PM Compares Iran Deal with Clinton's N. Korea Deal

Arguments being made for the Iran nuclear deal were also made about North Korea, PM tells major US news outlets - and it got the bomb.

Gil Ronen, | updated: 19:30

Netanyahu speaks on CNN
Netanyahu speaks on CNN
Haim Tzach / GPO

Speaking on CNN Sunday, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu compared the arguments being made for accepting the nuclear deal with Iran to those made when the United States negotiated a nuclear deal with North Korea in 1994 – and noted that in the end, North Korea got the bomb.

“They said the same arguments about North Korea – it'll make them peaceful, it'll make them moderate, it'll make them abandon their program – and the opposite has happened,” Netanyahu said.

In the interview, Netanyahu refused to say that he trusts President Barack Obama, despite being asked twice.

The deal, he said, “doesn't roll back Iran's nuclear program. Thousands of centrifuges will keep spinning and enriching uranium.”

Iran will have sanctions lifted “pretty much up front,” he added, and the money it will gain will be used “to pump up its military and terror machine.”

"It doesn't roll back Iran's nuclear program," Netanyahu said. "It keeps a vast nuclear infrastructure in place. Not a single centrifuge is destroyed. Not a single nuclear facility is shut down including the underground facilities that they built illicitly. Thousands of centrifuges will keep spinning enriching uranium. That's a bad deal."

"If a country that vows to annihilate us and is working every day with conventional means and unconventional means to achieve that end, if that country has a deal that paves its way to nuclear weapons, many nuclear weapons, it endangers our survival," the prime minister said.

"I'll tell you what else will happen," he added. "I think it will also spark an arms race with the Sunni states," a reference to Egypt and the Gulf monarchies.

Netanyahu made similar comments in back-to-back interviews with two other major American news outlets, NBC and ABC.

Speaking to the latter, Netanyahu told his interviewer Iran hadn't really made a single meaningful concession towards the framework deal reached late last week.

"Nothing has been asked of Iran, to change its aggressive and terrorist policies, nothing. And I think it's important to change the deal, to toughen up the deal, to get a better deal, because we all prefer to find a solution, but it has to be the right one," he said.

Watch: Netanyahu speaks to ABC

Speaking to NBC, the prime minister emphasized that despite his serious alarm over Iran's march to the bomb, he was still committed to a peaceful resolution of the crisis.

"I'm the only Israeli left standing who never talks about our military option," he noted. "But I will say this. I prefer a diplomatic solution. You know why? Because for any military option, the country that will pay the biggest price is always Israel."

Watch: Netanyahu speaks to NBC:

"So we want a diplomatic solution but a good one, one that rolls back Iran's nuclear infrastructure and one that ties the final lifting of restrictions on Iran's nuclear program with a change of Iran's behavior, namely that they stop their aggression in the region, that they stop their worldwide terrorism and that they stop calling and working for the annihilation of Israel," he added, repeating a demand he made Friday - which was rejected by the US - that any final deal with Iran include Tehran's recognition of Israel.

"These are the requirements that there is still time to put in place, and I'll use whatever means I have, including this program, to try to persuade people to go for this deal which is the only one that will give us peace and security."

 

President Bill Clinton's arguments for the deal he negotiated with North Korea can be seen in this video:

AFP contributed to this report.




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