To anyone who wants to missed it live here are the full speeches in video. Abbas’s speech you might think you should read instead but no you should listen to the reaction he gets from the hall at the UN. Netanyahu’s speech will be quoted for decades and contains many powerful moments including my favorite bit about a millennium old ring bearing the name of a Jewish official named Netanyahu.
Jump to 30 min 50 seconds to hear it in his voice:
I often hear them accuse Israel of Judaizing Jerusalem. Thats like accusing America of Americanizing Washington, or the British of Anglicizing London. You know why were called Jews? Because we come from Judea.
In my office in Jerusalem, theres a theres an ancient seal. Its a signet ring of a Jewish official from the time of the Bible. The seal was found right next to the Western Wall, and it dates back 2,700 years, to the time of King Hezekiah. Now, theres a name of the Jewish official inscribed on the ring in Hebrew. His name was Netanyahu. Thats my last name. My first name, Benjamin, dates back a thousand years earlier to Benjamin Binyamin the son of Jacob, who was also known as Israel. Jacob and his 12 sons roamed these same hills of Judea and Sumeria 4,000 years ago, and theres been a continuous Jewish presence in the land ever since.
And for those Jews who were exiled from our land, they never stopped dreaming of coming back: Jews in Spain, on the eve of their expulsion; Jews in the Ukraine, fleeing the pogroms; Jews fighting the Warsaw Ghetto, as the Nazis were circling around it. They never stopped praying, they never stopped yearning. They whispered: Next year in Jerusalem. Next year in the promised land.
As the prime minister of Israel, I speak for a hundred generations of Jews who were dispersed throughout the lands, who suffered every evil under the Sun, but who never gave up hope of restoring their national life in the one and only Jewish state.