Press Release - Boston Herald: Lindsey Graham: Iran Nuclear Deal a 'Disaster'
Lindsey Graham: Iran nuclear deal a 'disaster'
By Chris Villani
July 14, 2015
U.S. Senator and 2016 Republican presidential candidate Lindsey Graham called the Iranian arms deal a "disaster" and sharply criticized President Obama's policy in the Middle East during an appearance on Boston Herald Radio.
"If what they are telling me is remotely true, this is a disaster," he said. "If it is true we are lifting an arms embargo without a change in behavior you have set in motion re-arming the most radical regime in the Middle East. From our point of view, I can't think of a worse outcome than to get the Ayatollah a guaranteed nuclear program. From the Sunni Arabs' point of view, it's a declaration of war. And it could be a death sentence for Israel."
The deal includes a compromise of inspection sites within Iran, allowing Iran to challenge requests for UN inspectors to access military sites, according to reports. It also reportedly calls for a UN arms embargo and missile sanctions to remain in place for five or eight years, respectively, and that sanctions can be restored in 65 days if Iran violates the deal. Graham said he would not honor this agreement as President.
"I would not lift inspections until there was a certification they are no longer the largest state sponsor of terrorism," he said. "I would not give them a penny of money or a bullet until they are no longer a threat to destabilize the region. I would tie any monetary relief or lightening of inspections to a complete change in behavior.
"It's like taking a can of gasoline and throwing it on a fire. The Sunni Arabs are going to see this as a provocative act against their chief antagonist, they are not going to sit on the sidelines. And, oh my God, our friends in Israel. I feel so bad for them if any of this is true because it guarantees their chief antagonist will become a nuclear nation with the passage of time."
Graham laughed when asked whether the United States could trust Iran.
"The simple question is, do we have a president who understands who the Iranians are," he said. "Obama is dangerously naive about the Mideast. This decision is the biggest mistake any president of the United States could make. The Iranians are not wanting to become one of the family of nations."
"All I can tell you is the idea of giving them a dollar, given their behavior, what do you think they will do? Build roads and schools?" Graham said. "At the end of the day the inspection regime, as described to me, is a complete joke."
Lindsey Graham, Press Release - Boston Herald: Lindsey Graham: Iran Nuclear Deal a 'Disaster' Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/312553