“Well, let’s go to war” Mika Brzezinski sarcastically exclaimed, on Monday’s Morning Joe, in response to Joe Scarborough. The host elicited Brzezinski’s response when he said he wished the Obama administration would negotiate with parties “other than Iran and Cuba.”
Scarborough hit back hard. “I'm not saying go to war. And that's the stupidity. That stupidity that the administration has been peddling since day one…You either, cave in to Iran and give them over one hundred billion dollars or you go to war. There's an in between.” Brzezinski also hailed the Iran deal as a “milestone.”
“Look the other thing is, Mika, it's not a question ordeal or no deal. The question is against the falling price of oil, was this the deal we should have signed on to? … You can always get a deal. If you want to go the car lot, you'll leave with a car. The question is could we and should we have gotten better deal? That to me the argument out there,” explained Richard Haas, President of the Council on Foreign Relations.
It was clear from the beginning Brzezinski was a supporter of the Iran deal: “[President Obama] made a big deal here. He made a deal that appears to be working.” She may be a supporter of the Iran deal but was unable to defend the merits of it, preferring to punt it to the Secretary of State later in the program. “Secretary John Kerry will counter that in his first live interview since the weekend’s major milestones for the Iran nuclear deal.”
A partial transcript of the January 18 segment is below:
January 18, 2016
6:29:18 – 6:31:58
MIKA BRZEZINSKI: So, can I say what frustrates me about the critics of this, and then we’ve got to move on, is everyone says this president doesn't make deals, he’s not a deal maker, he know how to make deals, he don’t get in there. And I'm sorry, he made a big deal here. He made a deal that appears to be working. You may not like the deal. It may not be the deal you cut or the deal you cut, but as you know about cutting deals; no deal, do you really like the outcome of? You like little bit of it.
JOE SCARBOROUGH: I would prefer he make deals with people other than Iran and Cuba.
BRZEZINSKI: Well, let’s go to war.
SCARBOROUGH: I- I- I will tell you. I'm not saying go to war. And that's the stupidity. That stupidity that the administration has been pedaling since day one.
BRZEZINSKI: No, that’s not stupidity.
SCARBOROUGH: You either, cave in to Iran and give them over one hundred billion dollars or you go to war. There's an in between. And I hope somebody will write a column, maybe Richard Haas or someone at the Council on Foreign Relations, and talk about the treatment of Iran verses Egypt since president Obama came into power. Iranians shot down, gunned down in their own streets in 2009 and president Obama, for the most part, gave them a free pass. Egypt has protests and president Obama says, of a 30 year ally, Mubarak must go. There's a double standard here and it scares a lot of our friends in the Middle East.
RICHARD HAAS: Two things. One is, the June revolution in Iran five years ago. The United States essentially gave the Iranian leadership a pass, in part of hopes that something like this agreement would come of it. I think looking back on it, even Hillary Clinton and others, say that was a mistake. The fact that we didn’t respond to people in the streets there; where we did over respond, I would argue, to people in the streets in the Sunni world. I think that's a legitimate question. Look the other thing is, Mika, it's not a question ordeal or no deal. The question is against the falling price of oil, was this the deal we should have signed on to?
That's where I think historians will argue, because we had enormous leverage. The question is, given the leverage we have from this kind of price of oil did we- were we too anxious for a deal? And that to me is the real question. You can always get a deal. If you want to go the car lot, you'll leave with a car. The question is could we and should we have gotten better deal? That to me the argument out there.
SCARBOROUGH: And I want to say this and let you know, Mika, I'm aware of this fact. That for the war weary America, I think there's a lot of Republican candidates that are opposed to this deal. I think in the long run, I’m- I'm overwhelmingly in the minority of this and I think you're in the majority. I think, most Americans are willing to make this gamble with Iran.
7:42:34 – 7:43:07
SCARBOROUGH: And- And- And The Wall Street Journal editorial page’s last line. “Iran has, again, shown the world that taking American hostages while Barack Obama is president can yield a diplomatic and military windfall.” Well said.
BRZEZINSKI: Up next.
SCARBOROUGH: Even if Mika disagrees one thousand percent.
BRZEZINSKI: I do. I do. I do.
MIKE BARNICLE: They mean for us?
SCARBOROUGH: What’s that?
BARNICLE: Do they mean for us?
SCARBOROUGH: Oh no, it’s the Iranians that seized our people and got 100 billion.
BRZEZINSKI: Secretary John Kerry will counter that in his first live interview since the weekend’s major milestones for the Iran nuclear deal. We will be right back.