At a Wednesday interview, former President Joe Biden said former US President Donald Trump made a “gigantic mistake” for withdrawing the US from the Iranian nuclear deal and regretted Iran’s progress toward acquiring a nuclear weapon.
The President said in an interview, “The only thing worse than the Iran that exists now is Iran with nuclear weapons.” The President’s comments come amid rising tensions with Iran and as Biden faces increasing pressure from key Middle East allies to outline a comprehensive plan to constrain Iran. Biden said in the interview he would use force “as a last resort” to keep Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon. The President said he was also committed to keeping the IRGC, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, on the foreign terrorist list, even if it would kill a potential deal.
In preparation for his trip to Israel, the West Bank and Saudi Arabia, President Obama has been working with other US officials to build a coalition against Iran and urge the Gulf countries to integrate all their air and missile defense systems against Iranian attacks. The President further criticized the Trump administration’s foreign policy and said, “There are those who thought with the last administration we sort of walked away from the Middle East, that we were going to create a vacuum that China and or Russia would fill, and we can’t let that happen.” He stressed his trip to Israel, the West Bank and Saudi Arabia — the first of his presidency — was aimed at working toward stability in the region.
The President said other highly critical Democratic lawmakers are highly critical of Israel and do not support providing aid to America. “There are few of them. I think they’re wrong. I think they are making a mistake. Israel is a democracy. Israel is a friend,” Biden said.
Biden pointed out his administration’s policy of support for the Iron Dome aerial defense system and next-generation, laser-enabled Iron Beam system, which he visited on his first full day in Israel. “It’s in our direct interests that Israel be stable,” Biden said.
Biden said he thinks “there is no possibility” that significant portions of the Democratic or Republican parties will be “walking away from Israel.” He also suggested he would welcome a rematch against former President Donald Trump in the 2024 presidential election.