Florida Congressman Ted Deutch (D) and Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides met with Israeli Prime Minister Yair Lapid on Thursday to discuss the United States' commitment to supporting Israel in the face of growing Iranian nuclear aggression.
— Ambassador Tom Nides (@USAmbIsrael) August 19, 2022
Deutch chairs the House Foreign Affairs Committee's Middle East and North Africa subcommittee.
He announced earlier this year that he would not run for reelection. Instead, he will lead the American Jewish Committee (AJC).
Deutch's district, which includes parts of both Palm Beach and Broward counties, is considered a safe seat for the Democrats. The Democrat primary candidates include Allen Ellison, Michaelangelo Hamilton, Hava Holzhauer, Jared Moskowitz, Ben Sorensen, and W. Michael Trout.
On the Republican side, candidates include Joe Budd, Darlene Cerezo Swaffar, Steve Chess, Christy McLaughlin, Myles Perrone, James Pruden, Ira Weinstein.
Deutch has remained a staunch supporter of Israel during his tenure in Congress, although some criticized him for not going after fellow Democrats and members of the "Squad," who regularly push an anti-Israel agenda.
The meeting between Deutch Nides and Lapid comes at a critical time in the U.S./Israel effort to keep Iran's nuclear program at bay.
While nuclear talks are officially on hold, Iran continues to demand concessions from the United States and European Union.
Earlier this week, Iran officially responded to the EU's plan for the "final" time. Its response had many additional requests, including guarantees if the U.S. were to leave the agreement again.
Many are concerned that Biden, who was Obama's Vice President at the time of the original Iran Nuclear Deal, will be lenient toward Iran.
A heated Twitter exchange between Senate Foreign Relations Committee Ranking Member Sen. Jim Risch (R) and the National Security Council occurred Thursday afternoon.
Risch warned the Biden administration of the grave consequences of making concessions to Iran and called Iran's requests "blackmail."
The Iranian regime seeks #JCPOA guarantees from the Biden Administration that it will end the #IAEA probe, protect western companies operating in #Iran, & allow Iran to accelerate nuclear weapons work if a future administration exits the deal.
— Senate Foreign Relations Committee Ranking Member (@SenateForeign) August 18, 2022
The full thread reads:
"The Iranian regime seeks #JCPOA guarantees from the Biden Administration that it will end the #IAEA probe, protect western companies operating in #Iran, & allow Iran to accelerate nuclear weapons work if a future administration exits the deal. These demands from #Iran are blackmail and would go down in history as a major Biden foreign policy failure, coming on the heels of the disastrous #Afghanistan withdrawal. Not to mention this deal will threaten the safety of our partners and Americans in the region. #Iran continues to plot assassinations of former U.S. officials, provide #Russia w/ armed drones to attack #Ukraine, disable #IAEA monitors, prop up PIJ assaults against #Israel, & attack our troops & diplomats. Biden JCPOA sanctions relief will only increase Iran’s terrorism."
The official Twitter account of the Nation Security Council shockingly replied: "Nothing here is true."
Nothing here is true. We would never accept such terms. We also would not have left a deal that was working only to see Iran massively accelerate its nuclear program. https://t.co/MY6uJZzCGD
— National Security Council (@WHNSC) August 18, 2022
The Biden Administration has, in fact, lifted some sanctions against Iran, and doing so has allowed countries to cooperate with Tehran on civil nuclear projects.
While widely viewed as a dangerous move, the State Department contends the sanctions waiver is not a concession to Iran. Instead, it would "enable some of our international partners to have more detailed technical discussions to enable cooperation that we view as being in our non-proliferation interests."
Next week, Israeli National Security Adviser Eyal Hulata is visiting Washington to fully brief the Biden Administration on the importance of keeping Iran nuclear-free.
Originally posted in The Emet Times.