03.06.15

Weekly Column: Stopping Iran's Nuclear Threat

I recently had the opportunity to attend Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s address to a Joint Meeting of Congress. His speech to us focused on the important bond between the U.S. and Israel, as well as our shared goal of preventing Iran from ever obtaining nuclear weapons. I was pleased to hear the Prime Minister’s thoughts, especially as the Administration negotiates with Iran to eliminate their nuclear program.

Iran is a dangerous nation that threatens the security of the entire world.  This terrorist regime supports Bashar Al-Assad in Syria, the Houthi militia in Yemen, Hezbollah and Hamas – all of which have targeted or killed Americans. The country’s radical and hostile agenda, including plans to destroy Israel, must be opposed.

The administration’s deadline for laying out a framework of the agreement is the end of March. Prime Minister Netanyahu expressed his serious reservations about the administration’s approach to these negotiations. I hope the President will carefully consider the Prime Minister’s concerns. I believe the government of Iran is an enemy that cannot be trusted.

Previous nuclear talks with Iran have been unproductive, and the Administration has been unable to secure a long-term deal that would force Iran to suspend its nuclear enrichment program.

I am a cosponsor of the Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act, which would reimpose economic sanctions on Iran if an agreement is not reached. Imposing sanctions on Iran will demonstrate our resolve and encourage Iran to end their nuclear program. Iran’s weak economy would suffer immensely under more sanctions. The Nuclear Weapon Free Iran Act also requires that any agreement reached with Iran would be subject to Congressional approval.

If we allow Iran to maintain a nuclear program capable of creating nuclear weapons, other countries in the Middle East will certainly pursue nuclear weapon programs, ultimately creating a nuclear arms race in the most volatile region in the world.

I am pleased Prime Minister Netanyahu addressed the Joint Meeting of Congress on this important issue. The United States has no greater ally in the Middle East than Israel.

Israel has remained a steadfast ally, working with us to prevent the spread of violent extremism and the proliferation of nuclear weapons in the region, especially in Iran. Our relationship with them transcends both time and political theater, and it is imperative we continue to work together to defeat our enemies who would destroy us. A nuclear Iran threatens the entire world. This cannot be tolerated.