Sen. Biden, Iran Minister Clash Over Nukes
By GEORGE JAHN, Associated Press Writer
DAVOS, Switzerland - Sen. Joseph Biden and Iran's foreign minister clashed Friday over Tehran's nuclear ambitions, with Biden hinting at the possibility of armed conflict unless fears of an Iranian weapons program were put to rest.
The rare and frank public exchange between a senior American politician and a ranking member of the Iranian government came at a dinner during the World Economic Forum held in this Alpine resort town.
Considering that the US has no official contacts with Iran, why on earth is Biden conducting his "occasional" meetings with Iranian officials at all? Certainly he is no spokesman for the administration and, instead is a top representative of the Congressional far left.
Biden's "hoof in mouth" ailment became apparent with his "tempered" comments that the US may seek armed conflict in order to implement regime change.
No where in Bush's history of public speeches has he suggested that the US military would go into Iran. What he has wisely said is that military action would not be pulled from the table of options should Iran refuse to cease and desist it's uranium enrichment. Get real... promises of no military repercussion will do little to fuel cooperation from countries determined to develop WMDs.
Instead, Bush has made it clear that the matter should be put in front of the UN Security Council ... an action you'd think would have the American and int'l left jumping for joy. But no... with the anti-Bush crowd, it's always something.
Instead we have a big mouth Senator over there, breaking bread with Iranian officials and muddying the waters with his unsanctioned blather about an Administration of which he is no part.
Biden expressed hope that the Bush administration in its second term would reconsider its position and try to engage Iran, saying that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was receptive to his "initiatives to reach out to the Iranians for discussions" in her earlier capacity as national security advisor.
"I hope we're all smarter about this, smarter than we've been," he said. Alluding to the refusal by Bush to rule out an armed response to Iran's nuclear plans, he said: "I hope our leadership is brighter because if it's not, it's a very dull picture for the region, and for humanity."
As usual with extreme leftist viewpoints, Biden misses the larger picture.
Talks with a government that openly supports and funds terrorism is not only counterproductive, it is against all Bush has firmly stood for since 9:11. The Cowboy President is consistant in his refusal to deal with *all* despots and tyrants who harbor and support terrorists - just as he ostracized Arafat in his first term, tabling any engagement to broker yet one more failed Middle East truce.
What Biden also misses is that Iran is a country that is likely to fall from within in time. The US will have little need to effect regime change, as the Iranian youth crave what the current leadership denies - freedom of expression and a penchant for western economic benefits and trends.
And in the Iranian youth lies the country's future. Needless to say, should they wish to speed up that process for freedom on their own, they will find a friend in America under the current leadership.
Biden should not dilute the President's convictions on non-tolerance for terrorist leaders. Bush is, afterall, a man who says what he means, and does what he says... behaviour foreign to the likes of Biden and ilk.
By America's refusal to engage in talks with Iran's current leadership, we reinforce the Bush policy of no tolerance for those who harbor and support terrorists, and Bush remains a leader of his word. Therefore, in the event of failure of the 4-party talks, the next logical step is the UN Security Council. This is far removed from the Biden hints of military intervention.
It is high time that Iran decides just who's side they are on in the WOT. Perhaps Biden should be doing the same.