Defending the international agreement regarding Iran’s nuclear program, President Obama spoke at American University this Wednesday and attacked a key Republican talking point opposing the deal: Why would we make a deal with a country that chants “Death to America”?
“I recognize the resorting to force may be tempting in the face of rhetoric and behavior that emanates from some parts of Iran,” Obama said. “It is offensive. It is incendiary. We do take it seriously. But superpowers should not act impulsively in response to taunts. Or even provocations that can be addressed short of war.”
“Just because Iranian hardliners chant ‘Death to America’ does not mean that’s what all Iranians believe,” Obama continued. “In fact, it’s those hardliners who are most comfortable with the status quo. It’s those hardliners chanting ‘Death to America’ who have been most opposed to the deal. They are making a common cause with the Republican caucus.”
In spite of Iran’s “hardliners,” Obama said that the “majority of the Iranian people have powerful incentives to urge their government to move in a different, less provocative direction,” which are all “incentives that are strengthened by this deal.”
“We should offer them that chance,” he continued. “We should give them the opportunity.”
Watch, via CSPAN: