Friday, October 28, 2005

No Comment Needed (at least, I hope Not)

Although Mr. Ahmadinejad's comments about Israel were extreme, many diplomats point out that they reflected longstanding Iranian policy. "He said it more loudly, more directly, more forcefully and more offensively than anyone has said for a long time," said one Western diplomat. "But he is essentially stating what is known to be Iranian policy."


P.S. What comments?


President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said:

''Israel must be wiped off the map.''


October 27, 2005
Iran's New President Says Israel 'Must Be Wiped Off the Map'
TEHRAN, Oct. 26 - Iran's new president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, told a group of students at an anti-Israel event on Wednesday that Israel "must be wiped off the map" and that attacks by Palestinians would destroy it, the ISNA news agency reported.

He was speaking to about 4,000 students at a program called "The World Without Zionism," in preparation for an annual anti-Israel demonstration held on the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan.

His tone was reminiscent of that of the early days of Iran's Islamic revolution in 1979. Iran and Israel have been bitter enemies since then, and anti-Israel slogans have been common at rallies.

Senior officials had avoided provocative language in the last decade, but Mr. Ahmadinejad appears to be taking a more confrontational tone than have recent Iranian leaders.

He said on Wednesday that the issue of a Palestinian state would be resolved only when Palestinians took control of all their lands.

"The establishment of a Zionist regime was a move by the world oppressor against the Islamic world," the news agency reported him as saying. "The skirmishes in the occupied land are part of the war of destiny. The outcome of hundreds of years of war will be defined in Palestinian land."

Referring to comments by Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the leader of the Islamic revolution, Mr. Ahmadinejad said, "As the imam said, Israel must be wiped off the map."

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