Iran’s Supreme Leader has reiterated his anti-American stance this past Saturday, when he was quoted in a sermon in Tehran as stating that he would stand firm in negotiations with the United States and refused to “capitulate”. When the crowd in attendance began chanting “death to America”, Khamanei was quoted as stating “Of course yes, death to America, because America is the original source of this pressure.” The words of Khamenei, who has the last word on all matters of foreign policy in Iran, should be indicative of the true feelings of the Iranian regime towards nuclear negotiations.
Khamenei’s comments come at a crucial time in regards to these nuclear negotiations, and his inflammatory comments stand in direct contrast with the idea that the Iranian regime can become a respectable member of the Iranian community. These latest comments show the regimes continual desire to cast itself as victim in these negotiations, despite their repeated violations of Security Council resolutions.
The regimes fervor to obtain sanctions relief is based on the regimes own insecurity with a discontented domestic population. The Iranian people continue to view economic stability and growth as a more pressing issue than nuclear capabilities, yet the regime has sought to quell domestic dissent using terror and repression.
Further proof of Iran’s aggression can be seen in its actions in Syria, Iraq and now Yemen, as it employs expansionist policies designed to provoke instability and insecurity throughout the region. All of these actions have been employed in pursuit of the regimes ultimate goal, which is to acquire nuclear weapons and prolong an unpopular theocratic dictatorship.
The rhetoric espoused by Khamenei, coupled with the regime’s refusal to to implement any “irreversible” steps in regards to its nuclear program, should send a clear message to the international community that this regime is no partner for peace.