Congressman McClintock delivered the following remarks on the House floor
I don’t know how adequately to express my alarm and outrage at the President’s agreement with Iran. It is a breathtakingly dangerous act.
Some have compared it to Neville Chamberlain’s Munich Accord with Nazi Germany, but that doesn’t fully illustrate the danger. In this case, we are talking about a rogue state with all of Nazi Germany’s genocidal intentions – but this time armed with nuclear weapons.
In its preamble, the agreement asserts that Iran will comply with the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty that it signed long ago. Wait a minute. If it had obeyed this treaty, we wouldn’t be having this discussion to begin with, would we?
The fact is that Iran has a well-established and consistent record of routinely violating international law. Its intention to acquire nuclear weapons is obvious.
The immediate effect of the President’s action is to release hundreds of billions of dollars of direct and indirect resources to Iran with which it can pursue its military and terrorist activities – activities that aren’t even addressed in this agreement. It is sobering to consider that Iran’s extensive terrorist operations – which allegedly now reach to South America – are about to get a huge infusion of cash.
But lifting the sanctions does far more damage than merely releasing resources to this outlaw regime to kill Israelis and Americans – as its leader vowed to do again just last week.
The sanctions were having a major impact in destabilizing the regime according to all of the Iranian expatriates I’ve talked with. Relieving those sanctions undermines what had been a rapidly building uprising against the regime from within.
Over the last several years, the Iranian opposition has grown dramatically for two reasons: there is a strong and growing perception among the Iranian people that the Iranian dictatorship was a pariah in the international community; and that the resulting international economic sanctions had created conditions that make the regime’s overthrow imperative. That is, until Barack Obama blundered onto the scene.
This agreement cannot be verified. We are now learning that the 24/7 access to inspections the President promised does not exist. Under the agreement, the regime can stall any inspection for many weeks or even months.
The President’s promise that violations will result in a snapback of sanctions is also completely empty. Restoring U.N. sanctions would require the assent of China and Russia, something much less likely given our rapidly deteriorating relations with them.
And even IF Iran scrupulously abided by every detail of the agreement, they can continue to run centrifuges for low-level enrichment, continue their research and development of advanced centrifuges, continue their heavy water research and within eight years, acquire Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles. That means, even under this agreement, within a decade, Iran will have nuclear break-out capability and the launch vehicles to deliver those weapons anywhere in the world, with the solemn vow of its government to wipe Israel and the United States off the map.
Indeed, just last week, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff warned, “under no circumstances should we relieve pressure on Iran relative to ballistic missile capabilities and arms trafficking.” Yet a week later, that’s exactly what this agreement does.
The President says there is no alternative. That is utter nonsense. The sanctions were working. The domestic resistance to this Islamic-fascist dictatorship mustered over 100,000 Iranian expatriates at its annual meeting in Paris this year. This movement desperately needs the moral and material support of our nation to bring down this regime from within. That is what this administration has denied them.
Last month, I fear the Congress became complicit in this agreement by adopting a completely extra-constitutional process for ratification which was a sham. Instead of a 2/3 vote of the Senate to approve treaties, it requires an almost impossible 2/3 of both houses to reject it as an agreement. But at this moment in time, there is nothing more important to the world than that 2/3 of this Congress repudiates this dangerous folly.
Despite all the indignities, retreats and self-inflicted wounds our country has endured these past six and a half years, the freedom-loving people of the world still look to us for leadership and support. We are still what Lincoln called the last best hope of mankind.
It is now imperative that Congress now rise to the occasion.