Imam Khamenei

The enemy uses the media to wage economic war against Iran

The following is the full text of a speech delivered on September 6, 2018, by Ayatollah Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, in a meeting with the members from the Assembly of Experts after the culmination of the fifth session for the Fifth Assembly of Experts.



In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful,


All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of the Worlds; peace and greetings be upon our Master and Prophet, Ab-al-Qassem Al-Mustafa Muhammad, and upon his pure, immaculate, and chosen household, especially the one remaining with Allah on earth -- may our souls be sacrificed for his sake, may God hasten his reappearance, and God’s greetings be upon him.


You are very welcome here today, dear gentlemen. I thank you for being generous enough to take time out of your busy schedules to participate in this meeting, especially after the tense sessions that you attended over the past two days.


These days are important days: the last ten days of Dhul-Hijja, the second half of that month. These are important days in terms of the history of Islam and the historical events of Islam. According to the well-known account: yesterday the 24th of Dhul-Hijja, was the day of Mubahila and the day of the revelation of the ayah about the wilayat of the Commander of the Faithful--God’s greetings be upon him. “Your wali is Allah, His Messenger, and those who believe--those who establish prayers and give charity while they bow down in worship [The Holy Quran, 5: 55].”


Today is also a day that marks the revelation of Sura “Hal Ata” [Sural al-Insan] of the Quran, and according to one account, today is the day of Mubahila. So, these are important days. Well, in the second half of the month of Dhul-Hijja, we have ‘Eid al-Ghadir which is a great ‘Eid and an important event in the history of Islam. Mubahila–which should be commemorated and is very significant–is, in fact, the manifestation of assurance, faith-based power, and reliance on legitimate truth. And this is what we always need. Today, we need the same faith-based power and the same reliance on our legitimate truth. This is because we are moving on the path of the truth. We should rely on this in the face of the enemies' hostility, and we are, thankfully, doing so.


For this reason, there is, thankfully, a feeling of confidence among the public because the Iranian nation, public opinion, and the public orientations in our country, altogether, have a legitimate cause; they are moving in the right direction. Sura “Hal Ata” is also the manifestation of the blessing that exists during a sincere course of action. It is the manifestation of sincere sacrifice. Because of the sacrifice that the Ahl-ul Bayt made, Allah the Exalted sent down a sura for them: Sura “Hal Ata.” In addition to being a very important, valuable, and glorious historical event, it is a lesson. From the viewpoint of Allah, when sacrifice is accompanied by sincerity, it will lead to worldly and otherworldly rewards.


According to the points that existed in the reports of Mr. Jannati and Mr. Movahedi--I also had a report from the statements that the gentlemen in the Assembly of Experts made--you, thankfully, discussed important issues in a recent session: you brought up important issues. The good classifications that Mr. Movahedi presented and the report that Mr. Jannati delivered about the strategic intellectual committees are very good as well. You have initiated this task. The more this task develops and the more intellectual and human investments we make in it, the more blessings it will yield. The thought of scholars, broad-minded personalities, and the people’s experts is very important. Of course, there are certain conditions for it which will receive attention, God willing.


Before I forget, I would like to mention the two great brothers who have passed away: Mr. Imani and Mr. Mehmannavaz. They were two successful and honorable Friday prayer leaders. I hope that God will shower His mercy on them, and I hope that He will bestow immediate and complete recovery on our dear brother--Mr. Shahroudi.


What I want to discuss today is about a particular issue, and I will raise other points and matters related to that issue. The issue includes unity, national solidarity, and the general deployment of public opinion--the people’s viewpoints--in the direction of this unity. --This is what I want to discuss today. There are certain points in my mind which I will discuss with you, gentlemen.


We are facing a sensitive period of time. The present time, the time we are passing through is a sensitive period of time--not in the sense that we have more enemies or stronger enemies; no. Today’s enemies were there on the first day of the Revolution as well and nothing has been added. Besides, those who existed before were stronger than these ones: you should have no doubt about this. --This holds true in the case of the Zionist regime and in the case of the U.S. regime. As for some of the regional reactionaries, the former ones were stronger and more skilled than the present ones. However, they could not do anything to the Revolution.


That is while the Revolution was a weak sapling on that day. It was just a new sapling at that time. Digging it up was completely different from uprooting the good tree that exists today and that has become well-established: “whose root is firmly fixed, and its branches reach to the heavens [The Holy Quran, 14: 24].” So, when I say, “sensitive,” this is not the reason. And they used to adopt hostile measures. They shot down our passenger plane, they attacked Tabas, they imposed an eight-year war on us with the help of that madman in the region, they laid an economic siege upon us, and they did many other things. All those measures were adopted at that time and in the present time, many of the measures that they adopted at that time were not feasible. In other words, they are not able to adopt them anymore. So, this is not the reason why I am saying that the present time is more sensitive than the time before.


The present time is more sensitive because when a society or a system steps onto a new path and presents an unorthodox and different claim, and when it ventures into this vast jungle of international conflicts with that different claim and that new path, it will naturally face different circumstances because of those characteristics. Therefore, it should adapt itself to those circumstances, and move forward in line with them.


The same thing happened in the early Islamic era, and today it is the same. Today, too, there are international conflicts. This world of international politics is a vast jungle, and we are moving against the trend. The general trend in the world is about arrogance and the system of domination. Some are oppressors and some give in to their own oppression and accept it. We are moving against this trend. In the past 40 years, we have been advancing and moving forward. We naturally face certain circumstances; we have no choice but to be careful about them. We should be very careful. We should observe and evaluate the different dimensions of these circumstances.


As I said, the circumstances were the same during the early Islamic era. At that time too, different circumstances and conditions would bring about different responsibilities. One day, Allah the Exalted says: “If there are twenty among you, patient and persevering, they will vanquish two hundred [The Holy Quran, 8: 65].” Another day, He says, “If there are a hundred of you, patient and persevering, they will vanquish two hundred [8: 66].” One day, they fight against unbelievers 10 times larger in number, and one day, they fight against them two times larger. Without a doubt, there is no flaw in divine wisdom, this is clear. So, things are related to the circumstances. Under certain circumstances, Allah the Exalted says that you fight against 10; and, during other circumstances, He says that you fight against two.


This difference in circumstances will bring about the difference in rules and obligations. One day, the event of Badr occurs with the movement which led to the conquering of Makkah and other such events. And one day, there is the event of Hunayn: “And on the day of Hunayn, behold your great numbers elated you, but they availed you naught [The Holy Quran, 9: 25].” –That is how it is.


There are different circumstances for different situations; we should act according to them. Well, if these circumstances are ignored, we will suffer a loss. --This is the case whether it is the people or outstanding personalities who ignore the circumstances. In particular, if outstanding personalities ignore the existing circumstances and conditions and the position which the Islamic government is in, we will receive a critical blow.


Now, with this introduction, I would like to ask, where is our war located today? It is said that our war is an economic one, which is true. The enemy has waged an all-out economic war against us. They have a war chamber as well, and they are studying the circumstances carefully. They have agents, and they are constantly making their moves. --There is no doubt about this. We are in such a war, but there is another war which is often neglected by us. The latter is not less significant than an economic war. Sometimes, it even prepares the ground for the economic war to exert its influence. What is that war? That war is a media war, a war of public provocation, and a war of propaganda: it is very important. Of course, it existed before, too. There has always been some propaganda that goes against us, but today it has intensified just like the economic war. There were sanctions before, but they have intensified today.


During the second war and second arena, the enemy intensified his activities and movements. His activities have increased by several times. We should not ignore this war. Our intelligence shows--this is based on reliable information, it is not a guess--that an organization has been established by the intelligence services of the Zionist regime and the U.S... They have established an organization which is being funded by regional Qaroons. In some nearby countries, they are working and planning. They are diligently working [against Iran].


If they need someone who speaks the language, they hire people to learn the language. If they need someone familiar with the conditions of our country, they pay someone to do that in order to stain the intellectual and promotional environment of the country. --And this issue is an important issue: it is a very sensitive issue. It is bad to see that the promotional environment of the country is an environment which makes the people nervous, disappointed, and hopeless; which makes them pessimistic towards one another and towards organizations; which makes them think there is a dead-end: which increases the problems related to the economy.


You pointed to the issue of gold-coins, currency, the devaluation of national currency and an increase in the price of foreign currencies against Rial: this is correct. An important part of this is taking place through propaganda channels. It is propaganda apparatuses and media that prepare the ground for it. As a result of their actions, all of a sudden you see that the price of one particular product doubles. In other words, in a short time, the value of national money is cut in half. As a result of this, the power of national money is halved in a short time. --It is the depraved media that provokes this.


Of course, we have no expectation of the enemy. We do not anticipate of the enemy anything other than malice. The enemy is the enemy. What is important is that we should prevent the enemy from carrying such attacks. --This is what I want to express as the main purpose of my statement. We should not assist the enemy with his pursuits. We should not help stain the public environment and the people’s minds. We should act in an opposing way.  Sometimes, we do not pay attention and this happens. Sometimes, we exaggerate in mentioning some of the problems. Sometimes, we exaggerate in expressing our criticisms of a particular organization or person. This exaggeration is damaging because it will be employed in staining and disturbing public opinion as much as possible. This is something which should receive attention.


The virus of pessimism should not be spread. Notice that I, myself, criticize others. I have criticized all administrations which have held office since the beginning of my tenure on numerous occasions; sometimes, those criticisms were harsh and severe. However, I expressed my critical views. I do not like being slack when it comes to confronting the problems that organizations in charge have. However, the way we express our criticism, the way we take action and confront others should not cause the people to become afflicted with the disease of pessimism, because such pessimism cannot be remedied.


Things should not develop in a way that the people will not believe whatever positive news we have, but that every word uttered by the enemy will be credible to them. --This is a very dangerous phenomenon: we should not allow this to happen. We can change this situation. This virus of pessimism is adverse. Pessimism towards the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps, towards the administration, towards the Majlis [Parliament], towards the judiciary branch, and towards revolutionary institutions and foundations is a dangerous phenomenon.


There is nothing wrong with being critical: it is necessary for the sake of improvement. Being critical is a cordial course of action, not a hostile one. When you criticize someone, it is a cordial course of action: “Believers act as a mirror to other believers [Tohaf al-Oqul, page 173].” This means that you find and express the flaws and weaknesses that exist on the other side. --This is a good thing. So, criticism should be made. Sometimes, criticism should be made on a public level as well. We do not always believe that criticism should be made secretly. Sometimes, it should be public; but, if we criticize in a way that the hearts of our audience are torn apart, or they say to themselves: “everything is ruined, we are done,”--this is unacceptable.


We sometimes make mistakes in the way that we voice our criticisms and we work like this. The organizations which are criticized accomplish good tasks as well: such tasks should be highlighted. A few days ago, in a meeting that I had with government officials, I said to the gentlemen in the administration that both positive and negative tasks should be viewed; it should not be the case that we only see the negative ones.


The administration has accomplished good tasks, and it has some problems as well. The same is true of the Majlis. The same is true of the judiciary branch and the same is true of various other organizations. All of us are like this. We all have certain strong points: “They have mixed an act that was good with another that was evil. Perhaps Allah will turn unto them in mercy [The Holy Quran, 9: 102].” This act of mixing good and bad deeds is committed by everyone; it exists everywhere. If we mention bad deeds, we should mention the good ones as well. This helps the people to see where the problems lie as well as preventing them from becoming completely disappointed and saying, “everything is ruined.” --This should not be. There are good deeds and bad deeds, and one should see and express all of them.


There is a holy ayah that says, “O you who have faith! Be wary of Allah, and speak upright words. He will put right for you your conduct and forgive you your sins… [The Holy Quran, 33: 70-71].” If we want to talk “sadidah”-- which means using firm and correct words -- we should behave in the mentioned way.


“Do those of the Lord and the rabbis not forbid them to speak sinfully and to consume the unlawful [The Holy Quran, 5: 63]?” The two important points in this ayah are about the Quran’s criticism of rabbis and clergies who do not prevent the people from those two characteristics: one of them is uttering untruthful, erroneous, and uncalculated words --which means words that are not based on knowledge and good information-- and another is in regards to ingesting forbidden things. The latter is related to economic issues, unhealthy economic relations, corruption, and corrupt individuals. Both of these things should be corrected.


When I say that the Revolution and the country are making progress, this is not something that I am boasting about, rather this is based on good information: the country is making progress. The Revolution and revolutionary principles are making progress. Of course, some anti-revolutionary statements are made, and some points are raised, but the truth of the matter is that the country is moving towards revolutionary concepts and truths. This movement may not enjoy the necessary pace and speed, but it does exist. This movement exists. The country is making progress. We have progressed in various areas: we have progressed in scientific and industrial areas, in the area of political dignity, in the area of intellectual growth and in the area of spirituality. I will give an example in this regard at the end of my statements.


The examples are much greater than one or two. We have made many great achievements. There are so many outstanding young people in our country. Notice the obstacles of cyberspace. There are so many “misguiding troubles” [reference to Nahjul Balaghah, Hadith 93] in cyberspace, on satellite channels, and other such media. --Youth are subject to all of this. Nonetheless, notice how they behave in the Arbaeen rally, in the i'tikaf ceremony, and in public prayers held in universities. --These are very important points.


Why should we not see these points? These incidents show that even spirituality, which is the most difficult part -- the spiritual part of a culture -- is improving. Just look at the meetings held during the month of Ramadan. I ask questions about such gatherings, particularly during the month of Ramadan, in the month of Muharram, and Safar. I ask some people to carry out research and compare the meetings and gatherings during Ramadan of current years to previous years. They go and bring me reports, and I really become astonished at this progress and forward movement. Why should we not observe and see such phenomena? Such phenomena should be seen, analyzed, and discussed. Those who address large audiences should bring up these issues.


An important point is a solidarity movement among the people and the managerial organizations of the country. The people should be in contact with the managerial organizations of the country --whether the judiciary branch, the executive branch, or other branches. Solidarity! Of course, an important part of building trust falls on organizations themselves. The administration, the judiciary branch, and other organizations should behave and act in a way that they win the people’s trust. This falls on them, but a part of it falls on you and me as well. Another part of it falls on those who have large audiences and who take the podium. Some issues should be brought up in official and non-official podiums.


No administration is able to work without the help and support of the people. Neither our administration nor any other administration in the world is able to do so. We should not do something to lose the people’s support and trust in governmental and executive organizations of the country --whether the judiciary branch, the executive branch and other divisions such as the Armed Forces. The cure for problems is not that we stop backing the administration. The cure is not that we keep our distance from what organizations in charge do. The cure is that we should make our criticism, express our viewpoints, and offer help: intellectual and practical help. --This is the cure.


Of course, government officials --fortunately, today, the heads of branches are present as well-- should benefit from the people’s viewpoints. They should benefit from the viewpoints of experts. Some of the items on the list which was read out here are very important. The issue of the value of the national currency is very important. They should really appoint teams to sit and think correctly. I do not only mean teams from the administration. There are teams from outside the administration as well. There are economists and experts on monetary issues. They have some claims and they write and speak to me. Sometimes, they publish their ideas in newspapers as well, and they say that there are cures and ways for all these problems and that they know those cures. Very well, you should summon and speak to them so you can find a way and eliminate this problem.


I spoke to the gentlemen in the administration, and I asked them to channel the money volume and liquidity towards construction and production. --This requires a team of individuals to sit and think: this task requires activeness. They should perform these tasks. This is the responsibility of the people in the administration. We should guide executive officials towards this direction, and we should help them.


We should do something to make the people optimistic about the effort that they want to put in. The people should see that effort is being made. This is what unknots the minds of the public. Some people are concerned about public opinion, and their concerns are legitimate: not illegitimate. What resolves this is our capability to establish proper and healthy relations between the public opinion of the people and the organizations in charge. Of course, this does not mean absolute optimism.


They sometimes ask me why I do not speak sharply to the administration. They probably mean speaking sharply to them in public. They are not aware of our private meetings [Supreme Leader and members laugh]. I have other meetings with various officials --military, non-military, executive, judiciary, and other officials--and they are at least ten times greater than what is reflected in media. Well, they are not aware of those meetings. They want me to speak sharply in public. Well, what would be the advantage of it? The only advantage that it has is that you feel better, that is it! There are no advantages. However, it has big disadvantages which should be assessed. Kicking up a row is not the cure, nor is establishing parallel organizations with the administration.


Mr. Jannati pointed out that we should do jihadi work [make selfless ardent efforts]. --This is a completely correct statement. Jihadi work should be done, but by whom? By officials themselves! This should be done through the legal procedures. Of course, there may be cases in which the law does not work for a government official. He may need to work outside the present legal procedures. He may need to ask for our permission. In such cases, I will definitely cooperate and help. There is nothing wrong with this, like what the honorable head of the judiciary branch did [Supreme Leader’s response to the letter written by the head of the judiciary branch on August 11, 2018, regarding confronting economic crimes].


However, this should be done by the officials in charge. Doing parallel work alongside the administration will not be a successful act. This is the definitive experience of this humble person throughout all these years. The task should be done in a jihadi way, but who should do it? It is the officials in charge who should do so. This is one issue.


As I said earlier, the enemy is making some moves, and, by Allah’s favor, we will definitely defeat the enemy at this stage and at all future stages: “If the unbelievers should fight you, they would certainly turn their backs. Then would they find neither protector nor helper? Such has been the practice of Allah already in the past: no change will you find in the practice of Allah [The Holy Quran, 48: 22-23].”


If unbelieving enemies face you, they will certainly be forced to retreat. Of course, this happens when you fight. If you sit idle, this will not hold true. However, when we move and work, the enemy will definitely be defeated. We have, thankfully, seen this in the course of time. As I said, this has even happened in spiritual areas.


I want to give an example in this regard. Recently, I read a book which was very interesting. A young man and woman --a wife and husband-- who were born in the 1370s [1990s] make a vow that they will fast for three days so that no sins will be committed during their wedding ceremony—not even inadvertently. In my opinion, it should be recorded in history that a young couple relies on Allah the Exalted and fast for three days so that no act against sharia and no sin will be committed during their wedding ceremony! The boy decides to leave and defend the Holy Shrine of Hazrat Zainab --God’s greetings be upon her. The young woman's involuntary tears make his heart tremble. He says to his spouse: “your tears trembled my heart, but they will not tremble my faith.” And the spouse says, “I will not prevent you from going. I do not want to be one of those women who will lower their heads [in shame] in front of Fatima Zahra (ra) on Judgment Day.”


Notice that these events did not occur a hundred, two hundred years ago! They occurred in the years 1394, 1395 [2015-2016] -- in recent years. And they will occur in the years to come. --This is happening at the present time. There are such personalities among our youth. There are such brilliant realities among them. These things should be noted, seen, and understood.


And this is not the only example, so much so that someone might say: “The Spring will not come with just one flower.” The issue is not about ‘one’ flower. There are many such instances. Those two individuals --the wife and husband whom I mentioned-- were both students. Of course, the boy was martyred, and he is among the valuable martyrs of defending the Holy Shrine of Lady Zainab--God’s greetings are upon her. --This is how it is.


We are moving forward. We are moving forward in both worldly and otherworldly areas. By Allah’s favor, we will defeat arrogance in both worldly and otherworldly areas, and we will bring them to their knees. We will show that Islam --if it has supporters who are ready to engage in jihad and in defending-- will definitely achieve victory in whichever part of the world, and this will become a model for all Muslims.


Dear God, make what we said, what we are doing, what we did in the past and what we heard serve You and Your cause. Bestow Your blessings on what we said and what we want to do. Make us live on the path of Islam, and make us die on the path of Islam.


Greetings are upon you and Allah’s mercy and blessings.