During a recent sermon in Tehran, an Iranian cleric criticized the United States and said that the Iranian president should “punch the American president in the mouth” if he “talks nonsense.”
The comments by Ayatollah Ahmad Khatami were made on April 25, and broadcast on Iran’s Channel 1. The Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) translated them and posted them on YouTube.
“The arrogant pharaohs throughout history have always considered themselves superior to everybody everywhere. The actions of the despotic U.S. administration constitute a clear example of this,” Khatami charged.
“Look what they are doing in Ukraine. What is going on there? Who the hell are you to interfere in the affairs of another people? Their vice president went to Ukraine, and a few hours after he left, people were killed there. What is behind these declarations? A cloud of war hangs over that region. This is what is called an ‘aggressive nature,’” he continued.
Khatami accused the Americans of openly conspiring against Islamic Iran and said that “top U.S. officials without exception – from Carter to Obama – all wanted to topple the Islamic regime. It's not that they did not want to, but they failed to do so. They keep pouring their venom.”
“When our top negotiators enter the room, they should know that when they face the Americans, they face a hostile enemy that cannot be trusted at all. Thank God, our top negotiators have acknowledged this a few times in the past. Just as you confront them during the negotiations, you must confront them on the level of political declarations… If the American president talks nonsense, our president should punch him in the mouth,” declared Khatami.
Throughout the sermon, the crowd chants “Death to America!”
MEMRI has exposed several videos in the past in which Iranian officials and television hosts are seen mocking or even threatening the Americans.
Recently, a host on an Iranian television program mocked Obama, after the latter declared that he would come down “like a ton of bricks” on firms that violate the sanctions that have been placed on Iran.
The Iranian host subsequently suggested that the American president take “one brick and knock it against his head.”
Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ayatollah Ali, Khamenei recently threatened the United States, suggesting that the Americans “exercise self-restraint,” after Secretary of State John Kerry said the military option was still on the table if Iran fails to live up to its part of the agreement that was signed with it in Geneva.
In January, Khatami called on Iran to couple its negotiations with the West with “resistance”, saying that the “culture of resistance” does not contradict with conducting negotiations.