Iran’s Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei expressed defiance of the U.S. with a side order of American pop culture, invoking the cat-and-mouse adventures of Tom and Jerry.

“The U.S. has tried various political, economic, military and propaganda undertakings to hit the Islamic Republic” throughout its four decades, the nation’s top religious leader told a gathering of officials on Wednesday. But “all these plots failed. Like the famous cat in Tom and Jerry they will lose again.”

In the cartoon series created 78 years ago, the plucky mouse Jerry consistently outsmarted the larger cat Tom, although both did their best to torment each other.

Khamenei’s comments, posted on his official website, were his first since U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s speech this week outlining a list of demands for Iran, including that the Persian Gulf nation permanently end its nuclear program and withdraws support for groups like the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah that the U.S. considers terrorists.

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