October 25th, 2007
03:25 PM ET
11 years ago

Romney open to Iran 'bombardment'

Watch Romney explain his approach to Iran.

MANCHESTER, New Hampshire (CNN) - Campaigning in the critical primary state of New Hampshire, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney said Thursday that he would take “military action” against Iran if “strict economic and diplomatic sanctions” did not curtail that country’s nuclear buildup.

“Let their country know that they are a pariah,” Romney said firmly during a visit to a local hospital.

“If for some reason they continue down their course of folly toward nuclear ambition, then I would take military action if that's available to us. That's an option that's on the table.”

“I really can't lay out exactly how that would be done, but we have a number of options, from blockade to bombardment of some kind….[F]rankly, I think it's unacceptable for Iran to have nuclear weapons."

Romney reiterated that he also supported strict sanctions and other forms of international pressure to prevent Iran’s nuclear buildup. He also said he would seek to indict Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad under the U.N.’s Genocide Convention.

- CNN New Hampshire Producer Sareena Dalla

Filed under: Iran • Mitt Romney • New Hampshire
soundoff (88 Responses)
  1. Gordon Leeuwrik, Fairfax, VA

    Mr. Romney you are ridiculous! Mr. Ahmadinejad has not killed anybody that anybody is aware of and certainly if he killed while in the Iranian military not enough to be genocide. United States on the other hand continues to kill in large numbers...

    October 25, 2007 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  2. Lars, DC

    I support a Nuclear free Iran. Tough talk must be used against Iran before it's too late (and they blow themselves up with Isreal). I think Romney has the strength and wisom to handle the situation as it comes up. Stop being so mean to him CNN!!!!! He's the best candidate out there. I'm voting for Mitt 2008!

    October 25, 2007 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  3. Ballbright


    Go Huckabee!!!

    October 25, 2007 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  4. Jim, New York, N.Y.

    Lets nuke em, and mecca too while we're at it!

    October 25, 2007 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  5. Wallace, Chicago IL

    Henry Tucker, Ga

    Are you serious? The bottom line is that he is open to bombing Iran.

    Why do you insist on "softening the blow" to try to hide the facts. That's one of the main issues in American politics today, not to mention the media but you seem to encourage it.

    Transparency is a good thing, especially if we're talking about going to war and making a preemptive strike.


    October 25, 2007 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  6. BRJ, Chicago IL

    One has to wonder why we are so loathe to have countries like Iran attain a nuclear weapon when they have not even threatened us (threatening Israel does not count), but we do assist other countries attain nuclear weapons that aren't democracies, or are explicity communist. And for those countries that DO have nuclear weapons and DO harbor terrorists, we GIVE them money. Whoever is president from this point forward can bomb Iran all they want, and it won't be called 'war', because we branded basically their whole army a terrorist organization.

    October 25, 2007 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  7. WH Clark, Vicksburg, Mississippi

    As desperate as the world is right now for energy I think there should be a world wide ban on nuclear weapons and that all existing weapons should be used to make fuel for nuclear power plants.

    October 25, 2007 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  8. sonny c. v.p.,la.

    What WON'T someone say to get elected President if they think it will help them.

    October 25, 2007 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  9. Ben, St. Louis MO

    Iran not threatening us, Pixie!? They've found Iranian materials used in IED's. They may not threaten us as a nation, but they sure have threatened Israel who is our ally and helped kill our soldiers.

    Controlling nuclear weapons is our responsibility. We can't allow everyone to have them or we'd have nuclear holocausts occuring. Wouldn't Saddam have used them against Iran in the Iran/Iraq war? What if Sudan had them and rebels got a hold of them? How about Hezbollah? Maybe a palestinian extremist using it against Israel? What if the bomb in the twin towers back in the 90's had been nuclear rather than conventional?

    We have the right to protect ourselves from them and control the proliferation of a weapon so terrible it could kill hundreds of thousands and render the land completely useless. You think global warming is bad? Try a nuclear winter....

    October 25, 2007 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  10. Darko, New Orleans LA

    Get a clue Pixie.

    We can't exactly stop Pakistan and Israel from getting nukes because they already have them. The point is to stop them. Once they get one, then they can do what they want.

    Iran has threatened the US and our allies on a number of occasions.

    The man isn't 'warmongering', he's being a realist. Saying we won't ever consider military action is just stupid.

    October 25, 2007 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  11. Mr. America - USA

    Mr. America supports bombardment of course, however Values Voters have said that they will never vote for someone that would let law "stop a beating heart." So if Mitt is willing to bomb, then the Values Voters won't vote for him, correct? Or do some beating hearts not count?

    October 25, 2007 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  12. John Washington, DC

    Clicking on video take you to unrelated video. Please correct.

    October 25, 2007 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  13. hawk,texas

    this nut is just another dick cheney george bush tied together.he needs to go back to salt lake city and join his other wives.

    October 25, 2007 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  14. Joe Ossai, Bedford, NH

    Wow Romney the plastic man speaks again. What an idiot

    October 25, 2007 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  15. Cable King Pittsburgh PA

    The Mittster oughta stick his saber somewhere where it can't rattle.

    October 25, 2007 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  16. Jeff from Jersey

    Winning the minds and hearts,one bomb at a time.Iraq should just be further proof that this credo will NEVER work.
    There's no need for open,empty threats.Al that serves is to further fuel hatred of the United States and continue the "fear mongering" republican agenda that has been a catastrophic failure.Iran knows that option is always on the table.This is just a repeat of the Bush/Cheney legacy of death and destruction while our children don't get the education they deserve,our elderly are warehoused,our bridges,tunnels and roads collapse and health care is unaffordable.
    This tactic can only work when the rest of the global community believes the threat is imminent and unites to stop it.This is just more fear mongering by republicans.9/11 campaigning under another guise.
    The damage that our country and our people have suffered from the neglect is tantamount to a form of genocide.Bush should be indicted for homicidal neglect!

    October 25, 2007 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  17. Mark, Harrisburg, PA

    Pixie, Please make informed comments. Romney is not a "warmonger." Do a little research into his platform. I doubt you know little about him, besides what your hippy friends (hence your name Pixie) have said or what political pundits say on tv.

    October 25, 2007 05:08 pm at 5:08 pm |
  18. Mike, Palo Alto, CA

    Romney has a problem ... he has to pander to the religous right and now seems to have decided to pander to the neocons as well. The interesting question is: what can be believed about anything he says? A social moderate when he ran for Governor of Massachusetts, a liberal state, he has now positioned himself as hardcore religious right and hardcore neocon. If he really believes what he is now saying, he is very dangerous man ... a Bush with slicked back hair. Or if, as is more likely, he is just another political opportunist, we can recall the punch line of joke every man has heard: "We've already established what you are, we are just haggling over the price." Small wonder so many of us dipair over our politics.

    October 25, 2007 05:10 pm at 5:10 pm |
  19. Wayne, Greenville TX

    Why don't they just send out teams of Mormon missionaries on bicycles? They seemed to have Las Vegas pretty well-covered when I lived there in 1994-95.

    October 25, 2007 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  20. Angela, Cleveland, OH

    And this the the "values" guy who critized Hiliary Clinton? What army is he planning on using? Bet it won't be one with his children in it, it never is.

    October 25, 2007 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  21. Scott,Tupelo,MS

    Pixie, It is nice to know that everyone in the south is not a igornant warmonger. Maybe one day the poorest part of the country will evenually come out of the deer woods and educate themselves on the republican party and figure out they just hide behind religion to get the votes from the people of the south. The republicans have only the wealthiest Americans interest in mind so that leaves a majority of the people in the south out.

    October 25, 2007 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  22. Gary, Boston USA

    Lest we forget.. the Iran of today is a product of US policy. Take some time and learn some history. The US had a direct hand in overthrowing Iran's leadership. Iran rebelled and overthrew that goon squad, and was replaced by an even stronger set of religious zealots. Then came the hostages. Then came the US, overthrowing the leadership of Iraq, sticking Saddam in power. Saddam then started a lengthy was with Iran, funded and backed by the USA.. including supplying chemical weapons technology to Iraq. Saddam then went wacko. Invaded Kuwait after the US was not clear to him that they would retribute (they likely wanted an excuse to take him out and let him invade). Then comes Iraq Gulf War #1. Bush#1 castrates Saddam, but leaves him in charge. Then comes 9/11. Here comes the fake intelligence. The invasion and occupation of Iraq. Now we wonder why Iran is pissed off, feels insecure, and has active weapons programs?

    October 25, 2007 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  23. Dan

    At the 10/19 Detroit debate, moderator Chris Matthews asked the contenders if they believed a future president possessed the the authority to attack Iran without Congressional approval.

    Apparently unaware that the Constitution gives only Congress the power to declare war, the GOP candidates answered, by and large, yes. They could attack Iran, if it posed an imminent threat, without consulting the Congress.

    Mitt Romney said he'd have to check with his lawyers. But he vowed to "take action necessary to prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons." By my recollection, all the rest of the candidates said pretty much the same thing.

    Only Ron Paul, as has so often been the case in the debates, forcefully dissented. "Why don't we just open up the Constitution and read it!" said an exasperated Paul. "The idea that Iran is on the verge of an imminent attack is just preposterous!"

    He summed up the foreign policy views of his competitors thusly: "This is just war propaganda!"

    That is exactly what this ticker is regarding Iran, PROPAGANDA.

    Ron Paul will start brining the troops home immediately.

    We cannot go around the world forcing ourselves on the next enemy.

    Come to your senses people.

    War is Bad.
    Your brother, sister, father, mother, aunt, uncle, grandma, grandpa, neice, nephew, husband and wife will DIE in war.

    Ron Paul is the only hope for us.....


    October 25, 2007 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  24. Peter, miami

    now I know who NOT TO VOTE FOR

    October 25, 2007 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  25. lucas,boston,ma

    ya, and you put your sons in the military first. I remember one of his sons getting arrogant when being interviewed that he is happy he is not in IraQ. Now the father want military actions against Iran. So who is gonna go there?

    October 25, 2007 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
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