Thursday, April 24, 2008

Ross Issues Urgent Warning on Iran

The U.S. and its allies probably have no more than a year to take action against Iran before that nation acquires nuclear weapons, warns Dennis Ross, an architect of the Mideast peace process.

By 2009, Iran “could be a nuclear power, if not a nuclear weapon state, said Ross, who served as the director for policy planning in the State Department under President George H.W. Bush and special Middle East envoy under President Bill Clinton.

If not stopped by next year, Iran will have “crossed the threshold of stockpiling fissionable material,” Ross said in remarks to Toronto’s Shaarei Shomayim Congregation that were reported by the Canadian Jewish News.

“Once they cross that threshold, we’re going to be in a different ball game. We have to approach this with a high degree or urgency. We’re running out of time.”
ANot only did Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad vow to “wipe Israel off the map,” but former Iranian President Mohammed Khatami has stated that it would “take only one bomb” to annihilate Israel, Ross told the gathering.

“Is that their intention?” he asked. “Can you ignore what they say?”

Ross helped the Israelis and Palestinians reach the 1995 Interim Agreement on the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, facilitated the peace treaty between Israel and Jordan, and also worked on talks between Israel and Syria.

Regarding Iran, he said the country is vulnerable to economic pressure because it derives 85 percent of its export revenue from oil, and squeezing Iran’s oil revenue can push the “not very popular” regime into abandoning its nuclear weapons efforts, according to the Jewish News.

But there are clear signs that the Bush administration will not wait that long and military action is imminent.

As Newsmax reported in mid-April, a leading member of America’s Jewish community disclosed that a military strike on Iran was likely, and said Vice President Dick Cheney’s recent trip through the Middle East should be seen as preparation for the U.S. attack.

The source also told Newsmax that Israel “is preparing for heavy casualties,” expecting to be the target of Iranian retribution following a U.S. strike.

And Saudi Arabia is reportedly taking emergency steps in preparing to counter any radioactive hazards that may result from an American attack on Iran’s nuclear facilities.

© 2008 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

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