US Lawmaker Says Kerry Must Be Fired If He Shared Info With Iran's Zarif
If former secretary of state John Kerry shared sensitive information with Iran’s foreign minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, he should be fired from the Biden Administration and there should be an investigation, US Representative Don Bacon (R-NE) told Iran International on Wednesday.
“John Kerry should not be sharing classified information [with] a terrorist regime that undermines our great ally,” Congressman Bacon said.
Iran International revealed a three-hour audio tape on April 25 that it obtained from Iran, in which Zarif mentions that Kerry told him about 200 Israeli airstrikes in Syria that he was not aware of.
The audio recording and the segment about Kerry have led to hot discussions in the United States about whether the former secretary of state violated laws by discussing classified information with a foreign diplomat. It is not clear in the recording what time period Zarif refers to when he quotes Kerry about the Israeli airstrikes, but mentioning 200 airstrikes apparently refers to the period when Kerry was not a government official but still had access to classified information.
Asked if an investigation is warranted, Rep Bacon said, “we need and investigation and if it is true, John Kerry needs to be fired from his position and kicked out of the Administration, and his security clearance must be pulled.” Although the Congressman said that an investigation should take place to determine if Zarif “is being honost”, he added that given the Iran policy pursued by former president Barack Obama, Joe Biden and Kerry, Zarif’s remark “sounds accurate to me”.
Asked about the current talks in Vienna aimed at reviving the 2015 nuclear agreement, Rep Bacon said he has always been opposed to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action, JCPOA because of its sunset clauses, which would allow Tehran to acquire nuclear weapons after the agreement expires.
He also voiced his opposition to lift any sanctions, which will be necessary if the US returns to the deal, saying that such a step would simply give Iran money “for its military or for exporting terrorism”. He added, “Iran needs to change its leadership. The people deserve a government that respects freedoms and human dignity.” As long as the clerical regime is in power and does not change its behavior it is futile to negotiate with Iran, Bacon argued.
Regarding Biden’s policy toward Iran, the Congressman said he is concerned that the president wants “to hitch its wagon” to the Iranian regime again, which would be to the detriment of US allies in the region and bad for the Iranian people.
Asked if he agreed with Donald Trump’s ‘maximum pressure’ campaign against Iran, Rep Bacon said, yes, adding that US sanctions had reduced the Iranian regime’s ability to finance its military, with its currency reserves are “down 95 percent”, with its ability to “finance terrorism” reduced.