National Security Advisor Susan Rice received a standing ovation at AIPAC's annual policy conference in Washington on Tuesday when she said "a bad deal [with Iran] is worse than no deal. And if that is the choice, there will be no deal."
While "significant gaps" still remain in negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program, Rice said the Islamic Republic "is further away from a nuclear weapon than it was a year ago. And that makes the world, including Israel, safer."
A good, comprehensive deal "cuts off every single pathway" for Iran to acquire enough fissile material for a nuclear bomb, Rice continued, affirming a stated goal to extend Iran breakout time to "at least one year," from current two-month estimates.
"We cannot let a totally unachievable ideal stand in the way of a good deal," Rice said, adding that "soundbites won't stop Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon."
Rather, "strong diplomacy backed by pressure can."