Tags: Iran | John McCain | Middle East | john mccain | iran | nuclear | deal

McCain: Iran Deal Will 'Nuclearize the Middle East'

Image: McCain: Iran Deal Will 'Nuclearize the Middle East'
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By    |   Monday, 20 Jul 2015 10:27 AM

The deal that's been reached with Iran will "nuclearize the Middle East," Sen. John McCain said Monday, but he also doesn't believe Congress will approve it in the first round.

"I think it's not going to get through the first round, as you know, but the president's already said he would veto and then the question is, are there sufficient votes to override a veto?" the Arizona senator told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program.

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But meanwhile, McCain said he's talked to Middle East leaders who are "deeply concerned" about the agreement.

"They are moving in a direction of acquiring nuclear weapons, because they see this five-year, eight-year, 10-year window that they're going to have to, as Iran nuclearizes, acquires nuclear weapons after 10 years."

But he is also worried about the promise to relieve sanctions against Iran, and in particular, Iranian Gen. Qasem Soleimani.

"Gen. [Joseph] Dunford said that the copper-tipped IEDs [improvised explosive devices] killed at least 500 [in the] Army and Marines, and they're lifting the sanctions against him?" said McCain. "Someone's going to have to explain that to me."

Soleimani's name is included in an annex of the Iran agreement, even though he is blamed for helping Shiite militias kill American soldiers in Iraq, and also for assisting Syria's Bashar al-Assad, reports The Daily Beast.

"Soleimani is the guy that sent the copper-tipped IEDs into Iraq," McCain, who chairs the Senate Armed Services Committee told The Daily Beast.

But on Monday, McCain told "Morning Joe" host Joe Scarborough that at this point, "it's almost a take it or leave it" situation because it's an agreement.

"But I also think we should be deeply concerned about continued Iranian aggression," McCain said. "They're now controlling four countries. We just found out when I was in Afghanistan over the Fourth of July. They're now providing weapons to the Taliban. Everywhere they're on the move, and they're succeeding and still the chief state sponsor of terror. Now I understand the other argument."

Meanwhile, McCain said there was "very little doubt" in Iran's mind that the United States wanted the agreement more than they did, "and that's how you got somehow an agreement on conventional weapons crept into this, when Secretary [John] Kerry had assured us time after time after time that this was only nuclear."

There is also "great concern" about Iran's plans for the "tens of billions of dollars that are now going to be freed up," and McCain said he is looking forward to the briefings and debate on the agreement.

"And, frankly, I'm on the side of Bibi [Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu]," said McCain, stating his alliance with the leader and his fears about the future of Israel following the agreement.

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The deal that's been reached with Iran will "nuclearize the Middle East," Sen. John McCain said Monday, but he also doesn't believe Congress will approve it in the first round.
john mccain, iran, nuclear, deal
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2015-27-20
Monday, 20 Jul 2015 10:27 AM
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