Former President Barack Obama’s ambassador to Israel and Senior National Security Adviser Dan Shapiro lamented his administration’s decision not to vocally support Iranian protesters in 2009 in an interview with the New York Times.
Obama offered only tepid support to thousands of Iranian protesters in 2009 drawing intense criticism. “For a lot of us who were in the administration, there is some regret,” Shapiro admitted, adding, “It’s inspiring to see Iranian citizens going into the streets to protest a brutal and corrupt regime.” Shapiro’s sentiments were shared by former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton who wrote in 2014, “I came to regret that we did not speak out more forcefully and rally others to do the same.”
Protests have rocked Iran for several days amid frustrations with the skyrocketing price of food and economic depression. Some protestors have chanted slogans calling for the removal of the Ayatollah Khamenei. Several protestors have been killed or jailed recently and the regime has blocked access to social media across the country.
President Donald Trump has conversely taken a much more vocal approach to supporting Iranian protesters consistently criticizing arrest and crackdowns. Trump appeared to go even further Wednesday tweeting that future “support” would come to the protesters at an appropriate time.
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!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2018
The president’s previous tweets emphasized that the “world is watching” how the regime handles the protesters, saying:
The people of Iran are finally acting against the brutal and corrupt Iranian regime. All of the money that President Obama so foolishly gave them went into terrorism and into their “pockets.” The people have little food, big inflation and no human rights. The U.S. is watching!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 2, 2018
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!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 1, 2018