The man who wrote “The Art of the Deal” fumed on social media Monday over what he views as an Iranian steal negotiated by President Joe Biden.
On Monday, Iran freed five Americans that it held in exchange for $6 billion in oil assets that were unfrozen by the Biden administration, according to The New York Times.
Although the Biden administration said strings on the money meant it could only be spent on food, medicine and humanitarian items, it admitted there is nothing to stop Iran from using money it now spends for those things for other purposes. Soon after the deal was announced, Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi proclaimed he will use the money however he wants.
Former President Donald Trump said paying ransom was a terrible precedent.
“I brought 58 HOSTAGES home from many different countries, including North Korea, and I never paid anything. They all understood they MUST LET THESE PEOPLE COME HOME!” Trump posted on his Truth Social platform.
“Toward the end, it got so that countries didn’t even start the conversation asking for money, because they knew they would not get it. Once you pay, you always pay, & MANY MORE HOSTAGES WILL BE TAKEN,” he said.
The former president and leading GOP presidential candidate for 2024 said Iran got the better of the deal.
“Our grossly incompetent ‘leader,’ Crooked Joe Biden, gave 6 BILLION DOLLARS for 5 people. Iran gave ZERO for 5. He’s Dumb as a ROCK!” Trump wrote.
In a separate post, he said the deal should make voters wake up.
“This absolutely ridiculous 6 Billion Dollar Hostage Deal with Iran has set a terrible PRECEDENT for the future. Buckel up, you are going to see some terrible things start to happen. The 3 years ago highly respected USA has become a laughingstock all over the WORLD. MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN. VOTE TRUMP!!!” Trump wrote.
In another post, Trump said the deal was a symptom of America’s decline under Biden.
“After seeing what has happened to our beautiful USA in such a short period of time, including Afghanistan, Self Imposed Inflation, Energy Independence, the Horrors of the Open Border, NO VOTER I.D., & now, 6 Billion Dollars for 5 Hostages from Iran, I ASK, WHY HASN’T THE REPUBLICAN PARTY BEGUN THE PROCESS OF INVOKING THE 25th AMENDMENT AGAINST THE WORST & MOST INCOMPETENT PRESIDENT IN THE HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES, CROOKED JOE BIDEN?” he wrote.
Trump was not alone in condemning the deal.
.@RepMcCaul slams the Biden administration for releasing $6 billion to Iran:
“They are so naive … It was a hostage swap for $6 billion … It’s going to go into terror proxy operations, it’s going to go into building their nuclear…offensive system for a nuclear war.” pic.twitter.com/sWmqYuaWKR
— GOP (@GOP) September 18, 2023
Iran’s president said the ayatollahs will spend Joe Biden’s $6 billion ransom payment as they see fit—this means funding terrorist attacks against Americans and our allies.
This was a craven act of appeasement and total failure of leadership from the Biden administration. pic.twitter.com/IpxWKZ4wI9
— Tom Cotton (@SenTomCotton) September 13, 2023
Mick Mulroy, who served in the Pentagon during the Trump administration, said the deal will “likely give countries that incarcerate Americans as political hostages more reasons to do so,” the Times noted.
Spoke with the five American citizens freed from Iran today and told them we can’t wait to see them back home with their loved ones. @POTUS and I will not rest until we bring home every wrongfully detained American. pic.twitter.com/7ND26atF6u
— Secretary Antony Blinken (@SecBlinken) September 18, 2023
Meanwhile, Secretary of State Antony Blinken said Americans should not put themselves at risk by visiting Iran.
“While this group of U.S. citizens has been released, there is no way to guarantee a similar result for other Americans who decide to travel to Iran despite the U.S. government’s longstanding warning against doing so,” he said.