Former Sec. of State Shultz: U.S. Must Lead Fight Against ISIS

The United States needs to get its credibility back as a world power in leading the fight against ISIS and Islamic terrorism, former Secretary of State George Shultz said on Monday.

“What do we need to do? We need to establish the fact that we need the United States. Because when we set out to do something, we do it,” Shultz said at the World Jewish Congress’ gala dinner at the Waldorf Astoria in NY. “The U.S. needs to get its credibility back.”

“Iran is the world’s leading sponsor of state terrorism,” he asserted. “When you look at Iran, you see a country that obviously wants to get a nuclear weapon. And every other day they say they want to exterminate Israel. If the U.S. doesn’t lead, we get chaos.”

Shultz, who served as America’s top diplomat in the Ronald Reagan administration, received the prestigious WJC Theodor Herzl Award at the dinner, presented to him by Ronald Lauder, president of the World Jewish Congress (WJC), and former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger. The WJC Herzl Award recognizes outstanding individuals who work to promote Theodor Herzl’s ideals for a safer, more tolerant world for the Jewish people. Past recipients include Israeli President Shimon Peres, Elie and Marion Wiesel, Henry Kissinger, and, posthumously, Ronald Reagan and Axel Springer.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel will be honored with the WJC Herzl Award in 2016.

This year’s event coincided with the 77th anniversary of Kristallnacht, the night that marked the beginning of the Holocaust.

“In 1938 the world said nothing, it did nothing – there was utter silence. Adolf Hitler clearly understood that silence,” WJC’s Lauder said in his speech. “In some ways, nothing has changed in 77 years, but tonight we have a voice, and that voice is loud and clear and strong. Unlike in 1936, the World Jewish Congress today has tremendous influence and today our voice will be heard.”

Upon introducing Shultz, Kissinger recalled his own family’s escape from Europe that same year, saying, “I’ll never forget what America saved us from.” He also praised the former Secretary of State for teaching him “the importance of standing for unshakeable principles.”

In a letter sent to the event, Secretary of State John Kerry wrote, “[George] helped save so many lives through what he called the ‘smart statecraft’ needed to secure the freedom of over a million Soviet Jews. He was, and remains, a firm believer in the importance of ensuring Israel is a safe and secure Jewish state.”

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