Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad addressed thousands of adoring Hezbollah supporters in Beirut tonight.
After a day watching his words during a state visit to politically fragile Lebanon, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad returned to rhetorical form Wednesday night with a fulminating attack on the United States and Israel.
Given a hero’s welcome at a rally attended by thousands of Hezbollah supporters in Beirut’s southern suburbs, President Ahmadinejad said that the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, were an excuse for the US and its allies to pursue “colonial goals.”
“When we look at the dimensions of what the occupiers have done in Afghanistan, Iraq, and recently in Pakistan, we realize well that their goal is not to discover who executed the Sept. 11 events. Rather, these events were merely a pretext for presence in the region and pursuing colonial goals,” he said speaking in Farsi. He paused every few sentences to allow his words to be translated into Arabic for the benefit of the audience.
Hezbollah supporters had hoped that Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah would appear at the rally but the Hezbollah leader, who has made only a handful of public appearances since the 2006 war with Israel, instead addressed the crowd via the now customary giant video screen. In a short speech before Ahmadinejad took to the podium, he praised Iran’s support for Lebanon and the Palestinian cause and defended the outspoken Iranian president.