Tehran's substitute Friday prayers leader Ayatollah Seyyed Ahmad Khatami condemned recent remarks by US President George W.Bush and said the US arrogant attitudes, not Iran's peaceful nuclear activities, can pave the way for World War III President Bush, in his remarks on Wednesday, threatened that the world should convince Iran to abandon its nuclear activities to avoid World War III.
Addressing thousands of worshipers at Tehran University Campus, Ayatollah Khatami said,"If a danger threatens the world peace and security, it is the danger of US leaders' sheer greed and their arrogance and atomic arsenals."
"The world should know that Iran is just a pretext (for US) and if they do not stand against US greed, the whole world and especially those who have been indifferent to the issue will be the losers," the ayatollah said.
Quoting Iranian medieval philosopher Avicena saying "I fear a bull because it has horns but lacks common sense" Ayatollah Khatami said, "If there's a concern, it is from the US arrogant policies which interferes in all the world affairs and wants to be the world godfather which, by grace of Almighty God, would not happen." Referring to the summit of the Caspian Sea Littoral States presidents in Tehran on Tuesday, Ayatollah Khatami said the successful meeting is one of the reasons of US anger.
"They're angry and they must be angry. They should die of their anger because they did whatever they could to prevent the successful holding of Tehran's Summit," the substitute leader of Friday prayers said.
Referring to US accusations that Iran is seeking atomic bombs, Ayatollah Khatami said, "We've said many times that A. bombs have no place in our defence doctrine."
"In our Islamic teachings, we have been ordered not to poison enemy's water in a war, not to kill enemy's women and children, and not even to cut their trees. These teachings do not let us have weapons of mass destruction," the ayatollah said.
"We don't need an atomic bomb. What is it for? for preventive measures? With grace of God, we have adequate manpower and battle capabilities and we are in such a position to be able to slap on the face of any enemy who dares to violate the Islamic Republic." Elsewhere in his sermon, Ayatollah Khatami appreciated President Ahmadinejad's government for successfully holding the Summit of the Caspian Sea Littoral States presidents in Tehran and said Iran's foreign policy is close cooperation with the neighbouring countries in political, economic, security and defensive fields.
"The summit proved that the Islamic Iran, in spite of US enormous efforts to isolate it, is present in the regional and international scenes to the point that (Russian President) Mr. Putin calls it a big regional and international power."
Ayatollah Khatami praised the summit's 25-article declaration and said," It was a good declaration. Especially the article 15 which stipulates that the five countries are committed not to permit other countries to use their territories for military operations against other sides."
On domestic issues, Ayatollah Khatami advised the officials from the three branches of government to welcome critical comments.
"A society without criticism is a dead one. A lively society needs criticism. But critics should be fair. They should see the good points and praise them and criticize the faults and present their solutions." Ayatollah Khatami concluded.