Announcing the major gains made with the negotiations between the U.S. and Iran last week, President Barack Obama continued to speak in favor of the peace process, but his phrasing has created some controversy.
“So when you hear the inevitable critics of the deal sound off, ask them a simple question,” the president said on April 2 from the White House Rose Garden. “Do you really think that this verifiable deal, if fully implemented, backed by the world’s major powers, is a worse option than the risk of another war in the Middle East?”
One of the leading critics of the entire Iran deal is freshman Sen. Tom Cotton, who many remember as the author of the letter sent to Iranian leaders in March stating that any current deal worked out with the Obama administration can be removed once a new president is elected next year. Many supported the move by the Republican senator from Arkansas, but others questioned why he would interfere in such a tense process.
“This president has a bad habit of accusing other people of making false choices, but he presented the ultimate false choice last week when he said it’s either this deal or war,” Cotton said April 7 on "Washington Watch," a conservative radio program.
Cotton continued with his criticism, stating that bombing Iran would take “several days” as opposed to a full-scale attack, much like the Iraq War. He compared the bombing situation to former President Bill Clinton’s bombing of Iraq in 1998, labeled Operation Desert Fox, which only took four days.
“It would be something more along the lines of what President Clinton did in December 1998 during Operation Desert Fox. Several days air and naval bombing against Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction facilities for exactly the same kind of behavior. For interfering with weapons inspectors and for disobeying Security Council resolutions. All we’re asking is that the president simply be as tough as in the protection of America’s national security interest as Bill Clinton was,” BuzzFeed News reported the senator saying.
While much progress has been made with the Iranian negotiations, a deal will not be finalized until June.
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