Iranian president said Khomeini would back down if threatened
JERUSALEM—Hassan Rowhani, in a conversation secretly taped by an Israeli agent 27 years ago, is heard urging the West to take a firm stand against the founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.
The transcript of the tape, published yesterday on Ynet, could cause difficulties for Rowhani, Iran’s newly elected president, who thought he was criticizing the ayatollah to an agent of the United States.
“If you analyze Khomeini’s character you’ll see that a strong opponent makes him go a hundred feet back,” Rowhani said. “While a weak one impels him to drive forward. Unfortunately, you [the United States] have taken the wrong stance. You’re too soft on him. Had you been tougher, you’d be in a position of superiority.”
Rowhani urged the United States to “bare sharp teeth” to Khomeini or risk trouble around the world. “If you threaten him with military force he’ll kiss your hand and run.”
Rowhani was talking in a Paris hotel room with Amiram Nir, an adviser on counter-terror to former Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres. With them was Manucher Ghorbanifar, an Iranian arms dealer and the middleman in a complex American-Iranian-Israeli backroom deal in which the United States sent missiles via Israel to Iran, then fighting a war with Iraq, while Iran was supposed to pressure Hezbollah in Lebanon to release American hostages it was holding.
Full article: Rowhani Urged U.S. to Take Hard Line Against Iran 27 Years Ago (Washington Free Beacon)