Press Release by National Iranian American Council (NIAC)
Washington, DC - Today (Thursday, February 19th, 2015), the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) is running a full-page ad in the New York Times highlighting John Boehner and Benjamin Netanyahu's outrageous political stunt that could kill diplomacy with Iran and start a war.
"The U.S. and its closest allies are on the brink of a historic deal that will both prevent an Iranian bomb and war with Iran, and Congressional hawks are orchestrating political stunts with foreign leaders to try to kill it," said NIAC President Trita Parsi. "The American people do not want another senseless military adventure and certainly don't consider Benjamin Netanyahu to be their commander in chief."
The NIAC ad provides a call-in number and website for Americans concerned by Netanyahu's address and supportive of a diplomatic approach to Iran to contact their lawmakers and urge them to skip Netanyahu's address and support the negotiations.
A recent CNN poll found that a majority of 63% of Americans oppose Boehner's invitation to Netanyahu, which was orchestrated without notifying the White House.
“All doubt has been removed: Netanyahu will oppose any peaceful deal with Iran and will instead seek to blow up the diplomatic efforts of the United States and risk starting a war," said Parsi. "Congress better take into account that if they buy what Netanyahu is selling, it will be American troops who pay the cost."
NIAC's ad also highlights that, in one of the most critical national security debates of our time - the decision of whether to invade Iraq - Netanyahu was brought to testify before Congress. In his remarks he advocated strongly for the war, telling lawmakers 'if you take out Saddam's regime, I guarantee you it will have enormous positive reverberations on the region.'
"After a decade marked by thousands of American casualties, suicide bombings, massive regional destabilization, and now the ascendence of ISIS, it is clear that Netanyahu and those who lobbied for the Iraq war are in no position to give Congress further advice," said Parsi. "There is an opportunity to stop the next catastrophic war before it starts, and that only happens if diplomacy is allowed to succeed."
Negotiations between the P5+1 and Iran are ongoing, with a target of securing a framework agreement in March and a final nuclear agreement by June 30.
“If the U.S. and its partners can secure an Iran deal in the coming weeks, the same people who promised that war with Iraq would be a cakewalk will tell Americans we should reject an Iran deal and eventually take our chances with another war," said Parsi. "The fact that Congress is giving Netanyahu a platform to repeat this message is a very troubling sign, but I think the majority of Americans will take action to ensure we do embrace this historic opportunity and avoid the grave mistakes of the past."
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