Conservative Republicans are not alone in thinking that President Joe Biden, despite some occasional strong rhetoric, has generally displayed himself on the global stage as a weak leader whom America's enemies and rivals believe they can take full advantage of.
That view is also shared by Reza Pahlavi, the exiled crown prince of Iran, who just asserted that the current Islamist Iranian regime has been "emboldened" to try and exploit Biden's "weakness," Fox News reported.
The comments from Pahlavi, the eldest son of the deposed former Iranian Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, came in response to thinly veiled threats against the U.S. and the West from Iranian President Ebrahim Raisi.
On Saturday, Iranian President Raisi said of Israel and the U.S. on social media, "Zionist regime’s crimes have crossed the red lines, which may force everyone to take action. Washington asks us to not do anything, but they keep giving widespread support to Israel."
'The US sent messages to the Axis of Resistance but received a clear response on the battlefield," he added, likely in reference to dozens of attacks over the past few weeks against U.S. troops, interests, and allies in the region by Iranian-backed proxy groups in places like Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, and Yemen -- with minimal response from the U.S.
In discussing the current situation during a Fox News interview on Tuesday, Crown Prince Pahlavi said the Iranian regime "is trying to push the envelope, trying to see whether they can take advantage of a weakness, which currently seems to be the case. That's why they've become emboldened every time the West hesitates or doesn't apply the necessary pressure, as it should have, to at least contain this."
At another point in the interview, Pahlavi seemed to further decry the Biden administration's weak stance against Iran, and said, "Right now you have a situation where you encourage the regime that, if you take hostages, you will be rewarded and get some more cash in your hands."
"You have called for sanctions, but you have never implemented them, like the oil sanctions. That is not what I call putting pressure. So, 'be good boys and don't harm us.' Is that the message? I mean, come on," he added.
Those remarks were almost certainly in reference to the administration's clear attempts to appease the Iranian regime over the past two years, including most recently the unfreezing of $6 billion in sanctioned Iranian oil revenue in a "lopsided" prisoner exchange deal, according to the Washington Examiner, as well as efforts to revive the failed 2015 Iran nuclear deal and other "lamentably weak and ineffective" policies.
In the Fox News interview, Pahlavi went on to suggest that the U.S. needed to reimpose and actually enforce a "maximum pressure" campaign against the Iranian regime, preferably one in which European allies would join and, similar to the U.S., formally designate Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corp as a terrorist organization.
"But parallel to maximum pressure, there ought to be also a campaign of maximum support," he continued. "That means empowerment of the Iranian people to put domestic pressure to force the regime ultimately to paralysis and collapse. That would mean more technological assistance, funding for labor strikes, and what have you. And it has happened before," such as in support of Eastern European anti-Soviet efforts near the end of the Cold War.
Pahlavi praised the regular Iranian people as being similar to the American people in that they are mostly desirous of peace, liberty, freedom, and equality, though also stifled under the crushing weight of the Islamist regime's tyranny.
"They are only interested in exporting an ideology beyond our borders and create a modern-day Shiite caliphate to dominate the region and the rest of the world," he said of the ruling Iranian regime. "And they are conducting all these campaigns. They are funding all of these proxies at the expense of the Iranian people themselves."