Iran's supreme leader: Bush, Sharon ought to suffer same destiny as Saddam
Iran's supreme leader said Tuesday that all Iranians were "pleased" at the arrest of former Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, but said U.S. President George W. Bush and Israel's Prime Minister Ariel Sharon should also go.
"The Iranian nation is very pleased with his [Saddam's]arrest," Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said in a speech in the city of Qazvin carried live on state television.
He described the ousted Iraqi leader as a "wild animal", a "corrupt being" and a "bloodthirsty wolf", sparking chants from the crowd of "Death to Saddam", "Death to Israel" and "Death to America".
However, the leader also blamed Saddam's captors of hypocrisy, citing their support of Iraq during its 1980-88 war against the Islamic republic of Iran that cost the lives of hundreds of thousands of Iranians.
"The same Americans who are now happy over his arrest were at the time shaking his hand. The current U.S. defence minister [Donald Rumsfeld] met with Saddam in Baghdad, promised to help him and helped him in order to put Islamic Iran under pressure," Khamenei declared.
"I heard the U.S. president told Saddam that 'the world is a better place without you'. I want to tell the U.S. president that he should know the world would be an even better place without Bush and Sharon," Khamenei said.
That notion was also expressed by former Iranian president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani, currently the head of Iran's top political arbitration body.
"Saddam did not have anything except wickedness for the people of Iraq and his neighbors and the destiny of America and Israel will be the same," he was quoted as saying by ISNA news agency.
"This is the promise of Allah: if the people do not follow the path of serving the people and instead follow the path of corruption, they will face no other destiny except humiliation," Rafsanjani added. (Albawaba.com)
© 2003 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)