Leader's Speech in Meeting with Police Commanders

 The following is the full text of the speech delivered on April 26, 2015 by Ayatollah Khamenei, the Leader of the Islamic Revolution, in a meeting with commanders of the Police Force of the Islamic Republic. The meeting was held in Imam Khomeini (ra) Hussainiyah.

In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

First, I would like to welcome all the dear brothers and sisters, the high-ranking officials of the Police Force - who fulfill one of the most important and fundamental needs of the people and who have shouldered a great responsibility - and the honorable Interior Minister who is present in the meeting. I hope that by Allah's favor, all of you will be successful.

All of us should congratulate one another on our divine opportunity to enter the month of Rajab once more. The month of Rajab is an opportunity to get close to divine values and to God. It is an opportunity to engage in self-edification. The days which have been introduced as outstanding days in our narrations are all opportunities. Any opportunity is a blessing and any blessing requires that we thank God. Thanking God for His blessings means that we know blessings, behave according to their requirements, benefit from them, consider them as works of God and use them in His way. The month of Rajab is one of these blessings. The month of Sha'ban comes next and it is another blessing. From the viewpoints of saints, believers and mystics, these two months are an introduction to the month of Ramadan. The month of Ramadan is the month of transcendence, transcending, piety and purity and we need all these things. You should appreciate the month of Rajab. In this month, you should get close to the God of the creation as much as you can. You should remember God and carry out your tasks for the sake of Him. You should make efforts and work for the sake of God.

Your job is one that can easily be done with divine intentions. All tasks and jobs can be done for God. Even the effort to make a living can be made for God and we can do it with divine intentions, but some tasks - including yours - are much easier in this regard. This is because your job is to render services to society, the people, the Islamic Republic and Islam. Your job is to help Islam. A dear youth in this meeting recited an ayah: "Oh you who believe, be helpers of Allah" [The Holy Quran: 61: 14]. It means that we should help God and be among His helpers and assistants. Well, your job is a manifestation of helping God. It can really help Islam, religion and the people. When you say, "Oh God, the service that I render, the hours that I spend in the office and in my post, the effort that I make for improving my work and the extra minutes that I remain in the office are all for you" this is an opportunity to work for God. You should benefit from the blessings of this month one of which is what I referred to.

First, I deem it necessary to thank the Police Force. Well, good tasks are being carried out. We may have some criticisms in one, two, five cases, but the truth is that the effort made by the Police Force throughout the country is really a praiseworthy effort. One example is your effort during Norouz holidays. During Norouz holidays, all the people stay home with their relatives and their children, but your youth, your employees and your agents are busy attending to others' affairs on roads and in cities. They render services in different ways - on roads, in cities, in police stations and on the streets. This is very valuable and it is necessary to express our gratitude. I express my gratitude to you.

The significance of the Police Force - on which we place great emphasis - results from the significance of its mission. The significance of any person lies in the significance of the responsibility that they shoulder. Individuals and the organizations in which they work enjoy as much significance as their responsibility does. The mission that you have undertaken is to establish security in the country. Security is very important. In those places where security does not exist, the people appreciate its value. If men, women, youth and children go out without being sure that they will return to their houses, if streets, alleys and country roads are unsafe, if citizens expect incidents and accidents and if people feel insecure in their houses, they understand how important security is. Providing and establishing security all over the country is your job. The most important organization and group which shoulders this important responsibility is the Police Force. This is a very important task. Therefore, when we take a look at this responsibility, the Police Force becomes very important.

Well, security is not a formality and it is not achieved by talking. One cannot say without any evidence, "We have established security". Even if you say hundreds of times in different notifications, announcements and speeches that you established security in such and such a street, your words will not convince the people when they go out at night and face insecurity on that street. "Two hundred words are not as effective as half an action" [from a poem from Ferdowsi]. The people should feel secure. Feeling secure is dependent on the real existence of security. Security should really exist.

Of course, good tasks have been carried out. The honorable commander in the meeting referred to some good figures. I have seen them in reports as well and these are valuable, but you should not be satisfied with it. Your intention should be to increase the level of security and safety. It is not enough to, for example, decrease the percentage of road accidents. You should act in a way that road accidents and robberies do not take place at all. You should act in a way that insecurity and incidents do not exist at all. When you try to do so, tasks will naturally be carried out in an persistant way. When you show diligence, tasks will always move forward.

An important matter in this regard is that when we speak about social and individual security, we do not mean that you should only try to prevent individuals from being mugged on the street when they go from home to their office, shop and school. Of course, one area of security is protecting individuals against physical harm. Without a doubt, this is one part of security, but there are other areas of security which are more delicate but much more dangerous. One example is insecurity stemming from dealing drugs. If the people - particularly and mainly the youth - who go to parks, tourist attractions, streets and schools are not secure from drug dealing, this insecurity is very dangerous. If our youth are not secure from those who draw them to decadence and wrongdoings, this is a great insecurity. You are probably aware of the situation. We too have received certain reports that by spending massive amounts of money and by taking orders from certain centers, some people try to draw our youth to decadence and wrongdoings in night-time parties held in different places.

This is different from the wrong and irreligious move that a youth may make alone. This is drawing youth to dangerous wrongdoings. Therefore, you should not allow them to do so. You should prevent it. Imagine that our streets are safe from different forms of physical harm, but our youth are not safe from different temptations from inside schools, universities, parks and stores and from friendships in local streets. From these places, some people draw our youth to night-time parties and familiarize them with decadence and different wrongdoings. Another example is rape. These are things that are among different areas of security. If we have a kind of security that does not include these things, then it is not, in fact, security. After all, drugs, harassing women and drawing youth to decadence and other such things are very significant matters.

Another issue is that according to what I have heard, some youth who are drunk with wealth - with arrogance resulting from wealth - get into expensive and fashionable cars and mess around on the streets. This way, they make streets insecure. This too is a type of insecurity. You should have plans and work hard in the face of any kind of insecurity. These are things which form the different aspects of security.

Another important issue which I have discussed many times is the issue of the power of the Police Force. The Police Force is the manifestation of the authority of the Islamic Republic in establishing security. One of the responsibilities of the Islamic Republic is to establish security in society. As you explained, moral and social security is one of our responsibilities. It is one of the responsibilities of the Islamic Republic and therefore, we cannot abandon it. The Police Force is the manifestation of this security. It is the agent which is in the middle of this arena. Therefore, you should have power. You should be able to act in a powerful way. You should be able to act with decisiveness and authority.

However, an important point in this regard is that showing power should not be confused with showing oppression. You should not confuse power with crossing boundaries and moving forward in an unbridled way. For example, in some countries - such as America - the police is very powerful. They show muscle-bound people on camera who work as police officers and who arrest the people in the middle of the arena. Well, they are powerful, but they kill the innocent. For example, they kill a person by shooting 15, 16 bullets at him with the excuse that he wanted to draw a gun. This power is not an ideal power because it is accompanied by oppression. This is a kind of power which will not lead to security in the end. On the contrary, it will lead to insecurity. In fact, it is the main factor in creating insecurity. And as you have heard, when they go to a court of law, they acquit them.

Unfortunately today as you can witness, these events are many in a world that is indifferent to spiritual values. Now, the funny part is that in America - whose president is a black - many crimes are committed against blacks. They have a celebration on the occasion of abolishing slavery, which was done by a certain president, but they oppress blacks in a very cruel way. Of course, there are certain criticisms about the abolishment of slavery. They say that Abraham Lincoln abolished slavery, but this is not the truth of the matter according to historical research that has been carried out in a careful way. The issue was not the issue of abolishing slavery. Rather, it was the issue of the north and the south. It was the issue of long and deep-rooted wars between the north and south of America. It was a fight between landowners and agriculture, and industry. This was the main source of contention. They did not abolish slavery because of altruistic feelings.

In any case, despite this celebration, blacks are ignored and humiliated. Besides, their lives are in danger as well. Such police power is not what Islam and we want. We do not at all like to give a cinematic and Hollywood-like color to our police work on the streets. We want tasks to be carried out in the real sense of the word. That is to say, we want complete authority and power accompanied by justice, kindness and mercy - in certain cases, power should be accompanied by mercy. This is the manifestation of Islam. On the one hand, the Holy Being is Beneficent and Merciful and on the other hand, He is a Great Punisher. These two things should be considered together. This should spread in the different levels of the pyramid and affect our lives, behavior and affairs. The same thing should be done in the Police Force.

Another matter which in my opinion is very important is observing the law. Observing the law has two aspects: one is in your contact with the people. You should see in which places the law is violated and then you should confront it. Another aspect of observing the law is in the Police Force itself. The members of the Police Force should observe the law inside the organization in the true sense of the word. Observing the law should receive attention there more than anywhere else. Another issue is the moral health of the personnel. During the recent years, I have always offered this advice to former commanders and now too, I would like to stress that the honorable Commander of the Police Force and other police officials should not take lightly the issue of the moral health of the personnel. The moral health of the personnel is very important.

You are different from other military forces. You are among the people and the people are in contact with you. God forbid, any wrongdoing, flaw, problem, misbehavior and wrong measure will immediately be reflected. This is the case for the Police Force more than any other organization. Perhaps there are very few organizations in the country which are in contact with the people as much as you are. Therefore if - God forbid - there is any problem, wrongdoing and treachery, it will immediately spread among the people. When it spreads, it is not only the reputation of the Police Force that will be ruined. Rather, everyone's reputation will be ruined. As we said, the Police Force is the representative of the Islamic government. It is the representative of the Islamic Republic among the people. This is why you should attach great significance to the moral health of the personnel.

The Police Force can really build the reputation of the Islamic Republic. Even if five, ten organizations do not carry out their duties, but the Police Force acts as a righteous, strong, decisive and efficient force, this will enhance the reputation of the Islamic Republic at a public level. Your performance can be a source of dignity. God forbid, the opposite can happen as well. Therefore, these points - the most important of which is intra-organizational health - should receive attention. This moral health should receive attention because it will affect others outside the organization as well.

Well, the report that the honorable commander delivered contained the fact that spiritual, moral, religious and ideological areas have received attention in the Police Force. This is very good. Attention to those scientific developments and innovations which are related to your work and which emerge in the world on a daily basis is a very essential task and it will improve police work.

You should rely on Allah the Exalted. You should work for God and fulfill your duties in the right way. If you do so, Allah the Exalted will bestow blessings on you. He will bestow His blessings on your work and He will turn you into a source of blessing for the Islamic Republic. We will pray for you as well. I hope that God will make all of you successful. I hope that He will enable you to carry out the necessary tasks. There are some tasks in different areas that should be carried out with a joint effort. Other officials should cooperate in accomplishing them. I hope that in cooperation with one another, you will accomplish great feats.

Greetings be upon you and Allah's mercy and blessings