Counting Down

Earlier today, Iran’s President Ahmadinejad delivered a speech to foreign dignitaries in Teheran, marking the 18th anniversary of the death of the Ayatollah Khomeini, in which he said that the countdown to Israel’s destruction has begun, and that Israel will cease to exist in the “near future:”

“In Lebanon, the corrupt, arrogant powers and the Zionist regime did all they could in an unfair 33-day war. But after 60 years its [Israel’s] greatness fell apart,” Iranian media quoted Ahmadinejad as saying.
“The countdown to this regime’s destruction started through the hands of Hezbollah’s children,” he said in a speech to visiting foreign guests in Tehran.
“We will witness the destruction of this regime in the near future thanks to the endeavours of all Palestinian and Lebanese fighters,” he added.

This is also worth noting:

Iranian officials have expressed bewilderment over the uproar caused by [Ahmadinejad’s] comments [about Israel], saying he was merely restating one of Khomeini’s central beliefs that the Jewish state was doomed to destruction.

No doubt experts at the State Department are poring over Ahmadinejad’s latest pronouncements, in an effort to discern what he was really trying to say.
This story should be read together with Scott’s posts below on the historical foundations of the current crisis, as well as David Horovitz’s essay in the Jerusalem Post, titled The Campaign to Delegitimize Israel. Horovitz discusses the video of captured BBC newsman Alan Johnston which we posted on here. His essay is well worth reading in its entirety; here is a sample:

Peace with Egypt in the late 1970s, and with Jordan in the mid-1990s, and the illusion of looming peace with the Palestinians, had led Israelis to believe that the nations of the Middle East had given up hope of overrunning the Jewish state and were reluctantly coming to terms with it.
In hindsight, however, that momentum shifted with the Islamic revolution in Iran in 1979, and a counter-movement has been accelerating ever since. The Islamic Republic of Iran, a rapacious regime bent on exporting its fundamentalist thinking throughout this region and beyond, has made Israel’s elimination a prime goal, though by no means its sole aim.
It has waged war against Israel by proxy – via Hizbullah in south Lebanon and by the terror groups it helps arms and train and fund in Gaza and the West Bank. And now it seeks the nuclear capability to destroy Israel directly.

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