Escalating the threats between Washington and Tehran, Iran’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, warned Wednesday that his country would strike U.S. targets around the world in the event it is attacked over its refusals to curb its nuclear program.
“If the U.S. ventured into any aggression on Iran, Iran will retaliate by damaging U.S. interests worldwide twice as much as the U.S. may inflict on Iran,” Khamenei said in a speech to a workers’ assembly, according to the official news agency IRNA.
In a spate of statements this week, Iranian officials have also threatened to cut oil production, export nuclear technology, bar international nuclear monitors, make their nuclear program entirely secret and withdraw from the nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty.
Not to mention recent threats to disrupt the vital oil-shipping lane through the Strait of Hormuz–an area through which 2/5 of all globally traded oil flows.
Yes, they are rational (enough) and they recognize (as many others have) the strategically advantageous position they are in right now. Unlike the deterrent threats made by the Iraqi regime before the war, Iran is in a position to actually inflict the kind of punishment they are threatening—especially terrorist attacks overseas against US interests.