The Biden administration is pressing forward with its efforts to secure a new nuclear deal with Iran, even after Tehran over the weekend launched a dozen ballistic missiles at American sites in Iraq. The administration’s decision to “shrug off the attack” is generating outrage on Capitol Hill among Republican lawmakers who say negotiations with Iran should be halted.
Reps. Jim Banks (R., Ind.) and Joe Wilson (R., S.C.), members of the House Armed Services Committee and Foreign Affairs Committee, respectively, pressed the White House in a letter sent Tuesday, demanding to know why Iran’s latest attacks are being met with silence. Both lawmakers serve as leaders at the Republican Study Committee, Congress’s largest conservative caucus and a primary vehicle for Republican efforts to oppose the new nuclear deal.
“Shockingly, your administration’s senior national security and foreign policy officials shrugged off the attack,” the lawmakers write, according to a copy of the letter obtained by the Washington Free Beacon. “They claimed it did not target the U.S consulate and suggested that the negotiations in Vienna would continue unscathed.”
“The recent erosion of U.S. military deterrence against Iran is alarming,” they say. “Inaction in response to Iran’s provocation would invite Tehran to continue escalating its malicious behavior towards the United States and its regional allies.”
In one of its more lethal attacks in recent memory, Iran during the weekend launched a dozen ballistic missile at multiple sites in northern Iraq, including at the new U.S. consulate facility in the region. The attack was condemned by the Biden administration, but the White House did not issue any new sanctions on Tehran or respond militarily.