Skip to comments.Britain keeps distance from talk of strike on Iran
Posted on 08/14/2005 12:01:48 AM PDT by F14 Pilot
THE foreign secretary Jack Straw sought to distance Britain yesterday from comments by President George W Bush that he would not rule out a military strike against Iran.
It came as diplomats gave warning that British attempts to solve the crisis prompted by Tehrans resumption of its nuclear programme last week were doomed to failure.
Bush raised the temperature by giving an interview to Israeli television from his ranch in Crawford, Texas. Asked if he would consider force, he replied: All options are on the table. He added: The use of force is the last option for any president and you know weve used force in the recent past to secure our country.
The Foreign Office reacted swiftly. Our position is clear and has been made very, very clear by the foreign secretary, a spokesman said. We do not think there are any circumstances where military action would be justified against Iran. It does not form part of British foreign policy.
So soon after the invasion of Iraq, which has led to so much political turmoil for Tony Blairs administration, Straw is anxious not to be seen trying to talk up any future forays. But some rightwingers in Washington have criticised Straws position, saying that every time the foreign secretary rules out any remote chance of military action the Iranians know there is no need to compromise.
Bushs veiled remarks came as Foreign Office negotiators launched a new round of shuttle diplomacy to try to persuade Tehran to reverse last weeks decision to resume its enriching of uranium seen by Washington and the European Union as a smokescreen for a secret nuclear weapons programme.
A spokesman said Britains negotiators had worked their socks off to convince a meeting in Vienna of the board of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) to call on Iran to freeze activity at its Isfahan and Natanz plants.
Britain has made it clear that if Iran has not backed down by September 3, when Mohamed ElBaradei, the IAEAs secretary-general, is to report on the countrys nuclear programme, it will push for Tehran to be taken to the United Nations security council. Officials in Vienna warned, however, that any attempt to impose sanctions on Iran would be likely to be vetoed by Russia and China.
Iran has all the cards, said one official close to the talks. Its going to be embarrassing for the Brits.
Russia has a civilian nuclear contract with Iran worth £500m while China is increasingly reliant on Iranian oil and gas. Last October Sinopec, the Chinese state oil company, signed a £39 billion deal giving it a 51% stake in Yadavaran, Irans largest onshore oilfield.
For two years Britain, France and Germany have represented the EU in negotiations with Iran, which insists that it has a legal right to make its own nuclear fuel. The issue has become a rallying call in Iran, and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the new president, is thought unlikely to make any concessions.
Cyrus Nasseri, Irans chief negotiator, dismissed EU sweeteners as lollipops and denounced the IAEA resolution.
Last week scientists at Isfahan broke IAEA seals that had mothballed the plant and began converting uranium yellowcake ore into uranium hexafluoride gas, breaking an agreement made with the EU.
Hawks in the Bush administration have been less vocal in their calls for military intervention against Iran recently, and the presidents remarks are said to belie a lack of appetite for another all-out confrontation in the Middle East.
What youve got to remember is everything Iran could do for Bush, said one diplomat. They could make his Middle Eastern dreams come true: think of their influence in Iraq, in Lebanon, in Palestine. Think of their influence on oil prices.
Kim Jong Il: Hans, Hans, Hans! We've been frew this a dozen times. I don't have any weapons of mass destwuction, OK Hans?
Hans Blix: Then let me look around, so I can ease the UN's collective mind. I'm sorry, but the UN must be firm with you. Let me in, or else.
Kim Jong Il: Or else what?
Hans Blix: Or else we will be very angry with you... and we will write you a letter, telling you how angry we are.
What a STUPID thing to say
HELLO ... The Iran Gov. ain't building nuke plants because the have energy crisis problems ...
They are trying to build a nuke bomb .. and will use it if given the opportunity
Look, Britain won't go with us. No one else will for that matter. Drop a friggin' nuke on Tehran and have done with it.
Its possible only Israel may be willing to go with USA in the end.
"Possible only Israel will go..."
Yep and I still say, drop a thermonuclear device on Tehran.
It says to all the bad guys out there, we are not screwing around with you any more.
Bad cop: "All options are on the table".
Good Cop: "We do not think there are any circumstances where military action would be justified against Iran. It does not form part of British foreign policy.
One has to admire those two guys working together....
These diplo sob's are either mad or stupid or both. Thats all I can figure out.
There is no way in the lifetime of this universe that Iran will do what is outlined in the above quote without regime change.
I don't know what they're smoking or popping but it's pretty potent and lethal in the long run.
HELLO??? IRAN WANTS EVERY JEW DEAD! IRAN WANTS EVERY CITIZEN OF THE GREAT SATAN DEAD! IRAN WANTS EVERY INFIDEL DEAD!
What more is there to understand???
I am sure that guy was talking about a post-mullahs Iran.
A free, democratic Iran will help the USA secure the Middle east just like the 1970s
The US and Israel will have to take care of Iran and the rest of the world won't even offer to hold their coats.
Meanwhile, on Fox news this am, Hamas sits at a conference table (new green hats to match their fancy green flag), announcing that Israel's Gaza pull out is a WIN and the first step in the battle to destroy Israel. The Palie rabble are dancing in the streets.
Bad decision, and very bad presentation of a bad decision.
Swift public rejection of President Bush's statement now by two NATO allies doesn't help the west at all.
Can truly Britain and Germany be so eager to see Iran armed with nuclear weapons?
Showing a divided face on Iran is madness. Especially with the forbearance that President Bush showed throughout this whole very foolish idea of trying to negotiate with madmen who simply laughed and in bad faith used the time to further their nuclear weapons program.
Now the game has become: the U.S. patiently (all too patiently, in my opinion) waited for Europe to try its game of "appease the Iranians." The Iranians are now laughing at the Europeans for being so foolish, and the Europeans are now publicly moving away from President Bush.
What good has this wait done us? None -- instead of our allies now saying "Well, we gave it the old college try, now it's time to do something about the situation," we are getting "We will not take military action in any case."
The British media thinks there are hawks in the Bush administration?
They must use a different standard than I for determining hawkishness.
Why is there still a "NATO?"
England's new KING ARTHUR:
America's new Hero for the new Millennium:
911 Lifesaving Hero RICK RESCORLA, r.i.p.
that isnt going to happen, your participation to this discussion isnt helpful and is quite useless if all you can do it propose that the USA drop a nuclear bomb on Teheran (where the nulcear facility isnt even located) and kill unprovoked million of innocent Iranians
1) The bad guys don't have any qualms about the killing of civilians.
2) Everybody gets to have their say here, not sure you are the one to shut anybody up.
3) What happened in Japan after we dropped two Atom bombs ON CIVILIAN POPULATION CENTERS? (war over)
4) The Irananian nuke sights are spread out over the whole country. If you can guarantee that we know where they all are and that using coventional means, we can destroy them, I will agree with you, don't cut the head off of the snake.
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