Weekly Standard founder and Iraq War booster Bill Kristol has emerged in recent days as a self-styled defender of the Iranian people as their country’s anti-regime protests continue to intensify. But during a panel discussion on MSNBC Tuesday, National Iranian American Council president Trita Parsi questioned how much Kristol really cares about Iranians, given his long record of calling for military actions that would potentially leave many thousands (or even millions) of them dead.
Reacting to Kristol’s call for the U.S. to “respect the Iranian people’s desire for freedom,” Parsi said: “With all due respect, Bill, you’ve been arguing to bomb Iran for so long that I don’t know if you’re really respecting the Iranian people. You’ve been advocating killing Iranians.”
MSNBC host Stephanie Ruhle attempted to come to Kristol’s defense, insisting that he is “not advocating to kill anyone, let’s make that very clear.”
“No, on the contrary, there has been all of this argument for taking military action against Iran instead of actually having the nuclear deal that has been working,” Parsi responded.
Stephen Miles, director of Win Without War, argued following the exchange that Kristol’s history is enough to show that he “is no more qualified to speak about freedom in Iran than an arsonist is to promote fire safety.”
Kristol is just one of a number of American neoconservatives who have jumped at the opportunity to call for U.S. intervention in Iran in the midst of growing internal tensions.