Iranian hardliners have once more threatened the United States, Britain and France with escalation of the war in Gaza, as they avoid direct involvement.
The latest threat came in the form of a resolution Saturday, delivered at the end of the state-organized rally to mark the anniversary of the infamous 1979 takeover of the US embassy in Tehran.
In that attack 44 years ago, hardline supporters of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the founder of the Islamic Republic, stormed the US embassy and took more than 50 US personnel hostage for 444 days.
“Our guns are restless and your skulls are in sight,” was perhaps the most explicit part of the resolution, addressing “the US, Britain, and France.”
Such resolutions in Iran are, in fact, pieces of official propaganda and not independent positions expressed in popular events. This latest one comes in the wake of the admission by Ali Khamenei, Leader of the Islamic Republic that “Death to America is not just a slogan, it’s a policy.”
The regime in Iran has been markedly aggressive in tone since Hamas attacked Israel, trying perhaps to make up for its lack of direct action in support of Hamas.
“The Axis of Resistance is not limited to Gaza and Palestine,” the rally resolution reads. “If the bombardment and the barbaric slaughter of the oppressed people of Gaza does not stop, you shouldn’t consider any scenario unlikely.”
Despite the rhetoric, the Iranian regime has so far avoided conflict with Israel and has utilized loyal militants in Yemen, Syria and Iraq instead. The strongest of these groups, Hezbollah of Lebanon, has followed, so far staying away from an open, full-blown war with Israel.
In his much-anticipated speech Friday, Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah was quite diplomatic, not committing his forces to what could be a disastrous war with Israel.
Nasrallah put much stress on the operational independence of Hamas, which he claims, had kept secret their October 7 attack from Hezbollah and Iran.
In Washington, the State Department issued a statement on the anniversary of the storming of the US embassy in Tehran.
“The Iranian regime has a long history of unjustly detaining foreign nationals that continues today,” reads the statement. “We condemn Iran’s continued detention of foreign citizens for use as bargaining chips.”
Today marks 44 years since followers of Ayatollah Khomeini overtook U.S. Embassy Tehran, holding our diplomats hostage for 444 days. We condemn the Iranian regime’s continued support for hostage-taking and unjust detention of citizens from other countries. https://t.co/eq8IMyoPsU
— Matthew Miller (@StateDeptSpox) November 4, 2023
In September, the Biden administration managed to negotiate the release of five Iranian-Americans who were held hostage in Iran. To do so, it agreed to unfreeze $6 billion of Iran’s frozen oil revenues.
The deal was widely criticized even before it materialized. The criticism, however, became harsher after Hamas attacked Israel on October 7, killing 1400 and taking at least 200 hostage.
Biden critics claim there’s a direct link between the deal and the attack, since Hamas is supported and funded by the regime in Iran. Many also point out the fact that Iran’s oil revenue has rapidly increased during his tenure, allowing the regime to fund its “malign” activities.
House Majority Leader Steve Scalise repeated this attack line Friday –setting the state for the House to pass a bill to further restrict Iran’s oil exports.
“Iran has made $80 billion selling oil since Biden took office—as they bankroll Hamas’s terror,” he posted on X. “The House Republican Majority will take strong action to sanction their oil exports. Biden must be with us.”
Iran has made $80 BILLION selling oil since Biden took office—as they bankroll Hamas’s terror.
Biden lets them make billions while blocking U.S. oil production. Shameful.
The House Republican Majority will take strong action to sanction their oil exports. Biden must be with us. pic.twitter.com/XuHLIYcvR5
— Steve Scalise (@SteveScalise) November 2, 2023
Source » iranintl