Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman is describing the conflict between Israel and Hamas as just the latest manifestation of the “clash of civilizations” between the free world and radical Islam.

Meeting with German lawmakers visiting Jerusalem Wednesday, Liberman asserted that this clash of civilizations was “the world’s biggest challenge since World War II.”

Smoke from an Israeli strike rises over Gaza City, in the northern Gaza Strip, Sunday, July 27, 2014. (AP Photo/Adel Hana)

The foreign minister emphasized Israel’s proximity to the Middle East tempest and its position front and center to the civilizational conflict whose other manifestations could be found in Libya and Iraq.

“Beyond the moral aspects of the case, Israel is the first line on this front because it represents Western values, and that is why Islamic extremists are fighting us,” Liberman said according to a Times of Israel report on the meeting.

The hawkish Israeli politician lambasted European critics of Israeli actions in Gaza, saying that for years Israel answered the calls of the international community and in 2005 even withdrew its forces and citizens from Gaza, handing control fully to the Palestinians.

“But instead of peace and stability we received radical Islam, which attacks Israel from there with missiles and other terrorist activities almost every day since the disengagement” from Gaza.

Hamas seized control of the Gaza Strip in a violent takeover in 2007 and since then has invested millions in constructing a vast terrorist infrastructure including long-range rockets that can reach as far as northern Israel cities and attack tunnels.

“Hamas doesn’t talk about the establishment of a Palestinian state or the two-state solution, but rather of the establishment of one big Islamic state,” Liberman added according to the Times of Israel.