TEL AVIV – A top general in Iran’s Revolutionary Guards over the weekend warned the U.S. to “be wise” and “avoid threats” against the Islamic republic.
“The U.S. statesmen should be very wise and avoid threatening Iran, because the entire world has admitted this fact that the Americans cannot do such a thing,” said Brigadier General Mohammad Pakpour, chief of the IRGC’s ground forces, according to the semi-official Fars news agency. Pakpour was referring to alleged threats of “military aggression” against Iran, Fars reported.
“Hence, they are unlikely to do such a move because it is unwise,” he added.
The IRGC’s deputy commander for political affairs, Rasul Sanayee Rad, echoed Pakpour’s comments, saying on Iranian state TV on Friday that, “today we are enjoying deterrence, meaning that we have dissuaded the enemy from attack.”
The Trump administration imposed new sanctions on 25 entities connected to Iran’s missile program after ballistic missile tests were carried out in January, violating UN Resolution 2231.
National Security Adviser Mike Flynn warned that he was “putting Iran on notice” following the tests and President Donald Trump vowed that “nothing is off the table” if the Islamic Republic refused to toe the line.
Ignoring U.S. warnings, Pakpour also said Saturday that the Revolutionary Guards would go ahead with its plans to launch military drills next week that would include rockets.
“The maneuvers called ‘Grand Prophet 11’ will start Monday and last three days,” Pakpour told a news conference.
Vice President Mike Pence on Saturday told an international security conference in Munich that Tehran was “the leading state sponsor of terrorism.”
“Thanks to the end of nuclear-related sanctions under the [deal], Iran now has additional resources to devote to these efforts,” Pence said.
“Let me be clear again: Under President Trump the United States will remain fully committed to ensuring that Iran never obtains a nuclear weapon capable of threatening our countries, our allies in the region, especially Israel,” the vice president added.
Earlier this week, Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei vowed resistance to Trump’s “measures and threats” and mockingly thanked the president for saving Iran a great deal of trouble by “revealing the real face of America,” characterized by “political, economic, moral and social corruption.”