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"Apocalypse Now" McCain: An Israeli supporter

Story Transcript

PEPE ESCOBAR, ANALYST, THE REAL NEWS NETWORK: It all started as a love story.

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SEN. JOHN MCCAIN, US PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE (R): That alliance is forever.

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That was John McCain at the start of the AIPAC annual conference in Washington. But it soon became apocalypse.

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MCCAIN: The Iranian president has called for Israel to be wiped off the map. It has trained, financed, and equipped extremists in Iraq who have killed American soldiers fighting to bring freedom to that country.

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So what is the real story between John McCain, US foreign policy, and Israel?

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MCCAIN: An Iranian nuclear bomb would pose an existential threat to the people of Israel.

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To place McCain’s apocalyptic view of Iran in the Israeli perspective, I got the voice of a former member of Israeli intelligence.

SIMA SHINE, FMR HEAD OF RESEARCH, ISRAELI PM’S OFFICE: Israel does not accept the very existence of Israel. What we mean by saying "an existential threat" is that in its policy Iran is giving hope to all the enemies of Israel that they don’t have to reconcile with Israel.

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MCCAIN: Tehran’s continued pursuit of nuclear weapons poses an unacceptable risk, a danger we cannot allow. It remains the world’s chief sponsor of terrorism and threatens to destabilize the entire Middle East, from Basra to Beirut.

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It is dis-encouraging anyone in the Middle East that wants to start a peace dialog with Israel and to compromise with the existence of Israel in the Middle East, because all of them, if it’s Hezbollah, if it’s Syria, if it’s Hamas, they have the superpower Iran telling them that at the end of the day, there will be and they will have a solution—they do not need to compromise or to talk to Israel and to accept the existence of Israel in the Middle East. So from that point of view, for the long run it’s an existential threat to Israel. The NIE said that Iran stopped in 2003 its nuclear project, meaning Iran had a nuclear project and it stopped it. We don’t think Iran stopped it, and the last report of the IAEA is actually saying some very worrying remarks on this issue by saying that Iran does not cooperate on the question of weaponization. And there are a lot of open questions that are not receiving any good answers. So I don’t think there is anyone all over the world, and not the NIE itself, that do think that Iran is not in the process of becoming a nuclear power. [The way Iran] is looking for the preservation of the Islamic revolution, and the threats that they perceive are on Iran, internal and external, the military nuclear capability is the first and the utmost important tool in the eyes of the leadership to preserve the revolution and then to export the revolution.

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