Iran’s Khamenei Thanks Trump for Revealing ‘the Real Face’ of America

TEHRAN, IRAN – SEPTEMBER 18 : Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei delivers a speech during Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) meeting in Tehran, Iran on September 18, 2016. (Photo by Pool / Press Office of Iranian Supreme Leader/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)

As Iran tries to calibrate how to deal with President Trump, its supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, in caustic comments to air force commanders, thanked the new American leader for revealing “the real face” of the United States.

“We are grateful to this gentleman who has come!” Ayatollah Khamenei said, according to a report posted on his official website.

Iranian officials have shown caution since Mr. Trump took office last month; despite expressing anger at his policies and comments, even hard-liners have taken care not to provoke the new American president.

Mr. Trump included Iran on a list of seven predominantly Muslim countries whose citizens have been barred from entering the United States, and his national security adviser, Michael T. Flynn, warned Tehran last week that it had been put “on notice” after a missile test.

Washington also imposed new economic sanctions on 25 people and entities after the missile launch, which Mr. Flynn said violated a 2015 United Nations Security Council resolution that was approved shortly after the United States and other world powers reached an agreement with Iran on its nuclear program.

“The things we have been saying over the past 30-some years — political, economic, moral and social corruption in the American administration — this man came and exposed them during his election campaign and afterwards,” Ayatollah Khamenei said, according to the text of the speech.

He added that a report that a 5-year-old boy had been handcuffed at Dulles International Airport, outside Washington, during enforcement of the travel order “shows the real meaning of American human rights.”

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SOURCE: NY Times, Thomas Erdbrink