Mahmoud Ahmadinejad is in town, and will “face off” against Hillary Clinton today at the UN regarding the 40-year-old Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Announcing only last week that he would attend the 189-nation conference, the controversial Iranian leader plans to mount a frontal attack on world nuclear powers — the United States chief among them — that he will say have failed in the NPT’s nuclear disarmament obligations, reports the Christian Science Monitor.
The Obama administration is currently pressing for a fourth round of sanctions against Iran over its nuclear program. Watch for Ahmadinejad to “pound the podium with his rant on the little guy’s rights, he’s going to tell all the other little guys in the audience that we [Iran] have done nothing wrong, that it’s the U.S. that wants to keep you down — and suddenly it’s going to be very hard to keep everyone on the reservation,” says Henry Sokolski, executive director of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Education Center in Washington.
While Ahmadinejad will likely defend Iran’s nuclear program as nothing more than a “civilian power project,” Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who will follow the Iranian leader to the UN stage, has said, “We’re not going to permit Iran to change the story from their failure to comply.”
Groups have been busy protesting Ahmadinejad’s visit, pressuring luxury hotels to refuse to host him and requesting UN ambassadors to leave the hall during his speech. We didn’t see him in Tompkins Square Park last night, so we presume he got a room.
If you’re traveling up the East Side, plan ahead.
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on May 3, 2010