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Iran Remains 'Dangerous,' Bush Insists

Weapons Halted

Sheldon Alberts, CanWest News Service  Published: Wednesday, December 05, 2007


Jim Young, Reuters

A report stating Iran halted its nuclear weapons program four years ago is a "warning signal," George W. Bush said yesterday.

WASHINGTON - U.S. President George W. Bush defended his administration's hard line on Iran yesterday, warning that the regime in Tehran remains a serious threat despite a new U.S. intelligence report showing the country halted its nuclear weapons program four years ago.

"Iran was dangerous. Iran is dangerous and Iran will be dangerous if they have the knowledge necessary to make a nuclear weapon," Mr. Bush said. "Iran had a hidden, covert nuclear weapons program. What's to say they couldn't start another covert nuclear weapons program?"

Mr. Bush made the comments during a news conference aimed at defusing criticism his administration has over-hyped the threat posed by Iran. Hoping to keep the UN Security Council onside with tougher sanctions on Iran, Mr. Bush touted the new National Intelligence Estimate (NIE) as evidence Tehran could quickly resume its efforts to develop a nuclear weapon.

A little more than a month ago, Mr. Bush said he feared Iran's pursuit of a nuclear weapon could lead to "World War III."

The new intelligence report says Iran suspended efforts to build a nuclear bomb in 2003, but continues to enrich uranium and develop long-range ballistic missiles. What the U.S. is now seeking to prevent, Mr. Bush said, is Iran gaining the knowledge needed to build a bomb.

"I view this report as a warning signal," Mr. Bush said. "And the reason why it's a warning signal is that they could restart it. And the thing that would make a restarted program effective and dangerous is the ability to enrich uranium, the knowledge of which could be passed on to a hidden program."

Still, the unexpected U.S. intelligence finding immediately produced calls for the Bush administration to cool its rhetoric toward the Islamic regime.

Representative Rahm Emanuel, chairman of the Democratic congressional caucus, said the U.S. "can now be clear-eyed and hard-headed as it approaches the Iranians."

"We do not have to operate from fear or weakness. We have strength here. And I think the NIE report shows that."

In Tehran, Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki welcomed the U.S. report as evidence that Iran's nuclear program is intended for peaceful purposes only.

"It's natural that we welcome it when those countries who in the past have questions and ambiguities about this case ... now amend their views realistically," Mr. Mottaki told state radio.

"The condition of Iran's peaceful nuclear activities is becoming clear to the world."

Mr. Bush maintained that the new intelligence report shows "the strategy we have used in the past is effective" in curbing Iran's nuclear ambitions.

"Many in the world are going to take heart in noting that it's diplomatic pressure that caused them to change their mind," he said. "And plenty of people understand that if they learn how to enrich [uranium], that knowledge can be transferred to a weapons pro-gram if Iran so chooses."

But he was put on the defensive when reporters asked him whether he had exaggerated the threat posed by Iran. On Oct. 17, Mr. Bush said Americans needed to isolate Iran "if you're interested in avoiding World War III."

Mr. Bush said the director of the Central Intelligence Agency informed him of "new information" about Iran's weapons program, "but it wasn't until last week that I was briefed" on its content.

When a reporter suggested Mr. Bush looked "dispirited" at having to explain such a major re-evaluation of its intelligence, the President was taken aback.

"All of a sudden it's like Psychology 101," Mr. Bush said.

"I'm feeling pretty spirited, pretty good about life."

The White House has struggled for years to regain credibility among Americans after its erroneous claim prior to the invasion of Iraq that Saddam Hussein possessed weapons of mass destruction.

But Mr. Bush dismissed the suggestion the U.S. will now find it more difficult to convince UN Security Council members such as Russia and China to impose additional sanctions on Iran because of its nuclear energy program.

The UN has already passed two sets of sanctions against Iran and met last weekend to discuss a further round.

Reacting to the NIE report, both Britain and France stressed the importance of maintaining pressure on Iran.

"It confirms we were right to be worried about Iran seeking to develop nuclear weapons [and] shows that the sanctions program and international pressure were having an effect, in that they seem to have abandoned the weaponization element," said a spokesman for British Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

 



I just want to ask something. Dont take it personally but do you fellow americans realise you have an one hell of an idiot for a president?

Like do general citizens (people on the street and familys etc) of america realise he's is stupid?? because the rest of the world does.

Just asking as i dont know what americans think so id thought id ask you guys as... well... you live thier.

.... i hope this honestly dosent offend anyone.



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Interesting that the US does not see that their country is the biggest threat to the world.



 

Does anyone here know which console the US president likes?? Well at least we know he won't order a strike against Japan although if the ps3 starts catching up to the 360 you never know hehe



 

 

Yojimbo said:
Interesting that the US does not see that their country is the biggest threat to the world.

 I'll second that. And no; war on Iran is not inevitable. Bush and co are just scared that Iran will become a major contender in the struggle for the power in the middle east and gain control over the region's vast resources.



End of 2016 hardware sales:

Wii U: 15 million. PS4: 54 million. One: 30 million. 3DS: 64.8 million. PSVita: 15.2 million.

shrimpy_boy11 said:
I just want to ask something. Dont take it personally but do you fellow americans realise you have an one hell of an idiot for a president?

Like do general citizens (people on the street and familys etc) of america realise he's is stupid?? because the rest of the world does.

Just asking as i dont know what americans think so id thought id ask you guys as... well... you live thier.

.... i hope this honestly dosent offend anyone.

(not american) well, given he was elected for two terms... i'm pretty sure 50% of the [voting] population doesn't realise it, or maybe there is just a lack of better options... that said, how many people actually vote in America? I read somewhere that more people vote for American Idol, but was too long ago to give a link or be bothered finding it



"Dont take it personally but do you fellow americans realise you have an one hell of an idiot for a president? "

Disclaimer I am European and Georgyboy is in many areas pretty incompetent. But to be honest the US has been and is a better force in the world than Europe.

You don't want Iran with Nuclear weapons. You need to show that you are willing to not let this happen. North Korea is isolated an nuclear Iran would be so much more dangerous.

Its like in real world you need to talk sensible with others (something the US has not done in the past) but if someone is doing something criminal you have to stand up against him (something Europe never does).

I think the good cop/bad cop team US/Europe is perhaps no bad idea but this doesn't work with only good cops.

Irak has become a disaster but sometimes you need to use force, like the balkan where 10 years of european negotiations and sanctions couldn't do what 6 weeks of american-lead NATO bombardment achieved (very simplified). Or Sierra Leone where pregnant woman were killed by drugged up child soldiers which was resolved by a couple of british platoons in a matter of weeks. And an american aircraft carrier in the street of Taiwan is infinitely more responsible for Taiwan still being an independent, democratic country than all negotiations of the world.

Most of the time you need to negotiate, sometimes you need to threaten the use of force and sometimes you need to use force. But all of these things have to be done when they are appropriate. Neither the Bush way ("proactive" force) nor the European way (let's talk about it) are right.

//rant off



Who remembers the old "Iraq has wmd's", I hope so because america is already getting chopped in Iraq. Then if they invade Iran we may finally see the complete downfall of america.
I thought the american public would get sick of there people dying to protect the jews. But the jews/zionist that run america still have the masses there brainwashed.



-UBISOFT BOYCOTT!-

Like when Bush let North Korea sell weapons to Ethiopia so they could attack Somalia. North Korea had sanctions on them and he let them sell anyway. If North Korea would have tried to sell to another country it would been "different story". I dont like the hypocricy from US. Seems like they are controlling their people with "fear" and it seems to work because bush won twice. If US attacks Iran the problems will get to new heights. They will win but millions will die, how many civilians have died in Irak 600k-700k? Iran is bigger and stronger country then Irak.



 
shrimpy_boy11 said:
I just want to ask something. Dont take it personally but do you fellow americans realise you have an one hell of an idiot for a president?

Like do general citizens (people on the street and familys etc) of america realise he's is stupid?? because the rest of the world does.

Just asking as i dont know what americans think so id thought id ask you guys as... well... you live thier.

.... i hope this honestly dosent offend anyone.

Well ignoring the fact that your comments are completely unspecific I think you will find that most people disagree with him on a number of issues. Those issues will of course cover a wide range of issues, but it is worth noting that many people also agree with him on a number of issues.  This again falls back to my point that you were very unspecific.

Now if you are actually going to make claim that he is in fact a person of low intellect I think you will find it substantially harder to back up this claim with anything other than the typical unfounded anti-bush rhetoric, of which there is plenty to go around. Particularly if you are looking for it online.  

Furthermore, I think you would find that while Americans do care about how we are viewed in the world we simply do not care what other countries want us to do in terms of who we elect.  We elect our candidates based on our views and nothing more.  If you take issue with the fact that our candidates don't have your countries best interest as their primary goal then that is definitely valid from your viewpoint but seeing as we are electing our leaders we are looking at our bottom line first.  

Finally, it might help a bit if more countries, in Europe especially, were to actually step up to the plate a bit.  If you don't like the US's foreign policy perhaps getting your countries involved where we are screwing up is a good alternative.  At the moment most of the American people hear a bunch of yelling from the proverbial peanut gallery who are unwilling to get their own hands dirty but plenty willing to bitch when you do it in a way that doesn't suit them.

 

@Yojimbo,

As soon as the US elects a leader that literally claims to want to hasten the end of the world I think your claim would begin to make sense. Until then your comment is a fine example of what propaganda and indeed ignorance can produce when fostered with a dose of "blame it on the US". 

@mummelmann,

What resources?  Oil?  So apparently the Iraq oil wasn't enough so you think he wants to wage war with another country just for a little bit more oil?  Because I don't think you can be serious about Iran becoming a serious power.  Economically they are beyond insignificant and  technologically they are at least 30 years behind the US.  So the only thing I can believe is that you, like Yojimbo, are buying into the propaganda and grasping at straws to jump on the "Its the US's fault" bandwagon.

@topic,

I truly dislike the way Bush has handled the war on terror from the start of the war in Iraq onward.  The recent surge has been promising, but in many ways it is aggrevating that this progress was not made sooner.  At least progress is being made, however. 

As far as Iran goes, I cannot fathom how any person would look at the (until now) rising tentions between the two countries and honestly believe that the US is the instigator.  What part of radical islam have you not understood?  Is it the part where they truly want to bring death to western culture or that part about bringing about the end of the world?  

Do people even doubt the grip radical islam has over a country like Iran at the moment? I truly am at a loss for words as to what the disconnect is.   Am I the only one who sees news stories about a country that encourages 13 year old boys to strap bombs to their chest and blow themselves up?  Or is that the fault of the US also?  At what point do you wake up from dreamland and really think about who the bad guys are?  Because it sure as hell is obvious to me.  

As far as Europe goes, the impression I continually get about the continent is that the governments don't know what the hell to do.  So rather than trying something, which if you fail is death politically, they sit by and critique those who are doing something.  The result of which is all this fabulous monday morning quarterbacking and second-guessing.  I would love to see Europe actually unite behind a cause.  At least it would show your politicians still have a bit of a spine left in them. 



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