TEL AVIV – A senior Iranian official goaded President Donald Trump on Sunday, insisting the U.S. would suffer an “unprecedented defeat” at the hands of an “iron dam” like Iran.
Ali Akbar Velayati, head of the Expediency Council’s Strategic Research Center, told the semi-official Tasnim news agency that a “calculating newcomer” like Trump wouldn’t dare confront Iran, which is far more powerful than other countries the U.S. has come up against.
Velayati was responding to Trump’s veiled warning on Friday to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in which he said Rouhani “better be careful” about threatening the U.S.
“We are by no means worried about Trump’s comments,” Velayati said, adding that despite Trump’s public rhetoric, the president is a calculating politician. Furthermore, the Iranian official told Tasnim, the opposition Trump faces at home among the media, judiciary and influential politicians will prevent him from doing what he wants with Iran.
Velayati, who also served as Iran’s foreign minister, said the Islamic Republic was not seeking war against any country, but would not waste a moment defending itself if necessary.
His comments come after Rouhani addressed the Iranian people on Friday in an event to commemorate the 38th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution.
“We are experiencing conditions in which some novices have come to power in the region, in the world and in the U.S. as they should all know that they have to talk to the Iranian nation with the language of respect and dignity,” Rouhani said.
The following day, head of Iran’s Strategic Council on Foreign Relations Kamal Kharrazi described the new president as “a rookie person and a newcomer on the political scene [who] has made many mistakes.”
The commemoration of the revolution was marked with hundreds of thousands of people taking to the streets and celebrating by burning effigies of Trump and chanting “Death to America,” and “Death to Israel.”