White House Battles Dick Cheney On Social Media Over Iran Nuclear Deal

The Obama administration is using its social media accounts to respond to former Vice President Dick Cheney, pushing back against his criticism of the recently negotiated nuclear deal with Iran and five other major powers.

In a new video released on the official White House YouTube account, the administration charges that Cheney was “wrong then, wrong now” in regards to nuclear weapons, particularly as they related to the Iraq war. As NBC News points out, the video highlights Cheney’s public assertions that Iraqi citizens would greet American troops as “liberators,” as well as his August 2002 claim that “There is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction.” The clip is interspersed with footage of a number of journalists pressing Cheney on the Bush administration’s foreign policies.

“Vice President Dick Cheney opposes the Iran nuclear deal. If his reasoning sounds familiar, it’s because we’ve heard it from him before on the Iraq war.”

In recent months, Cheney has been one of the most visible opponents of the administration’s proposed pact with Iran. The video was released ahead of Cheney’s speech on Tuesday, given at the American Enterprise Institute, where the former vice president again criticized the deal. Claiming that it would give Iran the capacity to launch a nuclear attack on the United States, Cheney further asserted that “by legitimizing the Iranian enrichment program for the first time ever, the deal will likely accelerate nuclear proliferation as other nations demand the same right.”

The Obama administration has charged in turn that opponents of the Iran deal are tacitly endorsing war as the only viable means of combating Tehran’s nuclear ambitions. As Business Insider notes, President Obama defended the accord in an August speech, asserting that it was preferable to another conflict in the Middle East.

“Let’s not mince words: The choice we face is ultimately between diplomacy and some form of war — maybe not tomorrow, maybe not three months from now, but soon. How can we in good conscience justify war before we’ve tested a diplomatic agreement that achieves our objectives?”

The Iran nuclear deal was sent to congress by the Obama administration in July. Though they are expected to soon vote on the pact, the opposition does not have enough votes to override a veto from the White House.

[Photo by Mark Wilson / Getty Images]