Watch CBS News

Trump threatens "obliteration" if Iran attacks "anything American"

Trump announces new sanctions on Iran
Trump announces sanctions against Iran's supreme leader 06:03

President Trump is threatening "obliteration" of Iran if the country carries out an attack on "anything American," after Iranian officials said the path to diplomacy between the two nations is permanently closed after Mr. Trump's new round of sanctions Monday. 

Mr. Trump announced the sanctions on Iran's supreme leader and the supreme leader's office in response to what the administration deemed multiple acts of aggression by the Iranian regime. 

"Iran's very ignorant and insulting statement, put out today, only shows that they do not understand reality," Mr. Trump wrote in a series of tweets Tuesday morning. "Any attack by Iran on anything American will be met with great and overwhelming force. In some areas, overwhelming will mean obliteration. No more John Kerry & Obama!"

"Iran leadership doesn't understand the words 'nice' or 'compassion,' they never have," the president also tweeted. "Sadly, the thing they do understand is Strength and Power, and the USA is by far the most powerful Military Force in the world, with 1.5 Trillion Dollars invested over the last two years alone."

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, in a televised address, called the new sanctions "outrageous and idiotic," slamming the Trump administration for issuing the sanctions while also calling for negotiations. 

Tensions between the U.S. and Iran have long been escalating, reaching a breaking point last week after Iran shot down a U.S. drone. Mr. Trump had approved a strike on Iran, but backed off after -- according to Mr. Trump -- the president learned how many lives could be lost. Instead, the Pentagon went ahead with a cyber attack

The sanctions the Trump administration announced Monday are aimed at cutting off access to financial tools for the supreme leader and his office. 

"These measures represent a strong and proportionate response to Iran's increasingly provocative actions," Mr. Trump told reporters in the Oval Office Monday. "We will continue to increase pressure on Tehran until the regime abandons its dangerous activities and its aspirations including the pursuit of nuclear weapons, increased enrichment of uranium, development of ballistic missiles, engagement in and support for terrorism, fueling of foreign conflicts, and belligerent acts directed against the United States and its allies."

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.