US President Barack Obama has thoroughly bungled the US's approach to the Iranian nuclear program, former US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton stated in a special Arutz Sheva interview.
"I think the President has said for some time that all options are on the table with respect to Iran's nuclear weapons program, but nobody really believes it," Bolton stated. "Worst of all, the Iranians don't believe it."
"There is no credible American military threat against Iran's nuclear weapons program, and that's a possible reason why Iran continues to stall, continues to drag out the P5+1 negotiations, continues to ask for more concessions – because they don't fear a strong United States response," he continued. "The pressure that's on Iran now is due to the collapse of international oil prices - not the sanctions, and certainly not fear of the United States."
Despite this, Bolton maintains that it's time for the US to step up its offensive against the Iranian nuclear program.
"When I began to work on the Iranian nuclear program over 14 years ago, we thought we could force Iran to give up the program using comprehensive, strict, strongly enforced economic sanctions, and a credible threat of military force," Bolton explained. "But over the almost 15 years now, the sanctions have been ineffective, the military force has been weak, and I don't think there's time now for sanctions to work."
"Sanctions work in limited circumstances in the best of times, and Iran is really past that," he added.
Bolton opined that the international community is now limited to two "very unattractive" choices: Iran gaining full nuclear weapons access and capability – which he states is the most likely possibility – or a strong show of military force against the program.
The former ambassador added that Israel is on its own regarding Iran's nuclear program.
"The President simply will not take the steps that are necessary. He's not done it for the past six years, there's no indication he's going to change his opinion now," he added, noting his own concerns that US President Barack Obama will give "full diplomatic recognition" to Iran.
Bolton concluded with a few words about the Palestinian Authority (PA) unilateral push for statehood.
"Israel has to keep rejecting the idea of a legitimate Palestinian state – there is none," he said. "It's simply not anything consistent with international law – customary or treaty."