web analytics
April 2, 2015 / 13 Nisan, 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Time To Get Tougher On Iran


Amid the media firestorm over Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s annual propaganda turn on the world stage addressing the UN General Assembly, let’s not lose sight of the need to get tougher on Iran.

The Iranian regime’s foreign and military policies present an existential threat to Israel, the region, and the rest of the world.

Iran is aggressively arming and training Hamas and Hizbullah, groups intent on destroying Israel.

For years, the Iranian regime, by its interference in that country, has attempted to undermined American efforts to build a stable Iraq.

And despite Ahmadinejad’s protestations otherwise, Iran’s nuclear ambitions advance by the day.

I had the privilege of visiting Israel this month to meet with Prime Minister Netanyahu and his top military and intelligence advisers. We discussed a wide range of issues, particularly the threat posed by Iran.

After these discussions, my conviction has only grown that the global community must come together to stop Iran’s nuclear program and growing negative influence in the region.

Today, because of Iran, Hizbullah has rockets that can threaten Ben Gurion Airport, and Hamas possesses specialized Iranian rockets designed to be smuggled through tunnels into Gaza. Iran’s support has strengthened the ability of these terrorist groups to inflict harm on innocent civilians.

Many experts believe Iran’s capability to launch a nuclear bomb is getting dangerously close, and Iran’s continuing enrichment program increases its ability to intimidate and influence its neighbors. From discussions with Israeli leaders, it is clear that a nuclear Iran not only threatens Israel, our great friend and ally in the Middle East, but could incite a nuclear arms race in the Gulf resulting in a nuclear weapon or dirty bomb in the hands of terrorists.

A nuclear Iran cannot be tolerated.

Ahmadinejad and other leaders have lost significant legitimacy following broad-based election protests. The ruling Iranian regime has formed a government despite popular unrest. I see two possible courses for the regime: it will seek to bridge divisions with the international community or it will hasten the country’s nuclear enrichment path.

In recent weeks, we have only seen more stall tactics from Iran – attempts to deflect attention from the nuclear program and focus on a variety of economic, political and other international issues.

The permanent UN Security Council members have agreed to meet with Iranian chief nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili on October 1. While these talks should proceed, we cannot condone additional delays allowing for the continuation of Iran’s efforts to build military nuclear capabilities.

As Ahmadinejad takes the stage this week, it is important for the global community to move forward on a plan to stop Iran’s nuclear weapons program.

First, we need to back President Obama’s efforts to engage Iran. I support the president’s decision to change course from the previous administration’s unilateral foreign policy approach, which undermined our ability to successfully engage our allies and address the threat of a militarily nuclear Iran.

America’s sincere invitation to Iran gave the regime an opportunity to rebuild its international standing and lawfully engage in a civilian nuclear program that would address its economic needs. Having strengthened again the Western alliance, the U.S. is now in a position to forge international pressure on Iran to live up to its obligations.

Second, we must combine engagement with increased sanctions. Congress needs to provide the president with all the tools necessary to combine tough sanctions with diplomacy to head off the Iranian threat. The Senate has had over six hearings on the subject of Iran this year.

But we must also take concrete action. We should pass the Iran Refined Petroleum Act, which targets companies that assist Iran’s petroleum refining capacity, and the Iran Sanctions Enabling Act, which would protect our state and local governments as they divest from companies that invest in Iran’s energy sector.

Because Iran lacks the ability to refine its internal oil and gas resources, its economy depends on importing refined petroleum and bringing in foreign companies to build domestic refining capacity. In fact, Iran imports approximately 40 percent of its refined petroleum needs.

Without cheap oil, Iran cannot fix its serious economic problems. Passing these new, tough sanctions targeting Iran’s energy sector would give America needed leverage to convince the Iranian regime to temper its nuclear ambitions.

Third, the U.S. must work strategically with Russia and China, the two UN Security Council members that have been most reluctant to impose sanctions. Gaining their cooperation with respect to Iran will make America and the world safer.

I support President Obama’s decision to abandon plans championed by the previous administration to build a missile-defense system in Poland and the Czech Republic, particularly if the decision moves Russia to end its sales of weapons to Iran, cease its development of Iranian gas fields and nuclear facilities, and support increased sanctions as a way to end Iran’s nuclear ambitions.

And we should, together with our allies, find ways to help China address its energy needs without investing in Iran.

My hope is that President Ahmadenijad’s visit will inspire American officials to take these proactive steps immediately. Certainly, the safety of Israel, the United States and the world depends on it.

About the Author: Kirsten E. Gillibrand, a Democrat, is a U.S. senator from New York.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “Time To Get Tougher On Iran”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ)
Biggest Democratic Foe of Obama on Iran Indicted
Latest Indepth Stories
Colonel John Henry Patterson, Commander of the Jewish Legion

An eye-witness claimed, “British troops just stood by” while Arab attacked Jews in then Palestine

Indeed, some caucus members based their decision to stay away from Mr. Netanyahu’s speech on their contention that the Israeli leader had disrespected America’s first black president.

These are fundamental issues for Israel’s security and yet Mr. Abbas refuses even to acknowledge them as grist for negotiations.

Those seeking accounting, finance, business, healthcare, technology, etc., will often enter a specialized graduate degree “track” created by Lakewood’s Professional Career Services, in conjunction with local institutions of higher education, for our alumni.

We are grateful to Hashem that we have been privileged to institute this program and that over the years we have experienced tremendous siyata d’shmaya, with the program spreading throughout the world and its membership rapidly rising.

Indifference to the pain of the many singles should require us to have our heart, not head, examined

The rededication of the Hurva caused international hysteria.Arabs called the action a “provocation”

{Originally posted to author’s website, FirstOne Through} TRUST Trust is the bedrock of a functional relationship. It enables one party to rely on the other. A trust that includes both intention and capability permits a sharing of responsibility and workload. The relationship between US President Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu started off badly and further […]

Jabotinsky said “Go To Hell” was a good retort to opponents of the Jewish people; fitting for Obama.

Obama pulled off one of US history’s greatest cons,twice fooling a gullible electorate and most Jews

While in Auschwitz I felt a tangible intensity. I could sense that I was in a place of sheer evil.

Obama needs to wake up. The real enemy is not Netanyahu but Iran, Hizbullah, Hamas, Islamic Jihad,IS

My beliefs & actions have led to numerous death threats against me; my excommunication by my church

In November 2014, Islamic Relief Worldwide was classified as a terrorist organization by the United Arab Emirates.

More Articles from Senator Kirsten E. Gillibrand

Late last year in Oslo, a team of three American, British and Israeli scientists received the Nobel Prize in Chemistry for work that was done at Brookhaven National Laboratory in New York. This isn’t a case of geographic happenstance, but rather a symbol of the remarkable success we’ve seen from the bilateral scientific collaboration programs that exist between the United States and Israel.

Amid the media firestorm over Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s annual propaganda turn on the world stage addressing the UN General Assembly, let’s not lose sight of the need to get tougher on Iran.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/time-to-get-tougher-on-iran/2009/09/23/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: