Iran's President today has urged the United States on 9/11 anniversary today to “put warmongers aside.” The remark comes after the sudden dismissal of US's National Security Advisor, John Bolton, and amidst tensions between Tehran and Washington D.C on the crumbling nuclear deal with different world powers. Iran President's comments suggested approval of US President's sudden dismissal of John Bolton, who had been previously ridiculed by Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammed Javad Zarif as part of “B Team” that targetted Iran.
For a long time now Bolton was critical of Iran and had once promised before an Iranian exile group that they would be celebrating the toppling of Iran's Government this year. Bolton’s departure also comes amid speculation about Trump potentially meeting Rouhani during the upcoming U.N. General Assembly this month in New York. However, Rouhani's comments seemed to highlight an approval that Tehran is willing to put the blame of tensions on departing Bolton rather than on US President himself.
Rouhani spoke after a Cabinet meeting Wednesday, a day that saw all print media in Iran covering Bolton's exit. The progressive Shargh daily newspaper had one large headline that read: “Bolton: A scapegoat for Iran?”
Iran's President said in a televised statement that Americans will have to realize that warmongering and warmongers are not to their benefit. Adding that, They(Americans) should not only abandon warmongering but also end their maximum pressure policy.
Ali Rabiei, a government spokesman said after the meeting that Bolton's firing might help the U.S have a “less biased” attitude towards Iran. Although he stressed that the dismissal was an internal U.S issue, Rabiei called Bolton “the symbol of America's hawkish policies and its animosity towards Iran.”
The Foreign Minister of Iran, Zarif again used social media to tweet about what he refers the #B_Team, which included Bolton, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, and Abu Dhabi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, all opponents of Iran. Zarif added that the world, apart from 3 or 2 who panicked, was breathing a sigh of relief after Bolton's ouster.
“Thirst for war maximum pressure should go with the warmonger-in-chief,” he said
General Mohsen Razaee, a commander in the powerful Revolutionary Guard and its former chief, said in a tweet: “We will not be deceived by the sacrificing of Bolton.”
Bolton was critical of any potential talks between Trump and leaders of Iran and had persuaded Trump to keep U.S. forces in Syria to counter the Iranian influence in the region. Last year, Trump pulled the U.S. out of the landmark 2015 nuclear deal that lifted sanction on Iran in exchange for caps on Iran’s nuclear program. The U.S. administration later also intensified sanctions on Iran, slashing its sales of crude oil abroad and sending the country’s economy into freefall.
In response, Iran has in recent months crept past the limits the nuclear deal imposed on uranium enrichment and its uranium stockpile. And over the weekend, Tehran announced it would use advanced centrifuges prohibited under the deal. Meanwhile, mysterious attacks on oil tankers near the Strait of Hormuz, the downing of a U.S. military surveillance drone by Iran and other incidents across the wider Middle East have exacerbated the crisis in the region as Tehran tries to pressure Europe to find a way to sell crude oil abroad despite U.S. sanctions.
Rouhani has called the use of faster centrifuges Iran’s “third step” away from the nuclear deal. On Wednesday, he said that “if necessary, we will take other steps in the future.” For his part, Bolton was a longtime hard-liner on Iran who favored regime change and took money for speaking engagements from an Iranian exile group reviled by Tehran called the Mujahedeen-e-Khalq, or MEK. Bolton famously wrote in 2015, before Iran’s nuclear deal was struck, an op-ed in The New York Times headlined: “To Stop Iran’s Bomb, Bomb Iran.”
“The declared policy of the United States of America should be the overthrow of the mullahs’ regime in Tehran,” Bolton told a cheering crowd of MEK supporters in March 2018. “The behaviors and the objectives of the regime are not going to change, and therefore, the only solution is to change the regime itself. And that’s why, before 2019, we here will celebrate in Tehran!”
Bolton would become Trump’s third national security adviser a month later. “I don’t back away from any of it. Those are positions I took as a private citizen,” Bolton said when journalists asked him during a visit to Abu Dhabi in May about his prior remarks to the MEK. “Right now I’m a government official. I advise the president. I’m the national security adviser, not the national security decision-maker. It’s up to him (Trump) to make those decisions.” Trump’s decision on Tuesday was to fire Bolton. What happens next remains unclear.