Spain’s former prime minister said Wednesday that Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali Khameini, told him in 2001 that he considered Israel a “cancer condemned to disappear” and that an “open confrontation” with Israel and the US in which Iran will prevail was inevitable.
“Israel to him was a kind of historical cancer and anomaly, a country … condemned to disappear,” Jose Maria Aznar said, recalling a rare meeting with Khameini in Tehran. “At some point he said very clearly, though softly as he spoke, that an open confrontation against the US and Israel was inevitable, and that he was working for Iran to prevail in such a confrontation. It was his duty as the ultimate stalwart of the Islamic global revolution.”
Since then, Iran has been pursuing a nuclear program which it insists is for peaceful purposes and which Israel, the US and others believe is intended to provide it with military nuclear capability.