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17:26 | 2009-10-28


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Minister Downplays War Rhetoric against Iran

TEHRAN (FNA)- Iran's Defense Minister Brigadier General Ahmad Vahidi on Wednesday underlined high preparedness and power of the Iranian Armed Forces to confront enemies, and pointed out that enemies' war rhetoric and threats against Iran are merely aimed at intimidating the country's authorities.

"The enemies are seeking to intimidate us through psychological warfare and propaganda," Vahidi said after a visit to Iran's northeastern air-defense field and Army's airbase in the region.

He also stressed that enemies' plots to intimidate Iran will remain futile due to the Iranian nation's unity and integrity.

Vahidi lauded the Iranian Armed Forces' preparedness to defend the country, and added, "The Armed Forces will not hesitate to defend their soil and the territorial integrity of the great and honorable country of Iran."

"If the enemy decides to harm our country, they (Armed Forces) will teach them a bitter and more crushing lesson than the lesson they gave to Saddam Hossein (former Iraqi dictator who imposed an 8-year long war on Iran in 1980s)," Vahidi noted.

The remarks by the Iranian defense minister came days after the aggressive remarks uttered by Israeli officials against Tehran.

Israel and its close ally the United States accuse Iran of seeking a nuclear weapon, while they have never presented any corroborative document to substantiate their allegations. Both Washington and Tel Aviv possess advanced weapons of mass destruction, including nuclear warheads.

Iran vehemently denies the charges, insisting that its nuclear program is for peaceful purposes only. Tehran stresses that the country has always pursued a civilian path to provide power to the growing number of Iranian population, whose fossil fuel would eventually run dry.

Speculation that Israel could bomb Iran mounted since a big Israeli air drill last year. In the first week of June, 2008, 100 Israeli F-16 and F-15 fighters reportedly took part in an exercise over the eastern Mediterranean and Greece, which was interpreted as a dress rehearsal for a possible attack on Iran's nuclear installations.

A senior commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps in reaction to Israelis' recent war rhetoric warned Tel Aviv of Iran's devastating response to any possible military action against the country.

"In the event that the (Zionist) regime makes any mistake, Iran's response would be totally devastating," former Lieutenant Commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps Brigadier General Seyed Mohammad Hejazi said in July.

The commander ruled out possibility of an Israeli attack on Iran, underlining that the Zionist regime of Israel is too weak for such adventurism.

Meantime, a last year study by the Institute for Science and International Security (ISIS), a prestigious American think tank, has found that a military strike on Iran's nuclear facilities "is unlikely" to delay the country's program.