he charged that Mr. Obama’s calls for diplomacy with Iran were misguided and insufficient, and that his proposal to begin withdrawing United States troops from Iraq would lead to chaos in the region and endanger Israel.
In remarks that Senator McCain planned to deliver in a cavernous room here at the Washington convention center, he dwelled on the threat that a nuclear-armed Iran would pose – and criticized the positions of Mr. Obama, his likely Democratic rival.
“The Iranians have spent years working toward a nuclear program,’’ Mr. McCain was to say, according to excerpts from the speech provided by his campaign. “And the idea that they now seek nuclear weapons because we refuse to engage in presidential-level talks is a serious misreading of history,’’ he added, noting that previous overtures by the Clinton administration had failed.
“Even so, we hear talk of a meeting with the Iranian leadership offered up as if it were some sudden inspiration, a bold new idea that somehow nobody has ever thought of before,’’ he said in the advance text of his speech, which was provided by his campaign.
“Yet it’s hard to see what such a summit with President Ahmadinejad would actually gain, except an earful of anti-Semitic rants, and a worldwide audience for a man who denies one Holocaust and talks before frenzied crowds about starting another. Such a spectacle would harm Iranian moderates and dissidents, as the radicals and hardliners strengthen their position and suddenly acquire the appearance of respectability.”
Updated: Footage above of McCain’s speech via Jerusalem Online