Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said in a March 10, 2022 public address which aired on Channel 1 (Iran) that making concessions to the U.S. and other super powers would have put Iran in "great danger." He explained that it is "naive and amateurish" to say that Iran should reduce its "defensive force" and its "foreign defense capabilities," and he emphasized that Iran's strategic "depth" is a result of its regional involvement. In addition, he said that the nuclear issue is about Iran's scientific progress and its future technology.
Ali Khamenei: "In my opinion, nothing is more amateurish and naive than saying that in order for others not to be sensitive towards us, we should reduce our defensive force and our foreign defense capabilities.
"Imagine us having no involvement in the issues of the region, just so a certain superpower does not get upset, and so it will not engage in nit-picking against us. Our involvement in the issues of the region is our strategic depth. It is a means to strengthen our regime and a form of military power. Why should we lose it, when we can and should have it?
"[People talk about] relinquishing our scientific progress. Some people say that we should put aside the nuclear issue, because it has evoked such sensitivities. The nuclear issue is a scientific issue. It is about scientific progress and our future technology. Soon — it won't take long, only several years — we will need the product of this nuclear energy, and in full scale.
"People are talking about making concessions to America or others in order to become immune to the sanctions. This means severing this arm of our policy and this bargaining chip, so that, God forbid, they won't slap us with sanctions if we display toughness. I believe that these are mistakes.
"If, over the years, the people who want to chop off some of those arms of power had been given permission to do so, our country would have faced great danger today. With God's help, they have failed to do this."