erusalem Post & IsraelNN.com & Press.TV & Newsmax – 2008-05-21 22:45:49
White House denies Iran attack report
JERUSALEM (May. 20, 2008) — The White House on Tuesday flatly denied an [Israel] Army Radio report that claimed US President George W. Bush intends to attack Iran before the end of his term. It said that while the military option had not been taken off the table, the administration preferred to resolve concerns about Iran’s push for a nuclear weapon “through peaceful diplomatic means.”
Army Radio had quoted a top official in Jerusalem claiming that a senior member in the entourage of President Bush, who visited Israel last week, had said in a closed meeting here that Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney were of the opinion that military action against Iran was called for.
The official reportedly went on to say that, for the time being, “the hesitancy of Defense Secretary Robert Gates and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice” was preventing the administration from deciding to launch such an attack on the Islamic Republic.
The Army Radio report, which was quoted by The Jerusalem Post and resonated widely, stated that according to assessments in Israel, the recent turmoil in Lebanon, where Hizbullah has established de facto control of the country, was advancing an American attack.
Bush, the official reportedly said, considered Hizbullah’s show of strength evidence of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s growing influence. In Bush’s view, the official said, “the disease must be treated – not its symptoms.”
However, the White House on Tuesday afternoon dismissed the story. In a statement, it said that “[the US] remain[s] opposed to Iran’s ambitions to obtain a nuclear weapon. To that end, we are working to bring tough diplomatic and economic pressure on the Iranians to get them to change their behavior and to halt their uranium enrichment program.”
It went on: “As the president has said, no president of the United States should ever take options off the table, but our preference and our actions for dealing with this matter remain through peaceful diplomatic means. Nothing has changed in that regard.”
In an interview last week in the Oval Office, Bush told the Post that “Iran is an incredibly negative influence” and “the biggest long-term threat to peace in the Middle East,” but that the US was “pushing back hard and will continue to do so.”
He noted that “Iran is involved in funding Hamas and Hizbullah, and it’s that Iranian influence which I’m deeply concerned about. But there needs to be more than just the United States concerned about it.”
Bush said: “We take [seriously] this issue of [Iran] getting the technology, the know-how on how to develop a nuclear weapon.”
“All options are on the table,” he said, but, “Of course you want to try to solve this problem diplomatically.”
Asked whether the Iranians would be deterred from their nuclear drive by the time he left office, Bush told the Post: “What definitely will be done [before I leave office will be the establishment of] a structure on how to deal with this, to try to resolve this diplomatically. In other words sanctions, pressures, financial pressures. You know, a history of pressure that will serve as a framework to make sure other countries are involved.”
Days later, in his address to the Knesset, Bush said that “the president of Iran dreams of returning the Middle East to the Middle Ages” and “America stands with you in firmly opposing Iran’s nuclear weapons ambitions.”
“Permitting the world’s leading sponsor of terror to possess the world’s deadliest weapon would be an unforgivable betrayal of future generations. For the sake of peace, the world must not allow Iran to have a nuclear weapon,” he said.
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Military Attack against Iran Now Imminent
(May 20, 2008) — World renowned investigative reporter and terror expert Kenneth R. Timmerman, author of the bestselling book “Countdown to Crisis: the Coming Nuclear Showdown with Iran,” and Carl Limbacher, reporter for NewMax.com, reveal that the US and Israel will destroy Iran’s nuclear facilities in less than 10 weeks from now.
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Israel: Bush’s Iran Attack in Months
(May 20, 2008) — “George W. Bush intends to attack Iran within the next few months, before the end of his term”, The Israeli Army Radio and the Jerusalem Post quoted unnamed Israeli officials as saying on Tuesday.
The officials claimed that a senior member of the president’s entourage during Bush’s trip to the occupied Palestine last week said that Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney believed they should solve the issue of Iran ‘radically and resolutely’.
They, however, claimed that Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice’s reservations had so far prevented the administration from launching an attack on Iran.
Earlier, a news website close the Israeli intelligence agency revealed that during his visit to al-Quds Bush criticized Israeli prime minister Ehud Olmert for not attacking Lebanon after the political defeat of Fuad Siniora’s government in the recent crisis in Lebanon.
Report: U.S. Will Attack Iran
(May 20, 2008) — Israel’s Army Radio is reporting that President Bush intends to launch a military strike against Iran before the end of his term.
The Army Radio, a network operated by the Israeli Defense Forces, quoted a government source in Jerusalem. The source disclosed that a senior official close to Bush said in a closed meeting that Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney believed military action against Iran was now called for.
Bush concluded a trip to Israel last week, where he said, “The objective of the United States must be to . . . support our strongest ally and friend in the Middle East.”
The Radio report, which was quoted by the Jerusalem Post, disclosed that the recent turmoil in Lebanon, where the Iranian-backed group Hezbollah had seized virtual control of the country, was encouraging an American attack.
Hezbollah’s aggression in Lebanon is seen as evidence of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s growing influence, and the U.S. official said that in Bush’s view, “the disease must be treated, not its symptoms,” according to the Post.
The White House on Tuesday denied the Army Radio report, saying in a statement: “As the president has said, no president of the United States should ever take options off the table, but our preference and our actions for dealing with this matter remain through peaceful diplomatic means. Nothing has changed in that regard.”
However, numerous signs point to a U.S. strike on Iran in the near future:
• A leading member of America’s Jewish community told Newsmax in April that a military strike on Iran was likely and that Vice President Cheney’s March trip through the Middle East came in preparation for the U.S. attack.
• The Air Force recently declared the B-2 bomber fleet — a critical weapons system in any U.S. attack on Iran — as airworthy again. The Air Force had halted B-2 flights after a February crash in Guam. As Newsmax reported, the Air Force has refitted its stealth bombers to carry 30,000-pound “bunker buster” bombs, needed to destroy Iran’s hardened nuclear facilities.
• A second U.S. aircraft carrier, the USS Abraham Lincoln, joined the carrier USS Harry S. Truman in the Persian Gulf in May, carrying far more weaponry and ammunition than on previous deployments.
• Israel is gearing up for war. In April, it conducted its largest homeland military exercises ever. The Jewish-American source said Israel is “preparing for heavy casualties,” expecting to be the target of Iranian retribution following the U.S. attack.
• Saudi Arabia is taking steps to prepare for possible radioactive contamination from U.S. destruction of Iran’s nuclear facilities. The Saudi government reportedly approved nuclear fallout preparations a day after Cheney met with the kingdom’s highest-ranking officials.
• The USS Ross, an Aegis-class destroyer, has taken up station off the coast of Lebanon. Military observers speculate it is there to help defend Israel from missile attacks.
Adm. Michael Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at a recent Pentagon briefing that the Iranians are systematically importing and training Shiite militia fighters, who slip back across the Iraqi border to kill American troops.
And Israeli intelligence has predicted that Iran will acquire its first nuclear device in 2009, much earlier than previous U.S. estimates.
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