By Cory Gardner- The Denver Post
As the Obama administration announces its framework of an agreement with Iran over its nuclear program, Coloradans would be well-served to remember the nature of the regime on the other side of the bargaining table. Following the Islamic Revolution in Iran, the ruling mullahs held 52 American diplomats hostage for 444 days, releasing them only on Jan. 20, 1981, the day President Ronald Reagan was sworn into office.
Two years later, on April 18, 1983, a truck laden with explosives rammed into the U.S. Embassy in Beirut, Lebanon, killing 17 Americans. On Oct. 23, 1983, a similar attack on the U.S. Marine Barracks in Beirut killed 241 American servicemen. Overwhelmingly, the evidence led to Iran and its wholly owned subsidiary, Hezbollah, as the perpetrator of these attacks.
The Iranian regime has not changed in more than 30 years. It has targeted and killed Americans during the Iraq War, supported Shiite militias and supplied deadly explosives used to target our troops. Iran continues to prop up the regime of the murderous Bashar al-Assad in Syria.
The Iranian regime regularly threatens to "wipe Israel off the map" and abuses the human rights of its own people. It continues to imprison American journalist Jason Rezaian and former U.S. Marine Amir Hekmati; and it refuses to divulge the whereabouts of U.S. citizen Robert Levinson.
A nuclear-armed Iran would be a disaster. It would represent a serious threat to the national security both of the United States as well as our close allies, such as Israel and the Gulf states.