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Hundreds of thousands rally in Iran against Trump, chant ‘Death to America’: TV

February 11, 2017 Leave a comment

FILE PHOTO: Iran's national flags are seen on a square in Tehran

Parisa Hafezi

ANKARA (Reuters) – Hundreds of thousands of Iranians rallied on Friday to swear allegiance to the clerical establishment following U.S. President Donald Trump’s warning that he had put the Islamic Republic “on notice”, state TV reported.

On the anniversary of Iran’s 1979 Islamic Revolution, which toppled the U.S.-backed shah, marchers including hundreds of military personnel and policemen headed towards Tehran’s Azadi (Freedom) Square.

They carried “Death to America” banners and effigies of Trump, while a military police band played traditional Iranian revolutionary songs.

State TV showed footage of people stepping on Trump’s picture in a central Tehran street. Marchers carried the Iranian flag and banners saying: “Thanks Mr. Trump for showing the real face of America.”

“America and Trump cannot do a damn thing. We are ready to sacrifice our lives for our leader”, a young Iranian man told state TV in a reference to Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.

Last week, Trump put Iran “on notice” in reaction to a Jan. 29 Iranian missile test and imposed fresh sanctions on individuals and entities. Iran said it will not halt its missile program.

Iranian leading religious and political figures, including Pragmatist President Hassan Rouhani had called on Iranians to join the rally on Friday to “show their unbreakable ties with the Supreme Leader and the Islamic Republic”.

VIGILANT

In a speech marking the revolution’s anniversary, Rouhani urged Iran’s faction-ridden elite to seek unity amid increased tensions with the United States.

“Some inexperienced figures in the region and America are threatening Iran … They should know that the language of threats has never worked with Iran,” Rouhani told the crowd at Azadi Square.

“Our nation is vigilant and will make those threatening Iran regret it … They should learn to respect Iran and Iranians … We will strongly confront any war-mongering policies.”

The rallies were rife with anti-U.S. and anti-Israeli sentiment. Some carried pictures of Trump, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and British Prime Minister Theresa May captioned “Death to the Devil Triangle”.

“This turnout of people is a strong response to false remarks by the new leaders of America,” Rouhani told state TV, which said millions had turned out at rallies across Iran.

U.S. flags were burned as is traditional although many Iranians on social media such as Twitter and Facebook used the hashtag #LoveBeyondFlags to urge an end to flag-burning during the anniversary.

They also thanked Americans for opposing Trump’s executive order banning entry to the United States to travellers from seven mainly Muslim countries, including Iran. Trump’s travel ban is being challenged in U.S. courts.

Some marchers carried banners that read : “Thanks to American people for supporting Muslims”.

Both U.S.-based social media sites are blocked in Iran by a wide-reaching government censor but they are still commonly used by millions of Iranians who use special software to get around the restrictions. Iranian officials, including Khamenei, have Twitter and Facebook accounts despite the ban.

Trump has criticized a nuclear deal reached between Iran, the United States and other major powers in 2015 aimed at curbing the country’s nuclear work. Most of the sanctions imposed on Iran were lifted last year under the deal.

Rouhani defended the deal, which his hardline rivals oppose as a concession to pressure from Washington, saying it protected the Islamic Republic’s rights to nuclear power, ending Iran’s political isolation and crippling economic sanctions.

(Writing by Parisa Hafezi; editing by Ralph Boulton; Editing by Catherine Evans)

Iran pledges missile retaliation to ‘confront’ US warning ‘DARK DAYS’ ahead for Trump

February 11, 2017 Leave a comment

IRANIANS have taken to the street carrying “death to America” banners as the Ayatollah pledged to “confront” the US over the missile threat.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and a missile in Iran

Source: Daily Star

Supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei sneered at Trump’s threats over Iran’s nuclear programme after the Middle Eastern power fired a missile last week.

Trump had warned Iran was “on notice” and “playing with fire” but Tehran is continuing its missile drills – firing another weapon on Sunday.

Earlier this week Khamenei struck back after a meeting with his military leaders and promised the nation is planning to respond to mark today’s anniversary of the Iran’s revolution in 1979.

Since then Trump’s adminstration has threatened to blacklist Iran’s elite military force the Revolutionary Guard as terrorists as tensions continue to brew.

Ali Akbar Velayati, foreign-affairs adviser the Ayatollahi, said “Washington does not dare carry out its military threats against Iran”.

“The Americans know very well that Iran and its allies in the region would retaliate very hard, that will make America face dark days to come,” he said.

Hundreds of thousands of Iranians are rallying across the country to celebrate the 38th anniversary of the revolution.

Carrying “Death to America” banners and effigies of Trump, Iranians in Tehran marched towards the Freedom Square.

“No enemy can paralyse the Iranian nation,” Khamenei was quoted as saying by his website after a meeting with his commanders in Tehran.

The meeting came after Trump’s administration slapped a new raft of sanctions on Iran and deployed a destroyer off Yemen in move to intimidate Tehran’s allies the Houthi rebels.

Today sees Iran mark the Islamic Revolution which saw the overthrow of the US-backed Pahlavi dynasty and the establishment of a republic beneath the Ayatollah.

Iran's Revolutionary Guard

Khamenei said: “Trump says ‘you should be afraid of me’. No.

“The Iranian people will respond to his words on Febuary 10, and will show their stance against such threats.”

He added: “We are thankful to (Trump) for making our life easy as he showed the real face of America.

“During his election campaign and after that, he confirmed what we have been saying for more than 30 years about the political, economic, moral and social corruption in the US ruling system.”

Iran Set To Increase Nuclear Resources By 60%…Using Obama’s End-Term Deal To Allow ‘Research’

February 8, 2017 Leave a comment

Iran scientists

Before we get started, what is one of the worst things that you can think of? Among the top answers should be Hillary Clinton as president, Iran with nuclear capabilities, and ISIS getting bigger than they already are.

Now two of those options are thankfully not true, as Hillary was defeated in a landslide against President Donald Trump and ISIS has been dealing with Secretary of Defense James Mattis, who has been leveling strikes against the terror group since he was confirmed.

However the other option up there is unfortunately occurring. Iran is getting more and more nuclear power, thanks in no small part to the nuclear deal that they signed with former President Obama. The mere thought of Iran having a stockpile of uranium is enough to make world leaders lose sleep, so the thought of them having a giant supply is grounds for a horror film.

Unfortunately this is real life as the nuclear chief of Iran has said that once they receive another shipment, they will have 60 percent more stockpiled uranium than it did prior to the nuclear deal. That’s not a misrepresentation either; as they really have that much stockpiled uranium.

Iran's Supreme Leader occasionally tweets about Israel's demise.

Since early 2016, Iran has received 210 tons of natural uranium. According to Ali Akbar Salehi, who was quoted by the semi-official Fars news agency on Sunday, they are expected to receive a final batch of uranium. They are expected to receive 149 tons of natural uranium by Tuesday.

Doing simple math, the total brings us to 359 tons of uranium that has been given to Iran as a result of this deal. Considering that one of the shipments was around 133 tons and that was enough to make 10 nuclear warheads, they have nearly tripled that amount with how much they have stockpiled.

Obviously that much uranium is enough to raise concerns. It’s an element that is crucial into developing nuclear weapons. That means that all Iran has to do is highly enrich it to create a stockpile of nuclear weapons.

As we have seen from history class, nuclear weapons have a tremendous amount of power and they are extremely deadly. Therefore there should be something done to make sure that rogue nations, like Iran, aren’t receiving more uranium!

That was something that President Obama never bothered to do. Instead he literally did the opposite and gave them more uranium. They’re going to have 60 percent more of it than they did prior to Obama’s deal being signed. How in the world is that helping out the world?

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Under Obama’s nuclear deal, the International Atomic Energy Agency supervises the importing of uranium. Isn’t it a little concerning that this agency isn’t saying anything against that much uranium going to a nation that has expressed publicly about destroying the United States?

Iran has claimed that they are not going to use the stockpiled uranium for nuclear causes. There are other uses for uranium that are not giant death machines. Low-enriched uranium can be used for civilian applications, including medical research. However there is still a chance that they could make the uranium highly enriched, therefore endangering the world.

Part of the deal required Iran to curb their enrichment practices and place their nuclear program under international surveillance. In addition to getting more uranium, they would have several sanctions lifted off of them. These sanctions were put in place to cripple the Iran economy to make sure that they don’t continue to break the rules.

While the medical research would greatly help the people of Iran, that can only happen if they stick to their word, which is something that Iran has had a lot of trouble doing.

Part of the problem is that Iran has broken the nuclear deal twice and nothing has been done to reprimand them. The second time that they had broken the deal they were stockpiling something called “heavy water” which is used in the creation of nuclear weapons.

The other thing to worry about is how much money that the former president has given Iran. Obama gave $1.3 billion to Iran on top of the $400 million that they received in exchange for the release of four hostages. To this day, we have no idea why the extra money was sent.

The other thing that causes concern is the fact that Iran was smuggling missile technology into their country. This was against the rules that the United Nations had placed on the country. As of right now, the only thing that has been done is the acknowledgement that technology was captured.

Part of President Trump’s campaign promise was to renegotiate the nuclear deal, as he has repeatedly said that it was one of the worst deals he has seen. Iran has also heard of Trump’s campaign promise and they struck back, saying that they are not going to renegotiate the deal.

Share this article with everyone to show that as a result of Obama’s nuclear deal, Iran now has 60 percent more uranium than when the deal was originally signed. Now it’s true that Iran might not totally enrich the uranium for nuclear weapons, but considering everything that they have said about the United States, that remains an empty promise.

Iran’s top leader mocks ‘newcomer’ Trump

February 8, 2017 Leave a comment

Iran's top leader mocks 'newcomer' Trump

TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — Iran’s supreme leader said Tuesday that “newcomer” President Donald Trump had shown the “real face” of the United States, after the American leader accused Iran of being ungrateful for sanctions relief approved by the Obama administration and vowed a tougher stance.

Last week, after Iran tested a ballistic missile, Trump tweeted that the country was “playing with fire,” saying they “don’t appreciate how ‘kind’ President (Barack) Obama was to them. Not me!”

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, who makes the final decisions on all major policies in Iran, appeared to respond to the tweet in a remarks carried by State TV. “Why should we be thankful to the previous U.S. administration?” he said. “Because it imposed anti-Iranian sanctions? Because of the extremist Islamic State group? Setting the region on fire in Iraq and Syria?”

He went on to mock Trump, saying: “We are thankful to Mr. Newcomer, of course, since he has shown the real face of the U.S. and proved what Iran has said for 38 years about the political, economic, social and moral corruption of the U.S. government.”

He added that the Iranian people “are not afraid of any threat.”

Trump has repeatedly criticized the 2015 nuclear agreement between Iran, the U.S. and five other world powers, in which Tehran agreed to curb its uranium enrichment in exchange for the lifting of international sanctions, but he has not said what he plans to do about it.

His administration said Iran was “on notice” over the missile test, and imposed new sanctions on more than two dozen Iranian companies and individuals.

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, a moderate who has worked to improve relations with the West, said earlier Tuesday that the nuclear agreement could serve as a blueprint for resolving other Middle East disputes.

As an example, he pointed to Russian-led negotiations in Kazakhstan aimed at firming up a shaky Syrian cease-fire and paving the way for the revival of peace talks to end that country’s nearly six-year civil war. Iran and Russia are close allies of Syrian President Bashar Assad, while the U.S. and other Western countries support the rebels fighting to topple him.

Iran’s missile test ‘not a message’ to Trump

February 7, 2017 Leave a comment

Iran's President Hassan Rouhani gestures as he speaks during a ceremony marking National Day of Space Technology in Tehran, Iran February 1, 2017. President.ir/Handout via REUTERS

 

Iran said on Monday a recent missile trial launch was not intended to send a message to new U.S. President Donald Trump and to test him, since after a series of policy statements Iranian officials already “know him quite well”.

Iran test-fired a new ballistic missile last week, prompting Washington to impose some new sanctions on Tehran. Trump tweeted that Tehran, which has cut back its nuclear program under a 2015 deal with world powers easing economic sanctions, was “playing with fire”.

Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qasemi was quoted by Tasnim news agency as saying: “Iran’s missile test was not a message to the new U.S. government.

“There is no need to test Mr Trump as we have heard his views on different issues in recent days… We know him quite well.”

Iran has test-fired several ballistic missiles since the 2015 deal, but the latest test on January 29 was the first since Trump entered the White House. Trump said during his election campaign that he would stop Iran’s missile program.

Qasemi said The U.S. government was “still in an unstable stage” and Trump’s comments were “contradictory”.

“We are waiting to see how the U.S. government will act in different international issues to evaluate their approach.”

Despite heated words between Tehran and Washington, U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said on Saturday he was not considering strengthening U.S. forces in the Middle East to address Iran’s “misbehavior”.

Hamid Aboutalebi, deputy chief of staff of Iran’s President Hassan Rouhani, tweeted on Monday that the U.S. government “should de-escalate regional tension not adding to it”, and Washington should “interact with Iran” rather than challenging it.

Iran announced on Saturday that it will issue visas for a U.S. wrestling team to attend the Freestyle World Cup competition, reversing a decision to ban visas for the team in retaliation for an executive order by Trump banning visas for Iranians.

(Reporting by Bozorgmehr Sharafedin; editing by Ralph Boulton)

 

Video: 5 Signs We’re Probably Going to War with Iran

February 6, 2017 Leave a comment

Iran holds military exercises in response to U.S. sanctions

February 5, 2017 Leave a comment

Iran on Saturday began massive military exercises in a defiant response to a week of warnings from the Trump administration, including new sanctions, with a senior Iranian military commander calling the actions “futile” and threatening to “rain” missiles down on the country’s enemies.

The Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, Iran’s most influential security institution, said it would test missile and radar systems as part of the drill, according to the state-run Islamic Republic News Agency. And a statement on the IRGC website said that the aim of the exercise was “to showcase the power of Iran’s revolution and to dismiss the sanctions,” Reuters reported.

“Should the enemy make a mistake, our roaring missiles will rain down on them,” IRGC Air Force commander, Gen. Amir Ali Hazjizadeh, told the semi-official Tasnim news agency.

Iran also threatened its own sanctions on unnamed U.S. individuals and companies, saying it would “take action” against those it deemed “to have played a role in generating and supporting extremist terrorist groups.” The statement from Iran’s foreign ministry came a day after the Trump administration announced new sanctions on individuals working on Iran’s ballistic missile programs, as well as those who have helped the IRGC support U.S.-designated terrorist groups.

Those sanctions were in response to Iran’s successful testing of a medium-range ballistic missile last week, which the United States says is a violation of the 2015 nuclear deal aimed at curbing Iran’s nuclear weapons development. President Trump this week said that Iran was “playing with fire” and that Iran had been put “on notice” for the missile test. Defense Secretary James Mattis also called Iran the “biggest state sponsor of terrorism” on Friday.

At least three types of missiles were scheduled to be tested during the drills in Iran on Saturday, the privately-owned Mehr News Agency reported, as well as radar systems and cyber warfare technology. The drills capped off a week of rising tensions between the United States and Iran, which the Trump administration has also faulted for an attack by Iran-aligned Houthi rebels on a Saudi Arabian frigate off the coast of western Yemen.

For nearly two years, the United States has supported a Saudi-led coalition in a devastating war in Yemen. The United Nations says 10,000 civilians have died in the fighting.

Experts say the escalation between the United States and Iran probably won’t unravel the nuclear deal, a multilateral agreement made to ease sanctions on Iran exchange for the country halting its nuclear weapons program. The deal was negotiated by the so-called P5+1, including China, France, Russia, Britain, the United States, and Germany.

“Trump is unlikely to tear up the deal and shoulder the full wrath of the international community,” Cliff Kupchan, chairman of political risk firm, Eurasia Group, wrote in a briefing note this week.

In addition to the multilateral deal, a follow-up resolution from the U.N. Security Council also calls on Iran to refrain from testing ballistic missiles capable of nuclear payloads. But there is disagreement over whether such tests violate the resolution — Iran insists the missile tests are part of its conventional weapons program and do not violate the nuclear agreement.

Throughout his campaign for the presidency, Trump blasted the nuclear deal and vowed to renegotiate the terms.

“US-Iran relations will be volatile under the Trump Administration,” Kupchan wrote. And Trump “will likely implement sanctions more frequently.”

Iranian officials this week reiterated the country’s right to maintain defense capabilities. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif tweeted Friday that Iran was “unmoved” by the threats.

“We will never use our weapons against anyone, except in self-defense,” he said.

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