London, 14 August – Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of Iran, delivered a speech on Monday 13th August. It was clear to see that he does not see any way out of the desperate situation.
For the past few weeks, the country’s national currency – the rial – has been sharply falling. The more its value decreases, it seems that the people’s anger increases. Protests have been continuing and the uprising and unrest is getting stronger.
The Supreme Leader has been silent over the past few weeks, but he finally broke it by trying to encourage and persuade the country’s leadership that the situation is not as desperate as it appears. He said: “They are propagating viciously that the country has reached a deadlock and it has no way out other than to seek refuge from this Satan or Great Satan. Whoever states that we have reached a deadlock, he is either ignorant or his words are treacherous.”
He also said that the system is referred to as “corrupt” by some. He said that those who make such claims are “careless in their talks and writing”.
Khamenei is right – many refer to the “systematic and comprehensive corruption” in Iran. That would be because it is entirely accurate. The country’s wealth has been plundered on funding and fuelling wars abroad and supporting terrorist proxy groups. It has been plundered on the country’s ballistic missile and nuclear programs. There is not just one small pocket of corruption – it is at all levels of the leadership.
The Supreme Leader tries to deny this, saying that corruption “in some agencies or among some individuals should not be generalized to the whole country”. Khamenei pins the blame on President Hassan Rouhani, claiming that he has not prepared the country or his government for the U.S. sanctions. He also said that the government is responsible for peculating “18 billion dollars of the country’s current currency.”
Like many Iranian officials have said in recent weeks and months, the Supreme Leader also sees the people’s calls for a new leadership as a foreign conspiracy. He said that anyone who says that the “government should be dismissed are playing a role in the enemy’s plot”.
The current leadership in Iran is unable to change. There is no moderation despite the many claims to the contrary. The pillars of this leadership are based on despotic rule, so there is no way anything is going to change. Any negotiations with the U.S. would not bring the change that the Trump administration is looking for because it involves a major change in behaviour. A change that Khamenei is unwilling to accept. He said that “the negotiations are definitely to our detriment at this juncture and it is forbidden”.
The Trump administration will accept nothing less than compliance with its demands to curb its malign behaviour and Iran will not do this. Khamenei said: “Even if we were, under an impossible assumption, to negotiate with Americans, we would certainly not negotiate with the current (US) administration.”