Rouhani touts military achievements in revolution anniversary speech

Al-Monitor – Iran celebrated the 40th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution Monday in typical fashion, with speeches from government officials, marches, anti-American slogans, protests and also an element of the absurd.

As is customary, President Hassan Rouhani delivered a speech at Tehran’s Azadi Square for the anniversary, which took place on the 22nd day of the month of Bahman in the Iranian calendar. “The 22nd of Bahman has specific qualities of its own this year,” Rouhani said in a speech that was more defiant and focused on Iran’s independence and military achievements than in past years.

“Firstly, the Islamic Revolution was to protect Iran,” Rouhani said. He recounted how Iran had lost large portions of its territory in the last 200 years, giving specifics and the date of each region’s losses under the Qajar and Pahlavi monarchies. The territories were lost due to internal weakness and the meddling of great powers. Rouhani added that 38 years ago, many of the world countries targeted Iran’s western borders through their support of the invasion of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein that led to the 1980-88 Iran-Iraq war.

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