"There won't be any war. … We don't seek a war, and (the Americans) don't either. They know it's not in their interests."
The ayatollah's analysis — a war is in neither nation's interest — is correct. Consider the consequences of a war with the United States for his own country.
Iran's hundreds of swift boats and handful of submarines would be sunk. Its ports would be mined or blockaded. Oil exports and oil revenue would halt. Air fields and missile bases would be bombed. The Iranian economy would crash. Iran would need years to recover.
And though Iran's nuclear sites are under constant observation and regular inspection, they would be destroyed.
Tehran knows this, which is why, despite 40 years of hostility, Iran has never sought war with the "Great Satan" and does not want this war to which we seem to be edging closer every day.