Ayatollah Khamenei

No country in the world has a people who are as independent as the people of Iran

The following is the full text of a speech delivered on March 21, 2018, by Ayatollah Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, addressing a large gathering of pilgrims at the Holy Shrine of Imam Reza (as) in Mashhad. The speech was given on the first day of the Persian New Year 1397.


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 immaculate, pure and chosen household, especially the one remaining with Allah on earth.

Allah, bestow as many greetings upon Your representative — Ali ibn Musa — as much as Your knowledge encompasses. Bestow Your greeting upon him, one that is as permanent as Your power and authority. Allah, send as many greetings to Your representative — Ali ibn Musa ar-Ridha — as much as Your knowledge encompasses. Send Your greeting to him, one that is as permanent as Your glory, Your greatness, and Your magnificence. Allah, send your greeting to Your representative — Ali ibn Muhammad al-Hadi al-Naqi — one that is as permanent as Your power and authority.

I thank Allah the Exalted, for giving me another opportunity — during another new year — to see you, dear and loyal people, at this pure and blessed shrine. [I thank Allah] for allowing me to send my sincere greetings to the dear pilgrims, who have gathered in this place from throughout the country, and to the honorable residents of this Holy city. I congratulate you on the arrival of the New Year, Nowruz; and I express my condolences on the martyrdom anniversary of Imam Hadi (God's greetings be upon him).

One of the characteristics of that great Imam (Imam Hadi) – regarding the works developed by the Imams (greetings be upon them) – is that, in his Ziyarahs, he has explained the most important aspects about the Imams' positions and statuses with eloquent and exquisite descriptions. "Ziyarat Jamiah Kabirah" is narrated by that great personality (Imam Hadi). "The Ziarat of the Commander of the Faithful on Al-Ghadir Day" has been narrated by him as well: this is one of the best [Ziyarahs] by the Imams (greetings be upon them).

I hope that in the shade of the great Imam's affection and kindness – his martyrdom has coincided with the first day of the New Year and with Nowruz – the people of Iran will benefit from divine guidance this year.

Today, I would like to discuss a number of issues with you dear brothers and sisters, who are present and, in fact, with all the great people of Iran. First of all, I will refer to the 40-year performance of the Islamic Republic, briefly, whether in terms of fundamental principles, slogans, values or in terms of function. The year 1397 (the Persian New Year) marks the 40th year of the Islamic Revolution's victory. During these 40 years, this hoisted flag [of the Islamic Republic] has attracted the eyes and hearts of a large number of people. I would like to reflect, briefly, upon these 40 years so that we can visualize the conditions of the Islamic Republic's axioms and how we, officials, have performed our duties during this period of time.
Of course, this discussion would be a long and detailed one, which is not suitable for this gathering because of its length and detail. So, I will only present some brief remarks. However, I will discuss this matter in detail during an event for the auspicious month of Ramadan. If I am living during that auspicious month of Ramadan, I will discuss the issue in detail — this is one of those issues [that requires more time and attention].

Another concern regards the numerous talents and diverse capacities which have remained unused to this day: if they are utilized, the country will move forward and improve to a great extent. The next issue that I will discuss, today, regards obstacles that have prevented the use of such capacities so that we can become aware of our behavioral imperfections, and so that we may understand what has prevented us from using these diverse capacities. The next issue is about this year's motto: Support for Iranian Products — I will present certain explanations in this regard.

Later on, I will make a brief reference to regional issues and the future of our country: this concludes a list of today's issues. I hope that the dear brothers and sisters, who are present, will listen to these statements with patience; and I ask Allah the Exalted to bless me with an eloquent tongue so I can communicate what I would like to say.

As for the main values, the axioms and fundamental principles of the Revolution, what I can say is that the Revolution has passed a successful examination in this regard. The people of Iran have managed to preserve the fundamental values and core mottos of the Revolution — to this day — with the same vigor that they exhibited during early days of the revolution. These are chief catchwords and values [of the Revolution]: independence, freedom, democracy, national self-confidence, self-belief, and justice, but most importantly is the implementation of religious rules or sharia in the country: these words and values have been preserved with their initial freshness. Today, the country enjoys independence, and this has been the public request of the people of the Revolution. This is the Iranian nation's response to 200-years of domination by foreigners over this country. It will be good for our youth, our intellectuals, and our researchers to pay attention to this matter. Before the Revolution, hegemonist powers used to dominate this country for two hundred years; and our governments used to rule under the shade of foreign powers. The Qajar government survived with the guarantee of the Tsarist government of Russia. In the Iran-Russia wars and during the Treaty of Turkmenchay, Abbas Mirza Qajari was assured by the Russians that the Qajar household will remain in power. In other words, the Qajar household used to live under the flag and guarantee of the Russians.

Later on, the English came, and they brought Reza Khan to power. And it was the English, again, who brought Mohammad Reza to power. After that, on the 28th of Mordad in 1332, the Americans entered the arena and established Mohammad Reza' authority--again. During those years, it was this or that power which altered our government. At one point in time – during the treaty of 1907 – England and Tsarist Russia reached an agreement to divide Iran amongst themselves: one area was under the domination of the English, one area was under the domination of the Russians, and one small area was independent. The country was, once, dominated as such.

So, the public request of the Iranian nation was to get out of that situation and to achieve independence. I can say that today, no country on earth has a people who are as independent as the people of Iran. All nations in the world show some consideration – in different ways – in the face of powerful forces. The people whose votes are not influenced, by any other power of the world, are the people of Iran; thus, independence was preserved.

As for freedom, independence and freedom together have been among the main concepts of the Revolution. Freedom has been provided within this country. However, some people are unfair: they use our existing freedom, and then they say, falsely, that there is no freedom. Foreign radio stations and other outlets of propaganda reflect their false statements, but they do not relay the truth. Today, there is freedom of thought, freedom of expression, and freedom of choice in Iran. No one is pressured, threatened, and pursued just because their thoughts or opinions are against those of the Islamic system.

Anyone who claims that they have been pressured, just because their belief on a certain matter goes against that of the Islamic system, is lying. Numerous individuals, from different media outlets, express their thoughts and beliefs which differ from that of the system: no one confronts them; no one is supposed to confront them. Thus, freedom of expression exists, and the people can express their thoughts.

There is a framework for freedom everywhere on the planet: freedom in the sense of acting against the law does not exist; freedom in the sense of acting against religion and sharia does not exist. The framework for freedom in our country is our constitution and our laws, both of which have been inspired by immaculate Islamic sharia. If someone expects to be free to act against the law: this is not reasonable and does not exist. But, a type of freedom does exist in the country.

When it comes to democracy, the public elections in our country are unique among elections of all countries throughout the world. There is an election almost every year – lately, every two years. Everyone [citizens] is free to vote in our elections, and everyone participates. Our people participate with excitement and enthusiasm. Notice, during these 40 years, the administrations which held office due to the votes of the people were of different orientations. Sometimes, they believed in one policy; and, sometimes, they believed in an opposite policy: these individuals have been elected by the people. Henceforth, democracy is well-established in our country. We do not allow our elections to be delayed for a single day: this did not happen during the era of war [Iran's holy defense] either.

Another value and principle is national self-confidence and self-belief of the Iranian nation. This means that the people should not feel passive and weak in confronting others. Thankfully, a spirit of 'We can' does exist in the country. And, as I've said, the descriptions and statistics related to this discussion are long, and I will mention them, in more detail, another time. Today, our people and our youth have, thankfully, stood on their own feet; they have a feeling of independence and self-belief.

The next issue regards that of justice. A few weeks ago, I said that we are behind in the area of justice: this is what I sincerely believe, but others – those with malicious intentions – interpreted my statement to mean otherwise. They understood my comment to, wrongfully, mean the country has not made any adjustments in terms of justice: this is simply false. Numerous accomplishments have been achieved in the area of justice. Great deeds have been carried out, but we have not accomplished the kind of justice that we are looking for or the Islamic nation desires: there is some distance from that type of justice. Nevertheless, if you compare our country with the pre-revolutionary era or with many other countries, you will see that class inequality is less than what it was, that underprivileged classes have more capabilities, and that the educational, health and other such systems include larger classes of people. I have written down some statistics here: it will not be a bad idea to mention them. These statistics have been released by the World Bank, not by a domestic bank. It is mentioned that before the Revolution, the Gini coefficient was higher than a 50. The Gini coefficient is a measure that shows class differences and the gap between the rich and the poor in various countries. The higher this coefficient is, the higher class inequalities are; and the lower it is, the lower class inequalities are. Before the Revolution, the Gini coefficient was higher than 50! During the year 1394, the Gini coefficient in the country was 38. This means that we have managed to bridge the gap this much – the difference between 50 and 38.

According to another piece of statistical data – this one has also been released by the World Bank as an international statistic – before the Revolution, the class of society which suffered from absolute poverty constituted 46 percent of the Iranian population. In other words, almost half of the people living in Iran were amongst those suffering from absolute poverty before the Revolution. Today, this number of 46 percent has decreased to 9.5 percent. Of course, this statistic is related to the year 1393 — I do not know figures released after that. —This means that much work has been accomplished throughout the country.

Despite the pressures that have existed, the Islamic Republic has accomplished great tasks in the area of administering justice: it has made great achievements. Of course, propaganda states otherwise. And the kind of justice that we ourselves pursue is beyond what we have today. Therefore, the notion of justice is genuine, one that is thankfully eternal and well-established in the country.

Regarding the issue of religion and the implementation of sharia in the shade of the Guardian Council's existence; of course, all arrogant powers are opposed to the Guardian Council because the Guardian Council ensures that the law and performances conform to Holy sharia. These statements are related to maxims. I can generally say that our 40-year performance, according to the main slogans of the Revolution, has been sound and acceptable.

Now, when considering the performance of Iran's government officials – the executive performance of the officials — when it comes to security and stability, their performance has been commendable. Regarding the subjects of science and technology, performance has also been good. In the area of the country's infrastructure – transportation, dams, power plants, ports, and the like – performance has been exceptional. As for non-oil exports and the Gross Domestic Product [GPD]: the Gross Domestic Product has almost doubled compared to the pre-revolutionary era. There is a good performance sheet in these areas: the same is true of social expansion. Overall, there are satisfactory stats in terms of performance in different fields.
Again, propaganda shows differently. In their propaganda, the enemies try to make the people drift away from positive realities, in order to make them unhappy and upset with the Islamic Revolution, the Islamic Republic, and Islam. However, the reality is what I have recently mentioned.

The next issue is about untapped resources and capacities: this is an important point as well. I will tell you, these accomplishments that you witness – the achievements, the resources, and public and national capabilities – are only a fraction of country's capacities. The capacities of Iran are much greater: if we can utilize all the capacities of this country, in an efficient manner, the progress and growth of the country will be greater than it is in the present time.

These are the capacities that exist: one is our educated youth; they are very important. We have ten million graduated youth in the country. We have more than four million students who are busy at pursuing their education: this estimate is 23 times greater than the beginning of the Revolution. At the beginning of the Revolution, we had 170-180 thousand students; today, we have more than four million: this means that our students are 23 times greater; they [students] are an important capacity for the country. Even if we exclude young students, the youth who are busy studying in Islamic seminaries and working in practical arenas are very large in number. They have many capabilities, and they can play their part in scientific, industrial, and in matters related to experience and education.

We, however, have not benefitted from Iran's youth properly. Today, too, we are not benefitting from them adequately: this is the reason why I insist on youth working, acting and creating whenever and whatever they can. A complete plan is necessary for the country to benefit from their youth. When we spoke about one motto "Fire at will," this is not only confined to cultural tasks, youth can play their part in all the areas that are sufficient towards the progression of Iran. The youth of Iran signify resource for the country.

Additionally, “The Population Wave” is an important resource and capacity that some people are opposed to. Some individuals ask, “Why should the country have such a large population?” Or, “Why should the population increase?"—They are mistaken. A population of eighty-million is a source of credibility for the Islamic Republic. The population of our country is at eighty million. The western policy – I will refer to this later on – to decrease their population has become like an albatross around their necks—this policy is ruining them. They want Islamic countries to be deprived of large populations, active youth, and competent individuals. When I insist that the population should increase and that families should have children – or more children – this is because the future of this country needs more youth. Youth and manpower are not “things” that one can import from outside the country. The country itself can provide such youth. This “population wave” is one of our resources.

The vast area of our country and adjacency to international waters is one of the opportunities of this country. We are not using this resource to perfection. One of the two coasts of the Persian Gulf belongs to us. A large part of the Sea of Oman belongs to us. We have many neighbors as well. Fifteen countries are our neighbors, and this is a very important possibility and capacity for the country. Our country is located in a very sensitive area in terms of geography. Iran connects the east, the west, the north, and the south; this is very important in terms of geography.

There are valuable natural resources in our country as well; today, they are sold to foreign countries without any value-added: one of them is oil and another gas. Last year, I said, during a Nowruz speech, that we rank first in the world in terms of our oil and gas resources altogether. This means that no country has as much oil and gas, altogether, as our dear Iran. We rank first in the area of gas, we rank fourth in oil production, and we are number one when considering the sum of these resources – the sum of oil and gas. This is a very important feature of Iran: one that brings about infinite possibilities.

It is because of these wealthy resources that the enemy wants domination and custody over our country. Oil and gas are valuable resources of Iran. Furthermore, there are numerous valuable metals, grasslands, forests and numerous other resources in our country. If these resources are utilized, the economy of Iran will be among the first 12 countries out of 200-plus countries around the world. If, by Allah's favor, these resources are utilized with the innovation and presence of the youth and with the presence of active and diligent managers, the economy of the country will be among the first ranking 12 economies of the entire world, and it will progress in every possible way. Of course, this is not the situation today.

Well, why have we not used these resources already? The reason why these resources have remained untapped is the existence of obstacles. I would like to list these obstacles.

One of the obstacles is that our officials do not believe in these capacities. They either do not believe or they do not attach any significance to them. The existence of so many youths in the country is an important capacity: our officials did not attach any significance to this matter. Some of them did not believe in this capacity, and they did not attach any significance. Some people did not believe in the fact that youth can do the work. The day when the nuclear industry of the country began to work and the day it reached the peak, which all of you are aware of, there were some individuals – even some of our scientists and some individuals among our older generations – who used to say to us, "Do not do this because it is of no use, because it is impossible and because you can't."

Some people used to write letters to me saying that we cannot carry out some duties. Why was that? The reason was that almost all those in charge were young. Most of them were around the age of 30 or below. However, they managed accomplish their duties. Those who used to deny them of their capabilities acknowledged later on that our youth have really managed to carry out important task. Today, most people working in different industries, with nanotechnology and in advanced industries – as westerners say, “high tech” – are young. They are busy working and endeavoring; and they are capable. Our youth are capable of accomplishing many tasks. Some of our officials did not believe in this possibility during a course of time, or they did not attach significance to it.

In my opinion, the most important challenge for the country is a mental challenge: this means that the public does not realize how much wealth is at the disposal of the country. Even some of our officials do not, unfortunately, know how much wealth – human and natural wealth – is at the disposal of Iran. And the enemy is taking advantage of this knowledge. The enemy wants to say that we cannot do certain things and that we do not have many resources. I insist on saying to the people that we can, and that we are rich, and that our resources are numerous. Our officials should believe in the power and capability of the youth, and they should attach significance to this.

Our youth, too, should not be tired of working and innovating. They should not become disappointed at the ingratitude of some people. Some youth complain to us that, despite past their achievements in and despite their potential in future tasks, they do not receive any attention. Very well, they should not become disappointed; they should pursue innovative tasks; both officials and youth are responsible.--This is just one of the many obstacles.

Another obstacle is inactiveness. Unfortunately, some of the individuals who have responsibilities in different areas suffer from lethargy and inactiveness. The condition of the country requires hard and diligent work. Wherever officials and managers work, they should increase their efforts.

One of the obstacles that has prevented us from utilizing these capacities is trusting the foreigners' version. As I said, our people are not inactive in dealing with foreigners. Some of our officials, in some corners of the country, trust the foreigners' version more than the domestic version: this is a grave mistake. Notice that the policy of "the less children there are, a better life there is" is European or Western dogma. They [Westerners], themselves, acted on this policy, and they have serious problems because of it today. They are giving out rewards and privileges so that families have more children: they want to make up for this shortcoming, but it is of no use. Some people believed in this policy, and this western version of things. A few years ago, I insisted during different speeches and in private meetings with officials that they should remove obstacles to increase the population. The officials agreed and confirmed our statements, but there are, unfortunately, some obstacles in middle management.

They are not acting on this Islamic version the way they should: "Get married, have children, and this way you will increase in number. Then, I will be proud of you in the face of other nations on Judgment Day" [Prophetic tradition, Jaame al-Akhbar, page 101]. However, they are acting on Western dogma: this is one of the obstacles in the way of progress.
Another obstacle is [acting on] the World Bank policies, the policy of moderation, the policies related to some international treaties – as they themselves say, conventions. Acting on these policies is one of the obstacles ahead of progress in the country.

Yet, another obstacle is lack of attention towards developing the country from the inside out. One of the policies or characteristics of the economy of resistance is developing the country from within: this means generating wealth through the domestic activities of the country. We should not pin our hopes on the outside world. In the past, some people of different administrations decided to receive loans from the World Bank or the International Monetary Fund, but I did not allow this, and I prevented it. They had prepared the ground taking out such loans. If we make requests of foreigners or become indebted to them, this is a grave mistake.

The economy should grow from within; however, this does not mean that we should close the gates of the country: this is not what it means. We have previously said that the economy should grow from the inside and look at the outside. I will expand on this when I explain the axiom of "Support for Iranian Products.” So, one of the obstacles has been lack of attention towards the policy of developing the economy from the inside.

An added obstacle, in the way of our progress, is political or partisan tribalism. This means, "If you do this, it will be good, but if the opposite party does it, then it will be bad." This is one of the flaws in our work. We are suffering from political partisanship and tribalism--we should put this aside. If someone who is your enemy has done something good, you should promote and pursue it when management and decision-making is in your hands. If we say that because such and such a person – the opposite party — has done it so we will not do it, this is a mistake. —This is one of our problems.

That we do not combat corruption seriously is another problem. I will tell you that, today, the issue of corruption in the country – the publicity that corruption and corrupt individuals have in the country – has become a very common matter, but this is not the case. Certainly, corruption, even at small degrees, is harmful, but when some people promote the idea that corruption has engulfed the country everywhere, this is not the case. This is not the case in any way. Righteous, pious, pure and clean individuals are not few in number in the management of the country. They are many, and they form the majority of managers, but there are some who are corrupt as well.

These corrupt individuals should be handled in a serious and continuous manner. If the uproar originating from our statements about corruption is muffled after some time, this not something that is beneficial to the country in the end. So, one of the problems is that corruption is not combated in a serious manner.

My dear ones, the dependency of the country on oil also serves as a problem. Oil is a blessing given to us by God, but the fact that our economy is dependent on oil is one of the biggest problems of our country. We should allow in some changes to make oil separate from the economy of the country. It is not oil that should be in control of us, rather it is we who should be in control of our oil. If oil is in control of us, such problems will persist. This is because it is other powers which set the price of oil; they sometimes impose sanctions; sometimes they buy it; and sometimes they say that they should not buy it from a certain country. We should get rid of an oil-based economy. Of course, this is a very difficult task, but it should definitely be pursued in the country.

One of the more important obstacles is a fundamental flaw in our way of living: this is not related to officials: this is related to us and to you, the masses of people. We have problems in our lifestyle. One of our problems is consumerism: extravagance, lavishness, and overspending. One of our problems is excessive seeking of welfare. One of our problems is leading an aristocratic lifestyle. Unfortunately, aristocratic lifestyle flows from the upper classes of society to the lower classes. Even when average individuals – average classes of society – want to organize a party or a wedding, they do so like nobility-This is a flaw, a mistake: this will damage the country. Consuming too much, asking for too much, eating too much, and spending too much are among the important flaws in our lifestyle.
We should be zealous towards our national economy. Consuming foreign products is one of our flaws. We should be zealous towards consuming domestic products and towards our national economy. Our youth are fervent supporters of some football team or the other. One is a fan of the red team and another is the fan of the blue team, and they support them fervently. They even support foreign teams fervently, one is a fan of the “Real [Madrid]” and another is a fan of some other team [Audience laughs]. They are arch-supporters of these teams, but if we have the same zeal towards national economy and domestic production, many of our affairs will improve.
Now, let us discuss the theme [name] of the year. The theme of this year is "Support for Iranian Products.” First of all, I want to address those people who say, "When you choose a theme for different years, this is of no use--as the people do not act on it. So why do you choose a name without a reason?"—I, on the other hand, do not agree with this. These names are announced with two goals: one is directing and channeling executive policies according to the performance of government officials and another is raising public awareness: this way, public opinion can indicate which issues are important for the country.
Today, the issue of Iranian products is an important matter for the country. It is possible that executive officials do not agree with some of the themes that we bring up every year, but those who agree with them work hard, and they act on them. They work within the scope of their capabilities. Of course, if tasks are carried out in a better and more comprehensive manner, the results will be greater. Therefore, it is not the case that these names [of the New Year goals] are useless. On the contrary, these names are valuable.
This year's theme is addressed both to officials and to the people. The name is "Support for Iranian Products." An Iranian product is the final result of work, investment, economic activity, intelligence, and innovation: everything. Investors with their investments, laborers with their labor, and designers and planners with their intelligence and knowledge work hard, and the end result will be an Iranian product. Therefore, Iranian products are great and important matters: this should be supported.
In supporting Iranian products – which are the products of the effort put forth by economic and labor activists, investors, planners, designers and the like – the people play an important role both as producers of Iranian products and as consumers of Iranian products. They should both produce and consume. They should make great efforts in the area of production – I will refer to the tasks that should be carried out in this regard – and they should make sure to consume Iranian products. As a result, certain responsibilities fall on the shoulders of the people and officials. So, this theme is one for both the people and officials to follow.

Well, how should we support Iranian products? Primarily, this support is in the form of increasing production. This falls on both executive officials – they should plan – and the people, the goal is to increase domestic production.
Domestic production should improve in terms of quality as well. The Holy Prophet has been quoted as saying, "God's mercy be upon those who carry out the task in a proper and firm way." They should complete tasks in a firm, exquisite, and satisfactory manner. The quality of work should improve.
One form of support is coordination with the needs, tastes, and advantages of the times: this is support as well. It should not be the case that the people's needs are ignored. Producing Iranian products means producing things which are compatible with the taste of the people, accompanied by the necessary subtleties.
Finding markets outside the country and increasing exports is also one of the forms of supporting Iranian products. We have 15 countries as our neighbors. Apart from the distant countries, which can consume Iranian products, there are 15 countries which are our neighbors; we should benefit from this convenience in order to export Iranian products; this falls on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Commerce, and economic activists among the people: they should find markets.
Once, they gave me some statistics. I have not written it down, and I do not remember it exactly, but it was very important. Those statistics showed that if we can provide only 20 percent of the products that our neighboring countries need – only neighboring countries – and if we can commit ourselves to providing 20 percent of the products that they need to consume, then a number of jobs will be created. It was a large number, I do not remember it exactly; therefore, I cannot say for sure. The impact this has on creating employment in the country and on generating national wealth will be enormous. This is one form of supporting Iranian products.
Another form is presenting products at an affordable price and making production competitive. One of the very important tasks in the country is that we should be able to help domestic products compete with foreign products. We should do our best to produce our products at a price which is cheaper than their foreign counterparts.--Of course, there are certain prerequisites for this. Some prerequisites fall on the administration and some on us people.

And there are certain conditions for this support: if these conditions are not met, then there will be no support. One of the conditions is the serious management of imports by the administration. Administrations should strongly manage imports. The products which are manufactured or can be manufactured inside Iran should not be imported from abroad. I receive many complaints saying that when they open a factory, manufacture a product and decide to introduce it to the market, all of a sudden the gates of the customs office are opened and foreign counterparts enter the country. This causes many of our factories to suffer major repercussions in this regard. Some go bankrupt and face serious problems. These imports should definitely receive attention, and they should be managed by the administration.

Sometimes, they import certain things, and we ask the officials in charge why they have been imported. In response, they say it was not they who imported them, rather it was the private sector who did so. This is not a satisfactory response! The private sector should be better managed! The administration should manage it diligently. The administration should have control over the situation so much so that it can say which things should enter the country, what quantity is allowed, and which things should not enter the country!--This is certainly one of the most important tasks that must be carried out.

Another obstacle involves combating smuggling more intensely. Unfortunately, a serious combative strategy has not taken place in the previous years: this must be done. Of course, I have heard that the Ministry of Economic Affairs has created a system which is reportedly very efficient and valuable for preventing smuggling. Very well, they should pursue that operation so it can, definitely, be accomplished. Smuggling should be prevented. The people too should be zealously committed towards avoiding the use of smuggled products; therefore, smugglers do not find it economical to do this.

The figures that our young experts have released regarding the destructive impact of imports on the production of the country are significant figures. There are a number of young experts who work in these areas and who understand them perfectly. They presented me with statistical data showing that a particular number of imports will destroy a vast number of jobs! That is while we are concerned about this situation of youth unemployment! Imports are inundating the country like a massive flood! So, one form of support is combating smuggling and unreasonable imports inside the country.
Another form of support is investment in production by economic activists. Economic activists should not pursue those businesses that are merely more lucrative. If they want to make investments, they should invest in production. If they purify their intentions, making them divine, and if they work for the country, this investment will become an act of worship. Investment is a lucrative business, but if it is done for the progress of the country and for helping the people, it becomes an act of worship.
Well, these were matters related to the issue of supporting Iranian products. This is my advice: as I’ve said, you should support Iranian products in a zealous manner. Sellers should sell Iranian products, and buyers should buy Iranian products. Officials should help and support Iranian production, and they should prevent imports and smuggling. Hence, this discussion is over.

Now, I would like to discuss a few points about regional matters and American malevolence because this is necessary, and it is the issue of the day. During the year that passed, the Islamic Republic raised the flag of dignity and power, representing the Iranian nation in the region. The Islamic Republic played an important role in breaking the backs of takfiris (terrorists) throughout the region. It was the Islamic Republic [of Iran] that did so! The Islamic Republic managed to liberate the people from the malevolence of takfiris in an important part of the region, and it managed to ensure security. These are the tasks that the Islamic Republic has accomplished. And they are great – not insignificant – tasks.
Now, international meddlers – those who want to meddle in all the internal affairs of other countries complain about Iran's participation and interference in Iraq’s, Syria’s and other such countries’ affairs. Well, what is it to you? What should it matter to you [Western powers]? The Islamic Republic managed to foil America’s plot in the region. What was this plot? The plot was to create malicious, oppressive, and thuggish groups like DAESH in order to divert the minds of nations away from the usurping Zionist regime. The U.S.A. and their allies wanted to occupy the peoples’ time with their own internal affairs, domestic wars, and other problems so that they would not gain even an opportunity to think about what the Zionist regime was doing in the region. It was U.S.A.’s plan to create DAESH. By Allah's favor and grace, we managed to foil this plot.

They [U.S.A.] say that they participated in defeating DAESH, but they are lying. U.S. policy is to maintain DAESH, but on a tight leash. DAESH and those like DAESH are terrorists groups which are easy for the Americans to create, but are difficult to preserve. They want to have them under their own control and in the palm of their own hands: they do not have any intentions to destroy them. The security of the region is not what they [the U.S.] want. Besides, the Americans are not able to ensure security in the region: an example is Afghanistan. 16 years have now passed since Americans have entered Afghanistan, but what the heck have they done? Have they managed to ensure security in Afghanistan? No, not at all: they have failed to do so.
Some people say that they’ve [the U.S.] failed, and some say that they did not want to achieve security in the region. Either way, this gives reason to the claim made by the US and the likes of US – England and others – for presence in the region to be a false and unreasonable claim.
On the other hand, our [Iranian] presence is at the request of other governments. Wherever we facilitated, it was because governments and regional peoples asked us to help, and we have not behaved like bullies [while helping others]. We have not behaved in a tyrannical manner: we have not interfered in the affairs of other countries: they wanted our help and we helped them [other governments and nations]. And we offered help within a scope of reasonable and logical motives: everyone should come to know this. Everything that has been offered, aid in the realm of regional issues, was reasonable and in accordance with precise and wise calculations. It is not the case that someone has acted on a whim of feelings or emotions. This was not the case.

We have thankfully succeeded, and this will be the case from now on. We do not intend to interfere in the affairs of other countries. I can say that, without doubt, the U.S. will not achieve its regional goals on any issue, but, by Allah's favor, we will attain ours.
My dear people, let us summarize the main points. I would like to summarize what I have said in a few short sentences.
Here is the summary of our discussion: first of all, all problems of the country can be resolved. We do not have any problem in the country that cannot be resolved. We do not have a problem wherein the key to the solution is in the hands of foreign entities. Problems exist, but to every problem is a solution; and the key [to a solution] is held by the hands of our Iranian nation and the officials of the country.
The second point is that the Revolution is moving forward with strength and enthusiasm. The Revolution's 40th anniversary is not an era of aging or retrogression, rather it is an era of experience and enthusiasm for the Revolution. In its 40th anniversary, the Revolution, thankfully, continues to move forward by preserving its mottos and maintaining a raised flag.
The third point is that our youth are such a great source of hope for the country--in all arenas. Our Youth are extremely valued. In advanced industries, it is youth who are busy working. In cultural and artistic areas, it is youth who are busy working. In the area of the military and military leadership, it is youth who are playing their part. In the area of management too, wherever youth go, management becomes more enthusiastic. My advice is that more youth should be hired for different managerial positions.
The next point is that the enemy hoped – this point is important – that he could make the third and fourth generations of the Revolution turn their backs on the Revolution, but today the commitment of the third and fourth generations to the Revolution along with their deep and well-tested interest in the Revolution are not any less – if not more – than those of the first generation. The enemy is trying to magnify our issues. He is portraying problems as if they were bigger and more than what they really are.
In response, I would like to say that by Allah's favor and guidance, our youth can solve all these problems. The enemy is extremely angry and concerned with the blossoming of our younger generations. When you witnessed that the enemies – the Americans and westerners – were so opposed to our centrifuges, the reason was not only that centrifuges can enrich uranium, rather the main reason was that they would enrich this scientific movement and the minds of our youth. They would prepare them for greater tasks. They were concerned primarily because they would show the capability of the Islamic Republic in cultivating the young generation of the country.
I will tell you, our dear youth will build this country better than what has even existed in the minds of the former generation – our generation. By Allah's favor, they will build it better than ever, and they will manage to raise the flag of independence, greatness, and dignity of the country higher than today.
Dear God, bestow Your kindness, mercy and guidance on our youth, and make their steps firm on the straight path.
Dear God, by the blessedness of Muhammad and his household, make Islamic Iran more successful and honorable on a daily basis, and associate the immaculate soul of our magnanimous Imam – who opened this path to us – with the souls of Your saints.

Dear God, make the holy heart of the Imam of the Age satisfied and pleased with us; help us benefit from his prayers.

Dear God, help us benefit from the spiritual and divine guidance of that great Imam (PBUH). Make us be among his companions and hasten his reappearance.

Greetings be upon you and Allah's mercy and blessings



  • economy of resistance
  • Nowruz


  • 2018-04-04 01:00
    Bravo...clear observation of the past...fair reasonable assessment of recent past and present....canny prospects for future....great leadership...