Posted: 12/27/2003 3:58:22 PM EDT
Here is a piece of sobering news. With an attitude like this we will not see
peace between Israel and the Muslim world anytime soon.
The Jerusalem Post
Dec. 27, 2003
Iran rebuffs 'Zionist' help
by Herb Keinon
Iran refused Israeli help in dealing with its catastrophic earthquake,
saying the Islamic Republic would accept aid from all countries of the
world, except Israel.
Jahanbakhsh Khanjani, a spokesman for Iran's Interior Ministry, said, "THE
ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF IRAN ACCEPTS ALL KINDS OF HUMANITARIAN AID FROM ALL
COUNTRIES AND INTERNATIONAL ORGANIZATIONS, WITH THE EXCEPTION OF THE ZIONIST
THE FOREIGN MINISTRY HAD ANNOUNCED THAT ISRAELI NON-GOVERNMENTAL
ORGANIZATIONS WERE "LOOKING INTO OFFERING THEIR HELP" TO VICTIMS OF THE
EARTHQUAKE IN SOUTHEASTERN IRAN.
The 6.7-magnitude earthquake struck about 5:30 a.m., local time, collapsing
buildings in the city of Bam in southeastern Iran, severing power lines and
shutting down water service. As of Saturday morning, the Iranian government
put the death toll at over 20,000.
Foreign Minister Silvan Shalom issued a statement following the earthquake,
saying, "The Israeli people and government send their condolences to the
Iranian people. The government and people of Israel feel the pain of this
human tragedy facing the Iranian people, and despite all the differences of
opinion, at these moments a mobilization of the entire international
community is needed to help the injured and the families of the victims."
Large-scale Israeli assistance following a massive earthquake in 1999 in
northwestern Turkey that killed over 15,000 people, and a huge earthquake in
western India in 2001 that killed some 20,000 people, helped strengthen ties
between Israel and those two countries.
In 1999 Israel airlifted to Turkey doctors and equipment for a field
hospital, as well an emergency rescue team comprising 250 persons,
sophisticated rescue equipment, and rescue dogs.
And in 2001, Israel dispatched a field hospital and some 150 people to India
to assist in rescue and medical efforts following the earthquake in Bhuj.
The help Israel provided in these cases is still mentioned often by Turkish
and Indian officials when discussing their ties with Israel...