Andrea Mitchell Asks 'Why Shouldn't' Iran 'Develop A Nuclear Program' If Israel Has One

For an example of how MSNBC is leaning forward into biased coverage of the latest troubles Israel is having with the terrorist group Hamas, one need look no further than the July 15 edition of Andrea Mitchell Reports.

After hearing from NBC foreign correspondent Ayman Mohyeldin about how the Egyptian cease-fire was rejected by Hamas because it “failed to address the comprehensive issues that they (Hamas) were trying to go after,” Mitchell invited the Israeli ambassador to Washington, Ron Dermer, to discuss the crisis in Israel and offer “his take” on U.S. nuclear negotiations with Iran. When Dermer stated that “Iran wants to develop a nuclear weapon.” Mitchell retorted that they “say they don’t.” Well, that settles it. Just like that time in 2007 when the Holocaust-denying President of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, insisted there were no gay men in Iran. [See video below. Click here for MP3 audio]

Mitchell concluded the interview by asking Dermer “why shouldn't” Iran “develop a nuclear program” when “Israel has a nuclear program and reportedly has nuclear weapons, as well.”

This is after Mitchell interrupted the ambassador as he described how over 100 missiles had been fired at Israelis today to plead for the “200 Palestinians dead,” which “is what a lot of people are seeing.”

Not only did Ms. Mitchell continuously refuse to recognize Israel’s right to defend itself, the liberal veteran foreign affairs reporter made the outrageous comparison of Israeli nuclear proliferation to the horrors that would stem from Iranian nuclear armament. After all, as Amb. Dermer reminded the audience, Iran is only the “foremost sponsor of terror in the world.”    

See transcript below:

MSNBC
Andrea Mitchell Reports
July 15, 2014
12:16 a.m. Eastern
1 minute and 47 seconds


ANDREA MITCHELL: Let me briefly ask you about Iran because David Sanger in The New York Times reported after an interview with Foreign Minister Zarif that there is a new Iranian proposal which would be to have some enrichment but to put limits on it and postpone the eventual development of the nuclear program. Secretary Kerry said today that there's still very wide gaps and that diplomacy can do a lot, diplomacy is better than the alternative and no deal until there's a deal. What is your take on the negotiations?

RON DERMER: Look, we know what Iran wants. Iran wants to develop a nuclear weapon.

MITCHELL: They say they don't.

DERMER: They can say anything they want. They have said a lot of things over the years. They are the July 15, 2014, so they’re not a regime you can rely on for anything. They’ve have invested over $50 billion in developing this nuclear program, apparently they don't want. They’re building ICBM rockets, whose only purpose are to carry nuclear warheads, apparently they don’t want that as well. They’re putting underground enrichment facilities, because they only have peaceful intentions. I mean, this is ridiculous. It's a joke. We know Iran wants nuclear weapons, what we hope is that the international community will stand very firm to not leave Iran with a nuclear weapons capability. To not remove the sanctions, leave them essentially with their nuclear weapons capability intact, parked a few months or a little bit longer away from getting nuclear weapons in the future. That would be a terrible mistake for the whole world. We hope the international community will stand firm.

MITCHELL: And finally, what Zarif said and what he said to David Gregory is why shouldn't they develop a nuclear program? It's, of course, Israel has a nuclear program and reportedly has nuclear weapons, as well.

DERMER: Look. Israel doesn't threaten other countries with annihilation. The government of Iran threatens Israel with annihilation. We do not threaten anybody. That's the difference between us and Iran and we should never forget it.

Laura Flint
Laura Flint is a 2014 summer intern for the MRC's News Analysis Division.