Ahmadinejad: Israel Is Bearer of Satan
TEHRAN, Iran - Iran's hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad said Saturday that Israel was the standard bearer of Satan and the Jewish state would soon fall apart, the official Islamic Republic News Agency reported Saturday.
The agency quoted Ahmadinejad as he spoke at a religious conference and did not elaborate on what he meant by Satan. Since the 1979 Islamic revolution, however, Iran has regularly referred to the United States as "the Great Satan."
"The Zionist regime is the standard bearer of invasion, occupation and Satan," he said, predicting Israel's eventual demise. "When the philosophy behind the establishment of a regime is in question, it is not unlikely that it will find itself on a course of decline and dissolution."
In October 2005, he caused outrage in the West when he said in a speech that Israel's "Zionist regime should be wiped off the map."
His supporters have argued Ahmadinejad's words were mistranslated and should have been better translated as "vanish from the pages of time" -- implying Israel would vanish on its own rather be destroyed.