Joe Biden Tells AIPAC That Obama Is Not 'Bluffing' on Iran Nuclear Threat

Veep Insists U.S. Serious About Blocking Weapons Production

getty images

By Reuters

Published March 04, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Vice President Joe Biden told America’s biggest pro-Israel lobbying organization on Monday that President Barack Obama is “not bluffing” about the United States’ determination to stop Iran from getting a nuclear weapon.

“The president of the United States cannot and does not bluff. President Barack Obama is not bluffing,” he told the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in a speech to its annual policy conference.

“We’re not looking for war. We’re ready to negotiate peacefully . But all options including military force are on the table,” said Biden.

“While that window is closing, we believe there is still time and space (for diplomacy),” he added.

The United States and many of its allies suspect Iran may be using its civil nuclear program as a cover to develop atomic weapons, a possibility that Israel, which is regarded as the Middle East’s only nuclear power, sees as a mortal threat.

Biden said that a nuclear bomb in Iranian hands would be an “existential threat” to Israel, poses danger to other U.S. allies in the Middle East and would destabilize the world.

“We have a shared strategic commitment. Let me make clear what that commitment is: It is to prevent Iran from acquiring a nuclear weapon, period,” he said to loud applause from AIPAC, which has gathered some 13,000 activists in Washington this week.

Talks involving Iran and world powers in Kazakhstan about its nuclear work ended last week with an agreement to meet again.

But Western officials said Iran had yet to do anything concrete to allay their concerns about its nuclear aspirations, and Israeli leaders have warned that Tehran is using the negotiations to buy time to advance their nuclear program.

The United States, China, France, Russia, Britain and Germany offered modest relief from economic sanctions in return for Iran reining in its most sensitive nuclear activity but made clear that no breakthrough was in the offing quickly.

Obama will visit Israel before the Jewish holiday of Passover, which begins the week of March 25, Biden said.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • "If you want my advice: more Palestinians, more checkpoints, just more reality." What do you think?
  • Happy birthday Barbra Streisand! Our favorite Funny Girl turns 72 today.
  • Clueless parenting advice from the star of "Clueless."
  • Why won't the city give an answer?
  • BREAKING NEWS: Israel has officially suspended peace talks with the Palestinians.
  • Can you guess what the most boring job in the army is?
  • What the foolish rabbi of Chelm teaches us about Israel and the Palestinian unity deal:
  • Mazel tov to Idina Menzel on making Variety "Power of Women" cover! http://jd.fo/f3Mms
  • "How much should I expect him and/or ask him to participate? Is it enough to have one parent reciting the prayers and observing the holidays?" What do you think?
  • New York and Montreal have been at odds for far too long. Stop the bagel wars, sign our bagel peace treaty!
  • Really, can you blame them?
  • “How I Stopped Hating Women of the Wall and Started Talking to My Mother.” Will you see it?
  • Taglit-Birthright Israel is redefining who they consider "Jewish" after a 17% drop in registration from 2011-2013. Is the "propaganda tag" keeping young people away?
  • Happy birthday William Shakespeare! Turns out, the Bard knew quite a bit about Jews.
  • Would you get to know racists on a first-name basis if you thought it might help you prevent them from going on rampages, like the recent shooting in Kansas City?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.