The United States and its supporters do not dare attack Iran because of its “spirit of resistance”, a senior Revolutionary Guards commander was quoted on Wednesday as saying.
Tensions have spiked between Iran and the United States after Washington sent more military forces to the Middle East, including an aircraft carrier, B-52 bombers and Patriot missiles, in a show of force against what US officials say are Iranian threats to its troops and interests in the region.
“If the criminal America and its Western and regional allies don’t dare carry out a face-to-face military attack against our country it is because of the spirit of resistance and sacrifice of the people and youth,” Major General Gholamali Rashid said, according to the semi-official Fars news agency.
In a Twitter message addressed to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Wednesday, an adviser to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said the US military deployment to the region was a deliberate provocation.
“You @SecPompeo do not bring warships to our region and call it deterrence. That’s called provocation. It compels Iran to illustrate its own deterrence, which you call provocation. You see the cycle?” the adviser, Hesameddin Ashena, tweeted in English.
Later on Wednesday, Fars quoted another Guards commander as saying the elite force and regular Iranian military units had complete control of Gulf waters north of the Strait of Hormuz.
“Everything north of the Strait of Hormuz is under our control,” Ali Fadavi was quoted by Fars as saying, referring to the strait at the Gulf’s southeastern end through which about a fifth of the oil that is consumed globally flows.
“(Movements of) American battleships in the region are under the complete control of Iran’s army and the Revolutionary Guards,” Fadavi told Fars, without providing details.
In a statement, the US military said it would continue to fly and sail wherever international law allowed.
“We stand ready with our allies and partners to ensure freedom of navigation and the free flow of commerce throughout the US Central Command area of responsibility,” Captain Bill Urban, a spokesman of US Central Command, said.
On Sunday, US President Donald Trump tweeted: “If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again!”
Meanwhiel, the Commander-in-Chief of the Islamic Republic Army Major General Abdolrahim Mousavi says that what happened in the region in the UAE and Iraq when the United States arrived in the region is not unreasonable and the aim of Iranophobia is to exploit Arabs.
‘If we take a closer look at the recent developments of the region, we will find that the Iranian people are in full compliance with the principles of the revolution and, more than ever, have authority in the world,’ Mousavi said on Wednesday afternoon.
‘If one day the evidence of recent events is revealed, then we will find that the Saudis, along with the United States, are the main cause of recent events in the UAE and Iraq,’ he said.
The commander of the army highlighted, ‘The Saudis are trying to undermine the security of the UAE for punishing the UAE and getting concessions and the United States is trying to exploit the mercenary countries in the region with the policy of Iranophobia in the region.’
He added, ‘The United States must know that Middle East security is preserved by the regional states, and strangers must leave the region.’