Who exactly is in charge of American foreign policy? President Obama or Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu? Any middle-school aged student would easily be able to answer this, but the Republican Congress seems to think differently. Speaker Boehner's overtly political move of sticking his thumb in the eye of the President of the United States may have scored him some points among his fellow conservatives, but in doing so he may have irreparably damaged a decades long bipartisan relationship between the United States and Israel.
Mr. Netanyahu's speech to a joint session of Congress where he used his bully pulpit to implore representatives of a foreign country to openly defy the Commander-in-Chief and sabotage a nuclear deal with Iran is unfortunate and potentially dangerous. We have not elected our representatives in Congress to kowtow to a foreign leader and do his bidding. We have elected our representatives in Congress to do what is best for America. And a peaceful nuclear deal with Iran is in not just America's, but the worlds, best interest.
Back when America was debating whether to go to war with Iraq, Prime Minister Netanyahu spoke before a Congressional committee where he famously claimed that “if you take out Saddam’s regime, I guarantee you that it will have enormous positive reverberations on the region… The task and the great opportunity and challenge is not merely to effect the ouster of the regime, but also to transform the region.” He could not have been more wrong then and he could not be more wrong now. We listened to Netanyahu and invaded a country that never attacked us and all hell broke loose afterwards. Does he think things would be different if we listened to him this time around?
The Prime Minister said that 'no deal is better than a bad deal' multiple times throughout his speech, but he failed to explain how exactly the deal still being negotiated would be a bad deal for the United States. Iran already has a large nuclear program spread across their entire country. Does he just expect them to voluntarily tear down everything they have built and unlearn all the things they have learned? That is incredibly naive and wholly unrealistic.
What the Prime Minister also failed to detail is any alternatives. It's easy to say that no deal is better than a bad deal, but what happens if there is no deal? Does he think that Iran will just walk away from their nuclear program or will they put it into hyper drive? No deal will undoubtedly lead America on another path to yet another war in the Middle-East. This must not happen.
President Obama has taken the correct path in negotiating with Iran and other world partners to come to an agreement that will be good for the entire world. America can not and must not allow other countries leaders to dictate our foreign policy. We all know what happened the last time we allowed that to happen. Let's us not make the same mistake again.