Rice Denies Obama Admin. Misled Public on Iran Deal
U.S. National Security Advisor Susan Rice on Sunday pushed back against the notion that the Obama administration misled the U.S. public and manipulated the media in selling the Iran nuclear deal as concluded from the New York Times Magazine’s profile of Deputy National Security Advisor for Strategic Communications, Ben Rhodes.
“There was nothing hidden. There was no effort to or reality of misleading,” Rice said during an interview on CNN’s Fareed Zakaria GPS on Sunday. “There is nothing that Ben or the president or I or anybody who was involved in explaining the Iran deal to the American public said that wasn’t factually correct. The notion that there was any ball to hide or spin to put on it, I think, is really misguided.”
In an interview with the New York Times’ David Samuels, Rhodes bragged about the administration’s foreign policy team building an “echo chamber” of experts to help sell the Iran nuclear deal. “We created an echo chamber,” Rhodes told the magazine. “They [the seemingly independent experts] were saying things that validated what we had given them to say.”
Rice maintained that the agreement was publicly scrutinized for the public and members of Congress to consider and debate. “There was nothing that was hidden or could be hidden. It was in the public sphere,” she asserted. “And never in my recent recollection has there been a more robust and substantive debate over an important foreign policy issue.”
Stressing that there “was never anything other than a straightforward attempt to explain the merits of the Iran deal to the American people and to Congress,” Rice went on to defend the nuclear agreement as a “net positive by any measure,” since it has now “successfully cut off all of Iran’s pathways to a nuclear weapon.”
“Iran is far more subject to international inspection and verification. The whole world now is able to determine through the inspection capacity of the International Atomic Energy Agency that it is not an able or in the process of moving towards acquiring a nuclear weapon,” Rice said. “That makes the United States more safe. It makes our allies and partners in the region and the world more safe, including Israel.