In a video message posted on YouTube from an undisclosed location, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addressed the Israeli nation hours after Israeli Air Force warplanes launched an attack on Iranian nuclear facilities.

Sitting at a desk beside a flag of Israel, and in front of a volumes of Talmud and the Old Testament, Netanyahu, whose words were subtitled into Arabic at the bottom of the screen, said the following:

“Citizens of Israel, Shalom. I speak to you today from Jerusalem, our eternal, undivided capital, and the capital of King David. Several hours ago, I ordered the armed forces of this nation to remove the threat of extinction made against our country by the rulers of Iran. As of 3am last night, all of the armed forces of the State of Israel are in action to achieve a swift and decisive victory in this historic mission. All efforts at diplomacy and compromise have come to naught. While repeated, serious and honest efforts toward a peaceful resolution to the crisis were made by the P5+1 world powers, Iran was continuing to make preparations to produce atomic bombs. After receiving reliable and validated information that the Iranian nuclear program was about to enter its “zone of immunity,” I, together with members of the Security Cabinet, decided that the moment of truth had arrived, and that consequently, I must tell you, this nation is at war with Iran and its proxies in Lebanon and Gaza. Let me be dugri: this is not a war of choice. The truth is that we were left with no choice. We cannot live with a nuclear Iran because Iran will use its nuclear weapons to destroy us. Our enemy’s knife is at our throat, and there is no use in debating whether or not he will decide to draw our blood. As we have said all along, again and again, our security, and the security of our children, were always in our own hands. History has left us no choice: we are the only nation in the world whose very existence is threatened. Throughout history we have seen that those who rise to destroy the Jews do not stop at the Jews. But this time the Jews have a state of their own, and an army of their own. A mighty, fearsome, honorable and pure army which knows how to get the job done. Those threatening to destroy us are not sufficing with words alone, but are assiduously, and undeniably working to produce the ultimate weapon of destruction: the atomic bomb. Make no mistake; they intend to use this weapon. First, they will use it against us. After that, they will use it against anyone who stands in their way – anyone who dares to believe in the principles of freedom, democracy, and human rights. We ask the world to recognize our act as an act of self-preservation, and we ask the international community to recognize the step we have taken as the only option left to us. To those nations who condemn us: spare us your condemnations and hypocrisy: we know that many leaders, in every capital of the world, quietly support the military action we have embarked on today. What we ask now is that you step forward and support our struggle, which is also your struggle. If you will not follow us into battle, then the least you can do is tell the truth to your nations: tell them that the brave Israelis, these proud and gutsy few, have done what needed to be done, have stepped up to history’s call to defend the free world against the evil of tyranny and fundamentalist Islam. To our friends and allies: we ask your understanding that our calculations are different to your calculations. We remain committed to the concept of international peace and security, and are ready to play our part toward that goal. To the people of Israel, my people, and our brothers and sisters around the Diaspora: I am looking you in the eye, and I promise, as the prime minister of the State of Israel, the reconstituted nation state of the Jewish people in its historic homeland, that our resolve will not waiver, the Sword of Gideon and the Shield of David will not falter; we will not fail you. As long as we are united, there is nothing we cannot achieve. The Third Temple will not be destroyed. Masada will not fall again. We refuse to be murdered. We will not be led again quietly to our deaths, and we refuse to let our enemies get their hands on the weapons to destroy us. As our holy book teaches us: ‘He who rises to kill you, rise first to kill him.’ We refuse to play the part that many in the world have prepared for us. Better a bad headline than a good eulogy. We will prevail, and peace and prosperity will come to this land. This tiny nation has persisted to exist despite our enemies’ great and consistent efforts to wipe us out. While we are a nation that believes in miracles, we put our survival down to our own true grit and determination to keep living, and to live a normal life in our historic homeland. Citizens of Israel: I emplore you to listen to the instructions of the Home Front Command, stay close to your shelters; be brave and resilient, look after one another; support our brave men and women in uniform; have hope and pray with a full heart to the Almighty. Oseh shalom bimromav, hu ya’aseh shalom aleynu, ve’al kol Yisrael ve’imru amen. He who makes peace in His heights may He make peace upon us and upon all Israel; and say, Amen.”