Just hours after the top official of Iran’s elite Revolutionary Guard said that his country was not interested in pursuing war with the United States, as CNBC reported, Donald Trump took to his Twitter account to issue a dire threat against Iran, promising to bring about “the official end” of the country if a war took place.
The United States and Saudi Arabia have claimed that Iran has recently threatened U.S. and Saudi interests in the Middle East, and the U.S. has claimed that Iran was “highly likely” to have been responsible for attacks on four tanker ships off the coast of the United Arab Emirates last week, according to NBC News. But otherwise, the supposed Iranian threats have gone unspecified by U.S. officials.
But Iran Revolutionary Guard Major General Hossein Salami also said that Iran was prepared to fight a war against the United States, according to a report by The Telegraph newspaper.
“The difference between us and them is that they are afraid of war and don’t have the will for it,” Salami told Iran’s government-run news agency, as quoted by The Telegraph.
The Revolutionary Guard leader’s remarks came the day after Iran’s top Army commander, General Abdolrahim Moussavi, told the country’s Fars news service that Iran would respond to any “strategic mistake” by the U.S. with a “crushing strike.”
But rather than attempt to cool down the warlike rhetoric between the two countries, Trump on Sunday raised the temperature, taking to his Twitter account to issue a dire warning, saying, “If Iran wants to fight, that will be the official end of Iran. Never threaten the United States again!”
One reporter who covers Trump and has authored a book about him, Mother Jones Washington Bureau Chief David Corn, suggested on his own Twitter account that Trump was simply laying the groundwork for a meeting with Iran president Hassan Rouhani — similar to his meetings with North Korean leaders Kim Jong-un after threatening that country with “fire and fury” if it continued to threaten the United States, as The New York Times reported.
“Trump threatens nuclear annihilation of Iran. Next he’ll be trying to meet with Rouhani a la Kim,” wrote Corn via Twitter. “Then he’ll say he deserves the Nobel peace prize.”
Though journalists have attempted to find out the specific nature of the claimed threats against the U.S. by Iran, the Pentagon has not held an official press briefing in over a year, according to a report by The Hill.