House speaker John Boehner has invited Israel prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu to address a joint session of Congress on February 11. The invitation is meant to be a repudiation of President Obama's Iran policy, according to a draft Boehner's prepared remarks this morning to the House Republican conference.
“You may have seen that on Friday, the president warned us not to move ahead with sanctions on Iran, a state sponsor of terror. His exact message to us was: 'Hold your fire.' He expects us to stand idly by and do nothing while he cuts a bad deal with Iran. Two words: 'Hell no!' … we’re going to do no such thing," Boehner's expected to tell his fellow Republicans.
“So today I will announce that I am inviting the Prime Minister of Israel, a great friend of this country, to address a joint meeting of Congress next month. And I am specifically asking him to address Congress on the threats posed by radical Islam and Iran. America and Israel have always stood together in shared cause and common ideals, and now we must rise to the moment again. Let’s send a clear message to the White House – and the world – about our commitment to Israel and our allies.”
In a press release announcing the invitation, Boehner is a bit more cordial. “Prime Minister Netanyahu is a great friend of our country, and this invitation carries with it our unwavering commitment to the security and well-being of his people,” Boehner will say in the press release. “In this time of challenge, I am asking the Prime Minister to address Congress on the grave threats radical Islam and Iran pose to our security and way of life. Americans and Israelis have always stood together in shared cause and common ideals, and now we must rise to the moment again.”
At last night's State of the Union address, Obama briefly discussed his "diplomacy" with the rogue regime of Iran. "Our diplomacy is at work with respect to Iran, where, for the first time in a decade, we’ve halted the progress of its nuclear program and reduced its stockpile of nuclear material. Between now and this spring, we have a chance to negotiate a comprehensive agreement that prevents a nuclear-armed Iran; secures America and our allies — including Israel; while avoiding yet another Middle East conflict. There are no guarantees that negotiations will succeed, and I keep all options on the table to prevent a nuclear Iran. But new sanctions passed by this Congress, at this moment in time, will all but guarantee that diplomacy fails — alienating America from its allies; and ensuring that Iran starts up its nuclear program again. It doesn’t make sense. That is why I will veto any new sanctions bill that threatens to undo this progress. The American people expect us to only go to war as a last resort, and I intend to stay true to that wisdom."
As many have pointed out, there's no proof Obama's action have in fact halted Iran's nuclear program. Indeed, the diplomacy has worried those who most fear the consequences of a nuclear breakout in Iran, including Netanyahu.
Here's the text of Boehner's invitation to Netanyahu:
His Excellency Benjamin Netanyahu
Prime Minister of Israel
3 Kaplan Street, Hakirya
Jerusalem, Israel 91950
Dear Mr. Prime Minister: It is my honor, on behalf of the bipartisan leadership of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, to extend to you an invitation to appear before and address a joint meeting of Congress on Wednesday, February 11, 2015.
I thank you for your attention, and I look forward to your reply.