Giuliani: Trump Supports Regime Change in Iran; Hints of Withdrawal From Nuclear Deal

Patrick Goodenough | May 7, 2018 | 4:30am EDT
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Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani addresses the Iran Freedom Convention for Democracy and Human Rights in Washington on Saturday, May 5, 2018. (Photo: OIAC)

( – Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani told a gathering of Iranian Americans Saturday that President Donald Trump is as supportive as they are of regime change in Tehran, and predicted that he will withdraw from the Iran nuclear agreement later this week.

Giuliani is not a member of the administration, but recently joined Trump’s personal legal team and described himself in his speech as a “good friend” of the president for 30 years.

Addressing the Iran Freedom Convention for Democracy and Human Rights in Washington, he contrasted Trump’s message of support for anti-government protestors who took to the streets in Iran late last year with President Obama’s reaction to protests that occurred during his presidency.

“When the protest started … and we were so hopeful that they’d take off three or four, five years ago, the president at the time turned his back on the freedom fighters,” he charged.

In contrast, said Giuliani, “President Trump did not what President Obama did, turn his back, but did what my hero, President Reagan, did [in Poland in the 1980s]. He said to them – he didn’t send troops, he didn’t send arms, he didn’t send airplanes – he just said a couple of simple words: ‘We support their fight for freedom.’”

(When protests erupted in Iran in 2009, following the disputed re-election of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Obama initially responded cautiously, and it was only ten days after they broke out that he condemned them explicitly for the first time.)

Giuliani told the convention that in Trump the United States has a president who is “tough,” who “doesn’t listen to the people who are naysayers. And a president that is as committed to regime change as we are.”

“And with, and with Secretary of State Pompeo now on his right hand, and his National Security Advisor John Bolton – you remember John Bolton – on his left side, what do you think is going to happen to that agreement, that nuclear agreement?”

Giuliani then took a piece of paper and simulated spitting on it, before giving two thumbs down.

“Yep. With that gone, sanctions back – with that gone and sanctions back, we have a real chance of escalating these protests,” he continued, adding that he doubted the people of Iran, impoverished by the regime, were going to “take that for very much longer.”

Saturday’s rally was organized by the Organization of Iranian American Communities.

Addressing the event in a video message, the leader of the exiled Iranian opposition group National Council of Resistance of Iran (NCRI), Maryam Rajavi, urged the international community to support the protests underway in Iranian towns and cities and not to remain silent.

She also threw her weight behind calls to abandon the nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).

“The experience of the past three years has confirmed that the mullahs took advantage of the concessions in the JCPOA to suppress the people of Iran and massacre the people of Syria,” Rajavi said.

“As such, we emphatically demand that western countries adopt a policy that would eliminate the entire infrastructure of the regime’s nuclear program and, through unconditional inspections, prevent, once and for all, the regime from engaging in any nuclear-related activity, testing or research, including [uranium] enrichment.”

On or around Friday this week, Trump is expected to announce his decision on whether to withdraw from the JCPOA, which the Obama administration and its negotiating partners concluded with the regime in Iran in 2015. If he chooses not to do so, he will likely waive nuclear-related sanctions for another three months.

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