By BENNY AVNI Staff Reporter of the Sun September 28, 2007 UNITED NATIONS — In a sign that U.N. Security Council-based diplomacy is losing steam, a number of sources are reporting that a military strike against Iran's nuclear facilities may be imminent. .
Like most stories in the French paper, the article was based on unnamed sources who said that in order to reduce casualties, the attack against Iran is planned for October 15, the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan. Israel would bomb the first targets while America would orchestrate a second wave of strikes, the report said.
However, the French foreign minister, Bernard Kouchner, who recently spoke of preparing for war with Iran, berated reporters yesterday, telling them that he had said war is the "worst option."
Instead, he is now calling for "diplomacy, diplomacy, diplomacy." As foreign ministers representing the five permanent members of the Security Council — China, Russia, France, Britain, and America — and Germany plan to sit down Friday for a long-planned meeting to discuss ideas for addressing Iran's refusal to end uranium enrichment, Mr. Kouchner told reporters that China and Russia are likely to delay any significant decision until at least December.
"It would be very difficult to convince the Russians and the Chinese before" December, he said. A Russian diplomat told The New York Sun on Monday that Moscow would call on the council to await the conclusion of a new round of diplomacy conducted by the director of the International Atomic Energy Agency, Mohamed ElBaradei.
At a breakfast with reporters yesterday, Mr. Kouchner said he had "spent hours" with the Russian foreign minister, Sergey Lavrov, trying to convince him to approve council sanctions against Iran. Russia, Mr. Kouchner said, is attempting to regain its top world status, while "we treat them, they told me, like little adolescents."