2/18/2017: Battle of Persian Gulf II, 88-minute animated film depicting Iranian victory in naval battle with U.S., released.5Reuters, IMDb, IB Times, Bloomberg. Qassem Soleimani is the commander featured.6Reuters
2/26/2017: Former Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad writes “somewhat conciliatory” letter to Trump, applauding his honesty in describing corruption in U.S. political system and electoral structure, complaining of U.S. “dominance” and meddling in foreign affairs, causing “insecurity, war, division, killing, and displacement of nations,” delivered via Swiss Embassy in Tehran.8NBC, Kurdistan24, Politico, AP.
4/18/2017: U.S. Secretary of State certifies to Congress that Iran remains compliant with the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) stipulated in the 2015 nuclear deal, but still orders review.10Reuters, BBC, Arab News
5/20/2017: U.S.-Saudi Arabia $110B arms deal signed in Riyadh.13White House [press release], WSJ, Vox, NBC, ABC, WaPo, CNN, Reuters . Boeing Co. signs several defense and commercial deals with KSA for sale of military and passenger aircraft the next day; Chinook helicopters, guided weapons systems, P-8 surveillance aircraft, Boeing 777’s or 787’s.14Reuters.
5/21/2017: During 9-day first foreign trip of presidency, Trump delivers “good and evil” speech to Middle East leaders at the Arab Islamic American Summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, vilifies Iran as state sponsor and abettor of terrorism.15White House [speech], FT, Reuters, CBS [via YouTube]. Iran foreign minister suggests that Trump should discuss with Saudi Arabi how to prevent the next 9/11, while he’s there.16Reuters, Newsweek.
6/6/2017: Five suicide bombers and gunmen attack Iranian parliament and mausoleum of Ayatollah Komeini in Tehran, killing at least 13; Iran blames KSA.18Reuters, Wikipedia Islamic State claimed the attack was theirs.19Reuters, NYT, Middle East Monitor
6/17/2017: Trump confirms Iran still complying with nuclear deal, but still a threat.20Reuters.
7/27/2017: Iran successfully tests rocket capable of launching rockets into orbit; US, France, Germany, and Britain complain that it is a breach of UN Security Council Resolution 2231.22Reuters, NYT. U.S. Treasury imposes sanctions on six subsidiary companies of Shahid Hemmat Industrial Group that are allegedly involved in developing equipment that could be used for ballistic missiles.23Reuters.
8/2/2017: Trump signs into law “Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act” requiring sanctions against (1) Iran’s ballistic missile or weapons of mass destruction programs, (2) the sale or transfer to Iran of military equipment or the provision of related technical or financial assistance, and (3) Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and affiliated foreign persons.24White House [statement], CBS, NBC
8/29/2017-9/1/2017: Trump alleges Iran in violation of agreed uranium and heavy water limits, U.N. disagrees;25NYT, WaPo. Iran refuses calls for U.N. inspectors to access military bases;26Reuters, CNN. U.S. public fears Trump will start war.27New Yorker
9/19/2017: Trump gives speech at 72nd Session of U.N. General Assembly, calls Iran a “murderous regime” that “masks a corrupt dictatorship behind the false guise of a democracy”; says “Iran Deal was one of the worst and most one-sided transactions the United States has ever entered into”; highlights “stark contrast” of “Iranian regime’s support for terror” to the “recent commitments of many of its neighbors to fight terrorism and halt its financing,” such as Saudi Arabia.31White House [remarks], ABC, C-SPan; Rouhani calls Trump a “rogue newcomer to international politics,” says comments are ignorant and absurd.32AP, BBC
10/13/2017: Trump de-certifies Iran’s compliance with nuclear deal.34White House [remarks]].
The regime remains the world’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, and provides assistance to al Qaeda, the Taliban, Hezbollah, Hamas, and other terrorist networks. It develops, deploys, and proliferates missiles that threaten American troops and our allies. It harasses American ships and threatens freedom of navigation in the Arabian Gulf and in the Red Sea. It imprisons Americans on false charges. And it launches cyberattacks against our critical infrastructure, financial system, and military.Remarks by President Trump on Iran Strategy (10/13/2017) (announcing de-certification).
12/6/2017: Trump announces U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as capital of Israel and says building of new embassy there is in the works;38AP, BBC, WSJ Rouhani says that Muslim countries should band together to support Palestinians.39Reuters.
5/14/2018: U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem opens, relocated from previous site in Tel Aviv.44White House
1/8/2019: Netherlands, France, and Denmark accuse Iran of planning assassination operations on European soil; EU imposes sanctions on Iranian intelligence unit and two of its staff.45Reuters. Dutch accuse Iran of assassination of two Dutch nationals of Iranian origin, one in 2015 in Almere, the other in 2017 in Hague.46NYT, Reuters. Iran accuses Europe of harboring Mujahedeen Khalq (M.E.K., Iranian dissident group).47Reuters.
Iran is talking very boldly about targeting certain USA assets as revenge for our ridding the world of their terrorist leader who had just killed an American, & badly wounded many others, not to mention all of the people he had killed over his lifetime, including recently hundreds of Iranian protesters. He was already attacking our Embassy, and preparing for additional hits in other locations. Iran has been nothing but problems for many years. Let this serve as a WARNING that if Iran strikes any Americans, or American assets, we have targeted 52 Iranian sites (representing the 52 American hostages taken by Iran many years ago), some at a very high level & important to Iran & the Iranian culture, and those targets, and Iran itself, WILL BE HIT VERY FAST AND VERY HARD. The USA wants no more threats!Donald J. Trump, Pres., 1/4/2020 (via Twitter).
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