Weekly Columns

Iran Nuclear Agreement Misguided, Dangerous

f t # e
Washington, July 23, 2015 | Tiffany Haverly (202-226-8072) | comments

Last week, the Obama administration announced an agreement had been reached in nuclear talks between the Iran and the United States, UK, France, China, Russia and Germany. The White House claims this agreement will prevent a nuclear Iran, but I believe this deal will jeopardize our national security and regional stability. I have to ask, once again, what part of “death to America” does the president not understand? Why does Iran want a nuclear weapon, and what have we done to prevent this from happening?

It has been clear for months now that the administration is more interested in coming to an agreement than whether or not that agreement is in our strategic interest. The president presents a false narrative when explaining this deal. He says that without this deal Iran will develop a nuclear weapon and that no one has offered an alternative. That’s wrong. Sanctions already in place are working, and can be made tighter still. The possibility of military action can also help to contain Iran, but nobody believes President Obama will actually use it. Remember the red line in Syria?

With this agreement, the Iranians will continue to march on toward a nuclear bomb. By only allowing inspectors “managed access” to possible nuclear sites, we’re essentially giving Iran the greenlight to cheat the inspection system. Perhaps worst of all, almost every sanction on Iran is on track to be lifted under this agreement. These sanctions are estimated to have cost Iran nearly $160 billion in oil revenues since 2012, which has denied the Iranian regime precious resources necessary to finance terrorist activities they are involved in throughout the region.

Iran is the chief sponsor for state-supported terrorism in the world. To me, it’s obvious developing a nuclear bomb is offensive warfare, not defensive. We can look to history for a lesson on this issue. American administrations and the U.N. have negotiated similar agreements with Pakistan and North Korea. And where are we now? Both now have nuclear weapons, making the world less safe. We cannot trust Iran not to do the same.

It is President Obama’s job to look out for American interests and you have to ask yourself the question: why do other countries in the Middle East like Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Israel oppose this deal while aggressors like Russia and China support it? There’s only one answer, this deal is a bad one.

I strongly believe this agreement does not do enough to protect America and the rest of the world from a nuclear Iran, which is why I am an original cosponsor of H.Res. 367, a resolution introduced by Rep. Peter Roskam (IL) that officially expresses the House’s disapproval of this flawed agreement. I believe the House and Senate must use all tools available to them to stop this agreement.

As you may know, in May, I voted for the Iran Nuclear Agreement Act of 2015, authored by Tennessee Senator Bob Corker. There’s been a lot of misinformation about this bill, but the most important thing to know is that prior to its passage, the president could have implemented the agreement he struck last week without any review from Congress at all.  Now, Congress will have a 60-day review of the agreement and an opportunity to prevent sanctions from being lifted on Iran. I plan to work with both sides of the aisle to show that rejecting this agreement would be good for our long-term security and is in the best interest of our strongest ally in the Middle East, Israel.

Israel’s Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, has also raised serious concerns about this agreement. As you may recall, the Speaker of the House, John Boehner, invited the Prime Minister to address a joint session of Congress in March to share his concerns about the negotiations at that point. Sadly, it appears that the president failed to heed Israel’s warnings. Israel has a particularly strong reason to be worried about a nuclear Iran – in the not-too-distant past, Iranian leaders have threatened to wipe Israel off the map. We can only hope they aren’t given the means to do so.

This misguided and dangerous agreement must be stopped, and you can rest assured I will oppose this deal every opportunity I’m given.

Feel free to contact my office if we can be of assistance to you or your family. 
f t # e