Imam Khamenei

The enemy’s attack on spiritual matters is much more dangerous than his attack on other areas

The following is the full text of the speech by Ayatollah Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, to officials of the Martyrs of Southern Khorasan Commemoration Congress. The speech was published on December 11, 2018 by the Congress at Jamaran Hussainiyah in Birjand.


In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

One of the best and most honorable tasks in our time is commemorating martyrs. Particularly in certain areas – where the general public have more inclination towards religious and revolutionary matters – this task is carried out with more enthusiasm and grandeur. Your province is thankfully one of these areas. I have been familiar with Birjand and this province – from which many pious personalities and scholars have appeared – since a long time ago. Southern Khorasan Province has been like this.

Both pious people and outstanding and great scholars have lived in this province – whether in Birjand, Qaen or the other cities of the province. In my time and on the basis of what I myself have seen, the late Tahami, the late Ayati and the late Arefi have been three great clergy two of whom studied in Najaf. The late Ayati was the student of the late Aqa Zia. The late Tahami was the student of Mr. Naini and Mr. Arefi was the student of the late Hajj Sheikh in Qom. He was one of the scholars of Qom.

I have been witness to the piety of the people in that area. In the year 1342, when there was no trace of revolutionary matters in that area, I went there and spoke about those matters. The people gave me such a warm reception that it was really astonishing. That was a sign of their enthusiasm. Thankfully, they made great endeavors and worked very hard during the Sacred Defense Era as well. They offered two thousand-plus martyrs excluding disabled war veterans, prisoners of war, the missing soldiers and the like. This province has offered more than two thousand martyrs: the ones who are evidently martyred. I hope that the people of the province, the future of Southern Khorasan and the spirit of this province will benefit from the blessings of their martyrs. 

Today, our country needs to commemorate them. The enemy’s attack on spiritual matters is much more dangerous and problematic than his attack on ordinary matters and his hard-war and the like. And today, the enemy has focused his effort on this. Of course, as he has been frustrated in the area of hard-pressure and hard-war, he has been frustrated in this area as well.

In the case of the latter, revolutionary growth is thankfully felt in the country in a tangible manner. However, this requires effort. This has been achieved with endeavor. If these endeavors continue, these instances of growth will continue to move forward as well. By Allah’s favor, it will move forward and there is no doubt about this. Therefore, the formation of these ceremonies and these commemoration congresses are very valuable and significant.

You should follow up this task. You should hold such commemoration congresses for martyrs as well as you can. You should write the biography of martyrs. Sometimes, we witness that when the biography of an anonymous martyr – who was neither a Sardar, a commander nor a well-known personality – is written and presented to public opinion, it touches hearts in many cases. Of course, this happens when such biographies are written in a proper way and by being meticulous. You should accomplish this task.

Well, thirty years have passed from the end of the war, but the important issues of Sacred Defense are infinite. They are progressing on a daily basis. When our dear martyrs were alive, they defended the arena with their lives. Today, they are defending the identity of the country and Islam with their own identity and with their spirituality. This is a very important point.

You should refer to their parents. Of course, many parents of martyrs have unfortunately passed away, but you should visit the ones who are alive – the fathers, mothers and spouses: in the case of those who had a spouse. You should go to them and ask about martyrs and this way, you can prepare their biography. You should try to do quality work. Quantity is important, but quality is even more important. By Allah’s favor, you should pay attention to quality.

In any case, I send my sincere and genuine greetings to our dear martyrs and to families of martyrs – the martyrs of Southern Khorasan province, Birjand and other cities of that province. Also, I would like to greet the people of that area. Mr. Ebadi should send greetings to the people of Birjand and the people of Southern Khorasan on my behalf. I hope that he will always benefit from divine kindness. I hope that as Mr. Governor mentioned, he will attend to the problems of the people and I hope that they will carry out the tasks that should be carried out there, God willing.

Greetings be upon you and Allah’s mercy and blessings