And he calls Al Gore an alarmist?
New York Times:
Mohamed ElBaradei, the director of the International Atomic Energy Agency, urged the Bush administration on Sunday to soften its statements about Iran while maintaining diplomatic pressure to halt the nuclear enrichment that could lead to the production of a nuclear weapon.
But American lawmakers appearing on Sunday television talk programs were divided on whether efforts to influence Iran had been helped or hindered by the administration’s tough talk.
“We cannot add fuel to the fire,” Dr. ElBaradei said on “Late Edition” on CNN. “I would hope we would stop spinning and hyping the Iranian issue.” He also expressed frustration about the Israeli bombing in September of a building in Syria that analysts say may have contained the beginnings of a North Korean-designed nuclear reactor.
“To bomb first and ask questions later,” he said, was decidedly unhelpful.
In an Oct. 17 news conference, Mr. Bush said President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad of Iran had “announced that he wants to destroy Israel,” referring to Mr. Ahmadinejad’s comments that Israel “will disappear soon.” Mr. Bush also said he had “told people that if you’re interested in avoiding World War III, it seems like you ought to be interested in preventing them from having the knowledge necessary to make a nuclear weapon.”
World War III? Bush's rhetoric was extreme enough before, but this is going way too far. Equating the 'Axis of Evil' to the WWII 'Axis' may be a next step for the Bush administration, drawing more parallels between the fake 'war on terror' and the 'Great War', the Second World War. Russia and Iran both pose potential threats, but neither is close to harming America enough to beat the war drum for. Some people, especially Republicans, are beating the same drum as the president, and that is worrying. You'd think they would have learned their lesson in the years of needless war in Iraq since 2003.
Baradei is right: the hype echoing from the White House and elsewhere can only make things worse. As far as scaring Iran into submission, the US has pursued some form of that policy for years, and look how it has worked out. People are as riled against the United States as ever, and an attack against Iran would surely not only be disastrous, but counterproductive. As for Russia, Putin is primarily posturing — although Moscow's partnership with Tehran is worrying.
I don't know about you all, I do not want another war waged against a nation on false premises and neoconservative spin.