Responding to last week’s comments from US Secretary of State John Kerry that America’s military option against Iran was still on the table, Iran’s Defense Minister said his country was “ready to confront any hostile act by aggressors.”
“The continuation of such off-the-cuff remarks will create more hatred towards the US in the Iranian people as well as in regional and world nations,” continued Brigadier-General Hossein Dehqan, according to Iran’s PressTV on Wednesday. “It is surprising that so-called defenders of human rights, democracy and diplomacy still… think that they can serve their interests through bullying and aggression.”
“In any case,” said Dehqan, “it seems that the American officials’ statements are nothing more than a political bluff.”
Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps Navy Commander Ali Fadavi joined the criticism, telling “John Kerry and Obama to ask Reagan and [his Secretary of State] Caspar Weinberger about the abilities of the IRGC Navy during the war years. In [1988 and 1989] the Americans were frustrated by us in the Persian Gulf and officially announced their inability,” according to a translation by AEI’s Will Fulton.
“The military option is a laughable subject. Even John Kerry’s children snicker at it.”
Kerry told Al Arabiya in a January 23 interview that if Iran continues enrichment of uranium beyond permitted levels or break out toward a nuclear weapons capability, “then the military option that is available to the United States is ready and prepared to do what it would have to do.”
A six-month interim accord on Iran’s nuclear program was reached on November 24 in Geneva between the Islamic Republic and the P5+1 and went into effect last week. It can be extended up to a year.
Under the deal, Iran has agreed to halt production of 20-percent-enriched uranium, which is just short of bomb-making material. Iran will be able to continue enrichment up to 5%. It also will eliminate its stockpile of 20% enriched uranium.
In return, some Western sanctions against Iran are to be eased.