Panel Addresses Iran Nuclear Capabilities

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“This is the time for regime change,” said Mr. Perle as he addressed options that can feasibly be implemented when confronting the Iranian nuclear issue. Taking a flinty posture, he said that, “endless, feckless negotiations haven proven a failure with Iran.” Recalling policy meetings he had with the late President Ronald Reagan, Mr. Perle said, “After exploring various strategies vis-a-vis the Soviet Union, Regan decided to bring down the Soviet Union and he was successful, and today, the US policy as it pertains to Iran should be the same.”

Envisioning a military invasion of Iran by the US, Mr. Perle suggested “surgical strikes” on facilities and installations that would avoid casualities and the death of large numbers of people. “Military containment is not a viable strategy. It essentially translates into an acceptance of Iran’s nuclear capabilities. Destroying critical elements of their program would be the most efficient modality,” he said.

Citing the abysmal failure of the sanctions imposed on Iran by the UN, Mr. Perle did acknowledge that the people of Iran are feeling the brunt and that “the government in Iran is miserably unpopular.” As a country that produces millions of barrels of oil a day for foreign consumption, Mr. Perle suggested that an international ban on refined petroleum would create a situation in which Iran would grind to a halt.

As to the role of Israel in the increasing tense standoff with Iran, Ms. Eftekhari extended plaudits to the Jewish people and Israel and exhorted the Jewish state not to fire the first salvo in what could materialize as a major Middle East conflagration. “When I was studying in college in Iran, I warmly remember Israeli students studying there and the close friendships we developed. In Iran, Muslims and Jews at one time lived in peace and harmony. I remember the groups of Russian Jewish children that were smuggled out of the former Soviet Union and to Teheran on their way to Israel. We are like cousins in so many ways,” said Eftekhari. Referring to Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad as “a Holocausr denying midget,” she added that the past 33 years have been an anomoly in the longstanding and fruitful reliationship between the people of Iran and the Jews.

Exhorting Israel to refrain from initiating a military assault on Iran, Ms. Eftekhari suggested that they support a strike of Iranian oil workers for six weeks as a means of confrontation. “We must understand the impact of propaganda being spewed forth by the Iranian regime. There are 77 million Iranians and they would hate Israel if an attack was launched. The regime in Iran couldn’t care less if they lost 100,000 of their own citizens as long as it produced hatred for Israel among the population.” She also expressed her approval of Israeli government kidnappings of Iranian nuclear scientists and said that their “extrication” was “a good thing” until they can go back to Iran to actually work on nuclear medicine.

“If Israel attacks Iran, it will be because we allowed the regime to violate the human rights of its people. Iran has declared that 1.5 millon people there who express discontent with the government are criminals. Instead of bellyaching about whether Israel is going to attack Iran or not, let’s do something about it. Iranians are killing Americans as we speak in the Middle East through their terror proxies and we’ve done nothing to restrain them,” she added.

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