The Corner

Supreme Leader Ridicules Obama, Condemns U.S.

The Supreme Leader Khamenei receives a delegation of Iranian students on the occasion of the Students’ Day. Below are excerpts of his speech, provided by Ali Alfoneh (The CIA’s Open Source Center only has translated one paragraph, but far more is relevant).

 ”The United States of America is an imperialist power in the true sense of the word. It is not only an issue for us, but an issue for the world, the world of Islam…”

 ”In Iraq, the plan of the United States is to establish [military bases] and remain there 50 to 100 years. And in Afghanistan – since Afghanistan is a place where – should they have bases there – they can achieve superiority over the countries in South West Asia, Russia, China, India, Pakistan and Iran – they are trying to establish permanent bases and remain. This is the meaning of imperialism…”

 ”From the very first months [of the revolution], they showed us their naked sword and the Embassy became the center of conspiracy, the Den of Espionage, a center for provocation of this and that person, so that they could defeat the Islamic Republic. This was the big mistake of the Americans. After this they did whatever they could with the Islamic Republic, with our dear nation and with our country. One example is the attack against Tabas [the U.S. attempt to rescue the hostages during the Carter administration]. Another example is the downing of our passenger flight where they killed around 300 people in the Persian Gulf… Another example is attack against our oil platforms…Another example is all out help to the villain Saddam so that they could make him victor in the war against us and deal a blow to the Islamic Republic…”

 ”This new President of America said beautiful things. He sent us messages constantly, both orally and written: ‘Come and let us turn the page, come and create a new situation, come and let us cooperate in solving the problems of the world.’ It reached this degree! We said that we should not be prejudiced, that we will look at their deeds. They said we want change. We said, well, let us see the change. On March 21, when I delivered a speech in Mashhad, I said that if there is an iron fist under the velvet glove and you extend a hand towards us we will not extend our hand. This was the warning I made eight months ago. During the past eight months, what we have seen is contrary to what they orally express and pretend. On the surface the issue is this: Let us negotiation. But besides negotiation, there is threat. If the negotiation does not reach a desirable result, we will do this and that! What kind of negotiation is this? Is it not the wolf and sheep relationship where the Imam [Khomeini] said ‘We don’t want the relationship of the wolf and the sheep’? ‘Do come and negotiate with us at the table about this issue’, for example the nuclear issue, ‘but conditioned upon the negotiation reaching this particular result!’ For example abstaining from nuclear activity. And if this end is not reached ‘we will do this and that.’ Threats.

 I am amazed. Why don’t they learn from the past? Why don’t they want to know our nation…?”

“When the United States abandons imperialism, the day it abstains from intervening without any reason in the affairs of the nations it will be a state like all other states and it will also be a state like other states for us. But as long as the Americans are longing for returning to Iran and renewing events of the past, and want to change history and bring the time back and want control us they will not by any means force our nation to retreat, and they should know this. They should not rest their hopes in the unrest which happened after the election. The Islamic Republic is stronger than such things. It is deeper than this. It has greater roots than this. The Islamic Republic emerged victorious from much more difficult events. Now, four people – either simpletons, with or without a certain motive – or bad and ill wishing and with evil intents, coupled with simplicity and naive understanding of affairs tried to challenge the Islamic Republic. They can’t roll out the red carpet for the United States in our country. They should know this. The Iranian nation resists.”

Michael Rubin is a resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute, senior lecturer at the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Civil-Military Relations, and a senior editor of the Middle East Quarterly.