Iran is indeed the world's foremost state sponsor of terrorism. The sheer scope of Iranian terrorist activity is remarkable, including both the terrorism carried out by Iranian-supported terrorist groups and by Iranian agents themselves. Iranian sponsored terrorism threatens key United States security interests and American citizens alike.
It is critical that the international effort to rein in Iran's nuclear weapons program include an equally concerted effort to forestall its state sponsorship of terrorism. Failure to do so guarantees that Iran and its proxies will continue to undermine Israeli-Arab peace negotiations, conduct surveillance of U.S., Israeli, and other targets for possible terrorist attack, and destabilize Iraq.
"On the other hand, having a radical Muslim theocracy in possession of nuclear weapons is worse. So I guess my instinct would be to err on not having those weapons in the possession of the ruling clerics of Iran. ... And I hope it doesn't get to that point. But realistically, as I watch how this thing has evolved, I'd be surprised if Iran blinked at this point."
Senator John Kerry echoed this sentiment on May 29, 2004, when he told the Washington Post that the Bush Administration has not “been tough on the [Iran] issue … which is the issue of nuclear weaponry, and again just like I said with North Korea, you have to keep your eye on the target.”
Even DNC chair hopeful Howard Dean, allegedly the liberal arm of the Democratic Party, concurs Bush has not been tough enough on Iran. The Forward quotes Dean as saying, “The United States has to ... take a much harder line on Iran and Saudi Arabia because they're funding terrorism.”
Jumblatt dresses like an ex-hippie, in jeans and loafers, but he maintains the exquisite manners of a Lebanese aristocrat. Over the years, I've often heard him denouncing the United States and Israel, but these days, in the aftermath of Hariri's death, he's sounding almost like a neoconservative. He says he's determined to defy the Syrians until their troops leave Lebanon and the Lahoud government is replaced.
"It's strange for me to say it, but this process of change has started because of the American invasion of Iraq," explains Jumblatt. "I was cynical about Iraq. But when I saw the Iraqi people voting three weeks ago, 8 million of them, it was the start of a new Arab world." Jumblatt says this spark of democratic revolt is spreading. "The Syrian people, the Egyptian people, all say that something is changing. The Berlin Wall has fallen. We can see it."
Iran gets bombed June 2005.
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