President Biden, don’t cut Israel loose by signing disastrous deal with Iran
Israel’s leaders are unified in their belief that your nuclear deal is a “strategic disaster” – walk away now before it’s too late
JERUSALEM—The following is an open letter to the president of the United States.
Dear President Biden:
You have long called yourself a great friend of Israel and the Jewish people.
You even call yourself a Zionist, saying “you don’t need to be a Jew to be a Zionist.”
While I disagree with you on a wide range of issues, I have publicly stated that you are the best that the Democratic Party offers when it comes to being pro-Israel. [See my column, “Five Reasons Biden Deserves Credit For Standing With Israel During The Recent Gaza War.”]
Like many Israelis, and many Americans who love Israel, I appreciated that you chose to come to Israel this summer – it was an important visit and a welcome one.
Your support for billions of dollars in U.S. investment in Israel’s national security infrastructure, including the Iron Dome system, has been deeply appreciated.
So has been your support for robust U.S.-Israeli intelligence cooperation and strengthening and hopefully expanding the Abraham Accords to include more Arab-Israeli peace and normalization deals.
You have also been consistent in denouncing anti-Semitism in the U.S. and around the world.
I have been grateful that you have not followed the lead of the hateful, anti-Israel voices in the Democratic Party, particularly those in the House and Senate.
That said, Mr. President, you are rapidly approaching a critical crossroads.
I implore you: Don’t cut Israel loose by signing a disastrous deal with the Iranian regime.
Don’t undermine all the good you have done to strengthen the U.S.-Israel strategic alliance by trusting the word of the terror masters in Tehran.
Just when the Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei is presiding over a sinking economy – and shows no care or compassion for the suffering of the Iranian people but rather is crushing them body, mind and soul – don’t throw such a wicked man a financial lifeline.
Don’t end economic sanctions.
Don’t release frozen assets.
Don’t inject a massive infusion of cash into the regime – it won’t be used to help the suffering people of Iran but to continue funding terrorist operations against the U.S., Israel, and our Arab allies.
Last week, Israel’s spy chief – Mossad Director David Barnea – called the new deal that your negotiators are cooking up in Vienna “very bad for Israel” and “a strategic disaster” for the Jewish state.
Barnea is saying telling colleagues that the deal “gives Iran license to amass the required nuclear material for a bomb.”
That was being charitable.
Israeli leaders across the political spectrum are 100% unified against this deal.
Mr. President, Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid has been respectful and patient with you.
But now that the details of the actual deal are emerging, Lapid is pleading with you to walk away.
“In the current situation, the time has come to walk away from the table,” Lapid said on August 18. “Anything else sends a message of weakness to Iran.”
On August 24, Lapid stated, “On the table right now is a bad deal. It would give Iran a hundred billion dollars a year…that will be used to undermine stability in the Middle East and spread terror around the globe.”
“The sweeping removal of sanctions on sectors like banking – against financial institutions designated today as supporting terrorism – means the Iranians will have no problem whatsoever laundering money,” he added. “Iran will assist other nations facing sanctions to evade them.”
“The countries of the West draw a red line, the Iranians ignore it, and the red line moves,” Lapid said last week.
The new deal “does not meet the standards set by President Biden himself: preventing Iran from becoming a nuclear state.”
Mr. President, to read Prime Minister Lapid’s clearest and most detailed statement on the matter thus far, please click here.
To be clear, your good friend Yair Lapid is not alone in his firm opposition.
So, too, is another long-time friend of yours, former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who is now serving as leader of the opposition in the Knesset.
“I think this is a horrible deal – dangerous deal – that will pave Iran’s path [to nuclear weapons] with gold,” Netanyahu said as part of his media blitz in the American media to rally public support against your deal.
Netanyahu called your team’s approach “a golden paved highway to a nuclear arsenal.”
He argues that “if Iran has nuclear weapons, they don’t simply threaten my country – Israel and the entire Middle East and America’s allies – they threaten you directly.”
Indeed, Netanyahu noted that “simultaneously as they develop nuclear weapons, they [Iranian leaders] are developing the means to deliver them across continents” through long-range ballistic missiles.
At the same time, Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz is also steadfastly against the specific deal that is emerging.
“The State of Israel is not opposed to agreements in general, but it is opposed to the emerging nuclear agreement,” Gantz told reporters on August 23.
Because the emerging deal “is full of gaps concerning the future danger of Iran in the technology sector, in the production of weapons and in contributions to the Iranian economy which will continue to strengthen support for terrorist organizations in the region and beyond," Gantz explained.
“We are in contact with international authorities, the Americans and others, regarding our opposition to the agreement,” Gantz noted. “We will do everything we can to exert influence on this matter.”
Currently, Gantz is traveling in the U.S., urging his counterparts in the White House, Pentagon and at Central Command (CENTCOM) to reject the deal.
He is also urging you and your administration to rapidly develop and make clear to Iranian leaders that the U.S. has a credible military option to destroy all of Iran’s nuclear infrastructure if they continue down this incredibly dangerous path.
“Iran has gained knowledge, infrastructure and capabilities – much of which is irreversible,” Gantz told think tank leaders in the U.S. “This will enable Iran to further expand its nuclear program during the period of an agreement that would have fewer restrictions. Iran would be able to acquire a nuclear weapon when said agreement would end in 2031.”
Former Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett also strenuously opposes your deal, Mr. President.
“I call on @POTUS & the US administration to refrain, even now at this last minute, from signing the agreement with Iran. This agreement will send approximately a quarter of a trillion dollars to the Iranian terror administration’s pockets and to its regional proxies,” Bennett tweeted on August 23.
Mr. President, you have unified the entire Israeli political leadership – left, right, and center – against this deal.
Our highest political, military and intelligence officials are warning you not to say yes to this disastrous deal with a regime whose open goal is to annihilate Israel.
A poll we commissioned for ALL ISRAEL NEWS earlier this year found that fully two-out-of-three Americans (68%) believe “the Iranian regime wants to use nuclear weapons to carry out their repeated threats to ‘wipe Israel off the map’ and bring about a Second Holocaust.”
Listen to the American people, Mr. President.
Listen to Israeli leaders, your closest allies.
Demonstrate the courage to walk away now, before it’s too late.
Joel C. Rosenberg is the editor-in-chief of ALL ISRAEL NEWS and ALL ARAB NEWS and the President and CEO of Near East Media. A New York Times best-selling author, Middle East analyst, and Evangelical leader, he lives in Jerusalem with his wife and sons.