The New York Times ran an article (available for free here) denying that Ahmadinejad had called for Israel's destruction?
"Ahmadinejad did not say he was going to wipe Israel off the map because no such idiom exists in Persian," remarked Juan Cole, a Middle East specialist at the University of Michigan and critic of American policy who has argued that the Iranian president was misquoted. "He did say he hoped its regime, i.e., a Jewish—Zionist state occupying Jerusalem, would collapse." Since Iran has not "attacked another country aggressively for over a century," he said in an e—mail exchange, "I smell the whiff of war propaganda."
What would Professor Cole and the Times say now?
Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Thursday the solution to the Middle East crisis was to destroy Israel, Iranian state media reported.
In a speech during an emergency meeting of Muslim leaders in Malaysia, Ahmadinejad also called for an immediate cease—fire to end the fighting between Israel and the Iranian—back group Hezbollah. "Although the main solution is for the elimination of the Zionist regime, at this stage an immediate cease—fire must be implemented," Ahmadinejad said, according to state—run television in a report posted on its Web site.
How about the French Foreign Minister? Recall that he praised Iran as
great country, a great people, and a great civilization which is respected and which plays a stabilizing role in the region".
Ed Lasky 8 03 06