Ralph Peters: Iranian Leadership 'Should Be Very Afraid' of Mattis

December 5, 2016

Retired. Lt. Col. Ralph Peters appeared Monday on the Fox Business Network to discuss President-elect Donald Trump's pick of Marine Gen. James Mattis (ret.) for secretary of defense and how he would respond to Iran threatening action against the United States if it extends sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Host Connell McShane asked Peters what he thought of the Iranians threatening the United States government with "strong action."

"Bring it on," Peters said. "The Iranians are so used to getting their way on all things. They have virtually dictated our Middle East policy. Obama has been clinging to this awful nuclear deal so doggedly because it's his last standing foreign policy legacy that he's allowed Iran to run upshot."

McShane then asked Peters what he thought about Trump's incoming administration and whether Mattis would be tough on Iran.

"He certainly is [tough]. General Mattis understands the Middle East. He served there in Iraq, in Afghanistan, and contrary to that 'mad dog' nonsense, he is a very level-headed, firm guy," Peters said. "He doesn't want to go to war if we don't have to, but if we go to war, he wants to win. Iranian leadership should be very, very afraid. Their free ride is over."

Peters was also asked for his thoughts on Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visiting Pearl Harbor on Dec. 27 and the symbolism behind it.

"It's about time, isn't it?," Peters said. "We're apparently not going to get a formal apology. The world changed on Dec. 7, 1941, when the Japanese hit us from the air, by surprise, went down battleship row in Pearl Harbor, sank our battle wagons, the Arizona, enormous loss of life. And we just got by one stroke of dumb luck that day, our carriers were out of the harbor and training."

Peters said that one of Japan's previous prime ministers should have apologized generations ago, but he is glad that Abe is finally doing it.