Peres Shifts World Attention to Iran

Vice Premier Shimon Peres told Channel 1 TV that Iran, too, can be wiped off the map.

Yechiel Spira , | updated: 05:29

Mr. Peres was making reference to statements released by Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, who called for wiping Israel off the map. Mr. Peres said that Iranian policy seeks to make a mockery of the international community’s efforts to bring the nuclear enrichment crisis to an end using diplomatic efforts.

Peres was referring to a letter sent by Ahmadinejad to U.S. President George W. Bush, seeking to ease the mounting international pressure on Iran. Iranian officials, however, continue to maintain a firm position, boldly opposing the international community and releasing statements that Tehran will not halt its ongoing efforts to enrich uranium towards the manufacture of an atom bomb.

Peres warned of the global threat that would result should Iran reach nuclear independence. He said that other nations will then join the nuclear race and build an atom bomb should a conflict arise. This, he explained, would produce a situation in which it would be only a matter of time before such a bomb falls in the hands of terrorists.

Iran continues to issue threats, warning Israel that a military strike would result in painful retaliatory action. IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Dan Halutz recently stated that Iran’s nuclear facilities can be destroyed, hinting at a possible plan to do just that. However, he implied some criticism of Peres' statements today, saying that Israel need not place itself at the forefront of the international front against Iran, and that nothing more need be said about the topic.

In 1981, Israeli fighter jets targeted and bombed Iraq’s nuclear reactor, but today, experts state, this plan is not feasible. They say Iran has such facilities located in numerous locations, with some being deep underground, a safe distance from aerial strikes.