Iran: Islamic revolution’s 40th anniversary commemorated, crowds chant ‘Death to America’

Iran Islamic revolution’s 40th anniversary commemorated crowds chant ‘Death to America

Crowds were marching on Monday, heading out from a dozen points in the Iranian capital toward Tehran Azadi, or Freedom Square.

Regional power Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries have viewed Iran with great suspicion since the Islamic Revolution swept the Shah from power, fearing Khomeini would inspire Islamic militants across the region.

"The United States does not have the courage to shoot a single bullet at us despite all its defensive and military assets".

"The US should know that we would raze Tel Aviv and Haifa to the ground in the event of a military attack on us", General Yadollah Javani, head of the guard's political bureau, was quoted as saying.

Along with the chants "Death to America" and banners bearing slogans calling for "Death to Israel", Monday's marches were also a backdrop to the military's display of Iranian-made missiles, which authorities showcase every year during anniversary celebrations.

State TV showed crowds defying cold rainy weather and carrying Iranian flags while shouting "Death to Israel, Death to America", trademark chants of the revolution.

Chants of "Death to Israel" and "Death to Britain" followed, and demonstrators burned US and Israeli flags.

"I do not ignore the Iranian regime's threats, but I'm not impressed by them, either", Netanyahu said in a taped statement. It later broadcast footage showing crowds across this country of 80 million.

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Rallies were held across Iran to observe the anniversary of the fall of the Shah and the triumph of Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the Shiite cleric who led the Islamic Revolution.

In a speech at Tehran's Azadi (Freedom) square, Rouhani said United States efforts to isolate Iran would fail.

Stalls set up by state institutions handed out tea and cakes and choirs sang revolutionary songs, as crowds massed despite driving rain. "In those parts, many countries in the south of the Gulf have formed", Rouhani said. "They will not achieve their ill-omened aims".

The European Union has also criticized Iran over its "destabilizing" ballistic-missile program, its "hostile activities" in several EU member states, and its meddling in countries in the Middle East.

Netanyahu's comments came in response to a threat made by Yadollah Javani, the Guard's deputy head for political affairs, who said at a rally celebrating the 40th anniversary of the Islamic revolution that the USA "does not have the courage to shoot a single bullet at us despite all its defensive and military assets".

Israeli television reported last week that Israel has discovered a new ambitious precision missile factory being constructed by Iran in Syria together with the Syrian government and Lebanese terror group Hezbollah, after Israel bombed and destroyed a previous one.

Imam Khomeini had lived many years in exile, in Iraq and France, before returning home and leading a historical revolution that overthrew Pahlavi regime.

Iranians carried cardboard cutouts of dogs.

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