Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Monday compared President Barack Obama’s willingness to make deep compromises for a negotiated agreement on Iran’s controversial nuclear program to the actions of British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain, a leader who history has judged harshly for appeasing a genocidal dictator.
The senator’s criticism follows other similar comparisons evoking the 1938 Munich Agreement in which Chamberlain — wishing to avoid war at all cost — allowed Germany to occupy part of then-Czechoslovakia, all while Hitler was secretly planning to conquer all of Czechoslovakia. Thinking he had averted war, Chamberlain famously declared “peace for our time.”
"If we go forward with a deal that allows Iran to acquire nuclear-weapons capability, I believe that history may well record it as a mistake and a catastrophe on the order and magnitude of Munich," Cruz said, according to National Journal. "And when our negotiators return with a promise of peace in our time, we should believe it no more now than we should have believed it then."
"To allow the theocratic extreme religious mullahs in Iran to have nuclear weapon capability increases dramatically the likelihood that those weapons of great destruction will be used to murder millions," the senator said, calling the Iranian nuclear program the "single greatest national security threat facing America."
A reporter for Israel’s Arutz Sheva captured video of Cruz’s remarks at a meeting on Capitol Hill.
House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio) also appeared to be embracing the World War II-era parallels, as reflected in the gift he planned to give the Israeli leader during his visit.
Boehner said he was presenting Netanyahu with a bust of British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, Chamberlain's successor, to emphasize that only Churchill and Netanyahu have addressed Congress three times.
Social media users were using the hashtag #NevilleChamberlain to post criticism of Obama’s apparent willingness to make deep compromises with Iran in order to forge a deal in which Iran’s efforts would – according to media reports - be monitored for only 10 years after which restrictions on uranium enrichment would be eased.
Glenn Beck wrote on Facebook last week that Netanyahu’s address to Congress Tuesday “could be a pivot point in history. Our president is Neville Chamberlain or worse and [Netanyahu] is the closest we have to Winston Churchill.”
“Is Barack Obama another Neville Chamberlain?” asked Michael Makovsky, director of the Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs, in the upcoming issue of the Weekly Standard. “I’ve been reluctant to make the comparison, but as talks with Iran have unfolded, it’s become impossible not to think of the 1938 Munich conference, where Britain and France agreed that strategically and economically vital Czech territory be ceded to Germany, leading soon after to German conquest of Czechoslovakia and World War II.”
“America’s looming deal with Iran rivals Munich in its unnecessary and catastrophic recklessness. It is an inexplicable unforced error that will have disastrous consequences unless Congress, or Israel, does something to stop it,” added Makovsky.
The piece was accompanied by this hybrid of Obama and Chamberlain celebrating the deal with Hitler, calling it “a worrisome resemblance.”
The concessions Obama has been willing to make with Iran are “irresponsible” and would lead to “a dangerous deal,” Makovsky wrote.
Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton weighed in on the comparison last month, saying that Obama is “in a category worse than Neville Chamberlain.”