Says U.S. ‘Maximum Pressure’ Policy Has Failed
TEHRAN (Dispatches) – Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei said on Friday Iran will not open talks with the United States that will only benefit Donald Trump, adding the U.S. president’s sanctions policy has failed.
Tensions between Tehran and Washington have been rising since 2018, when Trump withdrew the United States from a landmark nuclear accord and unilaterally reimposed the most inhuman sanctions ever on Iran.
"The sanctions are a crime against a nation; even though it seems to be against the establishment, it is indeed against the entire nation,” said Ayatollah Khamenei in a televised speech.
"But the smart Iranian nation has made the best use of this attack, this animosity and benefited... by using sanctions as a means to increase national self-reliance.”
Ayatollah Khamenei said Western "think tanks admit that the maximum pressure of sanctions and U.S. force has not succeeded.”
Iran has responded to sanctions by boosting its non-oil exports, particularly to neighboring countries. "This has caused the country’s economy to be naturally less reliant on oil,” Ayatollah Khamenei said.
The Leader said surrendering to the enemy is not the way to lift the sanctions. "The only cure for sanctions is rather relying on domestic capabilities.”
"Some argue and propagate the idea that if you want to stop the U.S. from bullying, you need to back off. No sir! A person who is accustomed to aggression will come forward if you back off. This is a clear and natural issue. If you accept the U.S. demands, they will raise new demands.
"What the U.S. wants is that we totally abandon our nuclear industry, reduce our defensive equipment to one-tenth, and give up our regional power,” the Leader said.
"Unfortunately, some people, under the influence of the enemy, say what good nuclear power has got for us. Nuclear power is the definite need for our country’s future. We need at least 20,000 or 30,000 megawatts of nuclear power, which we cannot get from any other source, unless it is not cost-effective. What should we do on the day we needed it? Whose door should we go to? Should we beg from America and Europe to give us electricity or do enrichment for us? Will they do that? We have to think about tomorrow. These are not the needs that will be ready in a few months or two years. It must be prepared in advance and we have prepared the ground for it,” he added.
Ayatollah Khamenei said the "core” of the nuclear industry has been maintained despite numerous damage caused because of the 2015 nuclear deal, officially known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
The Leader denounced calls for Iran to open new talks with the United States, saying it is useless for Iran.
"Everyone must pay attention; I have said this for several times, and I have to repeat it, because some either fail to understand or pretend they can’t understand.
"If the enemy talks of negotiation, it means ‘come to the negotiating table and don’t develop missiles’. If you give in to their demands … you’d make yourself defenseless; and if you don’t, you’d have to face the same story: disputes, threats and sanctions again. This is what negotiation means.”
Without naming U.S. President
Donald Trump, the Leader said, "This old man in charge, he apparently made some propaganda use out of his negotiations with North Korea. Now he wants to use (talks with Iran) for the (November 3 U.S. presidential) election.”
However, Ayatollah Khamenei stressed, the ruling system in the U.S. seeks to achieve broader objectives beyond what the incumbent president seeks to gain from talks with Iran.
"They say you should abandon your defensive equipment, your regional power and national might. No man of honor interested in maintaining the country’s interests would give in to such demands. This is why I am opposed to negotiation; moreover, we are in talks with the entire world, except for the U.S, and the fake Zionist regime, and there’s no problem with that.”
Goals of Sanctions
Ayatollah Khamenei said the enemies of the Islamic Republic seek to achieve short-term, mid-term, and long-term goals by imposing sanctions against the Iranian nation.
In the short-term, they want to impose so much pressure that the nation gets weary, exhausted, and disturbed, so much so that they stand against the establishment, he said.
"You know that last year they said and this year they say there will be a hot summer – meaning the people should come and stand against the establishment, but they themselves got the hot summer,” the Leader said, apparently referring to anti-racism rallies which have been going on in the U.S. for two months now.
Their mid-term goal, he said, is to prevent the country’s development through sanctions.
"They mainly seek to prevent the country’s scientific development,” the Leader said, citing the assassination of Iranian nuclear scientists as an example of the enemy’s efforts to hinder the country’s scientific progress.
Ayatollah Khamenei said the enemy’s long-term goal is to lead the country and the government into bankruptcy.
"One of the other goals they pursue is to dismantle the country’s economy; if a country’s economy collapses, it is not possible to live in that country anymore.”
The enemies also seek to achieve a collateral goal, which is to cut the Islamic Republic’s ties with the resistance forces in the region, Ayatollah Khamenei noted. "That’s because they know the Islamic Republic will keep helping them as much as it can.”
The Leader said, "We have a strategic depth in the region, based on which many nations and governments are our supporters and interested in Iran, ready to strive in the service of our goals. The enemies say you ‘should give this up’, but even if we do that, they will not stop there.
"When you are willing to reduce your ability to defend yourself and destroy your power in the region; when you are willing to totally abandon your nuclear industry which is vital to the country, the enemy will not be satisfied yet and will demand something new,” the Leader said.
However, these dreams will never come true and as a Persian proverb says, "A camel dreams of cottonseed,” Ayatollah Khamenei added.
The Leader further pointed to a disinformation campaign, which works hand in hand with the sanctions and includes distortion of the truth and misrepresentation of the realities.
The main purpose of the disinformation campaign is to undermine the people’s morale, and to offer wrong solutions to people’s problems, Ayatollah Khamenei said.
The enemies, the Leader said, suggest that if Iran wants the sanctions to be lifted, it must give in to U.S. demands. "This is the gist of what they say.”
"Some people fall for such talks and exactly repeat what the enemies want, whether regarding the country’s weaknesses or its points of progress which they belittle and offer wrong solutions,” he said.
However, this campaign will fail to influence the majority of the Iranian people, because they have known the enemy and how biased it is, Ayatollah Khamenei added.
The Leader said the disinformation campaign tries to convince the Iranian people that the Islamic Republic must succumb to the U.S. demands.
"If the distortion process fails, so will the sanctions,” the Leader said. "The arena is the arena of war of wills; when the process of sanctions is defeated and the will of the Iranian nation remains the same, it will prevail over the will of the enemy.”