No surprise that serial Israel-basher Robert Fisk takes a typically snide and bitter view of Benjamin Netanyahu’s speech to the UN. His latest in The Independent includes the following:
Now, with the pleasant smile of President Rouhani gracing their television screens, fully accepting the facts of the Jewish Holocaust – unlike his deranged and infantile predecessor – the Americans (75 per cent, if we are to believe the polls) don’t want to go to war with Iran either.
Exactly when did Rouhani “fully accept” the facts of the Holocaust?
Whichever translation of the recent CNN interview with Rouhani you believe to be correct (the Iranian FARS news agency denies that Rouhani even mentioned the Holocaust by name), the Iranian president, at best, acknowledges that crimes were committed against Jews. However, when Rouhani is quoted saying that he is not a historian and speaking of “clarification of aspects” of Nazi crimes or stating that historians should be responsible for reflecting on their “dimensions,” this is not so different from Holocaust revisionists such as David Irving who admit that crimes took place but seek to minimize their scale and significance.
Robert Fisk also writes the following:
And, of course, like Iraq’s “weapons of mass destruction programme” which President George W Bush had to invent when the weapons themselves turned out to be an invention, we still don’t know if Mr Netanyahu’s version of Iran’s “military nuclear programme” actually exists.
As this backgrounder from The Israel Project makes clear:
The U.N.’s nuclear watchdog has declared that Iran’s nuclear program includes “strong indicators of possible nuclear weapon development” (http://is.gd/TUzoey). The program includes efforts to enrich uranium and conduct plutonium-related activity, as well as to develop warheads and missiles capable of carrying those warheads.
That Iran’s nuclear program has a military component to it has been accepted by many Western intelligence services and not only Israel, something directly addressed by Benjamin Netanyahu in his UN speech:
Rouhani tells us not to worry. He assures us that all of this is not intended for nuclear weapons. Any of you believe that? If you believe that, here’s a few questions you might want to ask. Why would a country that claims to only want peaceful nuclear energy, why would such a country build hidden underground enrichment facilities?
Why would a country with vast natural energy reserves invest billions in developing nuclear energy? Why would a country intent on merely civilian nuclear programs continue to defy multiple Security Council resolutions and incur the tremendous cost of crippling sanctions on its economy?
And why would a country with a peaceful nuclear program develop intercontinental ballistic missiles, whose sole purpose is to deliver nuclear warheads? You don’t build ICBMs to carry TNT thousands of miles away; you build them for one purpose, to carry nuclear warheads. And Iran is building now ICBMs that the United States says could reach this city in three or four years.
Why would they do all this? The answer is simple. Iran is not building a peaceful nuclear program; Iran is developing nuclear weapons.
It’s time for Robert Fisk to face up to reality even if it’s a reality he doesn’t like.