Leader’s Speech at Imam Khomeini’s (r.a.) Shrine

The following is the full text of the speech delivered on June 3, 2012 by Ayatollah Khamenei the Leader of the Islamic Revolution on the occasion of Imam Khomeini's (r.a.) 23rd demise anniversary. The speech was delivered to a large number of people at Imam Khomeini's (r.a.) shrine in Tehran.

In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

All praise belongs to Allah, the Lord of the Two Worlds, and peace and greetings be upon our Master and Prophet and the love of our hearts and the healer of our selves, Ab-al-Qassem Mustafa Muhammad, and upon his immaculate and pure household, chosen companions and those who follow them well until the Day of Judgment. And greetings be upon the one remaining with Allah on earth who will fill the earth with equity and justice, just as it was filled with oppression and injustice.

All-Wise Allah said in His Book:
In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful
And rely on the Mighty, the Merciful,
Who sees you when you stand up to pray,
And sees your movements among those who prostrate.
Surely He is the Hearing, the Knowing. [The Holy Quran, 26: 217-220]

We are thankful to Allah the Exalted who gave us another opportunity to gather at the shrine of this nation's great Imam and leader to renew our pledge of allegiance to His Eminence and review the lessons he taught us in order to enlighten our future path and guide our steps on the right path.

These days have coincided with the auspicious birthday anniversary of the Commander of the Faithful (a.s.) who was the father of the Islamic Ummah. Our people have named the 13th of Rajab "Father's Day". Our magnanimous Imam (r.a.) was like a father to our nation and our country. He was the embodiment of kindness and compassion, and the emblem of charisma and honor: strength of fatherly character coupled with fatherly love. Besides, Imam Khomeini (r.a.) is the father of the current Islamic movement in the world of Islam. One of the main characteristics of Imam Khomeini's (r.a.) lifestyle - which I will briefly discuss today - was instilling the spirit of national honor into our nation. Discussing Imam Khomeini's (r.a.) great movement, which revived our national honor, is based on the realities of our society. It is not just an abstract discussion. What does honor mean? Honor means social and individual strength of character, which gives individuals and societies the power and strength to clear obstacles and confront challenges.

First of all, I would like to speak briefly about a Quranic issue. According to the Holy Quran, genuine and perfect honor belongs to God and to anybody who fights for a divine cause. In the confrontation between truth and falsehood and between the camp of God and the camp of Satan, honor belongs to those who fight for the camp of God. This is the logic of the Holy Quran. In Sura al-Fatir, God says, "Whoever desires honor, then to Allah belongs the honor wholly." [The Holy Quran, 35: 10] And in Sura al-Munafiqoon God says, "Honor belongs to Allah and His Messenger, and to the Believers, but the Hypocrites know not." [The Holy Quran, 63: 8] Honor belongs to God. It belongs to His Messenger and to believers. But hypocrites do not know this. They do not know where the source and origin of genuine honor is.

In Sura an-Nisa, speaking of those who connect themselves to sources of satanic power in order to gain honor and glory, God says, "Those who take the unbelievers for guardians rather than believers. Do they seek honor from them? Then surely all honor is for Allah." [The Holy Quran, 4: 139] In Sura ash-Shuara, there is a detailed discussion of the challenges that the great divine prophets - including Prophet Noah, Prophet Ibrahim, Prophet Hud, Prophet Saleh, Prophet Shuayb and Prophet Moses - were faced with, which conveys divine revelations and the message of God to the people. Wherever in the Sura God wants to speak about the victory of the camp of prophethood over the camp of kufr, He says, "Most surely there is a sign in this, but most of them do not believe. And most surely your Lord is the Mighty, the Merciful." [The Holy Quran, 26: 121-122] That is to say, the camp of monotheism overpowered the camp of kufr in spite of the fact that it was outnumbered and did not have the power, wealth and weapons that the camp of kufr enjoyed. And there is a divine sign in this and "most surely your Lord is the Mighty, the Merciful." After the Holy Quran recounts the story of the prophets throughout Sura ash-Shuara, at the end of the Sura He says, "And rely on the Mighty, the Merciful." [The Holy Quran 26: 217] God tells His prophets to rely on the Mighty and Merciful God who guarantees the victory of truth over falsehood. "Who sees you when you stand up to pray and sees your movements among those who prostrate." [The Holy Quran, 26: 218-219] God is watching us all the time: "Surely He is the Hearing, the Knowing." [The Holy Quran, 26: 220] Therefore, according to the Holy Quran, honor should be obtained from Allah the Exalted.

The honor of an individual or a society acts like a protective wall, like a solid fortress which is difficult for the enemies to penetrate, besiege and destroy and protects one against the enemies. The more the layers of this honor, the more impenetrable the protective wall becomes, so much so that one is protected not only against one's political and economic enemies, but also against the main enemy of mankind, namely Satan. Superficial honor does not penetrate the deeper layers of one's being and therefore those who have superficial honor are defenseless against Satan.

There is a famous story that Alexander of Macedon was passing through a place and people were bowing down to him as a sign of respect. But a pious man who was sitting in a corner did not stand up to show his respect. Alexander was surprised and he ordered his soldiers to bring the man to him. Alexander asked him, "Why did you not bow down before me?" The man replied, "Because you are a slave of my slaves. Why would I bow down before you?" Alexander asked for an explanation and the man said, "You are a slave to your lust and wrath, and lust and wrath are my slaves. They are under my control."
Therefore, if self-respect permeates the deepest layers of one's being, one will not be affected by Satan, one will not be affected by human passions, one will not become a slave to lust and wrath. And Imam Khomeini (r.a.) was such a person. Throughout his studying and teaching years, throughout the time he was engaged in political activities and throughout the time he was managing the country, Imam Khomeini (r.a.) remained a manifestation of "rely on the Mighty, the Merciful." [The Holy Quran 26: 217] It was for this reason that he managed to do what was considered impossible. All the obstacles which were considered insurmountable became surmountable after he stepped into the arena. Not only was Imam Khomeini (r.a.) the embodiment of honor and spiritual power, but he also revived the spirit of honor among our people. This was the great achievement that our magnanimous Imam accomplished. I will come back to this point later on and I will explain it. Our nation rediscovered itself by relying on the sense of honor that it gained from Imam Khomeini (r.a.) and the Revolution. Our nation discovered itself and its capabilities. And this is the reason why we have seen many of the divine promises being fulfilled in front of our eyes over the past few decades. We have seen with our own eyes the kind of things that we would only read about in history books. Over these years, we have seen the arrogant powers being defeated by the oppressed. We have seen that the seemingly impressive castles of the arrogant powers are built on air. We have seen many such things.

I would like to highlight the issue of national honor and infer a point that I have in mind. Today is a momentous day. Today is the demise anniversary of the founder of the Islamic Republic of Iran. Today the memory of our magnanimous Imam is more alive than any other time. Today his auspicious legacy is in front of everybody's eyes in this country and in the world of Islam. Now I would like to highlight certain existential aspects of the movement Imam Khomeini (r.a.) started.

National honor and dignity. We Iranians have passed through different historical stages. At certain stages we had honor and glory, and at certain other stages we were humiliated. Over the two centuries that led to the Revolution, we went through a difficult, dark and humiliating era. Many people do not have historical information and many others treat history lightly. It is necessary to reflect on history. It is necessary to learn lessons from history. Over the two centuries that led to the Revolution, we went through a dark era of humiliation and the signs of this humiliation are numerous. Throughout this time, we were an isolated nation in the area of politics. We did not play a role in regional developments, let alone in global developments. Over this 200-year period, colonialism came into being. Colonial governments from different parts of the world came to our region and they occupied certain countries and enslaved certain nations. They plundered national sources of wealth. Over this 200-year period, the people and government of Iran stood by and watched the developments that were taking place. Sometimes they did not even learn about the developments, let alone trying to play a role in them. On the economic front, our conditions deteriorated on a daily basis. We were suffering from serious backwardness in the area of science and technology. We had accomplished no remarkable and presentable scientific achievement compared to the achievements of the scientific movement in the world. In our domestic policies, we were under the influence of the policies of foreigners. Our governments were under the control of colonial and domineering powers of the world. These colonial and domineering powers would impose their policies on our governments and they would make our governments work for them. And our governments and kings would not show any appropriate reactions, the kind of reactions that would make one feel proud.

Even in the area of safeguarding our territorial integrity and independence of our governments, we witnessed and experienced shameful weakness over the 200-year period. It was during the same period that the two disgraceful treaties - the Treaty of Torkmenchay and the Treaty of Gulestan - were signed and 17 Caucasian cities broke away from Iran. It was during the same period that they came and occupied Bushehr without facing the slightest resistance from our government and government officials. It was during the same period that a foreign government established a military base in Qazvin and threatened our central government with military invasion. They ordered our government to do certain things and to remove certain people from official positions, and they threatened that they would attack Tehran if their orders were not carried out. That is to say, they came as close as Qazvin and threatened Tehran with military invasion, and the central government in Tehran was trembling with fear. If it were not for a few competent people, our central government would have definitely complied with the orders of that foreign government. It was during the same period that the English government established the Pahlavi regime in Iran. They chose Reza Khan and crowned him. They legalized his rule and put him in charge of everything while they had full control over him. It was during the same period that the disgraceful Anglo-Persian Agreement of 1919 was signed, which would hand our national economy over to foreigners and would put the enemies of Iran in charge of our economy and politics. It was during this period that the Allied leaders of three countries came to Tehran and held a meeting without asking our central government for permission. They completely ignored our central government. Roosevelt, Churchill and Stalin travelled to Tehran and held a meeting. They did not ask anybody for permission and they did not show any passports. Mohammad Reza Shah, who was the king of Iran at that time, was completely ignored. They did not go to see him. He was the one who went to see them and when he entered the room, they did not stand up. They ignored him. Notice the consequences of a central government's weakness, which affects the people. This is the worst kind of humiliation and weakness that a government and a nation can suffer. These things happened during the 200-year period.

Of course, there were certain exceptions among them. For example, a person like Amir Kabir was in power for three years, Mirza-e Shirazi managed to put an end to the tobacco issue by issuing a fatwa, religious scholars became involved in the Constitutional movement, or the movement for nationalization of the oil industry was launched in a certain era. All of these things were short-term remedies, some of which were complete failures, but weakness and humiliation were the main things that were imposed on our great nation, a nation that has the potential to change the course of history, a nation that enjoys great historical legacies.

The great Islamic Revolution changed the direction completely and turned a new page. As the leader of this Revolution, Imam Khomeini (r.a.) focused his efforts on reviving the spirit of national honor and restoring the sense of honor and dignity among our people. Our magnanimous Imam turned "we can" into a cultural norm and instilled it into the hearts and minds of the people. In fact he was promoting a Quranic cultural norm: "Faint not nor grieve, for you will overcome them if you are (indeed) believers." [The Holy Quran, 3: 139] Religious faith is a tool for achieving material improvement as well as other things. Religious faith brings about improvement and honor for nations. Imam Khomeini (r.a.) took the first step and led the movement. Then the people became motivated and determined and they started using their capacities. And the actions of the people and their presence on the scene prepared the ground for benefiting from divine blessings. This is a truly important point. God is generous with His blessings, but people will not benefit from His blessings as long as they do not develop the capacity for these blessings. Our people stepped into the arena and prepared the ground for benefiting from divine blessings. As a result, they benefited from divine guidance. They benefited from divine blessings and started a continuous movement - a movement towards honor, a progressive movement. Of course, sometimes we moved ahead at a fast pace and sometimes at a slow pace, but there were no pauses and stops.

If you pay attention to Imam Khomeini's (r.a.) revolutionary rhetoric, you will realize that the main emphasis is on the inner strength of the nation. The main emphasis is on acquiring a sense of pride by relying on one's inner strength. The point that we must pay attention to is that this is not a one-shot effort, rather it involved continuous work. Nations should confront the causes of decline and stagnation. There are certain factors that stand in the way of progressive individuals and nations. Some of these causes are within them and some others are created by their enemies. If we want to avoid stagnation, if we want to avoid humiliation, if we want to avoid regression, if we want to avoid the infernal conditions of the pre-Revolution era, we must not let our movement stop. This is where the issue of "progress" comes up.

We need to make constant progress. This national honor, this inner strength, this solid structure should be making constant progress. This decade has been named "The Decade of Progress and Justice". And progress embodies justice. Progress is not limited to material manifestations and it permeates all aspects of the existence of humankind. Progress embodies freedom, justice and ethical and spiritual improvement. All of these things are embodied by progress. Of course, progress embodies material and scientific progress as well. With his movement, Imam Khomeini (r.a.) put us on a certain path and we must continue that path. Any stops on this path will result in regression. A nation that has gained honor and is moving forward on the path of progress, if such a nation fails to appreciate these blessings becomes ungrateful, then it will become a manifestation of this holy ayah: "Have you not seen those who have changed Allah's favor for ungratefulness and made their people to alight into the abode of perdition, into hell? They shall enter into it and an evil place it is to settle in." [The Holy Quran, 14: 28-29] The world will turn into hell for them and life will become bitter for them. If nations fail to resist and move forward, the hardships and gloom of the era of weakness and humiliation will return to them.

Today we have a living paradigm for national honor and progress, and progress itself is the result of national honor. As I said, this discussion is not just a theoretical and abstract discussion. We have a living paradigm in front of our eyes and that living paradigm is our nation and society, a successfully tested paradigm. The Iranian nation has stepped into the arena with this paradigm. I will mention a few examples of the progress that the Iranian nation has made and each of these manifestations require detailed explanation and examples.

One manifestation of the progress that the Iranian nation has made is overcoming the political, military, security and economic challenges that it has confronted over the past 33 years. The purpose behind creating these challenges was to wipe out the Islamic Republic. They had focused their efforts on the existence of the Islamic Republic. Our nation overcame all these challenges. In this arena the Iranian nation overwhelmed the east and the west at a time when the world was in the hands of the east and the west. And today the Iranian nation has managed to overwhelm the west in conditions that the world appears to have fallen into the hands of the misguided west.

Another manifestation of the progress that the Iranian nation has made is that our country is far more powerful today than the early years of the Revolution in terms of its political power and in terms of the role it can play in the regional and global developments. There is evidence that proves this point. Even our enemies admit this. One of the senior officials of the fake Zionist regime - which is the archenemy of the Iranian nation and the Islamic Revolution - admits that today there is a powerful movement that is working against their goals and that Iran has assumed leadership of this movement. This desperate and astonished politician admits that Imam Khomeini has established a camp behind their borders. Also a veteran American politician - whom we know very well - compares the America of 2001 with the America of 2011 in a meeting and asks which idiot has turned the America of the early 20th century into the America of 2011. That American politician also says that Iran has been fanning the flames of the developments that have led to the existing conditions. These statements mean that today the Iranian nation is playing a significant role in important regional and global developments with its resistance, honor and strength. And this is a sign of the progress we have made, which as I said, is in front of our eyes and is not just an abstract concept.

Another sign is the volume of construction services that have been rendered in our vast country. Today in you can see construction services are being rendered different corners of this country and these services keep increasing from one year to the next. This is one of the important signs of a nation's progress. One of the signs of progress is that our experts and self-made revolutionary youth are carrying out the most complicated projects in the country. They are building the most advanced industrial machines, engineering structures, steel companies and power plants, all by themselves. In the case of many of the things that are being done in our country, we do not at all need the presence of foreign experts. There was a day when we had to send for foreigners whenever we wanted to asphalt a road or build a bridge over it, but today our country is carrying out great projects, building massive engineering structures and doing complex things. And those who are shouldering these responsibilities are Iranian youth who have been raised and educated in a revolutionary environment.

Another sign - which has been repeatedly discussed on many occasions - is the rate of our scientific growth: the indexed publications of our scientists and the scientific rank of our country in the year 2011. They are all a source of pride for our country. And this is not our personal judgment. It is the judgment of prestigious scientific centers of the world. They say that the rate of our scientific growth is eleven times more than the global average and that the rate of our scientific growth increased by twenty percent in the year 2011, compared with the previous year. They are the ones who are saying these things. In certain areas, such as nuclear technology, nanotechnology, stem cell research, aerospace and biotechnology, our performance has been brilliant. The projects that are being carried out are brilliant projects which are few and far between in the world. Among all the countries in the world - including both the advanced and non-advanced countries - some of the projects we are involved in are being carried out in no more than 5, 10 or 15 countries. And we did not receive any scientific assistance from abroad. The doors of advanced scientific centers of the world are not open to our students. All these achievements have been made without assistance. Of course, I would mention in passing that the sanctions which have been imposed on us helped us most in this regard.

Islamic democracy is one of the signs and manifestations of our progress. It is necessary to pay attention to this point. It is a very important point. We have had exciting elections in the country. This has been the case with the different presidential elections in our country, particularly the tenth presidential election which was held three years ago. The same is true of our parliamentary elections. We have had nine terms of legislation in the country and all of these nine terms have started on the 7th of Khordad without being delayed one single day. Is this an insignificant achievement? Over the past thirty three years, nine parliamentary elections have been held in the country. Nine parliaments have been elected without being delayed one single day. No political, security or economic event and none of the enemy's threats have caused a delay of even one single day in the elections. All the previous parliaments have started their work on the 7th of Khordad.

Another sign is the revolutionary motives and slogans of the people. Notice how the anniversaries of revolutions are celebrated throughout the world. They just arrange a formal celebration: a group of political figures gather in one place and sometimes their armed forces march past them. In Iran each year the victory of the Revolution is celebrated enthusiastically by millions of people throughout the country on the 22nd of Bahman. And our celebrations become more enthusiastic and more impressive with every passing year. This shows that our nation is alive and that it is advancing its revolutionary goals.

The same is true of spiritual purification: we are making progress. When some people take a look, they just see certain superficial manifestations. Whenever they see a few youth or a few men and women doing something wrong, they make a general conclusion. This is wrong. Our people care about spirituality. These days one can go to the mosques of our universities and see what is going on in the itikaf ceremonies. From tomorrow our youth will hold itikaf ceremonies in our mosques. Apart from our great mosques which are open to the public, among the most crowded centers of itikaf ceremonies are the mosques of our universities. This shows that our people are moving towards spirituality. It is on the basis of these factors that we can say our nation and our country is making progress. Our country is making progress on all fronts and everybody is under the flag of Islam and in the shade of the divine call of our great Imam Khomeini (r.a.), the spiritual man and the righteous successor of the divine prophets who opened up this path in front of our nation.

Political communities and media outlets of the world are speaking about the danger of a nuclear Iran. They are claiming that a nuclear Iran is dangerous. I say that they are lying. They are trying to deceive people. What they are afraid of - and should be afraid of - is not a nuclear Iran: it is an Islamic Iran. It is an Islamic Iran that has shaken the foundations of the power of the arrogant powers. The people of Iran proved that a nation can achieve genuine progress without relying on America and the pretentious powers and even in spite of their hostilities. This is a lesson and they are afraid of this lesson. They want to convince nations and political elite that it is not possible to make progress without the help of America and outside America's sphere of influence. The people of Iran have proven that it is possible to achieve progress without America and even in spite of its hostilities. This is a great lesson and they are afraid of it.

Now I would like to say the last word in this regard. Dear people, dear youth, pious people of Iran, we set a record. We made progress. But if we feel satisfied with what we have achieved so far, we will be defeated. If we stop moving forward, we will regress. If we become overconfident and suffer from self-conceit, we will fall to the ground. If we - particularly we government officials - become self-centered and self-important, we will be kicked in the mouth. This is the way of the world. This is a divine law, a law of nature. We must not go after popularity. We must not go after worldly benefits. We must not go after aristocracy and luxuries. We government officials must remain true to our principles, just as our great Imam remained true to his principles. If we make mistakes, we will become manifestations of this holy ayah: "Have you not seen those who have changed Allah's favor for ungratefulness and made their people to alight into the abode of perdition, into hell? They shall enter into it and an evil place it is to settle in." [The Holy Quran, 14: 28-29]

On the path to progress, stopping is forbidden. Self-conceit is forbidden. Lack of vigilance is forbidden. Aristocracy is forbidden. Going after pleasure is forbidden. Thinking of accumulating material wealth is forbidden for government officials. It is these restrictions that can help us reach the peak. We are moving forward on the foothill. We have not reached the peak yet. We are far from it. The day the Iranian nation reaches the peak, the enmities will end. The day the Iranian nation reaches the peak, the malevolent hostilities and confrontations will end. We are far from that day. We need to continue our movement without stopping. I would tell our youth, our government officials, our students, our honorable scholars, those who can speak directly to the people and those who can affect the way the people think that we need to continue this movement towards progress without a pause - in the arena of politics, in the arena of science and technology and particularly in the arena of ethics and spirituality. We need to purify ourselves. We need to reform ourselves. We need to identify our shortcomings and try to eliminate them. If we do these things, the obstacles that the enemies put in our way will be ineffective. The sanctions are ineffective. The sanctions cannot stop the Iranian nation from moving forward. The only effect that these unilateral sanctions will have on the Iranian people is that they will deepen the hatred and enmity towards the west in the hearts of our people.

If you take a look at these uprisings and revolutions in the region, you will see that they are all about national honor. All of these revolutions - in Yemen, Bahrain, Egypt, Libya, Tunisia and the countries that will flare up one day - have been motivated by a desire to restore national honor, social justice and freedom. And all of these revolutions are being carried out in the shade of Islam. When we speak about "Islamic Awakening", it is based on a logical basis and there is a wisdom to it. Muslim nations want justice. They want freedom. They want democracy. They want respect for human identity. They believe that only Islam can bring about these things, not any other school of thought. This is because other schools of thought have been tested and they have all failed. And it is not possible to achieve these lofty goals without an intellectual basis. That intellectual basis, which is in line with religious faith and beliefs of the regional nations, is embodied by Islam and Islamic Awakening. This is the true nature of these uprisings.

Westerners and the regional governments that are dependent on the west want to change the equation. They want to mislead public opinion. But their efforts are useless. Influential figures must take care not to be conned. Nations must take care not to be conned. Nations have made a great achievement. The political and social atmosphere of the religion has changed in essential ways. This is just the beginning. And this first step has changed the political atmosphere of the region. For example, in Egypt when the popular uprising reached a critical point, many of the westerners and many of the autocratic governments in the region tried to support Hosni Mubarak. They tried to save Mubarak and suppress the people, but now that the people have overwhelmed the government and achieved a victory, the same governments - the most autocratic governments and the governments that are absolutely powerless against the west - are speaking about the rights of the people and democracy. This means that today democracy has become so popular among the regional nations that even those who were not prepared to speak about the people and their rights have been forced to support democracy and the rights of the people in order to attract public opinion.

These revolutions are very important. I would like to put special emphasis on Egypt. Egypt is a great country. The Egyptian nation is an ancient nation. Egypt has been an essential part of the world of Islam, but it has been humiliated by its corrupt, mercenary and wretched rulers. They had turned Egypt into a strategic asset for the Zionist regime. They had turned Egypt and the great Egyptian nation into an asset for the fake Zionist regime. Could it get more humiliating than this? Now this asset has been lost. It is out of the reach of the occupiers of Palestine. Mubarak's regime ensured Israel's security for thirty years. They even decided to keep one and a half million Gazans in a big prison. One and a half million people were being bombarded by the evil Zionists, and Hosni Mubarak's regime had completely blocked their access to the essentials of life. History will not forget these things.

During the 22-day war, a Palestinian combatant said in an interview, "Nineteen days have passed since the beginning of the war, but we have not been able to bring in nineteen kilograms of wheat and flour from Egypt." They had blocked the ways of shipping foodstuff, medicine and other facilities in Rafah in order to lay a siege on one and a half million people, pressure them and make them go hungry, all in the interest of the Zionist regime. Now that regime has fallen. The Zionist regime feels naked [unprotected and vulnerable]. They are panicked and astonished. The statements about a military action which are quoted in the media from the leaders of the Zionist regime are indicative of the fact that they are desperate, terrified and confused. They know that in these conditions they are more vulnerable than any other time. Any misstep they take and any inappropriate move they make will strike them like a thunderbolt.

Westerners and the Americans, who have always provided unconditional support to the occupying regime, have more problems today than at any other time. Today the west is just trying to maintain appearances. They are suffering from financial, monetary, economic and social problems and they are helpless against their own people. Several European governments that used to support America have fallen. If the people are given the opportunity, they will eliminate all the signs of American arrogance in Europe with their presence and power. These are their conditions today. And the conditions of America are worst of all. Nations hate America. America is in a crisis. Of course, they want to shift this crisis to Asia. They want to shift it to Africa. They want to shift it to the Middle East. They want to cover up their weakness by causing problems in other countries. Among the things that they want to do is to turn the great popular uprisings in the region against the people. They want to keep the people busy with ethnic, religious and tribal conflicts. We need to be vigilant.

Today the Americans are using the experience of the English in creating sectarian conflicts between Shia and Sunni. The English are very skillful at creating enmity among different groups, especially between Shia and Sunni in the world of Islam. They have been doing this since several hundred years ago. The Americans are making use of their experience. When the issue of Palestine comes up, when the issue Egypt comes up, as soon as they are faced with the people, they use some trickery and immediately bring up the sectarian issue in one way or another. Everybody must stay vigilant. Sunni Muslims must stay vigilant. Shia Muslims must stay vigilant. Religious scholars must stay vigilant. Outstanding academic figures must stay vigilant. The people must stay vigilant. They should know what they are doing. They should be aware of the enemy's plots and machinations. They must not contribute to the enemy's plot. This is what they are doing today.

Of course, westerners - especially the Americans - make senseless moves. They magnify the nuclear issue in order to cover up their own problems. They dishonestly put the nuclear issue of Iran at the top of global issues. They deceitfully mention "nuclear weapons". They deceitfully magnify certain issues in their propaganda. Their goal is to divert minds and public opinion from the events that are happening in America and in Europe. Of course, they will not succeed.

Our view of the region is optimistic. Egypt is busy with its own domestic issues and this is the nature of revolutions. Certain events take place and the people have to deal with them. The Egyptian nation is busy with the events that are happening in Egypt. These events have created a vacuum. They have created an opportunity for certain countries to interfere in the regional issues the way the west and America like, to spend money on behalf of America, to make certain moves on behalf of America, to make certain trips and go here and there on behalf of America. But by Allah's favor, the countries that have carried out a revolution, especially the great Egyptian nation, will restore peace and stability and overcome the problems and machinations. The dictatorial regime was overthrown and by Allah's favor, its followers will be overthrown as well and nations will manage to fulfill their role.

Of course, I deem it necessary to openly say that as far as the regional developments are concerned, the people of Bahrain are being oppressed more than others. They have been truly oppressed. The people of Bahrain are being unjustifiably suppressed by their autocratic and dictatorial regime. Their protests are crushed in the most violent way. What do they want? They are just demanding the most basic needs of a human being in a democratic country. This is not too much to expect. They bring up the Shia-Sunni issue and say that they are Shia. It is not about the Shia-Sunni issue. It is about a nation, 70 percent of whose population happens to be Shia. Even if that 70 percent followed a different denomination and their rulers followed a different denomination than they currently do, nothing would have changed. It would not have made a difference. The people of Bahrain follow a specific denomination. They follow Shia Islam and the Holy Prophet's (s.w.a.) household and they are faced with an autocratic government. The issue is not that the government follows one denomination and the people follow another denomination. The people of Iran decided to fight the Shah's regime, a regime whose officials appeared to be Muslims, Shia Muslims who would even go on pilgrimage to Imam Ridha's (a.s.) shrine. Therefore, it is not a Shia-Sunni issue. They turn the issue into a sectarian issue so that they can deny the rights of the people. But by Allah's favor, all the selfless efforts will achieve the desired results. We must stay vigilant and not let them fan the flames of ethnic, tribal and sectarian conflicts. This is our demand. This is our advice to all the sides that are involved in the issues.

I hope that Allah the Exalted helps and He definitely will. Undoubtedly the future will be better than the past for Muslim nations, for Islam, for Muslims and for the Iranian nation.

Greetings be upon you and Allah's mercy and blessings