US ready to take risk of war with Iran for Israel’s sake: Biden
As the White House tries to mend fences with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu who is upset about nuclear talks with Iran, Vice President Joe Biden says the US is ready to risk a military confrontation in support of the Israeli regime.
Speaking at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy late on Thursday night, Biden said, “As we pursue this deal, we’re also deepening our cooperation with Israel and our other regional partners.”
“There’s nothing simple, minimal or predictable about a war with Iran,” he said. “If required, it will happen. It’s a risk we may yet have to take should Iran race to a bomb.”
Israel and the United States accuse Iran of pursuing military objectives in its nuclear energy program.
Iran rejects the allegation, arguing that as a committed signatory to the Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and a member of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), it has every right to use nuclear technology for peaceful purposes.
Biden also pointed out that President Barack Obama has done more than any other president for the security of Israel.
“Let’s get something straight, no president has done more for the security of Israel than Barack Obama. That’s not going to change.”
The Obama administration is angry at Netanyahu for accepting a Republican invitation to address Congress on March 3 about Iran’s nuclear program without consulting the White House as well as the Israeli lobby’s interference in American foreign policy.
Biden reaffirmed his commitment to the Israeli regime during a speech at an Israeli Independence Day reception in Washington last month, saying the United States and Israel are “like family.”
“We have a lot to say to one another. Sometimes we drive each other crazy, but we love each other — and we protect each other,” he said.
America’s support for Israel still has strong bipartisan backing in Congress. The US provides Israel over $3 billion in annual military aid as well as other forms of assistance.
Nevertheless, Iran and the P5+1 group of countries — the US, Britain, France, China, Russia and Germany — reached a framework agreement on Tehran’s nuclear program on April 2 in Switzerland.
Speaking at the United Nations on Monday, US Secretary of State John Kerry said the P5+1 and Iran were closer than ever to striking a final comprehensive agreement.
“We are, in fact, closer than ever to the good, comprehensive deal that we have been seeking, and if we can get there, the entire world will be safer,” the top US diplomat said.
Kerry also met with Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif on the sidelines of the 2015 Review Conference of the Parties to the Treaty on the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons in New York City on Monday.
The two sides are working to finalize a deal by the end of June, despite continuous attempts by Israel and its powerful lobby in Washington to prevent a final nuclear agreement.