Tuesday, October 26, 2004

An ironic endorsement...

President wins endorsement from admirers in the 'axis of evil'

AP in Tehran
Saturday October 23, 2004
The Guardian

He has accused the country of being part of the axis of evil, a harbourer of al-Qaida terrorists and a nuclear menace threatening global stability.

So President George Bush may view with suspicion a ringing election endorsement from one of America's current enemies. Iran has thrown its weight behind the Bush campaign, saying it is unimpressed with John Kerry.

"We haven't seen anything good from the Democrats," said Hasan Rowhani, head of Iran's Supreme National Security Council, on state television. "We do not desire to see Democrats take over ... We should not forget that most sanctions and economic pressures were imposed on Iran during the time of [former Democratic president Bill] Clinton. And we should not forget that during Bush's era - despite his hardline and baseless rhetoric against Iran - he didn't take, in practical terms, any dangerous action against Iran."

Iran's declaration, however, is unlikely to be used on the stump by Mr Bush, despite the closeness of the race.

"It's not an endorsement we'll be accepting any time soon," said a Bush spokesman, Scott Stanzel, who suggested that Tehran should concentrate on pledging to "stop its pursuit of nuclear weapons".

With the adage that "with friends like these, who needs enemies" probably springing to mind, Mr Kerry's spokeswoman, Allison Dobson, said: "It is telling that this president has received the endorsement of a member of the 'axis of evil'."

Washington severed diplomatic ties with Iran after militants stormed the US embassy in Tehran in 1979 and held 52 Americans hostage for 444 days. America supported Iraq in the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war, and relations plummeted again when Mr Bush accused Iran of being part of an "axis of evil" with North Korea and pre-war Iraq.

Since then, US forces have accused the Iranians of fomenting violence in Iraq.

However, Mr Rowhani did not seem to think that Iran would be targeted next. "At least Republicans have come to the conclusion in our region that militarism and invasion has not only failed to bring any results but, on the contrary, it is threatening their interests."

(NOTE on Rowhani's comment: I don't think GWB sees it that way, the way he has refused to admit a mistake and insists freedom is on the march.)

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?