Former Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday tore into President Donald Trump’s “lie” that funding to Iran associated with the now-abandoned nuclear deal underwrote “attacks on the USA.”
In an interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation” from Iowa, where Kerry is stumping for Democratic presidential primary candidate Joe Biden, the former top diplomat said the president’s tweet earlier Sunday was intended to bait him.
“The president’s tweet is a lie,” he said. “And the president tweeted this morning, because I am coming on the show and he knew you’d ask me the question or he’d push you in a place where you did ask the question. You and the media, I think, need to call a lie a lie.”
“They didn’t get 150 billion dollars,” he continued. “I was saying clearly some money from the budget of Iran is going to go to the IRGC [Islamic RevolutionaryGuardCorps.] It always has. That’s no surprise.
“But the truth is and President Trump, well, he probably doesn’t know this, but the fact is his own defense intelligence agency in 2017 testified to the Congress that very, very little money actually went to the IRGC at all. Most of the money went to the economy of Iran, which is precisely what I said and what we all said. So, the IRGC has never had a problem getting money.”
According to the Associated Press, when Iran signed the nuclear deal, it regained access to its assets that’d been frozen abroad. Another $1.8 billion was a separate amount that came from the U.S. treasury to pay an old IOU.