- REUTERS/Larry Downing
The White House is firing back at former Vice President Dick Cheney.
Cheney has long been a fierce critic of President Barack Obama. But in recent days, he has been publicly savaging the administration’s Iran nuclear deal with new intensity while promoting his new book.
In a seemingly unusual reaction, the White House on Tuesday used its official social-media accounts to promote a video blasting Cheney for his comments.
The video stressed that Cheney was a leading proponent of the US invasion of Iraq in 2003. It also noted that the former vice president continued to argue that he was “right” to back the invasion even though intelligence agencies never found the weapons of mass destruction that were used to justify the war.
“Right? About the Iraq War?” the video asked in all capital letters while playing a series of clips from interviews in which Cheney’s credibility was challenged.
In one clip, Fox News commentator Juan Williams pressed Cheney on why anyone should listen to him on the Iran issue given the botched WMD evidence in 2003.
“People say, ‘Well, Dick Cheney was wrong about Iraq. Why should they listen to you on Iran?'” Williams said.
The video concluded by declaring, again in all-caps, that Cheney was, “Wrong then, wrong now”:
- YouTube/White House
Obama has sought to paint critics of the Iran deal as supporters of more US-led wars in the Middle East. In an August speech defending the agreement, Obama said that if the deal did not go through, the alternative was “some form of war.”
“Let’s not mince words: The choice we face is ultimately between diplomacy and some form of war – maybe not tomorrow, maybe not three months from now, but soon,” Obama said, according to The New York Times. “How can we in good conscience justify war before we’ve tested a diplomatic agreement that achieves our objectives?”
Critics of the Iran deal have balked at Obama’s suggestion that they are indirectly advocating military conflict and that the choice is that simple. The opposition, spearheaded by congressional Republicans, frequently argues that the agreement will actually lead to a more unstable Middle East with even more conflict.
The nuclear deal was struck in July by the US, Iran, and other world powers. Among other things, it grants billions of dollars of sanctions relief in exchange for Tehran curbing its nuclear ambitions while allowing increased inspections. Congress is expected to soon vote against the agreement but without the votes to override Obama’s promised veto.