ahmadinejad badass 298.8.
(photo credit: Associated Press)
A day after Vice Premier Shimon Peres said that Iran could be 'wiped off the map', the letter that Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad wrote to US President George W. Bush was released, concurrent with the beginning of the UN Security Council's deliberations on whether to impose sanctions on Iran.
The letter from Ahmadinejad was the first formal communication between the leaders of the two nations in decades. Sent as western nations confront suspicions over Iran's nuclear program, it made only an oblique reference to Iran's intentions, asking why "any technological and scientific achievement reached in the Middle East region is translated into and portrayed as a threat to the Zionist regime."
Otherwise, it lambasted Bush for his handling of the Sept. 11 attacks, accused the media of spreading lies about the Iraq war, and said that people around the world are moving closer to faith in God.
"Liberalism and Western-style democracy have not been able to help realize the ideals of humanity," said the letter, obtained by The Associated Press. "Today these two concepts have failed. Those with insight can already hear the sounds of the shattering and fall of the ideology and thoughts of the Liberal democratic systems."
Even though the letter hardly touched on nuclear issues, officials said it appeared timed to coincide with a push by the United States, Britain, France and Germany for a UN Security Council vote to restrain the Islamic regime's nuclear ambitions. Both China and Russia are opposed to leveling sanctions against Iran and the letter could provide them support.
US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice dismissed the letter and said it failed to resolve the dispute over the Iranian nuclear program - the focus of intense Security Council debate this week.
"This letter is not the place that one would find an opening to engage on the nuclear issue or anything of the sort," Rice said in an interview with The Associated Press. "It isn't addressing the issues that we're dealing with in a concrete way."
In the letter, Ahmadinejad instead criticized the United States for the invasion of Iraq and its support of Israel. It says that people around the world have lost faith in international institutions and questions whether the Bush administration has covered up some evidence surrounding the Sept. 11 attacks.
Ahmadinejad also suggests that Bush should look inward, saying there was an increasing hatred worldwide of the United States, and that history shows how "repressive and cruel governments do not survive.
"How much longer will the blood of the innocent men, women and children be spilled on the streets, and people's houses destroyed over their heads? Are you pleased with the current condition of the world? Do you think present policies can continue?"
On Tuesday morning, China expressed concern that a proposed UN resolution to curb Iran's nuclear program could lead to a new war and called on Britain and France to eliminate any reference to possible future sanctions or military action against Tehran.
China's UN Ambassador Wang Guangya remained adamant Monday in his opposition to putting the resolution under Chapter 7 of the UN Charter, which sets out actions to respond to threats to international peace and security ranging from breaking diplomatic relations to arms embargoes, economic sanctions and the use of force.
However, Wang said, "We are not thinking about veto. We are thinking about unifying the whole council".