The American people should not take personally the chants of “death to America” frequently led by Iran’s mullah dictators, according the nation’s supreme leader.
The Ayatollah Ali Khamenei made the clarification on Friday at a gathering of Iranian Air Force officers marking the 40th anniversary of the nation’s Islamic revolution.
“‘Death to America’ means death to Trump, John Bolton and (Mike) Pompeo. It means death to American rulers,” he said, referring to the national security adviser and the secretary of state along with the president.
“As long as America continues its wickedness, the Iranian nation will not abandon ‘Death to America,'” he said.
Trump pulled out of Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal with world powers last year and re-imposed sanctions on Tehran, dealing a blow to the country’s economy.
Jihad Watch Director Robert Spencer pointed out that Iranian leaders chanted “Death to America” during the presidencies of Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama.
“But now it only means ‘Death to Trump,'” he said.
Spencer commented that it’s “worth remembering in this context that deception of unbelievers is an Islamic concept based on the Qur’an (3:28), but its theological elaboration as the concept of taqiyya is a specifically Shi’ite enterprise.”
“The Shi’ite Islamic regime in Tehran makes liberal use of deception,” he wrote.