Former White House National Security Adviser Robert O'Brien had strong words for the Biden administration Tuesday night regarding its strategic plan for reopening the so-called Iran Nuclear Deal.
Appearing on Newsmax, O'Brien — who advised former President Donald Trump on national security affairs — told "Spicer and Co." co-hosts Lyndsay Keith and Hogan Gidley it's "ridiculous" and "absurd" that a Russian proxy would lead the Iran negotiations, especially when Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine has dominated the world scene for nearly two full months.
"The idea that we're using the Russian ambassador at the time of the Russians invading Ukraine, and we're supposed to be giving maximum-pressure sanctions on the Russians ... it's ridiculous, absurd. And I can't imagine that anyone at the State Department or White House thought this was a good idea," said O'Brien.
The former Trump adviser also found it troubling the Russian ambassador apparently speculated, before a TV audience, the Iranians would end up with better terms than initially anticipated.
"The fact that we outsourced our diplomacy to the Russians should never happen again. And it should be stopped, if it's still ongoing," said O'Brien.
In 2015, the United States, China, France, Germany, Russia, and United Kingdom entered into a Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action agreement, establishing nuclear-related provisions for Iran to follow.
The plan was endorsed by the UN Security Council Resolution and verified by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA).
Various reports had Iran receiving more than $150 billion in cash from the JCPOA collective, as a means of complying with the nuclear terms.
The old theory with the JCPOA was, "If we give the Iranians sanctions relief, they'll use it to support their middle class and become a responsible stakeholder in the Middle East, and they'll become a friendly power," said O'Brien, regarding the deal made during the Obama administration.
Instead, O'Brien says Iran earmarked the monies for terrorists in the region, along with the Bashar al-Assad regime in Syria.
"The Iranian people in the middle class got nothing. The terrorists got everything in the region, and it became more unstable," says O'Brien. "And that's why our allies in the (Persian Gulf) ... they're all very upset and unhappy about this. And, of course, our closest ally in the region is Israel, they're so much heartbroken as to what's happening."
The uncertainty in the Middle East has played a role in rising fuel prices over the last 14 months. But it doesn't have to be this way, reasons O'Brien, if the Biden administration stopped looking everywhere else to offset the surging costs — except domestically.
"Why don't we finish the Keystone Pipeline and get 800,00 gallons a day from Alberta (Canada)? Why not let the folks in Midland start (tapping the oil pumps)?" mused O'Brien, with a sarcastic tone.
"If the people of Midland, Texas threatened to sell their oil to China, maybe (the Biden administration) would send an envoy to Texas to get more oil and gas.
"We've got all the oil and gas we need. We need to pump it here. We need to drill it here, and then get it to the (consumer) pumps and drive down the (gas) prices. It's killing American consumers."
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