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Howard Dean calls Iraqi PM an 'anti-Semite' for not supporting Israel
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Democratic Party chairman Howard Dean on Wednesday called Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki an "anti-Semite" for failing to denounce Hezbollah for its attacks against Israel.
Al-Maliki has condemned Israel's offensive, prompting several Democrats to boycott his address to a joint meeting of Congress and others to criticize him. Dean's comments were the strongest to date.
"The Iraqi prime minister is an anti-Semite," the Democratic leader told a gathering of business leaders in Florida. "We don't need to spend $200 and $300 and $500 billion bringing democracy to Iraq to turn it over to people who believe that Israel doesn't have a right to defend itself and who refuse to condemn Hezbollah."
On Tuesday, leading Senate Democrats said in a sharply worded letter that Al-Maliki's "failure to condemn Hezbollah's aggression and recognize Israel's right to defend itself raises serious questions about whether Iraq under your leadership can play a constructive role in resolving the current crisis and bringing stability to the Middle East."