News Release

· Iran and Israeli Nukes · Iran Peace Offer Rebuffed?

“Iran has followed President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s recent letter to President Bush with explicit requests for direct talks on its nuclear program, according to U.S. officials, Iranian analysts and foreign diplomats,” the Washington Post reported in a front-page article on May 24. “The eagerness for talks demonstrates a profound change in Iran’s political orthodoxy, emphatically erasing a taboo against contact with Washington that has both defined and confined Tehran’s public foreign policy for more than a quarter-century, they said.”

JAMES ABOUREZK
A former U.S. Senator from South Dakota, Abourezk said today: “The U.S. government should push for a nuclear-free Middle East, including Israel, which experts acknowledge is in possession of 200 nuclear warheads. Instead of snubbing Iran in its request for discussions, the administration should begin talks with that country so we can avoid a very dangerous clash in that part of the world. It makes no sense to tell one country — Iran — that it cannot develop nuclear capabilities when a country hostile to it — Israel — is in possession of a huge nuclear arsenal.

“That part of the world needs to be rid of all such weapons of mass destruction. For the Bush administration to seek to disarm one country without disarming their enemy is a nuclear fallacy which this world cannot afford at this crucial time. Bush has already guaranteed Israel’s security with American money and blood, which should make a nuclear arsenal by Israel unnecessary.”

GARETH PORTER
Porter is a national security policy analyst who has been writing extensively on Iran. He said today: “Iran offered in 2003 to accept peace with Israel and to cut off material assistance to Palestinian armed groups and pressure them to halt terrorist attacks within Israel’s 1967 borders, according to the secret Iranian proposal to the United States.

“The two-page proposal for a broad Iran-U.S. agreement covering all the issues separating the two countries, a copy of which was obtained by IPS [Inter Press Service], was conveyed to the United States in late April or early May 2003.” Porter’s latest book is Perils of Dominance: Imbalance of Power and the Road to War in Vietnam. For further background, see Newsday, “A Missed Opportunity with Iran.”
More Information

For more information, contact at the Institute for Public Accuracy:
Sam Husseini, (202) 347-0020, (202) 421-6858; or David Zupan, (541) 484-9167