July 9th, 2008
10:00 AM ET
10 years ago

McCain, Obama slam Iran

Obama and McCain have reacted to the Iran missile test.

Obama and McCain have reacted to the Iran missile test.

(CNN) - Presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain said Wednesday Iran's missile test showcases the need for implementing a more effective missile defense system while his Democratic counterpart, Barack Obama, said the event highlights the need for more aggressive diplomacy with the rogue nation.

Watch: Iran tests missiles

"Ballistic missile testing coupled with Iran's continued refusal to cease its nuclear activities should unite the international community in efforts to counter Iran's dangerous ambitions," McCain said in a statement. "Iran's missile tests also demonstrate the need for effective missile defense now and in the future, and this includes missile defense in Europe as is planned with the Czech Republic and Poland."

"Working with our European and regional allies is the best way to meet the threat posed by Iran, not unilateral concessions that undermine multilateral diplomacy," McCain also said.

Obama, who has faced criticism for saying he would directly sit down with sworn enemies of the United States, told CBS Wednesday morning the test underscores the need for direct diplomacy.

"At this point, the report is unclear, it's still early," he said on CBS' The Early Show. "What this underscores is the need for a clear policy that is putting the burden on Iran to change behavior. And frankly, we just have not been able to do that the last several years, partly because we're not engaged in direct diplomacy."

Obama also said he will continue to push for an incentive package that seeks to deter Iran from its nuclear goals.

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (261 Responses)
  1. JB from NH

    Nuke 'em Johnny!

    Nothing better for the economy than another war!

    Then we can rebuild Iran in our image for $12 billion a month.

    July 9, 2008 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  2. JOEL


    July 9, 2008 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  3. NotFallingInLine.org

    Maybe Barry Bam Bam can go to Iran and give a speech and the sky will open and the light will come down and celestial choirs will be singing and everyone will know what we should do.

    Obamessiah can do it!

    NFIL Democrat

    July 9, 2008 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  4. gluv

    we created this monster of iran...there's never been evidence that iran been a threat to our national security until bush annoucned them as a threat as part of the "axis of evil".

    everything that iran is doing today is pretty much reactionary to whut we are doing and whut israel is doing. we have missile tests close to their region, israel have multitudes of test as well own nuclear weapons...

    since nobody is willing to have diplomancy, the only other thing you can do is confrontation. confrontation leads up to war.

    July 9, 2008 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  5. ANGIE

    dont worry mccain is prepared as president to bomb bomb iran he doesnt know any other way!!!!

    July 9, 2008 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  6. Mike

    Is this the kind of people that we will sit down and have direct talks with? They are thinking about hurting our interests and we will sit down and have direct diplomacy. LMAO. If the pressure the world is putting on them is not showing any results what makes you think you sitting down with that dictator is going to make a difference. Obama we know you are a great speaker but words dont change people's minds,policies do and so far you havent come up with one.The lack of understanding of world politics is clearly showing up.

    July 9, 2008 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  7. Bitter - New Orleans, LA

    I'm sure the chosen one will convince Iran to behave... It's a pipe dream people.

    I wish diplomacy alone worked in this world, but it doesn't. Diplomacy + deterrence is tried and true. If Obama fails, then the consequences are great. If McCain fails, then at least we have a physical defense.

    Mark my words, Iran has been buying time for over a decade now. They tease our leftist with promises of negotiations while flat out refusing to negotiate...yet we keep taking the bate.

    Iran's missile arsenal is a joke. They've invested EVERYTHING into the nuclear stuff and it's the only leg they have left to stand on.

    July 9, 2008 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  8. jim, kansas city

    Hold on folks, I think Obama is going to give a "major-historical" speech this coming days(today or tomorrow) on the issue of Iran launching missiles.
    When you think he wanted to meet with leadership of Iran, sends chills down my spine.
    Well maybe I should not rush, he will show up on TV and claim that he never said that, flip-flop. Would not be the first time.
    Just hold on, that speech should be coming very soon.

    July 9, 2008 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  9. Herman in LA

    Barack you are the only one the Iran will listen to so get on the phone and handle this problem and show America people and the world the leader you can be.

    Just like EF Hutton; when Barack speaks the world listens....

    July 9, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  10. Kris Hussain from AZ

    Obama has the right idea. Icentives are the key. More diplomacy.

    July 9, 2008 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  11. not important

    McCain will bomb Iran. The hole Iran thing is just because of colonialism. Qajar dynasty ruled Iran. Then was the Pahlavi dynasty. USA supported Mohammad Reza Pahlavi because prime minister Mohammed Mosaddeq was going to nationalized the Iranian oil industry.

    July 9, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  12. Stacy

    Mccain will bring destruction to our foreign policy and economy! a 3rd Bush term is strike three!

    July 9, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  13. Abby

    Well there are two choice…Continue in the same way as the last 8 years ( McCain) which have gotten us to this dangerous point or start aggressive diplomacy ( Obama).

    July 9, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  14. MD

    McCane is another "cowboy" who is itching to get into the White House to start another war. He doesn't have a clue how to be a statesman. Diplomacy and negotiations and inclusion are words he must have forgotten after 51/2 years of torture.

    When will we learn that the countries in the Middle East cannot be threatened to do what we say?

    As talkes with Iraq continues, it is becoming crystal clear that the United States never intended to leave Iraq.

    At least McCane was honest enough to say that we will be there for the next 100 years.

    July 9, 2008 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  15. Scott

    What a lovely time for our future President to be promising a meeting with that tyrannical nutcase.

    McCain 08

    July 9, 2008 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  16. Joe

    Obama just doesn't get it. The U.S. is in direct talks with Iran just not at the Presidential level. We have several people from the Secretary of State's Office talking with the Iranian counterparts. If he thinks he's going to talk directly with the crazy President of Iran directly then he is just naive and a danger to our country. Does he think direct talks ONLY means the two Presidents of each country? Wow is all I can say! He is beginning to worry me for the first time.

    July 9, 2008 10:19 am at 10:19 am |
  17. cherrystrawberry

    Obama also said that under the Bush administration we have exported more goods to Iran than ever before, while publicly scolding them and that the eportation of goods to Iran must stop!

    I tottally Agree. McneedsaCane's oly answer is a military one. When will the blood shedding of our sons and daughters end if this guy is elected. I'm so tired of WAR!

    July 9, 2008 10:20 am at 10:20 am |
  18. Typical White Person

    Yet another idea stolen – Aggressive negotiations – didn't he steal that from Anakan Skywalker?

    July 9, 2008 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  19. DD, New York

    Could it be that a reason why gasoline prices are so high at the pump is because it is some kind of prelude to a "confrontation" with Iran?

    July 9, 2008 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  20. Mike - Texas

    Well, well, well.

    That tiny insignificant country that is NO threat to the U.S. launches 9 test missiles and threatens Isreal.

    Maybe Obama will finally come around to believe that we live in a dangerous world.

    Unforunately he is beating "dead horse" with his intentions towards Iran. The U.S. , Russia, China and others have already tried the "carrot" approach and it didn't work!!

    July 9, 2008 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  21. Diplomacy Works

    Diplomacy works, are we not a product of this?

    McCain is showing his Bush like qualities wanting to go around attacking countries. And yes it is sending mixed signals when you talk tough yet still export goods out of Iran. McCain and Bush want to have their cake and eat it to, well life just doesn’t work like that.

    McCain worries me being so ready to jump into another war at the drop of a hat.

    OBAMA 08!!!

    July 9, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  22. King from CT

    I also think Obama has the right idea and it seems like Mccain's plan will be more destructive than productive

    July 9, 2008 10:23 am at 10:23 am |
  23. Anne in CA

    obama is weak on foreign policy.

    i'll stick with mccain, at least he knows what he's doing.

    Super Delegates wake up and vote for Hillary Clinton at the convention.

    July 9, 2008 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  24. RJ, CA

    It's Obama's signals that are mixed - again. There's been plenty of diplomacy going on - by the U.S. and other countries. Rogue regimes like that in Iran don't understand "diplomacy." They simply turn it around for propaganda purposes. The only thing they DO understand is potential military action. It's like Teddy Roosevelt said: "Talk softly and carry a BIG stick!" And that means USING the stick when necessary!

    And it's not the U.S. government that is "increasing exports to the country" - if that is even the case (I notice Obama wasn't very specific on that point, just vague generalities, as usual). If exports to Iran are going on, it's private comanies doing that.

    July 9, 2008 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  25. richard

    i choose diplomacy.
    mccain is ready to go to war with iran right now!

    July 9, 2008 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
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