Press TV has interviewed Mohammad Marandi, a professor at the University of Tehran, about the importance of Iran’s defensive drills amid threats from the United States and its allies.
The following is a rough transcription of the interview.
Press TV: Let’s start off with your views on the significance of these drills.
Marandi: Well, I think the significance is quite clear that we want to be very … that the United States in previous years never attempted to attack Iranian targets despite the threats that they repeatedly made, it was determined Iran is deterrent. And of course now we see that deterrence capability growing and it sends a message to countries like Saudi Arabia, to the Israeli regime that any escalation beyond the certain point could lead to grave consequences.
Press TV: Mr. Marandi, as soon as the JCPOA was implemented almost immediately the United States turned its focus to the issue of ballistic missiles in Iran. Talk to us about that angle of the United States most importantly in the face that Iran has always maintained that its deterrent powers and readiness are being displayed in these drills and that its doctrine is completely defensive in nature.
Marandi: Well, I again I think that it’s obvious that the United States wants to have Iran be in a vulnerable position and so that they can blackmail the country. The fact that Iran has worked for almost three decades now on developing very strong defense deterrence, which is indigenous, I think this is one of the main reasons why the United States will never [be] able to attack Iran despite the fact that many people in the United States wanted to inflict punishment on ordinary Iranians.
So, Iran has passed that stage and threat by the United States when the new sanctions obviously will not change Iranians defense policy and Americans really have to begin learning to live with a powerful Iran.
Press TV: Also if you may, Sir, highlight the indigenous aspect of Iran’s defense capabilities.
Marandi: Well, I think when we compare for example Iran to Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia imports all of its weapons, its ammunitions. And right now it is driving the Saudi economy into the ground.
The Saudi reserves because of the unjust and criminal war in Yemen are depleting rapidly. And there’s a serious talk about the Saudi riyal being undermined under pressure, because people are selling their riyals for dollars. The very fact that Saudi Arabia is so dependent on the United States is a good comparison for the Iranian case.
Iran develops its own weapons. It costs the country much less. It doesn’t depend on foreign power. It can support its friends and allies in the region without much difficulty, because it is indigenous and less expensive and less reliant on foreign reserves. So, Iran’s position is very strong today. Its allies are very strong today. And Saudi Arabia is moving toward bankruptcy.
By Press TV