President Donald Trump just did a number on the Iran nuclear deal — which he has constantly blasted as “one of the worst deals, probably ever.”
Right before speaking, Sec. of State Rex Tillerson told reporters that Trump would announce plans to “de-certify” the Iran nuclear deal. Tillerson said this could be done through use of the Congressional Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act, after which Congress could decide to restore sanctions, make changes to the law or do nothing.
Additionally, less than an hour before speaking, news broke that Sen. Bob Corker had just released legislation to address flaws in the deal.
— Fox News (@FoxNews) October 13, 2017
BREAKING: Bob Corker unveils legislation to “address flaws in Iran nuclear deal” pic.twitter.com/pvGizpAJCx
— NBC Politics (@NBCPolitics) October 13, 2017
“History has shown that the longer we ignore a threat, the more dangerous the threat becomes,” Trump said, noting that Iran continues to sow “conflict, terror, and turmoil in the Middle East and beyond.”
Trump called Iran as a leading state-sponsor of terror, asserting that it provides assistance to al-Qaeda, the Taliban, Hezbollah, and others; and outlining its history of crimes, dating back to 1979. He particularly focused on the Americans killed by the terror groups Iran helps fund.
“The regime’s two favorite chants are ‘death to America’ and ‘death to Israel,” he said.
After asking what had happened with the $1.7 billion cash payment Obama paid Iran in exchange for American hostages, he began citing instances in which Iran has violated the terms of the agreement.
“On two separate occasions, they have exceeded the limit of 130 metric tons of heavy water. Until recently, the Iranian regime has also failed to meet our expectations in its operation of advance centrifuges. The Iranian regime has also intimidated international inspectors into not using the full inspection authorities that the agreement calls for,” he said.
Trump also brought up the possibility that Iran is working with North Korea — and emphasized that the government is actively investigating that connection.
After extensive consultations with our allies, he said, the United States government has decided on a new, international strategy to counter the regime’s destabilizing activity. “We will place additional sanctions on the regime to block their financing of terror. And … we will address the regime’s proliferation of missiles and weapons that threaten its neighbors, global trade and freedom of navigation,” the president said.
He added that the U.S. is imposing strong sanctions on Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corp, whose terrorist activities he also detailed in his remarks. The Corps are Iran’s Armed Forces, founded after 1979 revolution.
“We will not continue down a path that’s predictable conclusion is more violence, more terror, and the very real threat of Iran’s nuclear breakout.”
Here’s what the pundits are saying:
Obama administration didn't care much about Iran's sponsorship of terrorism against the U.S., Trump certainly does
— Katie Pavlich (@KatiePavlich) October 13, 2017
This @realDonaldTrump Iran speech is a home run: real statesmanship requires being honest about threats to the American people.
— David Reaboi (@davereaboi) October 13, 2017
Iran has 3 chants, "death to Israel" "death to America" & "death to Jews" yet Libs are losing their minds that TRUMP is standing up to them!
— Amy Mek (@AmyMek) October 13, 2017
— David Vance (@DVATW) October 13, 2017
— Nile Gardiner (@NileGardiner) October 13, 2017
A rare agreement with Trump. The IRGC is in fact a terrorist group. https://t.co/H016MKGd05
— Howard Dean (@GovHowardDean) October 13, 2017