Addressing a group of people from the holy city of Qom on Wednesday, Ayatollah Khamenei said the Americans speak gleefully of “strongest sanctions in history” against Iran, “but the Iranian nation will, God Willing, make them suffer an unprecedented defeat in history.”
“The nation and authorities should attentively work to turn the American sanctions into an unprecedented defeat for the Great Satan (the US), as was done during the era of Sacred Defense (the eight-year Iran-Iraq war),” said the Leader.
The United States first brought Iran under sanctions in the wake of the Islamic Revolution in 1979. It slapped new bans against the country in 1987 at the height of Iraq’s Western-backed war against Iran.
The eight-year war is known in Iran as the Era of Sacred Defense due to the sacrifice and resistance exercised by the Iranian nation in the face of the invader and its Western patrons.
Washington lifted some of its sanctions after the implementation of a 2015 multilateral nuclear deal with the Islamic Republic and other world countries. However, US President Donald Trump left the deal unilaterally last year – even though the accord has been ratified in the form of a United Nations Security Council resolution – and reimposed the sanctions.
The Leader further urged steadfastness in the face of the US and Europe’s “militarism, bluster, and idle talk,” saying, “Neither their threats, nor their words and promises, and not even their signatures is creditworthy.”
Ayatollah Khamenei also referred to predictions of a “regime change” in Iran by certain US officials by the end of 2018. “A while ago, a US politician had said, among a gathering of terrorists and thugs, that he hopes to celebrate this Christmas in Tehran,” Ayatollah Khamenei said.
The Leader was referring to comments by US National Security Advisor John Bolton, a long-time regime change advocate, who often speaks at gatherings of the anti-Iran MKO terrorist outfit.
“Before 2019, we here will celebrate in Tehran,” Bolton told an MKO meeting in July 2017. Bolton was on the pay list of the terrorist MKO group for his lectures to its gatherings. The MKO assassinated a number of American nationals in Iran during the Shah’s time.
Ayatollah Khamenei said, “Christmas was a few days ago. This is how US calculations work.”
Ayatollah Khamenei's address to an audience from the city of Qom were meant to mark the anniversary of protests in 1978 that challenged Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, the last monarch of Iran. They would spiral into the nationwide demonstrations that saw the Shah leave Iran and give rise to the 1979 Islamic Revolution. Iranians will commemorate the revolution's 40th anniversary in February.
Press TV, AP and Reuters contributed to this story.