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Thursday, October 27, 2005

The Rule Of Unintended Consequences.

The recent vile hatred spewed from the mouth of Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who declared that 'Israel must be wiped off the map,' may have had unintended consequences.

The response of the Europeans and others, might not have been what the Arab world wanted to see. In fact, there has been a clear response. Thanks to the Iranian president he Arab and Islamic world may have been made aware that they aren't quite as 'integrated' into Europe or the west as they may have deluded themselves into believing.

The following remarks were taken from various press sources.

The European Union said the comments - were "despicable and unacceptable" and "inconsistent with any claim to be a mature and responsible member of the international community".

British Prime Minister Tony Blair said Thursday he has "never come across a situation of the president of a country saying they want to ... wipe out another country," Blair said at the close of a European Union summit outside London.

"Their attitude towards Israel, their attitude towards terrorism, their attitude on the nuclear weapons issue, it isn't acceptable. ... Can you imagine a state like that with an attitude like that having a nuclear weapon?"

He said the comments made him feel "revulsion."

A Foreign Office spokesperson in London said Ahmadinejad's "sickening" remarks will "heighten concerns about Iran's nuclear ambitions".

Spanish Foreign Minister Moratinos summoned Iran's ambassador and issued a statement saying he "condemned the remarks in the most emphatic terms."

"Of course, we are opposed to Iranian policies with regard to Israel, we are opposed with regard to the nuclear policy, with regard to their support of terror, with regard to their negative policies in Iraq," the Voice of America quoted the U.S. ambassador to Iraq, Zalmy Khalilzad, as saying.

The Iranian ambassador to France, Sadegh Kharrazi, was summoned to the French Foreign Ministry on Thursday morning and asked for "clarifications" of the remarks by Ahmadinejad.

French foreign minister Philippe Douste Blazy spoke out against the Iranian leader. Douste Blazy said: “For France, the right for Israel to exist should not to be contested. This state was created by a decision of the UN General Assembly.”

The Iranian ambassador, summoned to the French Foreign Ministry "was reminded that the right of Israel to exist cannot be contested. The Israeli-Palestinian conflict cannot serve as a pretext for calling into question this fundamental right," French Foreign Ministry spokesman Jean-Baptiste Mattei said. "The ambassador took note of this demarche and indicated that he would report it to his authorities."

Austria "resolutely rejects" Ahmadinejad's comments, said Austrian Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik. Plassnik said her ministry had summoned the Iranian envoy in Vienna for discussions about the matter.

Catholic Action of Austria, a leading Austrian Roman Catholic layman's organization, said in a statement Thursday that it was the responsibility of all Christian believers to defend Israel's right to exist, and it deplored Ahmadinejad's hostility as "intolerable."

"This murderous call from Tehran must not stand without international consequences," the organization said.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who is in Israel for meetings with Israeli leaders, told Sharon on Thursday that Ahmadinejad's comments are unacceptable to Russia and that the Iranian ambassador to Moscow has been asked to provide an explanation.

"I don't agree that anyone should challenge the right of any UN member to exist," he said earlier in the day. "This is indeed inadmissible."

Canadian Foreign Minister Pierre Pettigrew said: "We cannot tolerate comments of such hatred, such anti-Semitism, such intolerance. And these comments are all the more troubling given that we know of Iran's nuclear ambitions."

In Berlin, the German government said the comments were "completely unacceptable".

"If these comments were in fact made, they are completely unacceptable and should be condemned in the strongest terms," said foreign ministry spokesman Walter Lindner.

Looking to get ahead of the bad PR curve, Palestinian Authority senior negotiator Saeb Erekat on Thursday condemned the Iranian President Majmoud Ahmadinejad call for Israel's destruction.

"This is unacceptable to us," Erekat said. "We have recognized the state of Israel and we are pursuing a peace process with Israel, and ... we do not accept the statements of the president of Iran. This is unacceptable." No mention of Hamas and Jihaf, who explicitely share
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's sentiments. They too, want to see Israel destroyed (preferably, with as many dead Jews as possible).

It should be noted that his (reluctant) were the only remarks of condemnation from the Arab world.