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Aftershocks of U.S. blacklisting Zarif

Iranian regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei with Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif
Iranian regime Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei with Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif

Analysis by PMOI/MEK


Iran, Aug 5, 2019 - Following Iranian regime President Hassan Rouhani’s angry statement and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) announcement, Iranian officials continue to express their worries about the blacklisting of their chief apologist, Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif.

“Now it’s clear that they’re lying about their intent to negotiate,” said First Vice President Eshagh Jahangiri.

“The U.S. intent from blacklisting Zarif is to shut down the Islamic Republic’s voice in the world,” said government spokesman Ali Rabiei.

Fearing decreasing morale among the regime’s armed forces, Defense Minister Amir Hatami said, “[Iranian regime Supreme Leader Ali] Khamenei has said there will be no war nor any negotiations. Our forces will defend Zarif unequivocally.”

In Tehran’s Friday prayers, where the imam usually expresses the regime’s official position on important matters confirmed by Khamenei himself, Mohammad Javad Haj Ali Akbari, the temporary Friday prayer imam, said that blacklisting Zarif was the result of Khamenei’s “no war, no negotiations” policy.

“Indeed, it’s an honor for Mr. Zarif and the Foreign Ministry that the honorable Foreign Minister has been blacklisted and that the Americans have sanctioned them. However, this approach shows how low the diplomatic apparatus and the ruling elite of the U.S. have sunken to,” Haj Ali Akbar said, adding this is the result of the “resistance narrative” and that the “no war no negotiations” policy has had its impact.

Alireza Rahimi, a member of the regime’s Majlis (parliament) Board of Directors says, “… increasing tensions in the political field will result in more tensions elsewhere.”

Mojtaba Zolnour, chair of the Majlis National Security and Foreign Affairs committee said, “Those who previously thought we could negotiate with the U.S. should now, after Zarif’s sanctioning, realize that one cannot trust the U.S.”

Meanwhile, an Iranian pundit compared Zarif’s blacklisting with the Foreign Minister of Nazi Germany, saying such sanctions have not been seen since World War II.

Joachim von Ribbentrop was Germany’s Foreign Minister from 1938 to 1945. Ribbentrop was also Germany’s Ambassador to the United Kingdom from 1936 to 1938 when then UK Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain failed in his attempt to appease Hitler.

In the aftermath of WWII, Ribbentrop was put on trial in Nuremberg and found guilty of participating in the initiation of the war and the Holocaust, and was the first of the Nazi war criminals to be hanged on 16 October 1946.

Following the designation of Javad Zarif, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a written statement, “Foreign Minister Zarif is a key enabler of Ayatollah Khamenei’s policies throughout the region and around the world.”

“He’s just as complicit in the regime’s outlaw behavior as the rest of [Khamenei’s] mafia,” he added.