time we can be certain that Netanyahu is not lying is when he is asleep,” he added.
Larudee is an Iranian-born American political activist and human rights volunteer, who works with the International Solidarity Movement. He is a former contracted US government adviser to Saudi Arabia and a founder of the Free Gaza and Free Palestine Movements.
Following is the full text of the interview:
Tasnim: In a speech to the UN General Assembly on Thursday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu once again accused Iran of developing a nuclear weapons program. He claimed he was revealing the existence of a “secret atomic warehouse” in Tehran but offered no proof of the claim or details. In response, Iranian officials dismissed the claim as a despicable lie and said such lies are aimed at covering up the Tel Aviv regime’s heinous crimes against the defenseless people of Palestine. This is while Israel is the only possessor of nuclear weapons in the Middle East, but its policy is to neither confirm nor deny that it has atomic bombs. The Tel Aviv regime is estimated to have 200 to 400 nuclear warheads in its arsenal. What do you think about Netanyahu’s comments?
Larudee: There are several principles that are applicable to Netanyahu’s comments. First, no one should ever accept the truth of a statement from even the most credible person we know unless they produce evidence. Netanyahu produced none, and he is far from credible. Second, Netanyahu is already in trouble for corruption in his own society and is happy to put fear into the minds of his constituents in order to deflect attention from his own deeds. Third, Netanyahu and his government are well known for disseminating lies and fabricating false evidence, as they did for the purpose of pushing the US and NATO to intervention, war and regime change in Iraq, Egypt, Libya, Syria, and other countries. These are more than enough reason to dismiss Netanyahu’s claims about an Iranian nuclear weapons program, and if that is not enough, we have the reports of the International Atomic Energy Agency, that Iran has fully cooperated with inspections, that Iran has not violated any of the inspection requirements, and that they are certain that Iran has no atomic weapons program. The only time we can be certain that Netanyahu is not lying is when he is asleep.
Tasnim: As you know, Israeli troops on Friday killed seven other Palestinians, two of them children, and wounded dozens more in the deadliest day in recent weeks as Gazans stepped up protests along the border fence. Since March 30, Israeli forces have killed at least 191 Palestinians during the demonstrations dubbed the “Great March of Return” along the Gaza border. Most of the dead and the thousands wounded were unarmed civilians against whom Israel was using excessive force. What is your opinion about the developments and the Israeli regime’s crimes?
Larudee: For decades, public figures in the West have said that the Palestinians should use nonviolent resistance. Although it is not the business of the West to tell Palestinians how to liberate themselves, the people of Gaza and other parts of Palestine have tried popular nonviolent resistance for six months now. Is the West intervening in “Israel” in order to protect the population, the way they supposedly did in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and Syria? Why not? Why are they not intervening in Yemen to defend Yemenis against Saudi Arabia and its allies? Why are they not holding “Israel” accountable for its crimes? The simple answer is that the US is the biggest criminal of all, and has been repeatedly ranked the biggest danger to peace in all the world. It, therefore, loves criminals that are willing to work with them to destroy other countries. Israel is just such a criminal state and therefore married to the US. Will Israel’s crimes ever become big enough and outrageous enough to provoke action from the rest of the world? It is hard to know what the threshold might be, or even if there is one.
Tasnim: Israel has rejected international calls for probes into recent deaths and insisted that its open-fire rules for Gaza will not change. Some Western states, particularly the US and Britain, who call themselves champions of human rights, have supported the Tel Aviv regime’s crimes against Palestinians. The UN has also failed to restore the rights of the people. What is your assessment?
Larudee: It is best to treat with great skepticism the claims of so-called champions of human rights, and especially those who are themselves the greatest violators of human rights, or receive most of their funding from such violators. Their deeds speak louder than their words. In the case of the crimes committed by “Israel”, the sponsoring countries will condemn or criticize “excesses” while defending Israel’s “right to defend itself” and continuing to shower Israel with weapons and money. The deeds of these so-called “civilized” countries are clearly in support of the genocide of the Palestinians, and the destruction of countries and governments that do not accept US domination. It is best not to put much hope in Western “champions”, but rather to be prepared to defend against them.