The Office of the Supreme Leader

Leader's Address to Air Force Servicemen

In the Name of Allah, the Comapssionate, the Merciful

The memory of Bahman 19 is a memory that fills us with pride and honor. The young Air Force servicemen, including the Homafars and commissioned and non-commissioned officers, performed a great epical deed on that day. Probably our young servicemen who are present at this gathering will not be able to imagine the significance of what they did under those sensitive and decisive circumstances. Their epical deed has been a source of inspiration over the past 27 years.

The Iranian Air Force, over the past years, has been in the forefront of all pride-inspiring deeds that are expected from the Armed Forces of the Islamic Republic. In the era of the Sacred Defense, the Air Force performed remarkable deeds in the fields of offense and defense. I don’t know whether our young servicemen are well informed of the history of the activities of this force in the above adventurous period. But what you should know is that the most earnest endeavors that are likely to be made by military servicemen in the field of defense were made by our valorous Air Force personnel in the Sacred Defense era.

Such matters should be conveyed to our young generation in a precise and honest way and without any exaggeration. There is no need for exaggeration, since the realities are so wonderful and so magnificent that they will catch the eyes of and attract the attention of any viewer.

Furthermore, in the field of construction, the first military force that took great strides toward self-sufficiency in its real sense was the Air Force. I have observed the valuable measures taken by the Air Force and other military organizations to attain self-sufficiency, and I have noticed that they have made considerable progress in this area.

The inclination for independence and the desire for the Muslim Iranian army to stand firm and straight-backed and feel proud of its inherent strength first emerged in this military force, and it led to great valuable achievements and the removal of certain obstacles.

Today, the Air Force personnel should duly recognize the status of their military force. The Air Force is a very significant, and in a sense decisive, military force. The anti-aircraft division of the Air Force is the most effective division in the country’s entire military apparatus for defending the honor, independence and dignity of the Iranian nation.

The high summits of progress can be conquered only through strong will and determination, self-confidence, trust in Almighty Allah and tireless efforts. The great deed that was performed by the Air Force servicemen some 27 years ago had a very effective role in the revolution’s victory. This shows that any military force in our armed forces can play a significant role on certain occasions.

You should try to boost your self-confidence and utilize your inherent capabilities, and you should realize that through determination, innovation, creativity and earnest endeavors you will be able to turn your military force into a source of honor for the Iranian nation.

So far you have done so. It is also possible for you to do so in the future. Organized and constant efforts combined with self-reliance, observance of strict military discipline, commitment and trust in Almighty Allah can prove very effective and influential.

The epical event of Ashura conveys this important lesson that Muslims should not be daunted by threats, and that they should undertake momentous responsibilities. Of course that great epical deed could only be performed by Imam Hussein-ibn-Ali (greetings be upon him), not by anyone else. Nevertheless, at the foot of that high mountain, there are different responsibilities that you and I can undertake, and there are various duties which we can carry out.

Over many years and through ceaseless propaganda, they had turned the Iranian nation into a dependent nation, devoid of self-confidence and noble aspirations and alienated from its native culture. The Iranian people, despite their remarkable historical background, significant geographical position, great human talent and abundant natural resources, were exploited by alien powers, first by Britain and then by the United States. But the Islamic Revolution awakened our people and ended their dependency. The Iranian people learned this lesson from the epical event of Ashura, a lesson which changed their fate and destiny.

Today, we are treading the path of honor and independence and trying to fulfill our human talent, and we have made considerable progress in this regard. This is also acknowledged by other nations. We should continue treading this path. No nation will be able to attain a high status through indolence and self-indulgence.

In order to attain independence and achieve national sovereignty and honor, any nation will have to pay a certain price. But nations should incur such expenses and make every effort to achieve the above objectives. They should be hopeful of the valuable results of their endeavors, despite all the attempts that are being made by the enemies to undermine their hopes and aspirations.

There are certain issues in the world that are of significance to us. Presently you can see that the world's arrogant and domineering powers are raising a commotion and outcry about Iran's scientific and technological capabilities, especially about the Iranian nation's innate ability to attain nuclear technology. This has deeply confused hegemonic powers, and their commotion and outcry stems from their confusion.

The fact of the matter is that domineering powers are opposed to the independent nations' attainment of scientific and technological power. They are angry to see that the Iranian nation has been able to attain modern nuclear technology, a source of pride and honor, without any reliance on them.

As a result, U.S. president and other Western officials are making false claims to the effect that the Islamic Republic is pursuing nuclear weapons. It is quite clear that there are ulterior motives behind such false claims, since they are well aware of the fact that we are not seeking nuclear weapons.

These countries are also wielding immense influence over international organizations, and these organizations are losing face one by one because of succumbing to their influence. The Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty (NPT) had been drawn up by Western countries themselves. On Saturday, these countries themselves abolished and disposed of this treaty.

Why should nations submit to the will of those countries that are bullying and trying to dominate others, those countries that attach no worth and value to the sovereignty of other nations?

The Islamic Republic's move has been aimed at leaving no room for such false claims. Over the past two and a half years, the Islamic Republic of Iran removed whatever suspicions they had and took away all their excuses for making such claims. Consequently, in the end, Western countries had to acknowledge that what concerned them was not a nuclear weapons program, but that they were actually concerned about the attainment of nuclear technology by the Iranian nation!

They do not want the Iranian nation to possess nuclear technology. They want our nation to be dependent and lag behind in science and technology. These countries do not want the gap between domineering powers and other nations to narrow. It is clear that what Western countries want is by no means acceptable to the Iranian nation.

The era when the orders of American and British ambassadors were carried out by Mohammad-Reza Shah is over now. Today, the Iranian nation is present on the scene. Today, our government officials represent the will and desires of the Iranian nation. They should also represent the power of this nation. Our honorable president's order to the Atomic Energy Organization and his statement were in conformity with the honor and sovereignty of the Iranian nation.

Fortunately, the decisions made by our officials are based on prudence and expertise and adequate knowledge of political and international and technical issues. They know what they are doing, and they have acted appropriately with regard to this issue.

Those who are waiting to see signs of weakness in the Iranian nation should bear in mind that the Iranian people, treading the path of honor, independence and national sovereignty, will show no weakness in the face any threat whatsoever. Our experience over the past 27 years, including the experience of the revolution and the Sacred Defense era, also corroborates this reality and makes it clear that the power of this country and nation should not underestimated.

Hegemonic powers have limited resources at their disposal, and bullying and threats are the major tools frequently used by arrogant and domineering powers in advancing their goals and objectives. If Islamic governments and Third World countries and other nations realize the worth of their power, such tools will no longer be effective. The Iranian nation has realized the worth of its power and capabilities.

The more important issue is the outrageous affront to the Holy Prophet of Islam (peace be upon him and his infallible household), which brings disgrace to Western civilization with regard to the freedom of expression. Such offensive acts discredit and bring shame upon liberal democracy, the banner of which has been raised by Western countries and in which these countries take pride, with respect to the freedom of expression.

Western countries allow no freedom of expression, which they claim to advocate, with regard to the myth of the massacre of Jews known as the holocaust, and nobody in the West enjoys the freedom of expression to deny it or raise doubts about it.

There are many individuals in European countries, including scientists, scholars, historians and journalists, who do not dare to express their doubts about this issue. There are also some who believe that the whole issue is a lie, but they do not dare to say so because they have seen that whoever has said so has been punished, prosecuted and imprisoned and has been deprived of his rights.

However, affronting the sanctities of about 1.5 billion Muslims - without any reasons or the existence of any quarrels between the two or any affronts on the part of Muslims to their sanctities - is permissible in the West and benefits from the freedom of expression!

The issue is not that some cartoonist has been paid by the Zionists to draw the cartoons in order to further the diabolic goals of the Zionists. But the issue is that European politicians are defending and endorsing this mean and outrageous action and trying to portray it as permissible on the pretext of the freedom of expression!

I guess the whole affair is a premeditated Zionist plot aimed at pitting Muslims and Christians against each other, since it is of great significance to the Zionists to pit the great Islamic community throughout the world against Christians.

The day following the September 11 incident when U.S. president inadvertently said that a crusade had begun – but later U.S. officials realized that they had made a mistake and that they should not have said so, and they tried to make up for their mistake – nobody quite realized what this crusade meant. It means a war between Christian and Muslim nations. U.S. politicians intend to prepare the ground for pitting these nations against each other. Thus, both Muslims and Christians in the world should be quite aware and vigilant so as not to play into the hands of these wicked politicians.

A few years ago a European politician in a meeting with me talked about a war between Christians and Muslims. What he said attracted my attention. Although he was not a senior politician, he was linked to American circles and was knowledgeable about U.S. policies. This is why what he said drew my attention.

Today we can see that the Zionist hands are at work in the Christian world and Europe preparing the ground for this confrontation. For what reason should an affront printed by a certain newspaper in a certain country a few months ago be republished in central and western European countries repeatedly? What are the motives for this?

The Muslim nations' reaction was timely and appropriate, since the Holy Prophet of Islam (peace be upon him and his infallible household) is the center of deep love and warm emotions of Muslims and the pivot of unity and solidarity of all the Islamic schools of thought. However, all should know that the sacred and justified anger of Muslims is not against Christians, but it is against the wicked and hidden Zionist hands that have hatched this plot and are treating the politicians of arrogant powers as their tools and playthings. They also are wielding control over many publications and the media in the West.

The Zionists, who are dominating the present U.S. administration and who are also active in Europe, received a heavy and shocking blow from the victory of the Islamic resistance movement Hamas in the recent Palestinian parliamentary election. Thus, they are now trying to compensate for their defeat and lost face in Palestine by affronting Muslims.

The United States had openly extended financial assistance to the Palestinian groups competing with Hamas in the recent parliamentary election. But despite this and to the great frustration of U.S. officials and the Zionist usurpers of Palestine, Hamas members achieved remarkable victory in the election.

If today free elections are held in any part of the Islamic world, the same thing will happen again and anti-U.S. groups will win those elections because of the ugly and abominable face of the United States in the eyes of Muslim nations. The United States, despite all its arrogant speech and threatening remarks, is helpless in the face of the presence of nations on the scene.

There is also a contradiction between the words and deeds of U.S. officials. On the one hand, they claim to advocate democracy. On the other hand, any democracy that is established runs counter to U.S. interests. For this reason, they express opposition to the results of democratically-held elections. Wherever they can, they will manipulate the results. If not, they will cast aspersions on those elections.

The Iranian nation is witnessing the great results of its revolution in the Islamic world one by one. It is witnessing that this sapling is now bearing fruit, and such results are going to increase in the future. Our nation has so far trodden its path with power and strength and by divine favor and assistance will continue to do so in the future.

We will capture the peaks of honor and glory one by one, not through war and bloodshed but through patience, perseverance, prudence and firm intention, just as we have advanced and captured many such peaks so far.

The Iranian people are expected to preserve their unity, deep faith and firm resolution, and surely they will do so. During their parades and rallies on Bahman 22 this year, the 27th anniversary of the Islamic Revolution's victory, the Iranian people will once again by divine guidance voice their goals and ideals and aspirations. Thus, the whole world should open their eyes and watch the Iranian people on Bahman 22 this year, as they did in the past years.

Divine grace and guidance are bestowed on our nation, and we are pinning our hopes on assistance from Almighty Allah. It is true that we are making efforts, but our efforts constitute a body whose soul is divine grace and favor. Try to prepare your hearts to receive divine favor and guidance.

I would like to stress this point in particular to our dear young servicemen in the Air Force that you should highly value your immaculate hearts and illuminated minds. Try to consolidate your relationship with Almighty Allah and further enlighten your hearts with the light of divine grace and favor.

I hope you will all benefit from the sacred prayer of His Holiness Imam of the Age – may our souls be sacrificed for his sake.

Greetings be upon you and Allah's mercy and blessings