President Trump brought senior members of his national security team along with him to Camp David this weekend to brief Republican leaders in Congress about a range of foreign issues facing the U.S. Among an array of issues to discuss, was the massive protests in Iran.
CIA Director Mike Pompeo was one of the administration officials on hand at Camp David to keep lawmakers abreast of the U.S. position on foreign policy issues.
Mr. Pompeo was interviewed on Jan. 7th on CBS Face the nation, where he was asked a number of questions regarding the security and foreign policy of the United States.
The interview also covered the continuous protests and uprisings in Iran.
John Dickerson of CBS asked the CIA director that in Iran, what's the significance of the protests so far? And is this a turning point? Or is this just a flash point and the regime will continue to have power?
Mr. Pompeo replied "Difficult to know analytically if this is a turning point. But it is different. The protests that we saw in 1999 and 2009 were from elites. This was not that. These were ordinary Iranians. The same people who would enlist in the IRGC, their neighbors are now the ones out protesting. They're protesting because they've seen the failed promises of Rouhani and Zarif, that they haven't been able to deliver the economic outcomes that they said. They said they'd get the JCPOA and food would be plentiful, that commerce would reign, and that jobs would arise. And that simply hasn't happened.
Dickerson asked, so in that sense has the Iran deal forced destabilization in Iran? And is therefore that good for- in terms of U.S. interests?
Mike Pompeo said "what is clear is that there have been economic difficulties in Iran in places outside of Tehran. There is massive unemployment. What the Iranian people were promised, has not happened. They can see that. And thus they have taken to the streets.