March 18th, 2008
01:01 PM ET
4 years ago

McCain warns of increasing Iranian influence

CNN 

Listen to Sen. McCain’s remarks from Jordan

(CNN)— Senator John McCain warned Tuesday Iran’s increasing influence in the Middle East is hindering progress in Iraq.

Closing a week-long congressional delegation to the region that included a time in Iraq, McCain expressed concern over a large cache of explosives found in Iraq and alluded that they may have been sent from Iran.

During a press conference in Amman, Jordan, the Arizona senator also said there is a continued concern that Iran may be training Iraqi extremists in Iran and then sending them back into Iraq.

The presumptive Republican presidential nominee also said he was concerned about Iran developing nuclear weapons and said he planned to work closely with European allies to set in place a strict set of sanctions “that would be harmful and compelling" to Iran's trade, diplomatic, and financial institutions if he was elected president.

"There'd be a broad range of sanctions and punishments to the Iranians to help try to convince them that their activities – particularly development of nuclear weapons – is not a beneficial goal to seek," he said.

McCain said he was encouraged by the progress he saw in Iraq as well as his meeting with King Abdullah II of Jordan.

"We realize that there are enormous challenges in the form of the Israeli-Palestinian peace process, and also continued efforts to win the struggle in Iraq, which we are succeeding but we still have a long way to go," he said.

Despite having a fundraiser planned in London this Thursday, McCain stressed the trip, his eighth to Iraq was not political. McCain is the ranking Republican member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. He was joined on his trip by two fellow committee members, Sens. Joe Lieberman of Connecticut and Sen. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina.

Full Story

–CNN's Emily Sherman


Filed under: Iran • Iraq • John McCain
soundoff (195 Responses)
  1. Floridian

    Is he planning on singing "Bomb Iran" to the tune of Barbara Ann again? Sigh. And half the country wants this man to be president...

    March 18, 2008 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  2. EA

    To Richard:

    Are you seriously saying that John "McBush" McCain is "making great history" Adolf Hitler made history, that doesn't make him "great". Take a pill and listen to your doctor, if your Viagra is making you crazy, STOP TAKING IT!
    Old people and war mongers are John McCain's base, and frankly, it frightens me, mainly because the legacy they would leave would have to be cleaned up by the rest of us, and our children.

    Get real, and go watch McGyver.

    March 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  3. Jorge Villa

    This is not good, another BUSH....

    & I was gonna vote for a republican if the Democrats mess with the voting election rules.

    Guess not!

    REPUBLICANS REALLY SUCK!!!

    March 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  4. Enrique

    I've got news for you John McCain, we're worried about Iran too. We're worried that the Bush policies that you embrace have gotten Iran much closer to acquiring the knowhow to build nuclear weapons. We're worried that having you as president will mean more war.

    March 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  5. john - arizona

    There is no question that John McCain has had an overwhelming life experience and he has dedicated himself to the political life. However, he represents a generation of past thinking and his agenda is driven by ideals that have outlived their shelf-life. his PTSD is a real factor and we should not gloss over that aspect of who he is. it's insane to elect this man as the president of our country. the elephants have to re-invnet their platform and get out of the grasp of the extreme right chirstian fist of intolerance and reframe their party in the spirit of lincoln.

    March 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  6. HTH

    History trumps Hillary.
    History trumps Hillary.History trumps Hillary.
    History trumps Hillary.History trumps Hillary.History trumps Hillary.
    History trumps Hillary.
    History trumps Hillary.History trumps Hillary.
    History trumps Hillary.History trumps Hillary.History trumps Hillary.
    History trumps Hillary.

    March 18, 2008/ "Imperfect Union Speech"

    March 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  7. Will-South Dakota

    Here we have another Republican leading America down a WAR road with Iran. McBushMcCain is just trying to set up an invasion on what evidence? War is OLD MEN sending Young Men off to battle, McSame should just stay over in the middle east along with Cheney, put on a uniform and stand on the front lines or go out on patrols. This time he didn't walk down any streets in an open market wonder why?

    March 18, 2008 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  8. Edwin Portland

    Richard,
    Your caricature of Obama is absolutely false and shows that you have an inability to think for yourself. Try researching the man and not just regurgitating FoxNews. Learn to spell and use correct grammar, also.

    March 18, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  9. maya

    Richard- You are right, Obama can't win the general election. Hillary will!!

    March 18, 2008 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  10. Johnn

    War with Iran? Whatcha gonna use for troops moron.

    March 18, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  11. Jorge Villa

    McCAIN, AMERICANS SAY!!! RULE NUMBER ONE!

    WE CANNOT START ANOTHER WAR WITHOUT A STABLE ECONOMY!!!

    March 18, 2008 01:39 pm at 1:39 pm |
  12. Frank

    We shall bomb bomb ....We shall send more Americans into the war...we are bush...third term..more war more death...bomb Bombbomb..

    Bravo Mc.

    March 18, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  13. Thomas

    "constitution …stained by the sin of slavery" – Obama's

    McCane Loves America, shame that this democrat has to vote for a republican because he loves America!

    March 18, 2008 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  14. Media

    Keep feeding the media. I am sure the Media will fall for it and make a news. Very sad but true. The media is to blame for every thing that is happening now they are diverting the critical issues the nation faces. By focusing only to what gives them rating. People do not be fulled the media does not care if our nation goes to hell all they care is how to make more money and beat their compititors. Time to make up people.

    March 18, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  15. Margaret, Silver Spring, MD

    Why don't just build a tent for McCain and Chenney in the middle east/persian gulf – PERMANENTLY !

    March 18, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  16. mimi de la cruz for OBAMA

    MAYBE WE SHOULD JUST ATTACK IRAN, THEN SOMEONE ELSE, OH WE MIGHT TAKE A CRACK AT CANADA. THEY ARE CLOSE ENOUGH. IT AUGHT TO BE REAL EASY. IS MCCAIN OUT OF HIS MIND? THE IRANIANS WERE NOT THERE BEFORE WE ATTACKED IRAQ. AND NOT MUCH ELSE EITHER.

    March 18, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  17. The MAcdaddy of them all

    RealityKing March 18th, 2008 1:25 pm ET

    Iran is sending arms into Iraq to kill Americans?

    No…., that would be all over the news…, wouldn't it??
    __________________________________________________

    You just read it in a news article– wow it's in the news......it's been reported before– ignorant

    March 18, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  18. Doug R.

    Have the WMD's in Iraq been found, Mr. McCain?? Then he tells us he is encouraged by the progress he saw in Iraq...George Bush told us democracy in Iraq is well established and the mission has been accomplished.
    Why don't we talk about the ecomony, Mr. McCain?? What are your plans if you become President?? Can you handle that or is it too difficult for you to grasp??

    March 18, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  19. Darth Vadik, CA

    Here is something to ponder for you people on the edge:

    People who talk about war as a means to peace

    DO NOT WANT PEACE

    March 18, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  20. demon_joe

    Richard, poor misguided Richard.
    McCain will kill this country by keeping the status quo on the economy, illegal aliens and the war(s). He has no plans of ever ending the war(s) and the costs will ruin us. The costs in lives lost, our reputation abroad and our economy.
    McCain has no clue on a new direction.

    March 18, 2008 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  21. 1love

    THE AWAKENING HAS BEGUN...PEACE

    March 18, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  22. James D

    Great, we took our eye of the Taliban in Afghanistan to invade Iraq, and now the Taliban is back in force. Now we can push Iraq to the back burner and plunge into Iran. Maybe we'll be greeted as liberators.

    March 18, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  23. Mary, Indianapolis

    Wow, Richard, I don't know what you're drinking, or smoking, or eating...but I want some. Talk about delusions.

    March 18, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  24. TN_Dave

    McCain know Bush/Cheney was to go to war with Iran, so he is helping fan the flames. NO MORE WAR! OBAMA "08

    March 18, 2008 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  25. Louis

    McCain sees war as the first best option. Continuing the two conflicts we are in and starting one with Iran, despite his claims there are no, NO intelligence reports that say that there is an active nuclear weapons program in place. yet he is ready to start a military conflict. Keep in mind that the reason we have Iranian influence in Iraq is because we deposed the guy we supported there to keep the influence out.

    March 18, 2008 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
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