National Security Adviser McMaster Highlights ‘Tremendous Opportunity to Confront Iran’s Destructive Behavior’
A visible shift in American policy towards Iran is taking place under President Donald Trump, his national security adviser Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster said during a wide-ranging interview on Fox News over the weekend.
Speaking to Fox News anchor Chris Wallace, McMaster was clear that the US had developed the political will to back up any warnings directed at the Tehran regime.
“I think all we have to do is pull the curtain back on Iranian behavior,” McMaster said. “This is a regime that is supporting the murderous regime in Syria, that’s committing mass murder of its own people. This is a regime that is really applying what you might call a Hezbollah model to the greater Middle East, in which they have weak governments, that they want to depend on Iran for support, while they grow militias and other illegal armed groups outside.”
Wallace questioned whether America’s allies would even be “interested” in enforcing sanctions against Tehran.
“Our allies will be interested in doing that, and I think what you’ve seen, what has happened in the last eight years, is US policy has unwittingly maybe empowered Iran across the greater Middle East and beyond. Now, we are seeing the effect of that with this humanitarian political catastrophe in the greater Middle East that Iran has helped to foment,” McMaster said.
The national security adviser pointed to Trump’s “really strong relationships across the Arab world” as a positive sign that Iran’s regional ambitions will not go unopposed. “I think that there’s going to be a tremendous opportunity to confront Iran’s destructive behavior in the region and beyond the region,” he said.
Earlier today, an Iranian official emphasized that there would be no talks with the US on issues unrelated to the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) – the framework for the nuclear understanding between Iran and the international community spearheaded by former President Barack Obama.
“Under this administration, the American side has apparently brought up the issue of one or two [American] individuals held in Iranian prisons,” Foreign Ministry spokesman Bahram Qassemi said, in remarks carried by the Islamist regime’s English-language mouthpiece, Press TV.
“In principle, we do not engage in any other talks with the US, and subject matters have to do with the JCPOA,” Qassemi said.