In the Name of God, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful
I congratulate all of you, dear youths and future hopes of the country; [I congratulate] both those graduates, who have officially joined the Armed Forces and the Army of the Islamic Republic, and [also felicitate] newly admitted [cadets] and this year’s epaulette awardees, who celebrated the beginning of their auspicious movement today. As you said during your oath taking [ceremony] and we heard, this is a promising path [that you have taken]. In fact, the path you have taken is one of the topmost examples of a promising path.
I deem it necessary to thank the commanders of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army’s military academies, which thank God, [these academies] have [greatly] developed. At the outset of the Islamic [Revolution], we only had one military academy, [but] today there are several [military] academies, which are busy working and training youths in various sectors. I [also] thank commanders of these academies, [and] commanders of the three forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army. I [thank] teachers, especially the esteemed teachers, who teach these courses, [and] the esteemed clerics, who strive for religious training of these dear youths and take sincere part in their excursions, in their classes, [and] in their gatherings; I thank all of you and congratulate you.
This path, which you dear youths of today have chosen is a blessed path and by selecting this path, you have created a wealth for your country. You young people are the great wealth of the country in the true sense of the word. For any country, no wealth, [and] no source of power could be more valuable than efficient and faithful and free-thinking and proud manpower and today, you are an example of this great bounty and this great wealth; [therefore,] appreciate this.
The dear youths of today have not seen the [eight-year Iraqi] Imposed War [against Iran]. The majority or all of you dear youths, who are in this arena today, are among those who have been born after the end of war. The period of the Sacred Defense [the Iraqi Imposed War against Iran] was a strange period, was an important period, [and] was the period for [passing] a difficult test. Great and perseverant human beings show their true worth in [such difficult] tests, [and] it is there that the essence [of such people] is revealed. During the Sacred Defense, the essence of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army was revealed. [Through its presence] in various sectors, the Army managed to take brilliant and major steps by taking advantage of its different elements. You have [just] heard the name of the Sacred Defense. One of those steps, which is very necessary [to be taken] in these very [military] academies and in the general environment of the Islamic Republic of Iran Army, and especially in the Armed Forces, is increasing familiarity [of the young generation] with the period of the Sacred Defense. The period of the Sacred Defense was not an ordinary period, [and] was not a normal period.
[Under normal conditions,] the Armed Forces spend many years in peace and waiting for the rainy day. The rainy day is that day in which their country, their nation, their borders, [and] their identity come under aggression; it is then that the Armed Forces form the frontline of defense and pass their test. During the period of the Sacred Defense everything in the country was under aggression; not only the country’s borders, [but also] the national identity of the country, the Islamic establishment of the country, the great revolution of the Iranian nation, [and] numerous values, which this great nation had held before its eyes, were all under aggression. At that time, it was not simply the Baathist regime of [the former Iraqi dictator] Saddam [Hussein], which stood against us, [but the Imposed War] was, in fact, a general war, [and] an international war against the Iranian nation. NATO helped Iraq, America helped, then Soviet Union helped, [and in addition,] reactionary Arabs channeled their financial and material aid and their petrodollars toward them like a flood. Their propaganda [machine] – which was and still is under control of Zionists – made efforts in their favor and against the Islamic Republic of Iran across the globe, day and night. In this huge battle, [and] through this [development which was similar to the] Resurrection Day, the huge force of the Iranian nation, the force of faith, the force of resistance, the force of trust in God, the force that relied on [the leadership of the late leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah] Rouhollah [Khomeini], and on top of all of them, the Armed Forces of the Islamic Republic of Iran establishment rose up [against enemies]. This is [the true meaning of] rising up for the cause of Allah. [As put by the Quran:] “You [must] rise up for [the cause of] Allah, [and seek truth] in pairs and individually.” [Therefore,] [all Iranian forces] rose up [against enemies] for [promoting the cause of] Allah, entered the arena, [and] took advantage of their life, of their force, [and] of their capability [in this regard].
My dear ones, [and] my dear youths! These [people] are your past generation. These are those [people] whom you have succeeded and you have been handed down their honors. At that time, Army was not endeared by [the Iranian] people to this extent; [the likes of former commander of the Iranian Army’s Ground Forces General Ali] Sayyad [Shirazi] and [Major General Abbas] Babaei and [other] great personalities of the Army with their sacrifices, [and all those] commanders and generals, who used all their power to counter the enemy in the warfronts, it was them who created this honor, [and] it was them who created this [high degree of] popularity for the Army of the Islamic Republic of Iran. I have been witness to their struggles up-close and have seen what they did and how they [entered the arena of war and] chipped in their lives and their capability.
My dear ones! Equip yourselves, [and] prepare yourselves; [I mean,] both in scientific and technical terms, and in terms of organizational readiness and discipline, and in terms of faith-based and ideological and spiritual readiness, and this [latter form of readiness] is [a good] backing for all of the others. Lend your hearts to God on this path. Your country is a big country, is an important country, [and] is a magnificent country; [while] your nation is a smart and brave and mighty nation. This is not something that I say, [because] today, across the world, all those who are familiar [with this nation] and are willing to talk about it, say this openly and [even] enemies, who are not willing to confess openly, believe this at [the bottom of] their hearts, and what they believe [in this regard] is revealed in many cases and we hear about that. [On the other hand,] due to [its] independence, due to [its] faith, due to [its] belief in Islam, due to [its] belief in the sovereignty of God’s religion on Earth and in the society, [and] due to the lofty values that [the Iranian nation] strives for, it also faces a vast front of enemies, who are constantly busy [conspiring against it].
Of course, [the enemies] have been attacking [the Iranian nation] for about forty years and have certainly failed; they have failed up to this day and, through God’s assistance, they will fail after this as well. You must play your role in the real sense of the word in making the enemy fail; therefore, you must get prepared [to achieve this goal]. I seriously ask the esteemed teachers, [and] the esteemed clerics, who deal with these pure hearts, [and] with these dear youths, to do all in their power to transfer their own experiences, [as well as] their spiritual and scientific and non-material preparedness to these dear youths. Through God’s assistance and by God’s Grace great men will be made of you in the future, and God willing, you will be a source of honor for the country; [of course,] if you persevere.
I hope the Almighty God would make all of you successful and, God willing, your future would be much better than your present and this will [certainly] happen through God’s assistance, and the future of this country will be much better and more advanced than its present state. The blessed name of Vali-e Asr [the last Shia Imam] (PBUH) (May Our Souls Be Sacrificed for Him) is the source of blessing for what we say and blesses our gathering. I hope that Honorable One would pray for us and our dear martyrs and our Honorable Imam [Khomeini] would be satisfied with us and with what we do.
Peace be unto you and so may the mercy of Allah and His blessings