WASHINGTON (JTA) – Hillary Rodham Clinton said as U.S. president she would hew to the Iran nuclear deal just completed, but would also build a coalition to stop Iranian bad behaviour in other areas.
“We have in the agreement the access for inspections and the transparency that was absolutely necessary,” Clinton, the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, said Wednesday as she met Democrats in the U.S. Congress. “But we have to treat this as an ongoing effort and as president, I would be absolutely devoted to ensuring the agreement is followed.”
Clinton, who was U.S. President Barack Obama’s secretary of state in his first term, has broadly embraced his foreign policies. But since mounting her presidential run earlier this year, she has endeavoured to depict herself as more hawkish than her former boss.
“We still have a lot of concern about the bad behaviour and the actions by Iran, which remains the largest state sponsor of terrorism, which does go after and undermine governments in the region, that poses an existential threat to Israel, that unfairly, unlawfully confines and tries Americans on trumped up charges,” Clinton said.
“That bad behaviour is something we have to address. Having been part of building the coalition that brought us to the point of this agreement, I think we will have to immediately upon completion of this agreement and its rigorous enforcement look to see how we build a coalition to try to prevent and undermine Iran’s bad behaviour in other arenas.”
Israel adamantly opposes the deal for a range of reasons, among them the prospect of money flowing into Iran as a result of sanctions relief being used to fund Iranian-backed insurgencies and terrorism.
The deal achieved Tuesday exchanges restrictions on Iran’s nuclear activities for sanctions relief.
Virtually every one of the large crop of candidates seeking the Republican nomination has rejected the deal, with some calling it appeasement.