Colin Kahl, the Biden administration’s nominee to be undersecretary of defense for policy, has stressed the importance of getting the Iran nuclear program in a “box.”
“We need to get the nuclear program in a box,” Kahl said on Thursday at a hearing in front of the Senate Armed Services Committee.
“As troubling as Iran’s behavior is — and it is very troubling — it would be exponentially more dangerous if Iran acquired a nuclear weapon.”
“It’s absolutely essential we prevent Iran from ever acquiring a nuclear weapon. It’s also essential we prioritize the protection of our forces” even while pursuing diplomatic efforts, he said. “We have to remain vigilant against the other threats Iran poses.”
Kahl has previously served as national security adviser to Biden when he was vice president and had a lead role in forming the 2015 nuclear deal.
Kahl acknowledged his past objections to the Trump administration’s killing of Iran’s Quds Force commander Qasem Soleimani, but said he “did not shed a tear” over his death. “I was concerned about the escalatory dynamics,” Kahl said.