The Office of the Supreme Leader

Leader’s remarks on the occasion of the 26th anniversary of Imam Khomeini’s passing away

In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

والحمدلله ربّ العالمین و الصّلاة و السّلام علی سیّدنا و نبیّنا و حبیب قلوبنا ابی‌القاسم المصطفی محمّد و علی ءاله الأطیبین الأطهرین المنتجبین سیّما بقیّةالله فی الأرضین. اللّهمّ کن لولیّک الحجّة بن الحسن صلواتک علیه و علی ءابائه فی هذه السّاعة و فی کلّ ساعة ولیّاً و حافظاً و قائداً و ناصراً و دلیلاً و عیناً حتّی تسکنه ارضک طوعاً و تمتّعه فیها طویلاً. اللّهمّ اعطه فی نفسه و ذریّته و شیعته و رعیّته و خاصّته و عامّته و عدوّه و جمیع اهل الدّنیا ما تقرّ به عینه و تسرّ به نفسه.

At the beginning of my remarks, it is necessary to declare our devotion to the sacred presence of Baghiyat-ol-lah al-A’zam [Imam Mahdi (PBUH)]. The [existence of the] End-of-Time Savior has been substantiated by all Abrahamic religions; [the fact] that a person will come and will save the world from the filth of oppression and tyranny, has been accepted by all Abrahamic religions. In Islam, even the name of this savior has been specified; this divine being, this extraordinarily great person is known as [Imam] Mahdi (PBUH) by all denominations of Islam. Perhaps there is no sect among Islamic sects that would not believe that Mahdi (PBUH) will reappear and he belongs to the progeny of the Prophet [of Islam]; even his name and nickname have been mentioned.
The characteristic of Shia faith is that it introduces this personality in a totally specific and clear way; he is the son of the 11th Shia Imam – Imam Hassan al-Askari (PBUH) – [and] his birthdate has been clearly mentioned by Shia historians and scholars; other Islamic sects have often not mentioned this viewpoint or not accepted it, but Shiism proves the presence and existence and birth of that great personality with undoubting and decisive proofs. Some people have raised objection as how a person can be born and live for such a long time. This has been the sole objection that has been raised and repeated by opponents in the case of Hazrat Mahdi (PBUH); however, the holy Quran has done away with this objection in its clear text. As for Prophet Noah (PBUH), [Quran] says: “Noah lived among his people for 950 years. Not that his entire lifetime has been this much, but it appears that the time he has been a prophet has been 950 years; so there is no place for this objection.
The greatest property of this faith among Shias is that it inspires hope. The Shia society does not simply rely on the salient features of its past history, but sets its sight upon the future. A person believing in the issue of Mahdaviyyat [the return of Imam Mahdi (PBUH)] as per Shia faith, will not have a heart empty of hope even under the most difficult of situations and the flame of hope is always there; they know that this period of darkness, this period of oppression, this period of domination of [whatever is] untrue and evil will certainly end; this is one of the most important impacts and achievements of this faith. Of course, the conviction of Shiism in the issue of Mahdaviyyat is not limited to this. “It is due to his auspicious being that people have livelihood and it is due to his existence that the Earth and sky remain stable.” The issue of conviction in Mahdaviyyat is such a conviction. This burning flame, [and] this shining beam of light has existed in Shia societies during past centuries and will continue to be there and, God willing, the period of waiting for those who are waiting [for the return of Imam Mahdi (PBUH)] will come to an end. Yesterday, was the birth anniversary of that great personality; this brief account was just an expression of devotion on the occasion of this auspicious birthday, which was delivered in the gathering of you, dear brethren and sisters.
However, the material that I have prepared on the occasion of Khordad 14th (May 3) for dear brethren and sisters, who are present in this huge and glamorous meeting, and also for the Iranian nation, as usual, is a discussion about our great Imam [Khomeini]. We have talked a lot about this, but there is still room to talk about this great man. What I present to you today is entitled “distortion of Imam’s personality.” Can personalities be distorted as well? The word ‘distortion’ and the term ‘distortion’ is usually used about distortion of texts; [but] can personalities be distorted as well? [The answer is] yes. Distortion of personalities is when the main pillars of the character of that great person either remain unknown, or are described in a wrong way, or are described in a skewed and superficial manner; all these [instances] are cases of distortion of personality. A personality that is a role model, is Imam and leader, [and one that] his behavior, [and] his words are a guide and [source of] guidance for the next generations, if [such a personality] is distorted, it would lead to great harm. Imam [Khomeini] should not be merely taken into account as a respectable historical personality; some people like it this way; the Imam is a respectable personality in history of this country, who once existed, was active, [and] was useful, [and] then left our people and his time came to an end; [after that] we [only] show respect for him [and] mention his name with veneration; that is it. Some people want to know and introduce the Imam in this way and present such an image [of him]; this is wrong.
The Imam is objective manifestation of the huge movement that the Iranian nation initiated and changed its history; the Imam is founder of an intellectual and political and social school of thought. The Iranian nation accepted this school of thought, this path, [and] this roadmap and is still moving on [the basis of] it; continuation of this path depends on correct understanding of this roadmap. Without correct understanding of the Imam – which means understanding the principles of the Imam – this roadmap will not be understood. It is evident that our discussion is about intellectual fundaments of the Imam; the discussion is not about temporary decisions and [those decisions that are] related to [a specific] time or place; the discussion is about the main structure of the thought of our great Imam; we want to know this correctly.
Of course, the Imam was a great jurist; he was [both] a prominent and great jurist, and a philosopher, and a scholar in theoretical mysticism. In these fields [and] technical scientific spheres, he was at the top. However, the prominent personality of the Imam is not dependent on any of these [characteristics]; but the main personality of the Imam [was] the realization of the Quranic verse [which says]: “And strive in His cause as you ought to strive.” Having those prominent scientific backgrounds, the great Imam entered the field of struggling in the path of God and continued that struggle until the end of his life and created an immense movement not only in his own country, but all across our region and in the whole Islamic world and, in one way, in the entire world. The product of this movement was a unique product.
Two great steps, which were unprecedented in the history of the country, were taken by the Imam; one of them was to destroy the structure of the inherited, tyrannical and irrational monarchy that had a history of several thousands of years in our country. This rotten, obsolete, [and] wrong structure that the rule of a country should be in the hands of [a few] human beings and is inherited from one person to another, or that [the right to form a] government is gained through [use of] sword and military force and then it is inherited from one generation to another generation, was a wrong and irrational tradition [that existed] in our country through several thousands of years; the first step of the Imam was to destroy this wrong structure and put the country’s people in charge.
The second big step taken by our great Imam was to establish a government and [political] system on the basis of Islam, which this was unprecedented both in the history of our country, and even in the entire history of Islam after the early years of Islam. This great jihad [struggle] of our great Imam had such a valuable product and, therefore, he deserves to be described [like Quran says] as [one who] “struggled in the path of Allah in the way he ought to [have struggled].” As Quran says, “And strive in His cause as you ought to strive,” and as it is said about the Guardians of Religion, this great man was also an instance of [he who] “struggled in the path of Allah in the way he ought to [have struggled].”
Of course, I must say on the sidelines of this discussion that the struggle of this great man was not merely a political and social or intellectual struggle, but along with all these struggles, there was also an internal struggle, struggle against the human proclivity, [and] commitment to persistent and permanent contact with the Almighty God; this is also a lesson. It is not the case that if we entered the arena of intellectual struggle or scientific struggle or political struggle or military struggle, we would be entitled to pass over this [spiritual] part of the struggle. Our great Imam was humble, [he] was a person who cried [out of fear of God], who prayed, who [was devoted to] recourse [to God] and supplication [before God]. In this very auspicious [lunar] month of Sha’ban, he frequently repeated this section of Sha’baniya prayer in his speeches: “O God! Bestow upon me the highest degree of dependence on you and illuminate the [spiritual] eyes of our hearts with the light of looking toward you until the [spiritual] eyes of our hearts get through the covers of light and get connected to the source of grandeur.” This was how he behaved; his early morning crying, his worship [of God], his prayer, [and] his constant connection [with God], which constituted the spiritual backup for the persistence and continuation of this great man’s struggle. Let’s remember this on the margins of our great Imam’s struggle in the path of God.
The intellectual system of the Imam has all the complete characteristics of an intellectual and social and political school of thought. Firstly, it is dependent and based on a worldview and this worldview is monotheism. All his activities, [and] all his logic were based on monotheism, which is the main foundation for all Islamic thoughts. 
Another characteristic of this intellectual system, which turns it into a school of thought in true sense of the word, is that the intellectual system of the Imam was up-to-date; he put forth problems plaguing human societies and Iranian society, and [his] audiences felt it. In the Imam’s school of thought, opposition to dictatorship and opposition to arrogance had the first say; this is the one thing that Iranian nation felt as well; other Muslim nations [and] even non-Muslim nations felt it [as well]; this is why this call traveled [to all corners of the world].
Another characteristic of this school of thought was that it was alive and dynamic and energetic and operational. It was not like thinking and theorizations of some intellectuals, who say beautiful and appealing things during discussions, but lack efficiency in practice; the Imam’s logic; the Imam’s thought; [and] the Imam’s path was operational; could be realized in practice; this is why he triumphed and proceeded; this movement changed the course of history of our country.
We, the Iranian nation, were an subordinate nation and submerged in aimlessness and hopelessness; we were a dependent nation; we were a nation that had been intentionally held back; they [the foreigners] imposed both their ideas on us, and their culture; [they] both took away our economic resources, and directed toward our country a filthy string of ugly habits; we were such a nation. [The Imam] turned us into a motivated nation, a nation full of hope, a nation full of activity, [and] a nation with great goals. Today, Iranian nation is full of activity, is full of motivation, has hope and is moving toward great goals. Of course, we are still very far away from [the realization of] our goals, but it is important that we are moving; it is important that the [necessary] force and determination for progress exists in our nation; it is important that our youths believe that they can achieve those goals; they can materialize social justice in full; they can bring progress and wealth into this country; they can turn us into an advanced country and [one] possessing the power [that would be] proportionate to our historical identity. Today, our country is awash with this hope and our youths are moving in this direction. We have gotten out of our euphoric state; [we] have gotten out of drowsiness. This feat was pulled off by the movement of our great Imam and by this great man.
If the Iranian nation wants to achieve those goals; [and] wants to continue on this path; it should know the path of the great Imam correctly; know his principles correctly; [and] does not allow the Imam’s character to be distorted as distortion of the personality of the Imam is [tantamount to] distortion of the path of the Imam and diversion in the course of the straight path of the Iranian nation. If we lose the path of the Imam or forget it, or God forbid, put it aside intentionally, the Iranian nation will be slapped in the face. Everybody must know that the insatiable greed of the global arrogance has not taken its eyes off their country; a big country, a rich country, [and] a country situated at a sensitive global crossroads is very important to deceitful [and] powerful [countries] of the world. They have not given up their greed; [they] have not taken their eyes off [this country]; they will only backtrack if you, the Iranian nation, become so powerful, [and] become so advanced as to dash their hope. This is [exactly] where the risk of distorting [the personality of] the Imam becomes important; if the personality of the Imam is distorted, [and if it] is introduced in an inappropriate way, [and] in a wrong way, all these great risks will be posed to the Iranian nation; this is where the risk of the distortion of the [personality of the] Imam must be considered as a warning in the ears and eyes of state officials, intellectual scholars of the revolution, old disciples of the Imam, those who are interested in this path, and all the youth, the elites, academics, [and] seminarians. This was introductory part of my remarks.
When the Imam was alive, efforts were made to distort the personality of the Imam. On the one hand, there was the enemy that tried since the outset of the [Islamic] revolution in its global propaganda to introduce the Imam as a puritanical and harsh revolutionary – like what we know in the history of big and famous revolutions of the world like the French revolution, the Marxist revolution of the Soviet Union and some other revolutions –; a person who is puritanical and harsh, who is always frowning and merely looks forward to countering the enemy and there is no affection, [and] no flexibility in him; they introduced the Imam like this, which was wrong. Yes, the Imam was firm, unshakable, [and] was a determined person in his decision – about which I will later explain; however, he was also manifestation of affection, manifestation of kindness, manifestation of compassion, [and] manifestation of infatuation and love before God and before the people, especially with regard to the oppressed and underprivileged [social] classes; this was the thing that the enemy did to the Imam from day one in our revolution through global propaganda.
Inside the country, some people unknowingly and some knowingly distorted [the personality of the Imam]; even during the Imam’s life. They attributed to the Imam any words that they liked; while [those words] had nothing to do with the Imam. This current continued after the passing away of the Imam; [it] even went so far that some words and some remarks [by certain people] introduced the Imam as a liberal-minded person with no bound and condition in his behavior in political fields [and] even in intellectual and cultural fields; this is strongly wrong and against the reality. If we want to find [the truth about] the personality of the Imam in the true sense of the world, it has its own way. If we tread this path – which I will explain – the problem will be solved. Otherwise, today some people come and introduce the Imam in a certain way according to their own tendency and their own taste. It is possible that in future other people may come and according to other tastes, in accordance with other developments that take place in the world, see it expedient to introduce the Imam in a different way; this is not permissible. The popularity of the Imam among the people is a lasting thing; the enemy could not eliminate this; for this reason, the issue of distorting the personality of the Imam, which influences the hearts of many people – both inside the country and outside the country – is considered a great risk.
The [only] way that can prevent this distortion is to review the principles of the Imam. The Imam has a set of fundamentals; these fundamentals have been expressed in various remarks [of the Imam] throughout ten years of the era of the Islamic governance [under the Imam] and before that during 15 years of [the Imam’s] uprising; the principles of the Imam can be found in these remarks; put these principles [and] these lines together [and then] an image of the great Imam will take shape; this is the personality of the Imam. I am not saying that every secondary issue should be attended to; the life of the Imam, like all other human beings, was marked with ups and downs; events took place during it and every event had its own conditions; I mean basic remarks [of the Imam]; those things that cannot be denied and are among undeniable traits of the Imam through long years. Either before the establishment of the Islamic government, or during the establishment of the Islamic government, or during the time of the eight-year imposed war, or before that or after that, the Imam has repeated this principles in his remarks; these principles should not be chosen selectively. Of course, I will present five [or] six of these [principles], but I say here that the principles of the Imam may not be limited to these; those scholars and people who can and are able to do this job [must] go and pursue [this goal], look at the remarks of the Imam – which, thank God, have been compiled, do exist, [and] are available to everybody – and extract these principles. I cannot present all principles that can be extracted from the remarks of the Imam today; [therefore, I] only mention five, [or] six cases; I do not want to be selective; therefore, I say people should go and have a look and find [other] instances; however, what I present today is among undoubtable parts of the Imam’s logic and the Imam’s school of thought and the Imam’s path and the Imam’s line.
The first principle that exists in [the school of thought] of the Imam is substantiation of the pure Mohammedan Islam and negation of the American-style Islam. The Imam put the pure Islam against the American-style Islam. What is the American-style Islam? The American-style Islam in our time and in time of the Imam and in all times – as far as well know [and] it may be the same in future – does not have more than two ramifications: one is the secular Islam, [and the other] one is the petrified Islam. Therefore, the Imam always drew a parallel between those who had a secular way of thinking – that is, [those who] wanted the religion, the society, [and] the social behavior of humans separate from Islam - and those who had a petrified view of religion; that is, a view, which was backward and incomprehensible for new thinkers and was prejudiced about wrong fundaments; petrification. The Imam always mentioned these two [different varieties of Islam] in parallel to each other. Today that you look, you see both examples of Islam exist in the world of Islam [and] both are being supported by bullying powers of the world and are being supported by America. Today, both the deviant current of Daesh [ISIS] and Al-Qaeda and the likes of them are being supported by America and Israel, and some currents that carry the name of Islam [but] are unfamiliar with the Islamic act and Islamic jurisprudence and Islamic sharia are being supported by America.
From the viewpoint of the great Imam, the pure Islam is that Islam, which relies on the Book and Sunna, which is inferred and obtained through clear thinking, familiarity with [the exigencies of] time and place, and through a well-established and completed scientific way and method in seminaries. This is not the case that the method of inference is not important and any person can open the Quran and deduce principles of social movement; no, this requires a method, this has its way; this method is scientific [and] tested; there are people who can follow this method. This is the pure Islam as envisaged by the great Imam. Of course, everybody who knows that method, who knows that way, is not able [to infer principles]; they need clear thinking, must be familiar with time and place, must know actual needs of human societies and Islamic societies, must know the enemy, know how it exercises its animosity, [and] then they can clarify and know and introduce the pure Islam. On the other hand, the Islam of courtier clerics – whom the Imam frequently named by this term – and the Islam of Daesh, the Islam that is indifferent toward the crimes perpetrated by the Zionists [and] toward the crimes of America, the Islam that has set its sight on America and big powers and [awaits] America’s signal, they all originate from the same source; all of these [varieties of Islam] converge on a single point; [and] from the viewpoint of the Imam all of them are rejected. The Islam that the Imam introduces stands against all of these [other forms of Islam]. The follower of the Imam, he who follows suit with the Imam, must have clear borders, both with the petrified Islam and with the secular Islam; [they must] identify the pure Islam and follow it. This is one of the principles of the Imam. This is not something that the Imam had said just once; it stretches across the works of the Imam [and] the remarks of the Imam.
Secondly, one of the principles of the Imam is to put trust in the divine assistance, trust in the authenticity of the divine promise, and on the opposite, distrust of the arrogant and bullying powers of the world; this is one of the components of the school of thought of the Imam. Reliance on the divine power; the Almighty God has promised the faithful; and those who do not believe this promise have been cursed in the words of God himself: “…for them is the curse of Allah,” and those “[they] have the Wrath of Allah upon them;” those people who “have an evil opinion of Allah, an evil turn (of fortune) will befall them and the Wrath of Allah is on them and He has cursed them and got Hell ready for them, and evil is it for a destination.” Believing in the divine promise, in the authenticity of the divine promise, who has said, “if you assist Allah, He will assist you,” was one of the pillars of the [school of] thought of our great Imam; this promise must be trusted and relied upon.
On the opposite, the false promises of enemies, the arrogant [powers], [and] global powers should not be absolutely trusted; this is quite evident both in the Imam’s deeds, in the Imam’s behavior, [and] in the Imam’s remarks. This reliance on the power of God and trust in him caused the great Imam to be clear in his revolutionary positions. The Imam talked frankly; he explicitly expressed whatever he believed in because he relied on God; not that he did not know the [global] powers did not like it, not that he did not know they would become angry; he knew [all that] but believed in the divine power, in the divine assistance [and] in the divine triumph. In the face of events, he never faltered; [he] answered one of the letters – perhaps the Imam answered two letters out of the letters [sent by] the world’s arrogant heads of state or those dependent on the arrogant [powers] – which had been written to him; the Imam answered that letter with total frankness, answered its text, which was aired by the Islamic Republic of Iran Broadcasting at that time. Of course, the Imam talked politely, but expressed his firm and clear positions in those letters, and this trust [in God] was injected into the artery of the nation like blood by the Imam; the nation also put its trust in the Almighty God, believed in the divine triumph and embarked on this path. [The fact] that the Imam had no trust and no conviction in the arrogant [powers] caused him to pay no attention to their promises. The [then] American president – [Ronald] Reagan, who was also a powerful president – wrote a letter to the Imam and sent message and sent emissaries, [but] the Imam paid no attention to him, gave no response to him, and paid no attention and counted for nothing the promises that he had given.
 In another instance, one of the governments [which was] dependent on America, had given a promise about the end of the imposed war; hundreds of billions or a thousand billion was at stake; [but] the Imam paid no attention, [and] did not trust [that promise]. Now, we are feeling this concept in our different current affairs; we see how the promises of the arrogant [powers] cannot be trusted, what they say in a private meeting cannot be trusted; we are feeling this. The Imam made it one of the main lines of his work; trust in God [and] distrust of the arrogant [powers]. Of course, this did not mean to sever relations with the world [because] heads of state sent congratulatory messages to the Imam on various occasions and the Imam answered their felicitation messages. This kind of relation, at the usual level, politely and respectfully, did exist, but there was no trust in the arrogant [powers] and bullies and their affiliates and followers.
Thirdly, believing in people’s will and people’s power and opposition to centralizations by the government; this was among the main lines of the Imam’s movement. In those days, they tried due to an incorrect understanding [to provide grounds so] that all economic activities in the country would be delegated and made dependent on the government; the Imam warned time and time again – and those warnings were clearly reflected in his remarks – that these activities should be left to people; he trusted people in economic issues, [and] trusted people in military issues. Pay attention to this: from the very outset [of the revolution] the Imam supported the army; the one person who prevented dissolution of the army in the country was the Imam in person; however, he founded the [Islamic Revolution Guards] Corps force; [and] later, he created the institution of Basij; he turned the military movement into a popular current. In economic issues [the Imam supported] reliance on people; in military issues [the Imam supported] reliance on people; In issues related to reconstruction of the country which [he] launched the reconstruction Jihad. In publicity issues, reliance on the people and above all was the issue of elections in the country and [the role of] people’s votes in the management of the country and structure of the political system of the country. During all this time – the period that our great Imam ruled was 10 years; out of these ten years, there was war in this country for eight years; cities were bombarded; [and war] fronts were busy fighting – perhaps about ten elections were held in the country. Various elections were not postponed one day behind their schedule; in all stages, in all situations, under all conditions, the great Imam insisted that elections should be held on scheduled time.
Although it is customary in some countries to declare a state of emergency [in time of war], the Imam did not declare state of emergency [even] for one day [and] attached importance to elections. On the day of elections, one of the first people to go to the ballot box was the great Imam himself; [he] believed in people, and in the true sense of the word, he respected people’s votes and people’s thoughts and people’s choice. It was occasionally possible that what people elected was not what the Imam had in mind, but at the same time, he respected people’s votes; respected them [and] gave credit to them. This is one of the [important] things [about the Imam]. The Imam did not stop at this with regard to people, he introduced people as source of blessing for officials; the Imam frequently noted that these people are source of blessing for us; in some cases he introduced himself as servant of the nation; he said: “If they call me servant of the nation it is better than call me the leader;” this is a big assertion, [as it] indicates the prominent position of people and people’s thoughts and people’s votes and people’s presence in the eyes of the Imam; [and] people gave a suitable answer [to this]; they were present in the arena; wherever he pointed a finger, people were present from the bottom of their hearts. This [relationship] was mutual; the Imam trusted people and people trusted the Imam; the Imam loved people and people loved the Imam; this mutual relationship is an ordinary matter.
The fourth point is about domestic issues of the country. The Imam was a serious advocate of supporting the oppressed and underprivileged people; the Imam rejected economic inequality strongly and with full force; [he] bitterly rejected aristocracy; the Imam was supporter of social justice in true sense of the word; supporting the oppressed is perhaps one of the most frequent issues that our great Imam has expressed in his remarks; this is one of the clear lines of the Imam; this is one of the unwavering principles of the Imam; all of us must try to eradicate poverty; everybody must try to get the deprived people out of deprivation and to help the deprived people as much as is possible for the country. On the other hand, he warned the state officials about getting used to the aristocratic lifestyle – this point has been also mentioned in the Quran [where it says]: "And you dwelt in the dwellings of men who wronged their own souls" – and [the Imam] warned all of them to avoid getting used to the aristocratic lifestyle. He frequently emphasized that [state officials must] trust the loyalty of the underprivileged [social] classes; the Imam frequently pointed out that this is the slum dwellers, this is the poor, this is the underprivileged who have filled these scenes despite deprivation, raise no objection; [and] are present in fields of danger. [However,] those who were more fortunate, if a problem occurred in different cases, they happened to express more dissatisfaction. This loyalty of people of the middle classes and people of the lower classes was a prominent issue from the viewpoint of the Imam and [he] put emphasis on this. [He] put emphasis on correct spending of the treasury [resources] [and also] stressed [the need] to avoid extravagance. This is one of the basic lines [of the Imam]: the issue of social justice, supporting the deprived and distancing from aristocratic habits and luxury habits and acting in this direction.
The fifth point is about foreign issues. The Imam was clearly in the front that opposed international bullies and arrogant [powers]; and was bound by no consideration [in this regard]. This is why in the confrontation of the bullies and the arrogant and bullying powers of the world with the oppressed, the Imam stood in the oppressed front; he gave voice to this explicitly and with no consideration and without any caution. He was a serious supporter of the world oppressed. The Imam never sought reconciliation with the arrogant [powers]. The term “Great Satan,” [which the Imam used] for America, was a strange innovation on the part of the Imam. The ideological and practical ramifications of this Great Satan term are too many.
When you consider a person, [and] an establishment as the Satan, it is quite clear how you must deal with it, how you must feel about it; the Imam had this feeling about America up to the last day [of his life]; [and] he both used the Great Satan as a title [for America], and believed in it from the bottom of his heart. On the opposite, there were some people from the outset of the revolution who did not note that America was the backup that fed the tyrannical regime [of former Iranian Shah], which was overthrown by the Iranian nation. The Iranian nation toppled the tyrannical regime, but there were people at that time, who agreed with the presence of Americans, with their activity – even with the activity of some American institutions – in the country! The main sticking point between the interim government and the great Imam was over this issue; we saw [this] up-close. They [officials of the interim government] did not notice that America was supporting the tyrannical [Pahlavi] regime; now, the regime had been overthrown, but the system supporting it is still in place, is active; if it is given room, given opportunity, it will get busy again and will deal a blow and look for weaknesses and exploit those weaknesses; they did not pay attention to this issue. The Imam saw this; therefore, positions taken by the Imam on the issue of the Spy Den [former US embassy in Iran] emanated from this kind of look and from this viewpoint. There are people in the world, who did not pay attention to this point and suffered, which I don’t want to chide and scorn anybody now, but this is a blow that has been dealt to some people because they overthrew reactionary and arrogant regimes [but] ignored their backup. The Imam saw that backup from day one, [and] countered it; therefore, up to the last [day of his life] the Imam took position against America and the political and security establishment of America.
On the other hand, the great Imam supported, [and] defended Palestine through these long years. He defended Palestine, [and] defended Afghanistan. The day when the Soviets entered Afghanistan, although we were plagued with animosity of America – in these conditions when governments are at loggerheads with one side, they usually get along with the other side – the great Imam took firm position against the Soviet Union at the same time. Even some governments that were inclined toward the West did not take such a firm position, but the great Imam supported the afghan nation without any consideration; [he also] supported the Lebanese nation, [and] offered his most sincere support to Palestinians. This is the logic of the Imam with regard to countering the [world] arrogance. Today, through this logic, the world’s affairs can be identified, [and] the correct position can be understood. Today, as much as we are opposed to the savage and oppressive behavior of Daesh current in Iraq and Syria, to the same degree, we disagree with the oppressive behavior of America’s federal police in their country – these are both alike –; to the same degree we are opposed to the siege of Gaza; which is an unjust blockade against the oppressed people of Gaza; to the same degree we are opposed to the bombardment of the oppressed and defenseless people of Yemen; to the same degree we are opposed to the crackdown against the people of Bahrain, [and] to the same degree we are opposed to America’s unmanned aircraft attacks against people in Afghanistan and Pakistan. This logic, is the logic of the Imam. Wherever there is oppression, there are two sides: the oppressor and the oppressed; we takes sides with the oppressed [and] oppose the oppressor; this is the position that the Imam took unequivocally and this is one of the main lines [of the Imam]. This is why today, the issue of Palestine is a major issue for us; everybody must know this. The issue of Palestine will not be taken out of the Islamic Republic Establishment’s agenda. The issue of Palestine is the arena for an obligatory and necessary Islamic struggle; no development can separate us from the issue of Palestine. There are, perhaps, certain people in the [political] scene of Palestine who do not fulfill their duties; we do not count on them. However, the people of Palestine, Palestinian nation, [and] Palestinian combatants have our confirmation and our support.
Another one of the main points and main lines of the Imam’s thought is the issue of the independence of the country, [and] rejection of submission to hegemony. This is also one of the important topics. Last year in this very meeting I told the addressees of that year that independence is freedom on a national scale; this is [true] meaning of independence. If some people seek personal liberties in words or in their slogans, but speak against the independence of the country, this is a contradiction. How is it possible for personal liberties of individuals to be respected, but freedom of a nation, freedom on a national scale, in the face of the sanctions of opponents and enemies, could not be respected! This is totally incomprehensible; it is not acceptable. Unfortunately, there are people who theorize for the negation of the independence of the country; [they] sometimes describe independence as isolation, sometimes [they] write and say that today the independence of countries is not considered a value; [and] these remarks spread through society. Some people move in this direction, this is a big mistake, [and] a big and dangerous error. The Imam believed in the independence of the country; believed in rejection of domination [of foreigners] over the country. A large part of the activities of our enemy during all these years against our country and our nation was aimed at damaging independence [of the country]. Whether through sanction, or through threat, these [enemies] have targeted independence [of the country]; everybody should be vigilant [and] know what the enemy’s goals are. This is also one of the main lines [of the Imam’s thought].
Another one of the main lines of the Imam’s thought and the Imam’s path and the Imam’s line – this is the last subject that I discuss – was the issue of the national unity and attention to conspiracies that [aim to] foment division: whether division on the basis of religion, Shia and Sunni; or division on the basis of ethnic origins, Persian and Arab and Turk and Kurd and Lor and Baluch and the likes of these. Fomenting division was one of the unwavering policies of the enemy and from the first day, our great Imam put a unique emphasis on [the issue of] the national unity and unity among all people of the nation, which this is one of the [main] lines [of the Imam’s thought]. Today, we must follow this line as well. Today, you see in the world that the issue of [fomenting] division in the Islamic world is one of the main policies of the [global] arrogance. Americans have gone so far [in this regard] that now they [openly] mention Shia and Sunni: Shia Islam and Sunni Islam; they support one and attack the other. while the Islamic Republic of Iran has taken a uniform approach to this issue of religious difference from the very beginning [of its establishment]. We treated our Palestinian brethren, who are Sunnis, just in the same way that we treated [our] Lebanese Hezbollah brethren, who are Shias; we acted similarly in all places.
This was the viewpoint of our great Imam inside the country. Within the Islamic world, the viewpoint of the Islamic Republic is an Ummah-building viewpoint; the Islamic Ummah is the goal. [The fact] that second-hand lackeys of America come out and talk about the issue of the Shia Crescent, this is indicative of divisive policies. [The fact] that despite extensive propaganda, Americans deal with this divisive Takfiri groups in Iraq and Syria with tolerance – possibly in some cases help them without letting anybody know and covertly; their agents [though] are supporting them overtly – this indicates that the role of fomenting division from the viewpoint of enemies of Islam and Muslims and enemies of the Islamic Republic is a very prominent role; everybody [must] pay attention to this; both Shia [Muslims] pay attention, and Sunni [Muslims] pay attention; do not play into the enemy’s hands. That Sunnism, which is supported by America, and that Shiism, which is exported to the world from the center of London, they are both the same; both of them are brothers of the Devil; [and] both of them are agents of America and the West, and [the world] arrogance.
Empathy and rapport, on which I put emphasis this year at the beginning of the year and [which I] also repeated frequently afterwards, is based on this foundation. Inside the country, sisters and brethren from various ethnic groups, [and] from various denominations, [must] form a single hand together – as, thank God, has been the case up to the present time – [and] do not let the enemy infiltrate the realm of the Islamic world. The same applies at an extended and broad level; Sunni and Shia brethren [must] know together that [there is] an enemy who is threatening the very existence of Islam. This is also one of the main lines [of the Imam’s thought].
I presented seven instances of fundaments and principles of the Imam and certainly, the principles of the Imam are not limited to these [instances]. Others can search [for other instances], but nobody [must] attribute anything that he likes to the Imam. Everything that we attribute to the Imam must exist in sources related to the Imam and that in a repeated form, in a persistent form, like these seven instances that I mentioned; these [seven principles exist] from the beginning of the Imam’s remarks to the end, just as one refers [to his remarks], through long years, one can see all these instances in the Imam’s remarks; these [instances] qualify as principles. Others may search [and] find principles through this very method. The attraction and repelling force of the Imam was based on these principles. We also want to have attraction and repulsion; attraction on the basis of these principles, [and] repulsion on the basis of these principles.
Everybody must know that the goal of our enemies with different countenances and different grimaces that show from themselves – sometimes frown, sometimes smile, sometimes give promises, [and] sometimes threaten – is domination over the country. The enemy wants to get back to the era of its unconditional domination over this country; [and] since Islam is strongly opposed to this return and [since] the resistance force against this conspiracy of the enemy is “Islam,” they are against Islam. The opposition of the enemy with Islam is because they know that Islamic knowledge, [and] Islamic rules have erected a strong barrier in front of them. [They] are against our nation because the nation has stood up against them like a mountain. [They] are more opposed to anybody among the nation who puts up more resistance against the enemy. [They] are more opposed to the faithful elements, more opposed to revolutionary organizations and institutions, [and] more opposed to Hezbollahi [deeply religious] elements because they know that they are strong and solid barriers to infiltration of enemies. The enemy seeks domination and all the effort made by the enemy is to stop the Islamic movement of the Islamic Republic Establishment, which is a source of progress and prosperity and growth for this nation. A veteran American politicians had [once] said that Takfiri terrorist groups are not important for us, Westerners; it is no problem if they exist; what is important for us is the Islamic Iran because the Islamic Iran is bent on creating an immense civilization – of course, he had used the term “empire,” which was an error – [and] therefore, we must consider the Islamic Iran as our opposite and our important enemy. This quote also shows us the importance of building an Ummah.
These [were] my today’s remarks. I welcome you dear brethren, all those who have come from long distances, [and] from different cities; I say more power to your elbow; God willing, the Almighty may protect all of you. O Almighty! We swear you upon [Prophet] Mohammad (PBUH) and the Progeny of Mohammad to bestow your mercy and blessings on this great and mature nation. O Almighty! Bestow your mercy and blessing on the soul of this great man, this revered Imam who opened this illuminated path in front of us. O Almighty! Make us among honest followers of this path and take our lives through martyrdom in this path. O Almighty! Make the sacred heart of Vali-e Asr [Imam Mahdi (PBUH)] satisfied and content with us.

Peace be unto you and so may the mercy of Allah and His blessings.