Had the Islamic Revolution and our great Imam Khomeini not existed and if Islam had not been the driving force of the Revolution and the great change brought to this country, there would not have been any hopes for bringing to an end the humiliating and hellish dominion of the US and the barbaric dictatorship of the Pahlavis.
All options for the country were tested and all of them failed. Various political parties, movements reliant on East and West, as well as armed movements--all emerged at some point in the history of this country but none of them could serve this nation successfully. Hence, suppression and oppression under American dominion intensified on a daily basis in this country. During the last years before the victory of the Revolution, when a group of the youth opted for armed struggles, those armed struggles were severely suppressed, and the authoritative ruling of the Pahlavis intensified; gradually hopelessness entered the hearts of the people.
The only power which could truly stand against the Pahlavi regime was the nation. In other words, the corrupt, dependent and tyrannical Pahlavi regime and its US supporter would only be defeated if the entire nation partook in this struggle.
There was no center or hub in Iran which could mobilize the nation, save for the clergy and those who bore the flag of religion, and by expressing mottos in support of Islam. This has been a long-lasting experience in our country. These facts should be considered carefully.
Ayatollah Khamenei, 06/04/2002