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February 26, 2003

Perle: U.S. also seeks regime change in Iran, Libya, Syria

Gosh. Mr. Perle forgot to mention Saudi Arabia
The United States will not be satisfied with toppling Saddam Hussein, but also seeks to change other regimes throughout the Arab world.

Richard Perle, chairman of the U.S. Defense Advisory Board, said the regimes include those in Iran, Libya and Syria. Perle told Arab journalists during a trip to London last week that the U.S. tactic would differ for each country.

Perle, who is close to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, is said to be one of the architects in the Bush administration on the policy of the toppling of the Saddam regime, Middle East Newsline reported. He has played a leading, if behind-the-scenes role in diplomatic, political and military aspects of the current Iraqi-U.S. confrontation as well as the war against terrorism.

Change is needed in all those three countries [Iran, Libya and Syria], and a few others besides," Perle told the London-based author and analyst Amir Taheri.
But Perle said the regimes in Iran and Syria could be changed without direct U.S. intervention. He said the United States would help democratic reform movements in those countries.

"I think Iran can be changed by the action of the Iranian people," Perle told Taheri, an Iranian exile. "I believe that Syria, too, can organize change from within."[more]