Mahmoud Ahmadinejad 311.
(photo credit: MCT)
CAIRO - The United States fears Iran's growing military power
because it is now able to compete with Israel and the West, Iranian President
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said in comments carried by an Egyptian newspaper on
Responding to a toughening stance from the United States and
Israel against Tehran, Ahmadinejad accused Washington of inventing conspiracies
to discredit Iran and sowing discord with its near neighbor Saudi
'World leaders must meet their commitments to stop Iran'
PostScript: When the public gets taken for a ride
"Yes, we have military capabilities that are different from any
other country in the region," Egyptian daily al-Akhbar
cited Ahmadinejad as
saying. "Iran is increasing in capability and advancement and therefore we are
able to compete with Israel and the West and especially the United States." "The
US fears Iran's capability," he told the paper. "Iran will not permit (anyone
from making) a move against it." Iran's Islamic rulers, who say Israel has no
right to exist, deny accusations that they are seeking nuclear weapons and have
warned they will respond to any attacks by striking at Israel and US interests
in the Gulf.
A senior US military official said on Friday Iran had
become the biggest threat to the United States and Israel's president said the
military option to stop the Islamic republic from obtaining nuclear weapons was
Ahmadinejad repeated that Iran does not own a nuclear bomb, but
said Israel's end was inevitable.
The U.N. nuclear watchdog, the IAEA, is
expected this week to issue its most detailed report yet on research in Iran
seen as geared to developing atomic bombs.
"It is Israel that has about
300 nuclear warheads. Iran is only keen to have nuclear capability for peaceful
means," he said, accusing Washington of lumping Iran with Syria, Hamas in Gaza and Hezbollah in Lebanon.
portrays those four as "the Axis of Evil to save the Zionist entity (Israel).
But the Zionists are bound to go out of existence," he said.
to a US claim that Iran was involved in a plot to kill the Saudi ambassador to
Washington, Ahmadinejad said: "Iran is farthest from thinking of carrying out
such crimes but the US is always inventing conspiracies against
"The U.S. fears any friendship between us and Saudi Arabia and
therefore incites disagreements," he said. "To stop the US in its tracks we
must deepen the elements of friendship... We are ready for this and the relation
between Saudi and Iran already exists and has not been cut off."