Iran's president blames meltdown on U.S. government

UNITED NATIONS (AP) -- Iran's president says U.S. military interventions around the world have played a part in the collapse of global financial markets.

In an interview with the Los Angeles Times ahead of his address to the U-N General Assembly, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has said that the global economy "can no longer tolerate" the U.S. government's budgetary deficit caused by what he calls "years of heavy military engagement and involvement around the world."

The Iranian president claims the campaign against his country's nuclear program is the work of the Bush administration "and a couple of their European friends." There are estimates that Iran could have enough nuclear material to make a bomb within a year or two.

Ahmadinejad has told National Public Radio that he doesn't want a confrontation with the United States. He adds that the U.S. "interferes" -- and the Iranians defend themselves.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)


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