US Senator and vice presidential hopeful Joe Biden reportedly told Israeli officials three years ago that sooner or later they would have to reconcile themselves to the reality of a nuclear-armed Iran.
Israel's Army Radio reported on the remarks, which Biden is said to have made to visiting Israeli officials in his capacity as chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
According to the report, Biden reaffirmed to the Israelis his rejection of military action against Iran, but also admitted that diplomatic efforts to halt Iran's nuclear program had little or no chance of success. In essence, Biden resigned himself to the idea of a nuclear-armed Iran and told the Israelis that they, too, would have to accept that outcome.
Israeli security officials on Monday expressed concern over the remarks and saw them as further evidence that if Biden and his running mate, Senator Barack Obama, win the upcoming US presidential election, Iran's acquisition of nuclear weapons will be a foregone conclusion.
Israeli experts warn that it is only the real threat of force that stands a chance of convincing the mullahs and Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to give up their nuclear ambitions.