When in New York

Finally, U.S. authorities had issued late visas for Iran’s delegation to the United Nations Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) review conference in New York, which is led by its president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Since it is highly likely that no official wants to talk with him, he has booked at least an interview with Charlie Rose whom he had met in New York in 2007 when he had visited the UN General Assembly session and had given some bizarre responses to questions from the audience at Columbia University; and in Tehran in 2008 and 2009.

The interview with Charlie Rose will be tomorrow, May 3. It’ll take place five weeks after Rose had interviewed Flynt Leverett and Hillary Mann Leverett who had just visited Tehran University’s Institute of North American Studies and who were given the opportunity to express their apologetic views of the Iranian regime. When Rose asked Hillary Mann Leverett, “Do you believe that he [Ahmadinejad] and his government wants nuclear weapons or the ability to make them?” she frankly admitted, “The option, … [a]bsolutely the option.”

“I believe they want the option. I spent two years negotiating with Iranian officials over Afghanistan and Al Qaeda. Everything that they told me then and in the track to diplomacy I’ve had with Iranian officials since then, including early on with someone who was part of the Revolutionary Guard, their national security calculus is Iran is surrounded by 15 hostile countries. It’s not just Israel with nuclear weapons, it’s Pakistan with nuclear weapons. There’s not a strategic ally among the 15 neighbors.”

While I am not sure about the validity of either statement it is more than interesting what Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has to tell Charlie Rose regarding the matters.

 

Last update May 2, 2010.

 

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