Obama pushed the battle on the Iran nuclear deal up a notch by resorting to personal attacks, comparing opponents of the accord to radical Islamists.
US President Barack Obama accused Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu of meddling in American politics, saying he could not remember a time in which a foreign leader had interfered as much in American affairs.
In an interview that will air in full on Sunday, CNN‘s Fareed Zakaria asked Obama if it was “appropriate of a foreign head of government to inject himself into an American affairs,” to which the president responded that he “does not recall such an example.”
The Israeli and American leaders are locked in a public opinion battle regarding the nuclear accord signed with Iran. Netanyahu and his team are said to be vigorously lobbying lawmakers in an attempt to persuade them to vote against the deal next month. Obama has promised a swift veto if Congress rejects the deal. Lawmakers would then have to collect two thirds of the votes to override the president.
Chuck Schumer, the Senate’s leading Jewish Democrat, announced Friday that he will oppose the agreement. This is considered to be a blow to Obama’s camp.
Obama charged that “on the substance” Netanyahu is wrong and that “the basic assumptions that he’s made are incorrect.”
“If, in fact, my argument is right that this is the best way for Iran not to get a nuclear weapon, then that’s not just good for the United States, that is very good for Israel,” he asserted.
Obama Compares Deal’s Opponents to Islamists
Obama also stood by his comparison, during a speech last Wednesday at the American University, between Iran’s Revolutionary Guards, who are responsible for the Islamic Republic’s global terror network, and Republicans, who the president says are dead set on derailing any nuclear deal. “What I said is absolutely true, factually,” Obama stated.
“The truth of the matter is, inside of Iran, the people most opposed to the deal are the Revolutionary Guards, the Quds Force, hardliners who are implacably opposed to any cooperation with the international community,” Obama told the CNN interviewer. “Hardliners are opposed to any cooperation with the international community. The reason that Mitch McConnell and the rest of the folks in his caucus who opposed this, jumped out and opposed this before they even read it, before it was even posted, is reflective of a ideological commitment not to get a deal done,” Obama asserted. “In that sense they do have much more in common with the [Iranian Revolutionary Guards] hardliners who are much more satisfied with the status quo.”
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on Thursday rejected Obama’s claim that the only way to avoid war with Iran is through a deal.
“That’s an absurd argument, and it’s the one they’ve made from the very beginning, that it’s either what the president negotiates with the Iranians or it’s war,” McConnell said. “That’s never been the alternative.”
Israel, too, has rejected that argument, insisting that the current deal would cause war, not prevent it, and that a better deal would block Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons and bring regional stability.
By: United with Israel staff
Sign the Petition to Stop a Nuclear Iran
The US Congress must ensure that sanctions against Iran remain in force until the nuclear threat is completely eliminated.
Click here to locate and contact your Senator.
Click here to locate and contact your Congressman.