New York, NY, February 7, 2014 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today welcomed the strong comments by U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez (D-NJ) urging Congress, the administration and the American people to approach the challenges of the upcoming negotiations with Iran “as a bipartisan national security issue – not a partisan political issue” and to avoid “trying to force a vote on a national security matter before its appropriate time.”
Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:
Senator Menendez has presented a thoughtful case for allowing the diplomatic process some space to determine Iran’s true intentions while keeping the focus of the U.S. national discussion on the elements of what should be considered a successful outcome of the negotiations between the P5+1 and Iran.
We are deeply concerned that Iran’s nuclear program has progressed to a point where a final agreement must result in it being significantly rolled back.
If this can be achieved in a negotiated agreement with Iran, the world will be a safer place. If it cannot, we must be ready to immediately ratchet up pressure on Iran through stronger sanctions and be prepared to use all of the other means available to achieve an end of Iran’s nuclear weapons program.
We commend Senator Menendez for the compelling case he made for this approach when he said a final deal “cannot and should not rely simply on trust, but on real, honest, verifiable dismantlement of Iran’s capability to produce even one nuclear bomb.”
Many respected analysts have said a successful final agreement with Iran must start with a more robust inspection regime providing unfettered access and complete transparency. It should ensure that any future enrichment capability is significantly limited and stockpiles of enriched uranium are sent out of Iran to be converted to non-military grade before being returned to Iran for civilian use complying with Iran’s Non-Proliferation Treaty obligations. The underground enrichment facility at Fordow must be permanently closed and the heavy water plutonium facility planned for Arak should never become operational. The agreement should also be for a term sufficiently long enough to establish global trust that Iran is fully committed to the permanent abandonment of its nuclear weapons ambitions, and its terms should be included in a United Nations Security Council resolution which will authorize enforcement by the international community using all means available under the U.N. Charter.