At least, that’s the name in the White House transcript.
When he spoke, however, Trump said “Ayatollah Khomeini,” aka Ruhollah Khomeini, who led the country from 1979 until his death in 1989:
The unexpected shout-out to the long-dead ruler caused Khomeini’s name to trend on Twitter Monday afternoon and evening:
This is extraordinarily inept on the part of the White House. President Trump announces sanctions against Iran's supreme leader, whom he names as Ayatollah Khomeini. But Ayatollah Khomeini died in 1989. (Trump means Ayatollah Ali Khamenei). https://t.co/NPZMclFk7W— Nicholas Kristof (@NickKristof) June 25, 2019
Next up: Idi Amin— Allie Lipner (@alipner87) June 24, 2019
BREAKING: Iran levies crippling sanctions against President Lyndon B. Johnson— Judicious Adams (@jdarnbro) June 25, 2019
Somewhere in Hell, the Ayatollah Khomeini is outraged at Trump; but he’ll tell him when he sees him.— John Fugelsang (@JohnFugelsang) June 25, 2019
Crackerjack job, champ. Ayatollah Khomeini has been dead for 30 years. Good luck sanctioning his corpse.— Stephen Schwartz (@AtomicAnalyst) June 24, 2019