‘We Must Continue to Vocally and Unapologetically Stand up to the Evil Iranian Regime’
This week I gave opening remarks for the Foundation for Defense of Democracies virtual event on ‘The Future of Iran.’ During my remarks, I called for collapsing the Iranian regime, following the example of U.S. policy toward the Soviet Union during the Cold War. I also recognized the progress Congressional Republicans and President Trump have made toward eliminating the threat of a nuclear Iran and collapsing the Ayatollah regime, and called on the U.S. to finally and irreversibly end what remains of the catastrophic Obama-Iran nuclear deal. My full remarks are here. Excerpts are below.
On the necessity of collapsing the Iranian regime:
“When we’re talking about at the future of Iran, it is my belief that we need to collapse the regime. This used to be a very straightforward and broadly accepted idea. The Iranian regime unremittingly seeks our destruction, ‘Death to America,’ the Ayatollah chants. And we will not be safe until it is gone. Somehow in recent years, particularly as a fall-out from the Obama-Iran deal, that became viewed as a radical idea because it became synonymous with regime change followed by endless nation-building, of the sort that we have needlessly, foolishly, and catastrophically pursued in Iraq.[…]
“Just as Ronald Reagan brought down the Soviet Union with strategic strength and by boldly speaking the truth, we likewise must work to collapse the Iranian regime that oppresses its people and seeks to sow terror all over the world. I know this is possible, and not only that, it is necessary. Please know that I am working tirelessly with my colleagues in Congress to hold the Iranian regime accountable for working to develop nuclear weapons.
“Maximum pressure should mean maximum pressure. We must continue to vocally and unapologetically stand up to the evil Iranian regime. And we must exert maximum pressure and not allow the Ayatollahs to build a nuclear program. That, I believe, is the only reasonable path forward.”
On the Obama-Iran nuclear deal:
“The catastrophic Obama-Iran nuclear deal reconnected Iran to the global financial system while also flooding the Ayatollahs with hundreds of billions of dollars in sanctions relief, gifting them everything they needed to launder vast sums of money across the world for terrorism and proliferation. This included $1.7 billion in unmarked cash to the Ayatollah, which helped fund attacks against U.S. military bases, as a part of a ransom for hostages, because the Obama administration knew how it would look if they implemented the deal without at least some of the hostages being released.
“I urged President Trump to withdraw from this disastrous deal. Within the Trump administration there was a major battle. Both the State and Defense Department opposed pulling out of the deal. And yet, two years ago, President Trump agreed with me and he pulled out of the deal. I think that is the single most important foreign policy decision that has been made in the entire Trump administration.”
On invoking the snapback provision in U.N. Security Council Resolution 2231:
“Now it’s time for the United States to finally and irreversibly end what remains of the disastrous deal and the benefits that Iran gets from it by invoking the sanctions snapback described in the deal’s United Nations resolution. Unless we do so, the U.N. arms embargo and ballistic missile bans will inevitably expire, allowing Russia and China to start selling billions of dollars of weapons to Iran.
“Toward that end, I’m leading the push right now to get the administration to go to the U.N. and to invoke the snapback in U.N. Security Council resolution 2231. We don’t need anyone’s permission to use this mechanism. We can go there tomorrow and begin the process, which will finally shred the disastrous Obama-Iran nuclear deal once and for all.”
As a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, I am leading efforts in the Senate to finally shred the catastrophic Obama-Iran nuclear deal, including:
- Introduced bipartisan legislation to impose sanctions on those who use civilians as human shields, including terror groups such as Hamas and Hezbollah, as well as their enablers.
- Introducing legislation with Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) and Rep. Liz Cheney (R-Wyo.) dismantle a key remaining part of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), in response to the Trump administration's repeated issuance of waivers for civil nuclear projects contemplated by the deal.
- Urging President Trump to end remaining civil waivers stemming from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) following Iran’s announcement that it will no longer be bound by the terms of the Obama-Iran deal.