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11-07-08, 02:16 AM #1
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad congratulates Barack Obama on his win
TEHRAN, Iran – Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad on Thursday congratulated Barack Obama on his election win — the first time an Iranian leader has offered such wishes to a U.S. president-elect since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
An analyst said Ahmadinejad's message was a gesture from the hard-line president that he is open to some sort of reconciliation with the U.S.
Obama has said he is willing to hold direct diplomacy with Iranian leaders as a way to break the impasse between the two countries or give the U.S. more credibility to press for tougher sanctions if talks fail. His policy marks a departure from the Bush administration, which has refused high-level engagements with Iran.
Ahmadinejad congratulated the Democrat on "attracting the majority of voters in the election," according to excerpts carried by the official IRNA news agency.
The Iranian leader also said he hopes Obama will "use the opportunity to serve the (American) people and leave a good name for history" during his term in office.
Iran and U.S. have no formal diplomatic relations since 1979 and the hostage drama when militant Iranian students held 52 Americans captive 444 days.
Current U.S.-Iranian relations remain tense, with Washington accusing Iran of trying to develop nuclear weapons and of providing support for Shiite militants who are killing U.S. soldiers in Iraq — charges Iran denies.
In Jerusalem, Israeli Foreign Minister Tzipi Livni, a contender for prime minister in her country's elections, warned against any dialogue with Iran — a first sign of Israeli disagreement with the incoming U.S. administration.
"Dialogue at this time is liable to broadcast weakness," cautioned Livni, who is head of the governing Kadima Party. "I think early dialogue at a time when it appears to Iran that the world has given up on sanctions could be problematic."
Israeli officials describe Iran as the biggest threat to the Jewish state's existence, citing Ahmadinejad's frequent calls for Israel's destruction and its development of long-range missiles capable of striking the Jewish state.
Livni has repeatedly said she hopes international diplomacy prevails. But she doesn't rule out force if U.N. sanctions don't pressure Iran to scale back its nuclear aims. In June, she said Iran "needs to understand the military threat exists and is not being taken off the table."
Iran sees Obama's victory as a triumph over the policies of President Bush, who repeatedly clashed with Iranian leaders while in office over Iran's nuclear program and its opposition to the U.S.-led military campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq.
Ahmadinejad's message said that "nations of the world" expect changes from Obama — mostly that he will change U.S. foreign policy.
That policy, Ahmadinejad claimed, was "based on warmongering, occupation, bullying, deception and humiliation, as well as discrimination and unfair relations" and has led to "hatred of all nations and majority of governments toward the U.S. leaders."
Ahmadinejad also said Obama is expected to replace such a policy with "an approach based on justice and respect, as well as lack of intervention in the affairs of others."
Iranians will welcome such changes, Ahmadinejad added.
At the United Nations, the Iranian mission released an unofficial translation indicating Ahmadinejad relayed his message in a letter to Obama.
People across the world expect Obama to act so "unjust practices of the past six decades in the sensitive Middle East region are reversed in order to achieve the full restoration of the legitimate rights of nations, especially the aggrieved nations of Palestine, Iraq, and Afghanistan," the letter said, according to the translation.
The letter ends with blessings and well wishes to "leaders of societies with the courage to learn from the mistakes of predecessors, and the ability to use every opportunity to serve the people."
Iran's government refused to publicly side with any of the U.S. candidates throughout the presidential race, although Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani said last month that Obama seemed "more rational" than John McCain.
Saeed Leilaz, an independent analyst in Tehran, said Ahmadinejad's message was a "positive step" that now leaves Washington with the responsibility for the next one. Leilaz added he believes Obama's victory will "weaken radicalism" in Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran and North Korea.
11-07-08, 03:09 AM #2
My congtratulations to Saddam Hussein, for being brave and taking it like a man, on the day he was hanged.Some people come into our lives and quickly go. Some stay for awhile and leave footprints on our hearts. And we are never, ever the same.-- Anonymous
Old People, like me, may not be around to witness the destruction of our Nation. The rest of you may not survive the collapse. We all have the sworn duty to prevent it.
The light of hope burns brighter than the fires of doom.
11-07-08, 03:22 AM #3
Well that should tell you something...........He's probably just overjoyed now that he'll be able to build his nukes in peace while dialoguing with us.SI VIS PACEM PARA BELLUM-Ex-Sheriff Martin Howe to Will Kane in "High Noon"
"It's a great life. You risk your skin catching killers and the juries turn them loose so they can come back and shoot at you again. If your honest , your poor your whole life. And , In the end , you wind up dying all alone on some dirty street. For what? For nothing. For a tin star."
Far from being a handicap to command, compassion is the measure of it. For unless one values the lives of his soldiers and is tormented by their ordeals , he is unfit to command.
-General Omar Bradley, United States Army
11-07-08, 05:46 AM #4
I'm NOT an Obama supporter, but I do like that he has Emmanuel as his Chief of Staff. He, Emmanuel, is a very strong supporter of Israel, and even volunteered in the Israeli Defense Force. He has little use for Palistineans or terrorists, so maybe there is some hope.For the morning will come. Brightly will it shine on the brave and true, kindly upon all who suffer for the cause, glorious upon the tombs of heroes. Thus will shine the dawn.
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