Photo: AP
US President George W. Bush
Photo: AP
Photo: Reuters
Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni speaks at UN
Photo: Reuters
Photo: Reuters
Iranian President Ahmadinejad
Photo: Reuters

Bush on Iran: Israel’s worries justified

US president tells CNN he understands Israel’s concern over Iranian threat; Iranian President Ahmadnejad’s threats to destroy Israel should be taken seriously, he says

WASHINGTON – In a special interview with CNN on Wednesday, US President George W. Bush said that if he were Israel’s foreign minister, he would be deeply concerned about a neighboring country’s threats to destroy his country.


Bush’s comments followed Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni’s speech at the United Nations General Assembly Thursday, and her question as to what else had to happen in order for the world to take Iran’s threat seriously.


Bush also commented on steps the US was taking with regards to Iran’s nuclear project, saying that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice met with foreign ministers of Birtain, France, Germany, Russia, and China, and urged them to implement the security council’s decision.


The American president also referred to the UN Security Council’s decision 1696, which gave Iran an ultimatum to stop its uranium enrichment efforts by August 31st.


In reality, Iran received an extension from the Quartet Wednesday to continue with its uranium enrichment efforts.


'Ahmadinejad means what he says' 

Bush said he was worried that Iran was trying to evade the issue and bide time, adding that Iran could choose to be isolated and endure sanctions, or take a better route.


"He knows the options before him. I've made that very clear," Bush said.


Interviewer Wolf Blitzer reminded the American president that countries like India, Pakistan, and Israel had nuclear weapons. Bush replied that the Iranian regime made it very clear that it wanted to destroy Israel, an ally of the US.


In response to the question of how the US would react if Iran bombed Israel or fired missiles at it, Bush said, “You can't just hope for the best," he said. "You've got to assume that the leader, when he says that he would like to destroy Israel, means what he says. If you say, 'Well, gosh, maybe he doesn't mean it,' and you turn out to be wrong, you have not done your duty as a world leader."


פרסום ראשון: 09.21.06, 10:04
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