Bush on Mofaz's threat: We must pressure Iran together
US president tells The Times Israeli minister's assertion that attack on Iran was unavoidable 'should be viewed as the need to continue to keep pressuring Islamic Republic'; says concerned Obama might open cracks in West’s united front towards Tehran’s nuclear ambitions if elected
US President George W. Bush said Israeli Minister Shaul Mofaz's recent assertion that a military strike on Iran was 'unavoidable' US President George W. Bush said "really should be viewed as the need to continue to keep pressuring" the Islamic Republic.
In an interview with The Times, published Wednesday, the president said “We ought to work together, keep focused," regarding the Iranian nuclear program.
Bush told the London-based newspaper that he was concerned that the Democratic nominee Barack Obama might open cracks in the West’s united front towards Tehran’s nuclear ambitions, but added that after is successor assesses “what will work or what won’t work in dealing with Iran”, he would stick with the current policy.
Asked by The Times if the US is ready for a black president, Bush said, "I think the fact that the Democratic Party nominated Barack Obama is a statement about how far America has come.
"Having that all that, it's going to be important for the American people to figure out who can handle the task of the 21st Century. It's a challenging job," he told the British daily.
During the interview Bush admitted that his gun-slinging rhetoric made the world believe that he was a “guy really anxious for war” in Iraq. He was quoted by the newspaper as saying that his aim was to leave his successor a legacy of international diplomacy for tackling Iran.
Bush expressed regret at the bitter divisions over the war and said that he was troubled about how his country had been misunderstood. “I think that in retrospect I could have used a different tone, a different rhetoric,” he told The Times.
Phrases such as “bring them on” or “dead or alive”, he said, “indicated to people that I was, you know, not a man of peace”.