Trump’s speech sparks a new war of words be­tween US, Iran

The Standard Journal - - NATIONAL - By Nasser Karimi and Jon Gam­brell

TEHRAN, Iran — Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s re­fusal to cer­tify the Iran nu­clear deal has sparked a new war of words be­tween the Is­lamic Repub­lic and Amer­ica, fu­el­ing grow­ing mis­trust and a sense of na­tion­al­ism among Ira­ni­ans.

The speech has also served to unite Ira­ni­ans across the po­lit­i­cal spec­trum — from Trump’s declining to call the Per­sian Gulf, the water­way through which a third of all oil traded by sea passes, by its name, to un­der­cut­ting those try­ing to change Iran’s cler­i­cally over­seen govern­ment from within. That is also likely to strengthen the hand of hard-lin­ers within Iran, who long have in­sisted that the United States re­mains the same “Great Satan” de­nounced in the 1979 Is­lamic Revo­lu­tion.

“Un­der the deal, it was sup­posed to be that we get con­ces­sions, not that we give more con­ces­sions,” the hard-line Kay­han news­pa­per raged.

Ira­nian of­fi­cials and me­dia out­lets on Satur­day uni­formly con­demned Trump’s com­ments that an­grily ac­cused Iran of vi­o­lat­ing the spirit of the 2015 ac­cord and de­manded Congress toughen the law gov­ern­ing U.S. par­tic­i­pa­tion. Trump said he was not ready to pull out of the deal but warned he would do so if it were not im­proved.

In a tele­vised speech shortly af­ter Trump made his an­nounce­ment, Ira­nian Pres­i­dent Has­san Rouhani said his coun­try would re­main in the deal, but crit­i­cized Trump’s words, re­fer­ring to them as “curs­ing and fu­tile ac­cu­sa­tions.”

Rouhani also said Iran would con­tinue to build and test bal­lis­tic mis­siles, some­thing al­lowed un­der the nu­clear deal though Amer­i­cans be­lieve it vi­o­lates the ac­cord’s spirit.

“We have al­ways been de­ter­mined and today we are more de­ter­mined,” Rouhani said. “We will dou­ble our ef­forts from now on.”

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