Speaking at a gathering commemorating the 38th anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei’s top military aide the Trump administration’s latest warnings and emphasized that Iran’s growing military power will deter the United States and its allies from threatening the Islamic Republic.

 

“Iran’s foreign and trans-regional enemies, particularly the evil American, Zionist and British triangle and their puppets in the region cannot pose serious military threats to us,” General Rahim Safavi told revolutionary marchers in Iran’s southwestern city of Ahwaz, adding that Iran has become so powerful that it “can inflict unpredictable blows to the enemies of Islam and Iran in case of any potential aggression.” But he cautioned against underestimating Iran’s enemies and called for further strengthening Iran’s military power and economy.

Separately, Brigadier General Amir Ali Hajizadeh, the commander of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (I.R.G.C.) Aerospace Force, and hailed the country’s ability to produce advanced missiles.

Comment: Since Donald Trump took office last month, tension between Washington and Tehran has been escalating rapidly. After Iran test-fired a ballistic missile on January 28, the Trump administration officially put Iran “on notice” and imposed new sanctions on Iranian entities. Washington also warned Tehran about the latter’s support for regional terrorist and militant groups. But instead of defusing tension with Washington, Iranian leaders have only doubled down on their provocative actions by testing new missiles and continuing, and in some cases increasing, support for their regional proxies. Rahim Safavi is a close confidante of Khamenei and he also served as the chief of commander of the I.R.G.C. Thus, his views reflect those of both the Supreme Leader and Iran’s elite military forces.