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'Iran is Failing at Every Level': Trump Backs Protesters, Hints US Will Help Them

01-03-2018

The Trump administration hasn't minced words when it comes to Iranian leadership. 

With a slew of protests throughout Iran and almost two dozen dead, the administration is upping its condemnation of the regime. But the larger question of how to improve the conditions for the Iranian people remains unanswered. 

President Donald Trump took to Twitter multiple times to offer support. 

"Such respect for the people of Iran as they try to take back their corrupt government. You will see great support from the United States at the appropriate time!" the president tweeted Wednesday. 

"Iran is failing at every level despite the terrible deal made with them by the Obama administration. The great Iranian people have been repressed for many years. They are hungry for food & for freedom. Along with human rights, the wealth of Iran is being looted. TIME FOR CHANGE!" said Trump. 

But when asked what that change entailed, the White House replied with a list of demands. 

"The biggest thing is the change would be that the people of Iran have basic human rights, which their government is, frankly, not allowing them to have at this time, and certainly, in large part, stop being a state sponsor of terrorism. I mean, I think those are the changes we're looking for," said White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders. 

So what are the options? 

The president has the option to sign a waiver every 120 days to keep sanctions from being imposed on the regime. He could, however, skip signing that waiver. 

"We certainly keep our options open in terms of sanctions. In terms of signing a waiver later in January, the president hasn't made a final decision on that, and he's going to keep all of his options on the table in that regard," hinted Sanders.

Sanders stopped short of saying whether or not the administration would support a total regime change. 

"We support them giving basic rights to the people of Iran, and we support them stopping being a state sponsor of terror. And we want to see those actions take place," she said.

U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley is calling for an emergency session of the Security Council, hoping to boost efforts to protect the protesters.  

In Tuesday's address to the U.N., Haley reminded the assembly this wasn't the first time the Iranian people had rebelled. 

"All freedom loving people must stand with their cause. The international community made the mistake of failing to do that in 2009. We must not make that mistake again," Haley warned. 

One thing is for certain, the administration is committed to speaking up loudly and often against Iranian leadership. 
 

This also isn't the first time Vice President Mike Pence has spoken out against the regime. 

During the 2009 Iranian election uprising, then Congressman Mike Pence introduced a resolution to "speak a word of support for the people of Iran." 

"I appreciate the fact that the president said the protesters have a right to be heard and represented, and I appreciate the fact that he said he is troubled," Pence told CNN. "But I respectfully disagree with the administration's decision to essentially draw the line at not meddling and not interfering." 

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