Sanders: War the alternative if Iran nuclear deal fails
© Greg Nash

Sen. Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersBooker holds 'Get Out the Vote' event in South Carolina as presidential speculation builds The Democratic Donald Trump is coming Biden: Trump administration 'coddles autocrats and dictators' MORE (I-Vt.) said on Sunday that diplomacy is essential for maintaining peace with Iran.

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Sanders argued that the stakes are too high to avoid negotiations over the Islamic republic’s quest for nuclear weapons.

“We have to negotiate with Iran,” Sanders told host John Dickerson on CBS’s “Face the Nation.”

“And the alternative of not reaching an agreement, you know what it is?” the 2016 Democratic presidential candidate asked of President Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran. “It’s war.”

“Do we really want another war, a war with Iran? An asymmetrical warfare that will take place all over this world, threaten American troops?”

“I believe that we have got to go through every possible effort in order to make sure that we achieve that goal of Iran not having a nuclear weapon without going to war,” he added.

Sanders’s remarks follow his endorsement of Obama’s historic nuclear agreement with Iran last week.

The Vermont lawmaker said on Sunday that the accord has the best details possible given the complicated international dynamics at play.

“Look, I’m not going to tell you that this is a perfect agreement,” Sanders told Dickerson.

“It’s so easy to be critical of an agreement which is not perfect,” he said. “And every agreement can be better.”

Sanders then charged that the U.S. should exhaust all its options for preventing an Iranian nuclear arsenal before considering military force.

“It’s something that should not happen,” he said of Iran possessing atomic bombs.

“So I think we [should] go as far as we possibly can in trying to give peace a chance, if you like,” the White House hopeful added.