QUESTION: Senator, as a retired Navy chief, my thoughts are often with those who serve our country. I know both candidates, both of you, expressed support for Israel.
If, despite your best diplomatic efforts, Iran attacks Israel, would you be willing to commit U.S. troops in support and defense of Israel? Or would you wait on approval from the U.N. Security Council?
MCCAIN: Well, thank you, Terry (ph). And thank you for your service to the country.
I want to say, everything I ever learned about leadership I learned from a chief petty officer. And I thank you, and I thank you, my friend. Thanks for serving.
Let -- let -- let me say that we obviously would not wait for the United Nations Security Council. I think the realities are that both Russia and China would probably pose significant obstacles.
And our challenge right now is the Iranians continue on the path to acquiring nuclear weapons, and it's a great threat. It's not just a threat -- threat to the state of Israel. It's a threat to the stability of the entire Middle East.
If Iran acquires nuclear weapons, all the other countries will acquire them, too. The tensions will be ratcheted up.
What would you do if you were the Israelis and the president of a country says that they are -- they are determined to wipe you off the map, calls your country a stinking corpse?
Now, Sen. Obama without precondition wants to sit down and negotiate with them, without preconditions. That's what he stated, again, a matter of record.
I want to make sure that the Iranians are put enough -- that we put enough pressure on the Iranians by joining with our allies, imposing significant, tough sanctions to modify their behavior. And I think we can do that.
I think, joining with our allies and friends in a league of democracies, that we can effectively abridge their behavior, and hopefully they would abandon this quest that they are on for nuclear weapons.
But, at the end of the day, my friend, I have to tell you again, and you know what it's like to serve, and you know what it's like to sacrifice, but we can never allow a second Holocaust to take place.