Former Vice President Dick Cheney said Sunday that the European refugee crisis is “a direct consequence” of President Obama’s failed foreign policy and that he does not support the Iran nuclear deal.
Cheney, who was vice president in the George W. Bush administration, said Obama has helped to “create a huge vacuum” in Iraq for terror groups like the Islamic State to flourish and kill by failing to secure an agreement with Iraqi leaders to keep U.S. troops in the country after the war.
“That contributed directly to the refugee crisis,” Cheney told “Fox News Sunday.” “It’s a crisis of major proportions.”
Tens of thousands of refugees from Syria, Iran, Pakistan and other Middle East countries are now flooding into Europe as a result of civil wars and terror attacks in that region.
The war in Iraq began during the Bush administration, which established a troop-withdrawal date of December 2011.
The Obama administration has argued it had to honor the date because then-Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki rejected a proposal to keep several thousand U.S. troops in that country for training purposes.
Regarding the U.S.'s nuclear deal with Iran, Cheney also said Sunday that the deal is bad for the United States because “Iran got everything that they asked for.”
The international deal lifts billions of dollars of crippling economic sanctions on Iran in exchange for the rogue nation curtailing its nuclear development program.
“It’s a major, major defeat in terms of our position in that region,” Cheney said.
Congress could vote as early as this week on whether to disapprove the deal, but Obama is expected to have enough votes for final passage.
Cheney acknowledged that Iran built an estimated 5,000 nuclear centrifuges during the Bush administration but disagreed with the argument that it allowed the program to flourish.
“I don’t think of it that way,” he said.
Cheney argued the U.S.-led defeat of the regime of Saddam Hussein in Iraq in 2003 stopped the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction in that country and was a key step toward stopping the nuclear arms race in the Middle East.
“We stopped Saddam Hussein,” he said. “We stopped their program. I think we did a lot.”
Cheney suggested that Obama didn’t enforce his vow to act when the regime of Bashar al Assad in Syria crossed the president’s “red line” by using chemical weapons or mobilizing them.
“Obama has never had the military option on the table,” he said.