If there was any doubt whether following the recent, and quite surprising, detente between the US and Iran, which from a state that was shunned by the US for decades has transformed into a country that has been actively courted by the US in recent months, that Iran would change its tune toward that other bossom US ally in the middle east, Israel, it can be put to reset following the latest pronouncement by Iran's supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who on Wednesday called for a referendum canvassing the Arabs and Jews that live in Israel in order to end the "Zionist state."
Khamenei and his predecessor the Ayatollah Rouhollah Khomeini have called repeatedly over the years for an end to the Jewish state, including through a referendum in the region, where Palestinians are in the majority.
In his first official comments on Israel since the start of its offensive on the Gaza Strip on July 8, Khamenei reiterated the call.
Khamenei won't be making many, or any for that matter, friends in the AIPAC with the following harshly worded statement.
"There are logical and practical means to this end, which is for people who live and belong there to pick the government of their choice through a referendum. That would be the end of a usurping fake regime," Khamenei, who has the last word in all matters in Shi'te Muslim Iran, said in a speech to university students in Tehran.
Until then, Khamenei said, "while waiting for an end to this cold-blooded murderous regime, mighty armed resistance is the only way to deal with it."
Khamenei made clear for the first time that he was talking about the dismantling of the state of Israel, not the death of Jews.
"Israel's annihilation is the only real cure, but that doesn't mean destroying Jews in this region," he said in his speech, which was posted on his website.
As noted above, this comes at a time when Iran's new president Hassan Rouhani is trying to improve ties with Western countries, including the United States, in a public relations war with Israel. In addition to the Ayatollah's statement, Iran will mark "International Qods Day," an annual event falling on the last Friday of Ramadan, with nationwide organised demonstrations in solidarity with Palestinians and against Israel.
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Then again, one wonders: while clearly this dramatic theatrical performance is for popular consumption, one wonders what is really happening behind the scenes?
For the answer we go back to our post from February in which we explained that "US And Israel Quietly Provide Military Support And Parts To Iran, Which In Turn Is Arming Syria."
And now you know.