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In Ireland, Chomsky blames US for Iran crisis
Via NY Transfer News Collective * All the News that Doesn't Fit
The Irish Times - Jan 18, 2006
Chomsky blames US for Iran crisis
by Joe Humphreys
Iran would be "crazy" if it did not develop nuclear weapons, the
controversial US academic Noam Chomsky told an audience in Dublin last
While he said "no sane person wants Iran to have nuclear weapons", the
country would be mad not to develop them, given the manner in which it
had been threatened by the United States and Israel, two nuclear powers
- - the latter of which Chomsky described as an "off-shoot" of America.
More than 1,000 people crammed into O'Reilly Hall on the UCD campus for
last night's lecture. It was the first in a series of speaking
engagements by the anti-war lobbyist during a visit to Ireland this
The 77-year-old, who took to the podium in his trademark spectacles and
pullover, covered political territory ranging from Palestine to Latin
America. Only once in the two-hour session did he stumble over the
subject matter, temporarily mixing up the presidents of Egypt and
The linguistics professor opened the event by thanking the Department of
Foreign Affairs for allowing him into the country despite having an
out-of-date passport, as revealed by The Irish Times on Tuesday.
>From there on in, however, there were few words of praise for any
government, with Chomsky's ire turning in particular against the British
and American administrations which had proved to be "among the most
brazen liars in history".
He had little good to say about the media either, other than Al Jazeera,
the "most important independent media" in Iraq.
The expulsion of the Arabic satellite network from the war-torn country
had proven that "no media can be tolerated that are not under US
On the Iranian question, Chomsky said if the US was serious about
stopping the spread of nuclear weapons it should "stop compelling" Iran
to have them.
The US should also start taking the nuclear non-proliferation treaty
seriously, he added, claiming that the Bush administration was currently
the chief abuser of that pact.
There were no protests at the venue, and few signs of dissent from the
A significant portion of the attendance gave Chomsky a standing ovation
at the end of his address.
© The Irish Times
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