As his country continues to push for nuclear weapons capability, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad again has made clear his desire to see the state of Israel destroyed.
"Anyone who loves freedom and justice must strive for the annihilation of the Zionist regime in order to pave the way for world justice and freedom," Ahmadinejad said in a speech to ambassadors from Muslim countries.
It marks the latest in a string of threatening statements by the Iranian president. Some have claimed previous his infamous statement about wiping Israel off the map was the product of a mistranslation.
That's not the case this time, as Iran's Islamic Republic News Agency (IRNA) published the remarks in English. Though Theodor Herzl is credited with founding modern Zionism – the call for a Jewish homeland – in the late 1890s, Ahmadinejad blamed "a horrendous Zionist clan" for "ruling the major world affairs, and behind the scenes of the major power circles, in political, media, monetary, and banking organizations in the world" for 400 years.
He then alluded to upcoming "Quds Day," set aside by the late Ayatollah Khomeini for the last Friday of Ramadan, as "not merely a strategic solution for the Palestinian problem, as it is to be viewed as a key for solving the world problems," he said. That's when he called for Israel's annihilation in a comment Atlantic writer Jeffrey Goldberg called "frankly Hitlerian in scope."
Quds Day rallies are planned throughout the United States and Canada on Aug. 17. Past events have featured HIzballah flags and rabid anti-Israel rhetoric. Unless organizer specifically distance themselves from Ahmadinejad's statement, it is fair to infer they agree with it and are advocating the destruction of a nation.