Ehud Barak Quotes

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Ehud Barak
10th Prime Minister of Israel
In office
6 July 1999 â€“ 7 March 2001
President Ezer Weizman
Moshe Katsav
Deputy Yitzhak Mordechai
David Levy
Binyamin Ben-Eliezer
Preceded by Benjamin Netanyahu
Succeeded by Ariel Sharon
Minister of Defense
In office
18 June 2007 â€“ 18 March 2013
Prime Minister Ehud Olmert
Benjamin Netanyahu
Deputy Matan Vilnai
Preceded by Amir Peretz
Succeeded by Moshe Ya’alon
In office
6 July 1999 â€“ 7 March 2001
Prime Minister Himself
Deputy Efraim Sneh
Preceded by Moshe Arens
Succeeded by Binyamin Ben-Eliezer
Minister of Foreign Affairs
In office
22 November 1995 â€“ 18 June 1996
Prime Minister Shimon Peres
Deputy Eli Dayan
Preceded by Shimon Peres
Succeeded by David Levy
Chief of General Staff
In office
1 April 1991 â€“ 1 January 1995
President Chaim Herzog
Ezer Weizman
Prime Minister Yitzhak Shamir
Yitzhak Rabin
Deputy Amnon Lipkin-Shahak
Matan Vilnai
Minister Moshe Arens
Yitzhak Rabin
Preceded by Dan Shomron
Succeeded by Amnon Lipkin-Shahak
Personal details
Born Ehud Brog
(1942-02-12) 12 February 1942 (age 74)
Mishmar HaSharon,
Mandatory Palestine
Political party Labor Party (until 2011)
Independence (from 2011)
Spouse(s) Nava Cohen (divorced)
Nili Priel
Children 3
Alma mater Hebrew University of Jerusalem
Stanford University
Profession Military officer
Awards Medal of Distinguished Service
Tzalash (4)
Legion of Merit
DoD Medal for Distinguished Public Service
Military service
Allegiance  Israel
Service/branch Israeli Defense Forces
Years of service 1959–1995
Rank Lieutenant general
Unit Sayeret Matkal
Commands Chief of General Staff
Deputy Chief of General Staff
Central Command
Military Intelligence Directorate Aman
Sayeret Matkal
Battles/wars Six Day War
Yom Kippur War
Operation Entebbe

I'm such a failed politician that all of my rivals have disappeared, on both sides.
Ehud Barak
The aim of the Palestinian terror is not just to kill Israelis but also to break the will of Israeli society in order to dictate a political solution. Israel should never yield to this terror campaign.
Ehud Barak
The Labor party under my leadership is working to bring the Israeli people together from all nationalities in the spirit of the scroll of independence.
Ehud Barak
I tend not to believe radical Muslim movements.
When you launch a surgical operation, you must already be well deployed to follow it through with larger forces. That complicates matters: you need to be ready for a full-fledged campaign on the operational level and have the diplomatic backing lined up as well.
Ehud Barak
I don't think that the Iranians, even if they got the bomb, they're going to drop it immediately on some neighbor. They fully understand what might follow. They're radical, but not total mishuginas.
Ehud Barak
They say in the Middle East a pessimist is simply an optimist with experience.
Ehud Barak
The first intifada, I was then commander of Central Command, commanding the West Bank, basically. And I know to what extent the first intifada was a popular uprising.
Ehud Barak
Israel's secret services are allowed to profile.
I don't feel opportunistic ever, in anything.
It's the role of a government to defend its soldiers and its citizens.
Leadership can change its mind; leadership can open its eye. Leadership can even be replaced.
Ehud Barak
Israel cannot afford to be duped.
Iran sees India, China, Pakistan and, allegedly, Israel around them with nuclear weapons.
Ehud Barak
There is a perception across the Middle East that America is weakened. I believe the perception is wrong. The United States remains the world's mightiest military, economic and diplomatic power by far, with reach and abilities beyond rival.
Ehud Barak
I know that I am absolutely reliable. Absolutely.
If I were a Palestinian of the right age, I'd eventually join one of the terrorist organizations.
Ehud Barak
I don't do anything to impress anyone, quite successfully I can tell you.
Ehud Barak
I am confident the Obama administration will work professionally with any Israeli government.
Ehud Barak
As prime minister, I was the Israeli leader who walked the greatest distance in his offers to the Palestinians.
Ehud Barak
Israel fits into the zeitgeist of our era. It is true that there are demographic threats to its existence. That is why a separation from the Palestinians is a compelling imperative.
Ehud Barak
I fought against Palestinians. I saw them.
Israel is much more effective when the Israelis are convinced that we are on the moral high ground: that we are acting not just out of might, but also out of right.
Ehud Barak
There is a need to accept a limited disruption of civil liberties in order to penetrate terror.
Ehud Barak
I think first of all that Iran is a problem for the whole world.
Ladies and gentlemen, the relevant question is not when Iran will get the bomb. The relevant question is at what stage can we no longer stop Iran from getting the bomb.
Ehud Barak
There is a thin line between peace of the brave and peace of the hostage… between compromise – even calculated risk – and irresponsibility and capitulation.
Ehud Barak
Israel always has a special filter to look at things, and that is the attitude toward Jews.
Ehud Barak
Israel is the strongest nation in the Middle East, but we have to apply our strength wisely.
Ehud Barak
Sometimes you have to subordinate strategic considerations to tactical needs.
Ehud Barak
In Israel, there is a peace camp that can convene 200,000 people in central square of this city, on very short notice, and there is a major movement among academics, politicians, thinkers, and public leaders for peace, even at a painful price. On the Palestinian side, you can find them individually here and there, but there is no public movement.
Ehud Barak
One of the lessons learned in the Middle East is to never try to anticipate the other side's moves.
Ehud Barak
I hope any government formed in Egypt will understand there is no choice but to maintain the framework of international agreements, which include the peace agreement with Israel.
Ehud Barak
Benjamin Netanyahu seems to avoid any initiative.
Since the Six-Day War, the whole world, which is the real arena of battle between us and the Palestinians, believes that Israel is right in regard to procedure, namely problems and disputes should be solved around the negotiating table.
Ehud Barak
You can easily justify to anyone about the need to keep supporting Israel. We get very generous support. We need it.
Ehud Barak
The Islamization process in Arab countries is very disturbing.
We are living in an open world. There is a freedom of speech and, clearly, freedom of speculation.
Ehud Barak
The Syrian rebels, weakened by infighting, have also been victims of the growing rift between the U.S. and its closest Arab allies.
Ehud Barak
Try to think for your own why the Russians and the Chinese do not like the idea that whoever takes aggressive steps to keep order within his sovereign borders should not accept others to intervene physically.
Ehud Barak
We want peace, but not at any price.
I am the Israeli leader who met most with Arafat.
The Middle East is a region where predictions go to die.
History never repeats itself in the same way.
I respect General Halutz very much so.
I think that Jordan is strong. I think that they will hold on. I believe that they've already opened their parliament and their system, the press and others, to many voices… And I hope and wish that they will remain stable for a long time.
Ehud Barak
Iran poses the most serious long-term threat to regional stability.
Russians in top positions always told me, 'We don't want to deal with our allies the way that the Americans dealt with Mubarak,' which is a very live example in the minds of many.
Ehud Barak
The red line must be drawn on Iran's nuclear enrichment program because these enrichment facilities are the only nuclear installations that we can definitely see and credibly target.
Ehud Barak
If Israel does not find the way to disengage from the Palestinians, its future might resemble the experience of Belfast or Bosnia – two communities bleeding each other to death for generations.
Ehud Barak
An independent, strong, thriving and peaceful State of Israel is the vengeance of the dead.
Ehud Barak
I know Fiat plans to start manufacturing cars in Iran. This is wrong.
Once Iraq becomes a nuclear power, the very decision to go to war against it would become a totally different ball game.
Ehud Barak
Assad wanted Israel to capitulate in advance to all his demands. Only then would he agree to enter into substantive negotiations. I couldn't agree to this.
Ehud Barak
The Palestinian Authority cannot hold the stick at both ends: to incite violence, to participate in it, and to tell the world how – what kind of underdog they are.
Ehud Barak
I'm not afraid of elections. I've won every election I've fought in.
Ehud Barak
I have acquired – some would say deservedly – quite a few rivals: former Israeli politicians, some of whom at their height were stars beloved by large parts of the public. But today, they aren't in politics, and when they sit alone in their room, they say to themselves that Barak is the one who showed them out the door.
Ehud Barak
Toward the Palestinians, Israel can only give. But when dealing with the entire Arab world, Israel can get a lot.
Ehud Barak
I cannot penetrate the soul of Arafat. I cannot know in advance whether, behind all the masks, he's the kind of leader who can reach an agreement or whether he wants to be the Moses of the Palestinians, staying in front of the river and not crossing into the promised land.
Ehud Barak
Prime Minister Menachem Begin ordered the destruction of an Iraqi nuclear reactor near Baghdad in 1981. This action delayed an Iraqi bomb by at least 15 years. The whole world condemned Israel – only to realize later how farsighted it had been.
Ehud Barak
Either we destroy world terror or world terror will destroy us.
I became a prime minister within four-and-a-half years, the shortest kind of career ever in Israeli political history.
Ehud Barak
Israel is the strongest nation in the Middle East, but we have to apply our strength wisely.
Ehud Barak
International legitimacy is a fundamental source of power for Israel nowadays.
Ehud Barak
Israel will continue to act proactively to prevent the transfer of heavy missiles or advanced air defense systems from Syria to Hezbollah in southern Lebanon, which, of course, carries the risk of a military showdown.
Ehud Barak
I'm no wealthier than Bibi Netanyahu or Arik Sharon. I don't feel that I'm more hedonistic than Ehud Olmert, or Yitzhak Rabin or Shimon Peres.
Ehud Barak
In Israel, generally speaking, politics is much more familiar than any other place. We all know each other.
Ehud Barak
War is no picnic. Wars should be prevented, and if you can't prevent them, you have to put them off.
Ehud Barak
I do not believe the efforts of the international community to stop Iran's nuclear program will bear fruit.
Ehud Barak
To think that you can – as a Zionist, Jewish independent state at the end of the 20th century – rule over another people for generations without having any consequences – it's ridiculous.
Ehud Barak
ISIS has never fought a real battle.
There is no entity in the world that will dare attack Israel with chemical weapons.
Ehud Barak
If you establish a right unity government, you create an effective platform to make… decisions because you have wider support of your own party.
Ehud Barak
I'm in the government to make sure that if there's an opportunity to make peace, it won't be missed.
Ehud Barak
Yes, the world is short of perfect.
Unfortunately, you cannot let your neck be kind of cut as a gesture for your neighbor, even if it's a good neighbor.
Ehud Barak
When an army doesn't want to fight, you don't need much experience to win.
Ehud Barak
With the globalization, it's difficult for governments to impose decisions on private companies.
Ehud Barak
I delivered lectures, and I was also a consultant for international companies in finance, both private equity and big venture capital funds.
Ehud Barak
I don't hate people. I just accept missions.
Hezbollah will support Assad to the end because his continuing hold on power is critical to its own survival.
Ehud Barak
As long as in this territory west of the Jordan river there is only one political entity called Israel, it is going to be either non-Jewish or non-democratic. If this bloc of millions of Palestinians cannot vote, that will be an apartheid state.
Ehud Barak
I will not discuss future hypothetical situations.
Saddam Hussein has set an example of defiance, especially against the first President Bush, that other Arab leaders cannot and should not emulate; the example leads only to empty gestures and developmental stagnation, both of which the Arab nations have had enough of already.
Ehud Barak
I'm not a tycoon or anything like that. Does my property amount to several million dollars? Of course it does.
Ehud Barak
Who can guarantee that if we allow the Palestinians to establish a state, we won't find rockets there as well, half a mile from the airport or 10 miles from Tel Aviv?
Ehud Barak
A strong, responsible Israel can become a stabilizer in such a turbulent region.
Ehud Barak
I believe President Obama means everything he says about sticking to the unprecedented backing of Israel and keeping all options on the table against Tehran, as well as countering its adventures in Syria, Yemen, and Iraq.
Ehud Barak