Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu declared Monday that Israel's leaders must guarantee not only the country's security but also the very existence of the Jewish state.
"The leaders of the state of Israel guarantee not only the security of Israel and its citizens, but also the fundamental existence of the country," said Netanyahu in a television interview on a programme marking the 20th anniversary of premier Menachem Begin's death.
Netanyahu was asked about Begin's decision to destroy an Iraqi nuclear reactor in 1981.
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The successful attack is often referred to by Israeli analysts when speculating about the possibility of an Israeli military operation against nuclear installations in Iran.
When asked if he had studied how Begin reached the decision to strike Iraq, Netanyahu insisted that each case is different.
"Each decision is a separate decision," he said.
The Israeli premier had said on Sunday that Iran's controversial nuclear programme, which Western powers believe is aimed at developing an atom bomb, would be the main topic in his discussions at the White House with President Barack Obama on March 5.
Iran denies seeking atomic weapons and insists its nuclear programme is for purely civilian purposes.