According to the head of the Pentagon, the speeches in Iran are evidence of the desire of the country’s citizens to have a government accountable to the people.
The Trump administration on Sunday tried to amplify dissenting voices in Iran. This happened in a situation where Tehran at first denied, but then admitted that the Iranian military shot down a Ukrainian passenger plane.
Defense Minister Mark Esper said the street protests in Tehran show that the Iranian people want a more accountable government.
“You see the Iranians rise and claim their rights, their desire for a more effective government, for a different regime,” Esper said.
He appeared on Sunday’s broadcasts on two TV channels, while President Donald Trump’s national security adviser, Robert O’Brien, gave interviews to three other channels.
O’Brien made it clear that the United States sees the present moment as an opportunity to increase pressure on Iran’s leaders, who are already under enormous strain because of American economic sanctions that have virtually deprived Iran of its main source of income-oil exports.
“I think the regime is going through a very bad week,” O’Brien said. – This regime has not yet recovered from the maximum pressure, they have not recovered from their incompetence in the current situation, and the people of Iran are just sick of it.”
The White House adviser added that regime change is not US policy.
“I hope at some point the people of Iran will have the opportunity to elect their government and be under the leadership of the leaders they have chosen,” O’Brien said.
In Tehran on Sunday, a large number of security forces were deployed in anticipation of new protests.
According to Esper, Iran deserves credit for taking responsibility for the crash.
“My gut told me it was an accident,” he said, noting that although the Iranian authorities initially talked about American propaganda, they eventually “did the right thing” by admitting their guilt.