Rep Cmte Financial Services

Hensarling: ‘Let’s hope Boeing rethinks their decision’ on Iran deal

Washington, Jul 7 -

Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) delivered the following opening statement at today’s Monetary Policy and Trade Subcommittee hearing on the implications of U.S. aircraft sales to Iran:

“For the past year, this committee’s bipartisan Task Force on Terrorism Financing has done excellent work shedding light on sources of terror financing and offering legislation to improve U.S. government efforts to choke off these funds.

“Undermining this work, news broke a few weeks ago that Boeing had reached a deal to sell and lease billions of dollars’ worth of aircraft to Iran. This is the same Iran which the U.S. State Department in a report last month again called ‘the world’s foremost sponsor of state terrorism’ and the Treasury Department has labelled ‘a jurisdictional primary money laundering concern.’  This is the same Iran behind the 1983 bombing in Beirut that killed 241 American servicemembers.  The same Iran that fuels atrocities in Syria where half a million lives have been lost.  The same Iran whose government calls again and again for the annihilation of our ally, Israel.

“And yet this administration plans to authorize these transactions with Iran Air, the state-owned national carrier which has been sanctioned by the U.S. for transporting fighters and weapons of war on behalf of Iran’s Revolutionary Guard. It also seems poised – the administration – to allow U.S. financial institutions to provide financing for the bill, despite explicit assurances that Iran would not have access to the U.S. financial system when selling its nuclear deal.

“One of the last things we should be doing is allowing Boeing to export military fungible aircraft and providing access to the U.S. financial system to the Iranian regime. Boeing has been an iconic American company with a proud heritage, and I awoke just the other morning to watch Boeing’s 100th anniversary television commercial, which I have seen on numerous occasions.  On it were patriotic images of Martin Luther King and one of the space shuttle rockets.  Mr. Chairman, how tragic it would be for Boeing if, on its next anniversary, truth in advertising compelled it to replace MLK’s image with that of the Ayatollah Khomeini and to replace the space shuttle rocket image with that of Hezbollah rockets instead raining on Israel?

“Let’s hope Boeing rethinks their decision and if they do not, our work is clear.  We must ensure that American taxpayers and depositors will not have their funds used to back financing for the Ayatollahs and the world’s greatest state sponsor of terrorism.”