RNA - Speaking on the 40th anniversary of the 1979 Islamic Revolution on Monday, Rouhani told hundreds of thousands of demonstrators at Tehran’s iconic Azadi Square that their presence ruined all the plots the enemies had hatched over the past year to pressure the nation politically and economically.
“This presence makes it clear that the enemy will never succeed and the Revolution will continue on the same path as in the past 40 years,” the president said. “We will not let America succeed,” he added.
Last year, the United States unilaterally abandoned an international nuclear pact with Iran and reimposed its toughest sanctions ever, in a move which is viewed as a regime change attempt against the Islamic Republic.
US National Security Adviser John Bolton had said the outcome of the country's policy review should be to determine that Iran's Revolution would not last until its 40th birthday.
"And that’s why, before 2019, we here will celebrate in Tehran!” he had told a convention of the terrorist MKO group in Paris in 2017.
Rouhani reminisced about the nation’s resistance during the Iran-Iraq War, when former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein, backed by the West and the Soviet Union, attacked Iran.
“Let the whole world know that today Iran enjoys higher levels of preparedness, combat and defense” and Iranian armed forces make 85 percent of their weapons and equipment as opposed to the Pahlavi era, when the figure stood at around 5 percent, Rouhani added.
The Iranian president made it clear that Tehran would not ask for permission to strengthen its defenses. He said Iran was not going to roll back its regional influence either.
“Over the past five years, Iran provided assistance to Iraqi, Syrian, Lebanese, Palestinian and Yemeni nations when it saw fit and the world saw how the enemies failed” and now they are leaving the region, he said, referring to US President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw American troops from Syria and Afghanistan.
“Iran’s role in the region has reached a historical peak and no matter what other countries and superpowers say, Iran is the only country that can rush to help regional states,” he said.
“If you want regional security, no plan will succeed without Iran, and the global arrogance, Americans and Zionists should know that this victory will be Iran’s.”
US officials have adopted an extremely hostile policy toward Iran under the Trump administration, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pledging to “starve” Iranians until they give in to American demands.
Washington is calling for new negotiations which would include restraining Iran's missile program and its role in the Middle East as well as the country's support for anti-Israeli resistance movements, such as Hezbollah.
"The enemy cannot ask us to leave the region. They must leave the region," said Brigadier General Hossein Salami, deputy head of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC). "We will help any Muslim anywhere in the world."
IRGC Brigadier General Ramezan Sharif said Iran would "firmly punish" aggressors who attack the country.
"Islamic Iran has reached a level ... to protect its borders by effective military capabilities, and firmly punish any aggressor," he said.
Iranian Intelligence Minister Mahmoud Alavi, who took the podium after the president, doubled down on the importance of the occasion and said even more people were going to celebrate the Revolution over the next years because the Revolution was going to prosper.
First Vice President Es'haq Jahangiri, who had traveled to the city of Shiraz to mark the event there, said Iranians would overcome America’s “economic war” as they did during the Iran-Iraq war.
“Let me send this message to Americans that the Iranian government, nation and officials are pushing to break the American sanctions,” he said.
Minister of Petroleum Bijan Zangeneh told reporters at the rally in Tehran that the Islamic Republic had already taken measures to protect its oil industry against US sanctions.
“Such measures are not publicized in war; we are trying our best to pull through the era of sanctions,” he said.