“We are convinced that no modern problem has a military solution, and that applies to the Iranian nuclear programme as well”
Iran threatened to fire long-range missiles at American targets in the Middle East yesterday as the war of words between Teheran and the West continued to escalate.
A senior commander of the Revolutionary Guard, the largest component of the Islamic republic's armed forces, chose this moment to outline the capability of his country's ballistic missiles.
The Shahab-3 rocket has a range of 1,250 miles, allowing it to strike an array of Western targets across the Middle East.
"Today the Americans are around our country but this does not mean that they are encircling us. They are encircled themselves and are within our range," said Gen Mohammed Hassan Koussechi.
"The change of government in Paris has given French diplomacy a new and welcome dose of realism. Bernard Kouchner has made it clear that Gallic patience has come to an end where Iran is concerned. If Iran continues in its nuclear intransigence, Kouchner announced, the world must prepare for war
"...In stark contrast to the role played by the Chirac government, Nicolas Sarkozy has made it plain that he wants to work with the US on security concerns in the Middle East. Iran used to be a major client for French industry, just as Iraq once was under Saddam Hussein. France therefore has had influence in Teheran that neither the British nor the US have had, but their attempts to use it to curtail the Iranian nuclear quest came to naught.
"Their sudden support for keeping military options open may get some attention from the mullahcracy."
Stephen: Fine speech. Now what do we do?
William Wallace: Just be yourselves.
Hamish: Where are you going?
William Wallace: I'm going to pick a fight.
Hamish: Hope we didn't get dressed up for nothing.