In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds, and peace and greetings be upon our Master and Prophet, Ab-al-Qassem Al-Mustafa Muhammad, and upon his pure, immaculate and chosen household, especially the one remaining with Allah on earth
Greetings be upon Hussein, upon Ali ibn al-Hussein, upon the children of Hussein and upon the companions of Hussein – those who laid down their lives for Hussein in a generous manner
First of all, I would like to congratulate you dear youth, the apples of the Iranian nation’s eye and – God willing – the fruits of the good tree of the Revolution, on this ceremony and on this day. I wish to congratulate both those youth who have received their ranks and who have joined the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps, and also the youth who have entered this arena, who have received their epaulettes today and who will continue their studies at this blessed university, God willing.
I would like to raise two, three points with you dear ones today: one is about this university, another is about the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps and another is about a fundamental matter related to the Islamic Republic and the country.
As for this university – whether the Comprehensive University or Imam Hussein University – I have to say that this is a great blessing for all those who study in it, those who render services in it and those who will benefit from the blessings of the graduates of this university in the future, God willing. It is a divine blessing. I insist that the honorable officials in the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps should focus on the matters of this university in order to improve it.
The report that the honorable commander presented here was a good report that shows signs of progress. The ceremony that you performed here shows the continuation of the innovations by the youth in Guards Corps. It was a beautiful, meaningful and significant ceremony, but as I have said this many times, we are happy and we are proud of you, but we are not satisfied. This movement of progress should continue both at a scientific and training level and at other levels – which I will refer to. One of these levels is the recruitment and appointment system which is very important. We should stress its significance. Another is deep educational programs. Educational programs should really enjoy depth.
The points that the Guards Corps commander raised are important. What he said was correct. The scientific future of humanity and of the world is moving towards these newly-emerged matters. And we are thankfully not backward in them. We should focus on these matters as much as we can: matters like deep education, comprehensive training, having the necessary expertise in the case of the managers, and discipline. One of the matters that I wish to emphasize is being disciplined and systematic on all the matters of this university.
However, as well as the existence of solid discipline and a solid system, there should be an emotional and brotherly relationship between commanders, managers and the personnel. Since the beginning of the formation of the Guards Corps, this was one of its characteristics. The high-ranking commanders of the Guards Corps would behave in a brotherly way towards the body of the Guards Corps.
Another point is that the professors teaching at this university – who deeply believe in revolutionary matters and in the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps itself – should focus on these matters. Our dear friends, our dear brothers and the Guards Corps officials should focus on the matters of this university. This is because it is very important and by Allah’s favor, it will play a role in the fundamental issues of the country.
The second point is about the Guards Corps. Today, the Guards Corps thankfully enjoys dignity both inside and outside the country. And as it happens, the enemies have helped bring about this dignity. The Americans have increased the dignity of the Guards Corps with their violent, disgruntled and hostile attitude towards the Guards Corps. This is the enemy’s assistance which is acceptable and to our liking. God’s enemy shows enmity to God’s servants, but this enmity endears His servants and enlightens their faces.
Well, the Guards Corps has a perpetual lesson. A few days ago, I spoke in detail with the brothers from the Guards Corps about the matters related to that organization. I said what could be said, but I want to stress that there is a perpetual lesson for the Guards Corps which is what this holy ayah says, “Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power, including steeds of war, to strike terror into the hearts of the enemies, [the enemies] of Allah and your enemies” [The Holy Quran, 8: 60]. There are several points in this ayah:
First of all, the Arabic word “edaad” means preparing oneself as much as possible. It means that you should not be satisfied with any level. You should focus on this preparation and try to increase it as much as you can in the areas that have been mentioned in the ayah itself. The Guards Corps should increase its preparedness on a daily basis. This preparation primarily includes “quwwah” and secondly “rebat al-khayl”. “Quwwah” means power, capability and force. “Rebat al-khayl” means tools, different tools. In every era, there are specific tools. What is the goal then? “To strike terror into the hearts of the enemies, of Allah and your enemies”.
The Arabic word “torhebun” does not only mean intimidating for the sake of making someone feel afraid. No, such intimidation involves keeping someone at bay. If the enemy is scared of your power and your preparation, then that fear will keep him away. You should do something to make the enemy be afraid of the glory of young, pious, self-sacrificing and motivated men because this is the most important factor in keeping him away.
The word “quwwah” in the sentence “Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power”, means power. This power shows itself in different ways: one is organizational power which means having a strong, solid and comprehensive organization. Such organizational power is something that should be pursued in the Guards Corps.
Another is scientific and expert power. All successful moves made by various human groups were primarily shaped in the shade of science. It is in the shade of science that people achieve power, wealth, global power and dignity. And there has been so much emphasis on science in Islam. The reason is this. So, one important piece of power is science.
Another is having power in the area of tactics and strategy. The military organization of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps should constantly be prepared and move forward on a daily basis in the area of tactical and strategic matters.
Another is quwwah in the area of vigilance and readiness. Negligence is not accepted at all! We should be constantly awake and vigilant. The Commander of the Faithful (greetings be upon him) said, “The warrior should be wakeful because if he sleeps the enemy does not sleep” [Nahjul Balaghah, Letter 62]. If you fall asleep in your trench, this does not mean that the enemy has also fallen asleep in the opposite trench. He might be awake. Therefore, one should always be awake and ready in one’s trench.
Quwwah means firm and iron determination. It means strong and pure faith. It means having increasing motivation. All these are the components of quwwah: “Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power”. You should be prepared in all these areas. Quwwah also means building ambitious and motivated youth. The manifestation of quwwah is Imam Hussein University as it builds determined and pious youth. All these are parts of quwwah and they are the manifestation of “against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power, including steeds of war”.
“Including steeds of war” – this means tools. Our tools should be advanced tools. During the time of taghut we were dependent in the area of tools and instruments. We were both backward and inefficient. We had certain things, but we did not know how to use them. This is the characteristic of taghuti regimes. Tools should be advanced and we should be self-sufficient in them. They should belong to you. You yourselves should build, produce and create them. You should be their owners in the true sense of the word.
They should be up-to-date as well. Certain tools might have been used 10 years ago, but they might not come in handy today. You should see what we need today. You should be up-to-date in the area of tools. They should be diverse as well. They should be suitable for use on the ground, in the air, in space, on the sea, in our borders and in the heart of the country.
They should be usable everywhere. And we also need security and operational tools and various other tools. Diversity in tools is another issue that should receive attention. Another is the issue of cyberspace. Today, this is one of the tools. Another is the war games. Today, this is one of the tools as well. You should pay attention to all these. Therefore, we should both have strength and tools. You should prepare yourselves in these areas as much as you can: “To the utmost of your power”.
In the taghuti and dependent regime, our warehouses were full of American tools which belonged to them. We did not have the right to even open and look at them at that time. We could not even familiarize ourselves with the pieces if we had the opportunity to change them. At that time, the dear brothers in the army who were familiar with the issues of those days said to me that they would sometimes put a set of sealed tools – inside which, there were sometimes 30 pieces – inside the plane to be sent to the US and to be repaired there and then to be returned! They would not allow our technical officers or our army brothers in charge of such tasks to take them apart and to examine and repair them. This would not be allowed.
Our warehouses were full of weapons, but weapons which belonged to others. Others were in charge of them. They would be used wherever they wanted. If they did not give a permission, they would not be used. They built and developed the enemy’s weapon-building factories with our peoples’ money! This was one of the two elements of the power of the regime. The other element was that at the command of the US, we had the duty to be regional gendarmes. In other words, the taghuti regime of Iran had the obligation to purge the region for the US. It had the duty to suppress and stifle all anti-American voices. This used to be done at the expense of the Iranian nation, with Iranian manpower and with Iranian money.
The goal was to ensure others’ interests. Today, the exact opposite is true. Today, the Iranian nation works for itself and with its own free will. It moves with its own power and it does what is best for the country. Quwwah means that we should take all these things into account.
Today, the world of Islam is witness to one of the manifestations of quwwah which is the Arbaeen march: “Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power”. The Arbaeen march is the strength of Islam. It is the force of the truth. It is with the force of the camp of Islamic Resistance that millions of people march towards Karbala and towards Hussein – the peak of honor, self-sacrifice and martyrdom whom all liberated people in the world should learn from. The first day when the Arbaeen march came into being, it was as significant as today.
The significance of the first Arbaeen lay in that it was the powerful medium of Ashura. From Ashura to Arbaeen – according to one narration, Arbaeen was the day when the Ahlul Bayt (as) returned to Karbala – those forty days were forty days of the authority of the truth amidst the dark world of the Bani Umayyad and Sufiyani dynasty. The true medium is the cry of Zaynab al-Kubra and the cry of Hazrat Sajjad. In which place? In Kufa, in Shaam where darkness existed in its fullness. These were the greatest media.
It was these media that preserved Ashura. It was these media that helped Ashura reach the present time. This is the history and the origin of Arbaeen and the Arbaeen movement. On that day, the Ahlul Bayt (greetings be upon them) raised a storm with their 40-day movement. A storm was raised amidst that extraordinary suppression. On that day, suppression was so fierce that there were no more than 72 individuals around Imam Hussein – the grandson of the Holy Prophet and the flesh and blood of the Immaculate Zahra.
In such an era, the event of the Tawwabeen arose in Kufa. Madinah and Shaam were moved deeply in a way that the Sufiyani regime was overthrown. Such was the great movement of Zaynab al-Kubra and the Ahlul Bayt (greetings be upon them).
Today, the same thing is happening in the world. Today too, in the complex propaganda-saturated and tumultuous world which has dominated humanity, this movement of Arbaeen is a loud cry and a unique medium. There is no similar event in the world: millions of people take a walk, not only from a city or a country, rather from different countries, and not only from one specific denomination, rather from various denominations and even from non-Islamic religions. This is Husseini unity.
What you said is true: “Hussein makes us united.” This is really the case. Hussein brings about great unanimity. These hearts are moving forward with thousands of steps. Everyone is moving towards that mine and springhead of spirituality and freedom and they are showing it off to today’s materialistic world. By Allah’s favor, this should be further developed and expanded on a daily basis. And of course, it should gather more depth as well.
Fortunately, the phenomena that we have today, our mourning sessions for Imam Hussein (greetings be upon him) enjoy more depth than 40, 50 years ago in terms of spirituality, expansion of thinking and propagation of Islamic teachings. The same is true of the issue of Arbaeen. By Allah’s favor, it will gather more depth on a daily basis. Broad-minded personalities and scholars should think, work and endeavor in these areas, God willing.
The third issue is about the orientation and the direction of the Islamic Republic. Since the beginning of the Revolution, we have begun a movement in the area of ideals, the people’s living conditions, building the country and building individuals. Great movements have begun and magnificent achievements have been made. Of course, shortcomings are many. Problems are not few in number, but achievements and advancements are more than the problems. The movement that has begun today is an astonishing movement to those who can understand its dimensions. Now, it should become clear in which direction we should move to continue the task.
What is the direction? After all, we are Husseini. Imam Hussein himself has determined what the direction is. In the middle of his path, he stopped somewhere and delivered this sermon: “Oh people, the Messenger of Allah (God’s greetings be upon him and his household), said, ‘If someone sees an oppressive sultan who has turned God’s haraam into halal, who has broken the divine covenant, who has opposed the Holy Prophet’s tradition and who behaves in an oppressive manner towards the servants of God and if they do not oppose him in words and in action, they deserve to be placed at the level of that oppressive sultan’.”
This is a great statement. It is astonishing. First of all, it has been addressed to people and we are among people. So, it addresses us as well. It is not only addressed to believers. It is not only addressed to the gathering present there, rather it is addressed to humanity: not just humanity at that time, rather humanity at all times including today’s humanity.
He was quoting the Holy Prophet trying to state what his philosophy was. He said that he was acting on the Holy Prophet’s words. The Holy Prophet had ordered him to do that. What had the Holy Prophet said to him? “If someone sees an oppressive sultan…”. The Holy Prophet said, “if someone sees an oppressive power…”. “Sultan” does not only mean a king, rather it means power. Today, the sultan is the front of kufr and arrogance. It is the front of Zionism and the US. This is who the sultan is today. You are witness to today’s oppression which is widespread everywhere: warmongering, the pressure of colonialism, sucking the blood of nations, pressuring peoples, waging domestic wars and other disasters which arrogance is causing today.
“Who behaves in an oppressive manner towards the servants of God…”. He does not say, “towards believers” – what makes you responsible is not that that specific power oppresses believers. No, “towards the servants of God”. It means towards the servants of God and the masses of the people. And it can be every power, every front and every oppressive center which does these things: “behaves in an oppressive manner towards the servants of God”. So, what is the result? What is our duty? “And if they do not oppose him in words and in action…”- the hadith is addressing those who see such a power ahead of them and who do not adopt a position against it.
This opposition could be verbal or non-verbal. Both are possible. Sometimes, things dictate that you take action against an oppressive power and sometimes, circumstances are not apt for taking action, but you can at least adopt a position. Notice that these things clarify what our duty is today.
“They deserve to be placed at the level of that oppressive sultan”. Allah the Exalted has given Himself the right to make those who do not adopt a position against oppression and cruelty and who do not move against him suffer the same fate that that oppressor does: hell. The issue is this. Imam Hussein says that he has taken action to that end.
I have previously spoken at length about the movement of Aba Abdullah. Some people say that Imam Hussein (greetings be upon him) took action to gain power. Even some pious people say this. However, they are wrong. And some people say that he did it to become a martyr. However, I say that he took action to carry out his duty, but in the way of carrying out one’s duty, one might gain power as well. What is wrong with this? Another possibility is that one would be martyred. What is wrong with that? What I want to say is that we should be able to carry out our duties. This is the issue. This is what is ahead of the Islamic Republic.
This is the reason why we will not compromise with the US. The reason why we have not failed in the face of the enemy’s propaganda effort, by Allah’s favor, is this. The reason is that we have a duty. If we do not carry it out, we “deserve to be placed at the level of that oppressive sultan”. If we compromise, Allah the Exalted will make us suffer the same fate – the same hell – that that oppressor does. This is our duty. This is the Islamic Republic. This is the reason why Imam confronted the US from the first day when he got involved in the revolutionary activities. He was still speaking in Qom and he had not been exiled yet, but he spoke out against the US.
On that day, Imam (may God bestow paradise on him) said in his Qom speech, “Today, the most hated person in our country is the US President”. That speech was made 50 years ago! This is the reason why. Imam was insightful. His eyes were open. He would see the truth and he would understand it. He was hopeful. He believed in what Allah the Exalted had said, “Allah certainly aids those who aid His cause” [The Holy Quran, 22: 40]. He who aids God will certainly receive God’s aid and this is what He has already done.
And I will tell you dear youth that you should continue this path in a powerful way. This is the case not only for you, but also for all the youth of the Iranian nation. If pure and uncontaminated hearts, who wish to carry out their divine and human responsibility, stand up against the enemies of religion and humanity on the path of steadfastness and resistance, Allah the Exalted will certainly support them: “God will certainly aid those who aid His cause”. As we have succeeded in the past 40 years by Allah’s favor, we will – by Allah’s favor – overcome all obstacles in the future, in the second phase and in future phases and we will defeat the enemies.
Hopes are pinned on the youth. This does not mean that those who are not young do not have any duty. They do have duties as well. The elderly have duties as well. You witnessed that our magnanimous Imam would move, speak and think like the youth while he was at an advanced age. However, the engine of every society is comprised of youth. Youth should prepare themselves. They should prepare their minds. They should identify the enemy’s tricks.
The enemy’s first target is your thoughts, your minds and what dominates your minds. This is the enemy’s first target. He tries to change your mentality with all sorts of subterfuge. When your mentality changes, your actions will naturally change as well. You should not allow him to change your minds. You should not allow him to change your motivation. You should not allow him to destroy your inner faith and your lofty motivation with his tricks.
You should stand firm and rely on God because Allah the Exalted is with you, God willing: “Know that Allah is with those who restrain themselves” [The Holy Quran, 2: 194]. Allah is with the pious. He is with those who move on His path and He will help the mujahids, God willing.
Greetings be upon you and Allah’s mercy and blessings