LONDON PRAYER TIME DAWN: 05:22 SUNRISE: 06:54 ZOHR:: 12:14 MAGHRIB: 17:49
Leader's Remarks at International Conference on Islamic Awakening
In the Name of Allah The Beneficent, The Merciful
Assalam Alaikm wa rahmatullah wa barakatu
(O Prophet, fear Allah and do not obey the disbelievers and the hypocrites. Indeed, Allah is ever Knowing and Wise. (1). And follow that which is revealed to you from your Lord. Indeed Allah is ever, with what you do, Acquainted. (2) And rely upon Allah; and sufficient is Allah as Disposer of affairs.(3) Surat Al-Ahzab)
I welcome our honored audience and dear guests. What has brought us here together is the Islamic awakening, which comes from the stronger inspiration and greater understanding among Muslim ummah. This awakening has led to a major development among nations of our region and has brought about uprisings and revolutions that could never have been contemplated in the calculations of the dominant regional and international satanic powers. These are momentous uprising that have razed to the ground the autocratic and imperialist strongholds and vanquished the tyrants guarding them.
There is no doubt that colossal social upheavals have always relied on solid foundation of history and civilization and are products of accumulation of wisdom and experiences. Over the past 150 years, the presence of great intellectual and jihadi personalities that have been opinion leaders and behind Islamic movements in Egypt, Iraq, India and other countries in Asia and Africa has served as precursors and pioneers for the present situation in the Islamic world.
The developments in the 1950’s and 60’s led to coming to power of regimes that were mostly inclined to materialistic ideologies and thoughts, and because of their inherent character fell into the trap of Western imperialist and colonialist powers. These are experiences that are lessons to learn from, and have contributed substantially to evolution of general and profound understanding in the Islamic world.
The Islamic Revolution in Iran that was hailed by Imam Khomeini as `victory of blood over sword`, and establishment of the lasting, robust, courageous and progressive Islamic republic, and its impact on present Islamic awakening is itself a long story that deserves to be debated and researched. There is no doubt that Islamic Revolution of Iran will be accorded a thorough and comprehensive chapter in the analysis and writings of history of the present situation of the Islamic world.
For that reason, the present and mounting facts and truths in the Islamic world are not simply events that are severed from the past historical roots, social and intellectual backgrounds to allow our adversaries and the shallow-minded to present them as a passing wave and short-lived phenomenon in order to snuff out hope in the hearts of nations by their warped and biased analyses.
In this brotherly dialogue with you I want to place greater emphasis on three areas:
1. Taking a glance at the identity of these uprisings and revolutions
2. Major threats and harms lying on their way.
3. Recommendations to find solutions and prevent these threats and harms.
Regarding the first point, I believe the most important element in these revolutions is the actual and mass presence of people in the arena of action, struggle and jihad. They were present, not only with their heart, desire and faith, but also with their body and souls. There is a big difference between this presence and the presence of a military group or even armed combatants in front of uncaring people or even concerned people.
In the events of 1950’s and 60’s in some countries of Africa and Asia, the heavy load of the revolution was not on the shoulder of diverse segments of population and the youth from all parts of the country, but rather on the shoulder of coup d''etat or small and limited armed groups. They decided and acted, and they themselves or the succeeding generation changed their ways as a result of certain motivations. The revolution became its own enemy and the enemy managed again to prevail over their countries.
This is totally different than the change that comes from the people. It is the people that bring their body and soul to the arena of action, and by their jihad and devotion push back and defeat the enemy. It is the people that make the slogans and set the goals, identify and introduce and pursue the enemy. They draw their desired future, although not comprehensively, and as a result do not allow departure from the path of the revolution or conceding to the enemy, or change of course by compromising and the tainted few with special interests, and above all thwart the schemes of enemy’s agents.
In such a grass-root movement, the revolution may be slowed, but can stay away from short-sightedness and being on shaky ground. Quran says `Have you not considered how Allah presents an example, [making] a good word like a good tree, whose root is firmly fixed and its branches [high] in the sky?
أَلَمْ تَرَ كَيْفَ ضَرَبَ اللّهُ مَثَلاً كَلِمَةً طَيِّبَةً كَشَجَرةٍ طَيِّبَةٍ أَصْلُهَا ثَابِتٌ وَفَرْعُهَا فِي السَّمَاء
Have you not considered how Allah presents an example, [making] a good word like a good tree, whose root is firmly fixed and its branches [high] in the sky? (24` Ibrahim )
When I saw the brave body of the proud people of Egypt on television in Tahrir Square, I became convinced that their revolution will triumph.
Let me confess something to you. After the victory of the Islamic Revolution and the establishment of the Islamic republic in Iran which caused an earthquake among the worldly materialistic rulers in East and West and brought unprecedented uproar and joy to Muslim nations, we expected that Egypt would be next in line to rise. The reason was the history of jihad, progressive thinking and presence of great mojahids and intellectuals in Egypt. I was reciting in my heart this poem by Abu Faras:
أراك عصيّ الدمع شيمتك الصبر ما للهوي نهي عليك و لا أمر ؟
When I saw the people of Egypt in Tahrir Square and squares in other cities, I knew I have received my response. The people of Egypt told me with words coming from their heart:
بلي أنا مشتاق و عندي لوعة ولكن مثلي لايذاع له سرُّ
…This sacred secret was nothing but the motivation and resolve to rise, and gradually people of Egypt cemented this thought in their mind and at a historical juncture they manifested their resolve and entered the arena in a magnificent show of their power.
Tunisia, Yemen, Libya, and Bahrain are no exception to this general rule.
In these revolutions principles, values and goals are not written in prefabricated manifestos of groups and parties, but written in the minds, hearts and desires of each and every person present on the scene and are declared in the context of their slogans and behaviors.
With these signals one can clearly tell that the principles of current revolutions in the region, in Egypt and other countries, are first and foremost the following:
- Revival and renewal of national dignity and respect that have been broken and trampled during long years of dictatorial and corrupt rule and the political domination of America and the West.
- Keeping up the banner of Islam which is the profound faith and longstanding attachment of people and being able to enjoy peace of mind, justice, progress and prosperity that could only be achieved under Islamic Sharia.
- Resistance against the influence and domination of the United States and Europe that have wreaked the greatest damage and humiliation on the peoples of these countries over the past two hundred years.
- Countering the usurper and fictitious Zionist regime that the imperialist powers have planted like a dagger in the heart of this region to serve as a tool to continue their diabolical domination after expelling a whole nation from their historical homeland.
There is no doubt that the revolutions in the region that rely on and demand these principles are not to the liking of America, Europe and the Zionists, and they are going to use all means to deny them, but the truth will not change with their denial.
The widespread participation of people in these revolutions is the most important element that constitutes their identity. Foreign powers that tried everything in their power and used all their schemes to keep in power the tyrannical, corrupt and subservient rulers in these countries and only abandoned them when the people left no choice for them have no right to claim a share in the victory of these revolutions. Even in Libya intervention by America and NATO cannot distort the truth. In Libya, NATO has caused irreparable damage. Had it not been for the military intervention of NATO and America, victory of people might have been delayed, but all these infrastructures would not have been damaged, and innocent women and children killed and then enemies that were accomplices of Qaddafi would not have been able to intervene in this innocent war-torn nation.
People and the elite that are of the people and others who are from the people are the true owners of these revolutions that should be trusted to protect them and draw the path to the future.
2- Regarding the threats and harm, I should first emphasize that although there are threats, but there are also ways to stay safe. Mere presence of threats should not scare nations.
إِنَّ كَيْدَ الشَّيْطَانِ كَانَ ضَعِيفًا
( Indeed, the plot of Satan has ever been weak)
Allah says about a group of mojahids of early Islam:
الَّذِينَ قالَ لَهُمُ النَّاسُ إِنَّ النَّاسَ قَدْ جَمَعُوا لَكُمْ فَاخْشَوْهُمْ فَزادَهُمْ إِيماناً وَ قالُوا حَسْبُنَا اللَّهُ وَ نِعْمَ الْوَكِيلُ فَانْقَلَبُوا بِنِعْمَةٍ مِنَ اللَّهِ وَ فَضْلٍ لَمْ يَمْسَسْهُمْ سُوءٌ وَ اتَّبَعُوا رِضْوانَ اللَّهِ وَ اللَّهُ ذُو فَضْلٍ عَظِيمٍ
( Those to whom hypocrites said, `Indeed, the people have gathered against you, so fear them.` But it [merely] increased them in faith, and they said, `Sufficient for us is Allah, and [He is] the best Disposer of affairs.` So they returned with favor from Allah and bounty, no harm having touched them. And they pursued the pleasure of Allah, and Allah is the possessor of great bounty. )
We need to know what these threats are, in order not to be surprised and to be able to find solutions.
We faced these perils and threats after the victory of Islamic Revolution and experienced them. With the grace of Allah and the leadership of Imam Khomeini and sacrifices of our people we managed to sail through them safely. The plots by enemies still continue but so does the firm resolve of our people.
I divide the harm to these movements into two groups: those that have their roots within ourselves and come from our own weaknesses, and those that have been directly planned by the enemy.
The first group of harms is of the following type:
The sense and thought that after the downfall of the corrupt dictator the job is over. The peace of mind and comfort that comes after the victory and afterward the lessening of motivation and weakening of determination are among the first perils, and the most damaging threat is when individuals ask for their share of the spoils of victory.
The story of the Battle of Uhud and the defenders seeking the spoils of victory caused the defeat of Muslims, and the mojahids were reprimanded by God. This is a good example that should never be forgotten. Being shocked and awed by the appearances of the arrogant powers and the feeling of fear from America and other interventionist powers are of these kinds of harm that should be avoided.
The brave and young should throw out these fears from their heart. Trusting the enemy and falling into trap of their smiles and promises is another threat that needs to be avoided by the forerunners and leaders. The enemy must be identified no matter what cover it uses. The nation and the revolution should be protected against the designs of the enemy that at times hide behind the appearances of friendship and supportive gestures. Another side to this page is becoming overconfident and overlooking the enemy. Bravery must be combined with wisdom and good judgment. We must use all treasures of God within ourselves against Satan, al-Jinn wal–Ens. Causing division and pitting revolutionaries against one another and penetration behind the battlefront of struggle is another great harm that needs to be avoided with all your power.
The second group of harm has been experienced by almost all countries of the region during different events. The first harm is the coming to power of those who are committed to America and the West. The West tries after the downfall of its pawns to protect the basic pillars of the system and levers of power, and change the direction by using the same foundation, but with a different head, in order to perpetuate its domination. This means wasting of all your efforts and sacrifices. At this stage, if they face resistance of the people, they try to introduce and offer to the movement and people other alternatives that are designed to divert the course of the movement. This scenario could be recommending government models and constitutions that will again throw the Islamic countries into the trap of cultural, political and economic dependence on the West. This could lead to their influence among the revolutionaries greater financial and media strength of an unreliable current and marginalization of the genuine currents in the revolution. This also means return of the domination of the West and the stronger grip of then outdated Western models that are far from basic principles of the revolution.
If this tactic does not produce the desired result, experience tells us that they will go for anarchy, terrorism, civil war among followers of religions or ethnic communities and tribes, political parties, or even among neighboring nations and governments. Parallel to these actions, they will impose economic siege and sanctions, freeze national assets and launch all-out media war and propaganda. Their intention is to tire out and frustrate people and make the revolutionaries disappointed. Under these circumstances it becomes easy to defeat the revolution. Assassination of the righteous elite of the society and opinion leaders, defamation and vilification of others and even enticing some with money are among usual ploys used by the Western powers and the claimants of civilization morality.
In Iran, the evidence and documents from the U.S. Den of Espionage that fell into the hands of the revolution showed that all these plots were designed by the regime in the United States for the people of Iran for them bringing back the reactionary and dependant rulers in revolutionary countries is a principle that prescribes all these dirty tricks.
In the last part of my remarks, I present recommendations for your consideration and selection that are based on our tangible experiences in Iran and what has been gathered from the precise studies of other countries. Undoubtedly, conditions differ among nations and countries. Nonetheless, there are truths that can prove beneficial for all people.
The first point is that by placing one’s trust in God and believing in the repeated promises of divine victories in the Quran and through astuteness, resolve, and braveness, it is possible to surmount all obstacles and emerge victorious. Of course, the task that you all have taken up is quite grave and momentous. Thus, one must bear great hardship for its sake. The Commander of the Faithful, Imam Ali (`a) says:
`فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ لَمْ يَقْصِمْ جَبَّارِي دَهْرٍ قَطُّ إِلَّا بَعْدَ تَمْهِيلٍ وَ رَخَاءٍ وَ لَمْ يَجْبُرْ عَظْمَ أَحَدٍ مِنَ الْأُمَمِ إِلَّا بَعْدَ أَزْلٍ وَ بَلَاءٍ وَ فِي دُونِ مَا اسْتَقْبَلْتُمْ مِنْ عَتْبٍ وَ مَا اسْتَدْبَرْتُمْ مِنْ خَطْبٍ مُعْتَبَر..`
The important recommendation is that you must always consider yourself as being present on the scene: فَإِذَا فَرَغْتَ فَانْصَبْ ( So when you have finished [your duties], then stand up [for worship].)Therefore, when thou art free, still labor hard), always consider God as present and as your aid: وَإِلَى رَبِّكَ فَارْغَبْ (And to thy Lord turn all thy attention), and must not allow your victories to cause you to become arrogant or negligent:
اِذا جاءَ نَصْرُ اللهِ وَ الْفَتْحُ وَ رَاَيْتَ النّاسَ يَدْخُلُونَ في دينِ اللهِ اَفْواجاً فَسَبِّحْ بِحَمْدِ رَبِّكَ وَ اسْتَغْفِرْهُ اِنَّهُ كانَ تَوّاباً
(When comes the help of Allah, and victory. And thou dost see the people enter Allah’s Religion in crowds. Celebrate the praises of thy Lord). These are the true foundations of a faithful nation.
Another recommendation is the constant rereading of the principles of revolution. The slogans and principles must be refined and brought in line with the foundations and undisputed principles of Islam. Independence, freedom, justice, refusal to bow to despotism and colonialism, rejection of ethnic, racial, and religious discrimination, and the outright rejection of Zionism, which, today, comprise the pivots of the movements in Islamic countries, are all inspired by Islam and the Quran.
Write down your principles on paper. Preserve your genuine nature with a high degree of sensitivity. Do not allow your enemies to formulate the principles of your future system. Do not allow Islamic principles to be sacrificed for transient interests. Deviation in revolutions starts with deviation in slogans and objectives. Never place your trust in the U.S., NATO, or criminal regimes such as Britain, France, or, Italy, which for long plundered and divided your land among themselves. Look upon them with suspicion and do not believe their smiles. Behind these smiles and promises lies conspiracy and betrayal. Find you own way by resorting to the blessed fountainhead of Islam and give back foreigners’ prescriptions to themselves.
Another important recommendation is to avoid religious, ethnic, racial, tribal, and border disputes. Recognize differences as legitimate and manage them. Reconciliation among Islamic religions is the key to salvation. Those who fan the flames of religious division through apostatizing others are the mercenaries and servants of Satan, even if done inadvertently.
Creating your own system of governance is your main and seminal task. This is a complex and difficult undertaking. Do not allow secular or western liberal or extremist nationalist or leftist Marxist models to be imposed on you.
The leftist Eastern Bloc collapsed and the Western Bloc is propped up through violence, war, and deceit, and does not appear to have a bright outlook.
The passage of time will be to their loss and to the benefit of the Islamic current.
The ultimate goal must be a unified Islamic Ummah and the creation of a new Islamic civilization founded upon faith, rationality, knowledge, and morality.
The liberation of Palestine from the savage claws of the Zionists is also a great objective. The countries of the Balkans, Caucasus, and western Asia were liberated from the claws of the former Soviet Union after eighty years. Why should the Palestinian people not be able to free themselves from the captivity of the oppressor Zionists after seventy years?
The present generation in Islamic countries has the capacity to accomplish such great feats. The young generation of today is a source of pride for the past generations. As noted by the Arab poet:
أبو الصخر من شيبان قلت لهم كلا لعمري و لكن منه شيبانُ
و كم أبٍ قد علا بابنٍ ذُري شَرَفٍ كما علا برسولِ الله عدنانُ
Trust your young generation. Revive their feeling of self-confidence and benefit them by the experiences of the elders.
There are two important points in this connection:
First, one of the most important demands of the people who have revolted and who have been liberated is to have a decisive participation in the management of their countries. And since they believe in Islam, their desire is to have a system of Islamic democracy, i.e. the rulers being elected through the vote of the people and the dominant principles and values of the society being based on the Islamic knowledge and sharia. This can crystallize in various countries, depending on their conditions, through various methods and forms. However, utmost care must be taken not to confuse this with the western liberal democracy. The secular, and at times anti-religious, western democracy is in no way related to the Islamic democracy which is committed to the values and main principles of Islam in its system of government.
The second point relates to the fact that Islamic tenets must not be equated with backwardness, obscurantism, and ignorant and extremist biases. The demarcation between these two must be pronounced. Religious extremism, which is usually attended by violence, is the cause of falling short of the lofty goals of the revolution. This, in turn, results in the loss of public support and the eventual failure of the revolution.
In sum, to speak of Islamic awakening is not to speak of a nebulous and indistinct concept that is amenable to various interpretations. Rather, it is to speak of a tangible reality in the external world that has filled the atmosphere and resulted in great uprisings and revolutions and removed from the scene some dangerous elements of the enemy. Nonetheless, the scene remains fluid and in need of being shaped and brought to a conclusion. The verses recited at the outset contain a complete and effective set of guidelines, especially in this sensitive and momentous juncture… Though, they are addressed to the Holy Prophet (PBUH), we all are their interlocutors and responsible for adhering to them. In these verses, piety (taqwa), in its lofty and broad connotation, is the first recommendation. Then comes the rejection of the orders of the infidels and hypocrites, adherence to the divine revelation, and, finally, trust in God…
Once again, we will review these verses:
بسماللهالرحمنالرحيم يا أَيُّهَا النَّبِيُّ اتَّقِ اللَّهَ وَ لا تُطِعِ الْكافِرينَ وَ الْمُنافِقينَ إِنَّ اللَّهَ كانَ عَليماً حَكيماً(1) وَ اتَّبِعْ ما يُوحى إِلَيْكَ مِنْ رَبِّكَ إِنَّ اللَّهَ كانَ بِما تَعْمَلُونَ خَبيراً (2) وَ تَوَكَّلْ عَلَى اللَّهِ وَ كَفى بِاللَّهِ وَكيلاً.
(In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful. O Prophet! Fear Allah, and hearken not to the unbelievers and the hypocrites: verily Allah is full of knowledge and wisdom. But follow that which comes to thee by inspiration from thy Lord: for Allah is well acquainted with (all) that ye do. And put thy trust in Allah, and enough is Allah as a disposer of affairs.)
Assalam alaikum wa rahmatullah