Monday, May 01, 2006

Olmert likens Iran leader to Hitler

From The Australian, May 01, 2006 Abraham Rabinovich, Jerusalem:

ISRAEL'S prime minister-designate Ehud Olmert has denounced Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as a "psychopath" and said the West would never permit Iran to obtain a nuclear bomb.

"Ahmadinejad talks today like Hitler spoke before seizing power," said Mr Olmert in an interview with the German newspaper Bild. "We are dealing with a psychopath of the worst kind, with an anti-Semite. God forbid this man from ever getting his hands on nuclear weapons." The Israeli leader indicated, however, that the matter was not being left in God's hands alone.

Meir Dagan, the head of Mossad, Israel's intelligence agency, travelled to Washington last week to meet the CIA and pass on Israel's latest findings on Iran's nuclear progress. According to Israeli sources, Jerusalem believes that Iran is closer to nuclear capability than is generally realised.

...In Mr Olmert's interview with Bild, he indicated that Israel did not intend to take the lead in the confrontation with Iran, leaving that to the international community. "The West, above all under the leadership of the United States, will ensure that Iran under no circumstances comes to possess unconventional weapons," he said. If, however, the West fails to take action, Israel has always left open the possibility that it would itself launch an attack against Iranian nuclear development facilities.

"When I read the recent (intelligence) reports regarding Iran," said Yuval Steinitz, chairman of the Knesset's foreign affairs and defence committee, "I saw a monster in the making." The committee oversees Mossad.

London's Sunday Times quoted an Israeli source yesterday as saying that Mossad had evidence of hidden uranium-enrichment sites in Iran "which can shortcut their timetable in the race for their first bomb". The source said Mr Dagan presented US officials with Mossad's evidence and told them: "This is what we know and this is what we'll do if you continue to do nothing."

...The US is preparing to seek a UN resolution under Chapter 7 of the UN Charter which would make the UN's demands on Iran mandatory. The chapter leaves open the possibility of military action as a last resort.

Last week, Mr Ahmadinejad said he did "not give a damn" about UN resolutions.
The Iranian leader has called for Israel to be "wiped off the map" and expressed doubts that the Holocaust ever occurred.... the Iranian President earlier this month called Israel "a rotten, dried tree" that would be swept away by "one storm".

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