U.S. President Donald Trump has warned Iranian President Hassan Rohani on Twitter to "never, ever" threaten the United States or he would face consequences “few throughout history have ever suffered before.”
Trump’s tweet late on July 22, mainly in capital letters, followed a speech in which Secretary of State Mike Pompeo excoriated Iran's leadership, and came hours after Rohani warned Trump against pursuing hostile policies against Tehran.
"America should know peace with Iran is the mother of all peace, and war with Iran is the mother of all wars,” the official Iranian government news agency IRNA quoted Rohani as saying at a July 22 gathering of Iranian diplomats.
Trump’s tweet said: “To Iranian President Rouhani: NEVER, EVER THREATEN THE UNITED STATES AGAIN OR YOU WILL SUFFER CONSEQUENCES THE LIKES OF WHICH FEW THROUGHOUT HISTORY HAVE EVER SUFFERED BEFORE."
"WE ARE NO LONGER A COUNTRY THAT WILL STAND FOR YOUR DEMENTED WORDS OF VIOLENCE & DEATH. BE CAUTIOUS!”
The commander of Iran’s Basij force, Gholam Hossein Gheibparvar, dismissed Trump’s tweet as “psychological warfare."
“He wouldn’t dare take any action against Iran,” Gheibparvar was quoted as saying by the semiofficial ISNA news agency.
“We will never give up our revolutionary principles and beliefs," he said, adding that “the Iranian people and armed forces will stand up to enemies and will not yield.”
Iran's official government news agency IRNA said Trump was only "copying" Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif, who had reportedly warned Western countries during the 2015 nuclear negotiations to "never threaten an Iranian."
The tweet came about two hours after after Pompeo blasted Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and other Islamic religious leaders in the theocratic government as "hypocritical holy men."
In a speech in California, Pompeo also assailed Rohani and Zarif, considered by many to be moderates in comparison with Khamenei and others in the ruling establishment.
“The truth is they’re merely polished front men for the ayatollah’s international con artistry. Their nuclear deal didn’t make them moderates. It made them wolves in sheep’s clothing," he said.
Pompeo also vowed that the United States would maintain and increase diplomatic, military, and financial pressure against what he labeled the "mafia" government of Iran.
The U.S. administration is ratcheting up pressure on Tehran since Trump in May pulled the United States out of the 2015 nuclear deal and reimposed sanctions against Iran.
The deal with six world powers provided Iran with some relief from sanctions in return for curbs on its nuclear program.
The others who signed the pact – Britain, France, Germany, Russia, and China – have vowed to remain in the deal.