Sheldon Adelson was probably the worst bully on the playground if his ideas about how to negotiate with Iran are any indication. The billionaire casino operator who gives a lot of money to Republicans thinks Obama should fire a nuclear warning shot at Iran to force them to disband their nuclear program. Easy peasy.
The 80-year-old casino owner and former Mitt Romney supporter casually proposed the U.S. launch a nuke at Iran instead of negotiating diplomatically last night during "Will Jews Exist? Iran, Assimilation and the Threat to Israel and Jewish Survival," a talk with Rabbi Shmuley Boteach. Phillip Weiss caught the whole thing on video.
The two men were discussing the best way to deal Iran's alleged nuclear weapons program — Iran denies its existence but many others, including Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, think they're lying. "'We’ll give you this if you give us something.' I think it’s the worst negotiating ploy, tactic anybody can imagine," Adelson said, referring to the ongoing talks between the White House and Iran. When Boteach asked what kind of negotiating conditions Adelson would prefer, like ceasing enrichment as a precondition to nuclear talks, Adelson said this:
No. What do you mean support negotiations? What are we going to negotiate about? What I would say is, ‘Listen, you see that desert out there, I want to show you something.’ You pick up your cell phone, even at traveling rates. You pick up your cell phone, and– what are they called– [Boteach: roaming charges] Roaming charges. You pick up your cell phone and you call somewhere in Nebraska and you say, ‘OK let it go.’ So there’s an atomic weapon, goes over ballistic missiles, the middle of the desert, that doesn’t hurt a soul. Maybe a couple of rattlesnakes, and scorpions, or whatever.
And then you say, ‘See! The next one is in the middle of Tehran. So, we mean business. You want to be wiped out? Go ahead and take a tough position and continue with your nuclear development. [Applause] You want to be peaceful? Just reverse it all, and we will guarantee you that you can have a nuclear power plant for electricity purposes, energy purposes.’
Funny, that negotiating strategy Iran resembles the same strategy the Tea Party used during the government shutdown negotiations.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.