Iran’s Minister of Interior has slammed the previous government, hailing the current hardliner administration as "impossible to isolate” from the international community.
Ahmad Vahidi, a former IRGC officer, asserted that “Despite some claims about Iran suffering global isolation under this government, it is impossible to isolate it as long as it adheres to its values.”
Iranian hardliners were persistently attacking President Hassan Rouhani’s government for nuclear talks and the JCPOA agreement with world powers between 2013-2021. These attacks have continued in the past two years to justify the serious economic failures of President Ebrahim Raisi’s team and the parliament dominated by ultra-conservatives.
But the hardliners failed to reach a new nuclear deal with the United States after two years of negotiations with the Biden administration, leaving crippling sanctions in place and deepening Iran’s economic crisis.
While defending the performance of the current administration by saying that they have been in power for “just” two years, he criticized Hassan Rouhani's government by stating that “there is no win-win situation in dealing with Satan without giving ground,” referring to the United States.
“In the previous government, they said that we were advancing our goals in a win-win game, but what does that mean? Thinking of the enemy as a friend is a very dangerous attitude. That's also why it's taking so long to resolve the Palestine issue."
Vahidi even tried to blame foreigners for the apparent apathy of Iranians toward the regime’s highly engineered parliamentary elections. Concerned about the elections, the interior minister stated: “The enemy is doing everything in its power to deter people from voting, but our people will defeat the enemy once again with their enthusiastic participation.”
Meanwhile, Javad Zarif, Rouhani’s Foreign Minister was recently quoted as saying: "If Iran is dragged into the Israel-Gaza war, nothing is going to happen to any of Iran's state officials! The bombs are going to fall on the people."
Rouhani himself has also warned against Iran becoming involved in the Israel-Hamas conflict, pointing out that by inflaming the conflict, the regime is putting the country at risk. In his remarks, he emphasized the potential consequences of direct involvement or indirect involvement through proxies, asserting that "a mistake, a wrong decision, or an imprecise action could drag the flames of war towards us".
In particular, the government's actions and stance regarding the Gaza war seem to be exposing the cracks in the regime.
In a recent summit of Islamic and Arab states in Riyadh, Iran accepted the two-state solution, which is contrary to its central ideology of opposing the existence of the Jewish state. Palestine would be an independent state alongside Israel as part of the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
As a result, there was a major backlash and calls for the Foreign Minister to be impeached.
Although the current administration is attempting to appeal to hardliners by claiming that they are not isolated, but rather the “isolated nation is the United States”, the facts show a different picture.
With the election of Ebrahim Raisi in 2021, the regime has only increased its isolation from the international community and exacerbated internal tensions.
In the latest instance, Iranian punitive economic and political measures against Israel were rejected by Muslim leaders at the Arab summit and excluded from the final resolution.
The move to support Russia's invasion of Ukraine and speed up the nuclear program, led Western countries to condemn the Islamic Republic and impose more sanctions on its officials and entities. Iran has reportedly supplied Russia with hundreds of suicide drones for use against Ukraine’s civilian infrastructure and cities since mid-2022.
Also, attempts by the regime to substitute relationships with other countries - more specifically China- failed after Beijing backed the UAE in the Abu Musa and Tunbs island dispute.