PLANO, TX—United States Senator Bill Hagerty (R-TN), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and former U.S. Ambassador to Japan, today joined Kudlow on Fox Business to discuss the savage attacks by Hamas and other Iran-backed Palestinian terrorist groups against Israel and the failure of President Biden’s speech today to call out the complicity of the Iranian regime in these attacks.
Hagerty on Biden’s refusal to mention Iran as an accomplice to the Hamas attacks: “It’s just shocking how the Biden Administration has tiptoed around this. We all know the world’s greatest sponsor of terror—that’s Iran. Iran is at the very heart of this. They’re behind this. We’ve allowed them to enrich themselves under the Biden Administration, and Larry, you and I know how the sanctions were working under the Trump Administration. We worked together to impose them. You remember how we got Japan to stop buying Iranian crude [oil]? We had Iran at a point where they were ready to bargain. But they waited until the outcome of the election. The Bidens came in, and here’s what’s happened: They’ve looked the other way on the sanctions; we’ve allowed them to increase their capital accounts by roughly $50 billion just in additional oil sales since they’ve come in. You recall earlier this year, the Biden Administration signed off on Iraq making a $10 billion payment to Iran. Then, most recently, this $6 billion ransom payment, what we’ve done is put Iran in a position to do precisely what they have done. And the incentive here, I think, is very obvious as well. What we’ve seen is that Israel and Saudi Arabia were coming back to the table that President [Donald] Trump set in terms of the Abraham Accords, that we were at the precipice of getting done at the end of the last Administration. You worked on that too, Larry. As the Iranians saw the Saudis and the Israelis coming back to the table, the last thing they want to see is prosperity and the freedom that goes along with it break out in the Middle East. I think that’s the inspiration for this, to disrupt that entire process using their proxies, Hamas, to do it. And the fact that Joe Biden won’t even mention it, speak to the cause of this, I think, is absolutely shocking.”
Hagerty on the need to firmly support Israel defending itself: “Isn’t it shocking, Larry, that the Administration that wants to talk about the root causes can’t seem to see what the root cause of this disruption in the Middle East is? The root cause is Iran. They’re the destabilizing force, and the ability for this to happen goes right to the heart of what the Biden Administration’s foreign policy failures have been. I mean, it’s allowing Iran to enrich itself. It’s the failure in Afghanistan that has put our weapons in the hands of Hamas. It’s failure after failure, from a foreign policy standpoint, that has delivered this problem right here in the Middle East. And the fact that they won’t look the cause in the eye is just shocking. I’ll say one thing: Joe Biden did finally acknowledge Israel’s right to defend itself. And as U.S. Senator, I’m going to hold this Administration to that. It’s a shame that it took them days to get to this point. You recall the first communications out of the State Department were from the Palestinian Affairs Office asking for Israel not to retaliate, the Secretary of State having to take down his tweets, talking about a ceasefire, again, trying somehow to placate their far left, it’s ridiculous. We should call it what it is: Iran’s at the heart of this; they’re trying to destabilize the Middle East because they are worried that we’re in a position where Israel and Saudi Arabia might actually instigate economic policies that drive peace and prosperity.”
Hagerty on how the U.S. should properly respond to support Israel: “The U.N. Sanctions that were waived need to be snapped back. Larry, you know that’s the right answer here. We need to get the $6 billion back that was most recently granted through a waiver from South Korea to Qatar. Stop the flow of funds right there. We need to come back and impose sanctions. We need to start imposing sanctions and enforcing the sanctions that exist on this illegal sale of petroleum products from Iran. That’s how to make this sting. That’s how to make it hurt. Iran is now selling drones to Russia. It’s that drone technology, the same drone technology that’s going to be utilized here in Israel. We’ve got to come at this from every angle. We’ve got to stop it. We can stop it, but we’ve got to get the United Nations to move in the right direction. We need to get our allies to move in the right direction. But the only way to do that is for the United States to demonstrate leadership itself.”