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A senior Iranian military leader said that his country’s “power and resistance” has forced the United States and President Barack Obama to kowtow to Tehran, according to reports in Iran’s state-run media.
The senior military aide to Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei said that Iran has strong-armed Obama into accepting its nuclear rights.
"The Americans have sensibly chosen a type of flexibility and withdrawal vis a vis Iran," Major General Yahya Rahim Safavi was quoted as saying on Wednesday by the Fars News Agency.
The United States “reached this conclusion that they can't challenge the powerful Iran,” Safavi was quoted as saying.
The Iranian press celebrated Obama’s speech before the United Nations General Assembly earlier this week, describing it as a “different tone” and a “new path,” according to reports.
One Iranian newspaper even declared, “the time for change has arrived,” according to AFP.
Iranian military leaders such as Safavi claim that Obama’s shift from the rhetoric of war to that of peace signals Tehran’s arrival as a world power.
"It seems that the Americans have understood this fact that Iran is a powerful and stable country in the region which uses logical and wise methods in confrontation with its enemies," Safavi told Fars in an interview.
"Mr. Obama as the U.S. president announced for the first time that ‘we are not seeking regime change in Iran and respect the Iranian nation's right to access peaceful nuclear energy’ and this stabilized Iran's right,” he said.
But while Obama’s attitude may be shifting, Iran intends to retain its hardline rhetoric, according to Safavi
“Tehran will maintain its stance vis a vis the U.S.,” Fars reported, stating Iran “cannot forget the U.S. animosities throughout the last decades, including its support for the 2009 street unrests.”
Safavi also criticized Obama for speaking about the possibility of Iran's further isolation by continuing to pursue its nuclear ambitions and calling on Tehran to choose other ways in dealing with the regional and international issues.
America must immediately "remove the [economic] sanctions step by step and a mutual confidence is created, then we can be hopeful,” according to Safavi, who also called on “Americans to desist from their continued obstinacy against Iran and don’t follow the Zionist lobby.”
A top Iranian legislator echoed Safavi’s comments on Wednesday when he declared that Obama changed his tune “because of the resistance shown by the Iranian government and nation,” Fars reported.
“Obama’s speech had a different tone,” Gholam Ali Haddad Adel, a party leader in Iran’s parliament, was quoted as saying.
Iranian President Hassan Rowhani showed up the U.S. president by striking a resolute and diplomatic tone that took aim at “the Zionist pressure groups,” Adel said.
“Mr. Rowhani wanted to convey this point to the Americans in a diplomatic tone that who is making the decisions in the U.S., the Zionist pressure groups or the American statesmen,” Adel said.
Rowhani “persists in restoring Iran's nuclear rights and may not give up even an iota of the Iranian nation's right” despite his public rhetoric of reconciliation, Adel said.