On Tuesday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s “Andrea Mitchell Reports,” NBC News National Security and Global Affairs Reporter Dan De Luce pointed out that even if Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi is wrong when he claims that the country can use the money it gets access to under its prisoner swap with the U.S. however it wants, money is fungible, and “if you get $6 billion, that frees up other money” for other purposes.
De Luce stated, “That’s the criticism, right? That, on the one hand, the money is monitored. It is tracked. It’s in Qatar. It’s not sitting in a bank in Tehran. And they can only use it for these items that are not under sanctions, for food or medicine. However, if you get $6 billion, that frees up other money. So, obviously, critics are honing in on that and saying, essentially, we’re allowing them — we’re freeing up money that they would like to use for other purposes. But we should mention that every administration has these terrible dilemmas, what to do when you have Americans held in these kinds of countries? And there isn’t a lot of leverage. And they did have leverage with this frozen money. So, the argument they have is, we had to use this leverage to get them out. But it is already becoming a real kind of lightning rod here in Washington.”