In his first speech before the U.N. General Assembly, President Donald Trump called on world leaders to stand up together against rogue regimes.
“If the righteous many do not confront the wicked few, then evil will triumph. When decent people and nations become bystanders to history, the forces of destruction only gather power and strength,” Trump said in his speech at the U.N. headquarters in New York.
The president specifically took aim at Iran, North Korea, Cuba, and Venezuela as regimes that damage their country and citizens.
Referring to Iran’s regime as one that “masks a corrupt dictatorship behind the false guise of democracy,” Trump spoke forcefully against the nuclear deal that was reached in 2015, and the threats it poses to the world.
“[The regime] speaks openly of mass murder, vowing death to America, destruction to Israel, and ruin for many leaders and nations in this room,” he said.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu—a fierce critic of the deal, because it would allow Iran to develop a nuclear weapon after ten years—described Trump’s speech as “a powerful call to confront them in order to ensure the future of humanity.”
“In over 30 years in my experience with the U.N., I never heard a bolder or more courageous speech,” he said.
Trump and Netanyahu have cultivated a close relationship since Trump became president. Before the start of the General Assembly Netanyahu said that US-Israel relations have “never been stronger, never been deeper.”
Rabbi Shmuley Boteach said in response to Trump’s speech that it delivered “phenomenal moral clarity on foreign policy.”
“Trump, in the strongest terms, denounced the regimes of North Korea, Iran, and Venezuela … Rarely have we seen a leader speak with such strength about good and evil, and the President deserves our immense thanks,” Boteach said in a statement released by the White House.
Matt Brooks, Executive Director of the Republican Jewish Coalition, said in a statement that Trump’s speech was a historic moment.
“The President’s speech set out a clear, unambiguous vision that America will always work in the best interests of its citizens and will always work with responsible countries around the globe to keep the world safe and secure,” Brooks said.
In his speech, Trump vowed to continue the fight against terrorism.
“We must deny the terrorists safe haven, transit, funding, and any form of support for their vile and sinister ideology. We must drive them out of our nations,” Trump said.
Brooks said that the presidents speech was “a strong affirmation of American leadership on the world stage, something that has been missing during the last eight years.”