The following is the full text of a televised speech delivered on July 31, 2020 by Ayatollah Khamenei, the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution, on the occasion of Eid al-Adha. The speech was delivered via videoconference.
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 pure, immaculate and chosen household, especially the one remaining with Allah on earth
I would like to congratulate the dear Iranian nation, all Muslims and all the followers of Ibrahimi religions on the auspicious Eid al-Adha which is one of the greatest historic memories for all the pious in the world.
The first ten days of Dhul Hijja are imbued with instructive memories and are characterized by supplication and return to God
The memory that Eid al-Adha evokes is a great memory. Basically, the first ten days of Dhul Hijja are full of memories. In the month of Dhul Hijja, every ten days has a certain characteristic. The first one is both characterized by magnificent, important and instructive memories and by supplication, attention to God and return to Him. The first memory begins with the events related to Hazrat Musa (greetings be upon him) when God says: “We appointed for Moses thirty nights, and completed the period with ten more [The Holy Quran, 7: 142]. This is about the 40 nights Hazrat Musa spent in Mount Tur in remembrance of God. Different tafsirs [Quranic exegesis] say that these 40 nights begin from the eve of Dhul Qada and continue until the eve of Eid al-Adha. At first, it was going to last 30 nights, but later on, God added ten more nights – the first ten nights in the month of Dhul Hijja. This shows the significance of these nights.
It is clear that Hazrat Musa went through a lot of trouble in those events. Well, the many problems that Hazrat Musa- greetings be upon him- went through in Egypt such as his confrontation with the Pharaoh and the extraordinary problems that he faced after returning from Midian and leaving Egypt – problems in connection with the Pharaoh, Bani Israel, the magicians and others – and after that the great miracle that occurred, during which the sea split open and the enemy of Bani Israel and all his forces drowned in front of their eyes, should have strengthened Bani Israel’s faith, but this did not happen.
At first, they said, “Oh Moses, fashion for us a god like unto the gods they have” [The Holy Quran, 7: 138]. They pursued idols, polytheistic symbols and the like. They missed the idols. This was the beginning. After that, the incident related to the calf happened. Apparently, this happened during those 40 days. When that great personality returned from his pledge with God, he saw that things had completely changed and that the people had been reverted.
What a great pain this is for a prophet. A “da’i il-Allah” helps people take the path of God with so many problems and injects faith in them. However, after that, they return from their faith with the slightest incitement. The Holy Quran says, “He put down the tablets, seized his brother by the hair of his head, and dragged him to him” [The Holy Quran, 7: 150]. When Hazrat Musa saw the situation, he became extremely angry and sad and the Holy Quran refers to this at least two times: “Oh you who believe, Be you not like those who vexed and insulted Moses” [33: 69]. This ayah speaks about Bani Israel vexing Hazrat Musa. There is another ayah in this regard in Sura al-Saf: “And remember, Moses said to his people: "Oh my people, why do you vex and insult me, though you know that I am the apostle of Allah sent to you?” [61: 5]. These ayahs show that Bani Israel created a plethora of problems for Hazrat Musa. These ten nights evoke the memory of those important historic events and they show us that moving on the path of the truth is really difficult, despite the miracles that Hazrat Musa showed and they tell us how we should confront them and show patience. This is one memory.
Another memory is related to the day of Arafah which is a day of praying, supplicating and paying attention to God – it is actually the summit of paying attention to God. There is a narration in which Imam Sadiq (greetings be upon him) says, “My father, Hazrat Baqir, used to fast in Arafat on the day of Arafah when the weather was really hot.” He was probably fasting for a certain vow that he had taken. “He prayed, supplicated and wept in that hot weather.” As for the Dua of Imam Hussein (greetings be upon him), it is clear how important it is. The dua in Sahifa al-Sajjadiyyah is extraordinary. These events are related to Arafah Day. I hope that our dear people benefited from Arafah Day yesterday and I hope that all your prayers will be answered.
After that, we reach Eid al-Adha: the astonishing and impressive sacrifice in history which is really unique. Hazrat Ibrahim was entrusted with the mission to sacrifice his teenage son with his own hands because it was a divine command and a divine test. The surprising point is that he was a son that Hazrat Ibrahim had been deprived of for years as God had given that boy to him at a quite advanced age: “Praise be to Allah, Who has granted unto me in old age Isma'il and Isaac” [14: 39]. God had given him that son and it is evident how attached one is to a son born when one is old. He said to his son that he wanted to sacrifice him and he said this when Ismail had grown up: “When the son reached the age of serious work with him” [37: 102]. He explained to Ismail that it was God’s command. The son said, “Oh my father, do as you are commanded: you will find me, if Allah so wills one practicing patience and constancy” [37: 102].
Notice that these are astonishing events in the history of religion, religiousness, faith and Islam. We have these incidents in our past and in our history of piety. An old father is prepared to sacrifice his young son with his own hands because it was God’s command and the son says with complete willingness: “Oh my father, do as you are commanded: you will find me, if Allah so wills one practicing patience and constancy.” He said, “You will see that I can bear it.” This is the memory related to Eid al-Adha. So, the first ten days contain such glorious, significant and instructive memories.
The second and third ten days are reminiscent of the supreme station of Wilayat
The second ten days is characterized by Willayat and the issue of al-Ghadir. There is a narration which says, “Our invitation to Wilayat resembles no other invitation in significance.” Of all divine rules, Wilayat enjoys a superior status because it guarantees all other divine rules. Well, the al-Ghadir event – that very important event – represents a divine command.
The third ten days also contains many important events including, perhaps the most important one, the Mubahala event which is about monotheism again. The Holy Prophet’s discussion with the Christians of those days – the Christians from Najran – which led to a Mubahala, was about Hazrat Isa. The Holy Prophet said that Hazrat Isa was God’s servant and prophet, but they believed in a different thing. They decided to organize a Mubahala during which time, as you have heard, the Christians had to give up and retreat.
May this day be a joyous day for all of you. I hope that you have enjoyed these ten days and I hope that we will spend the other two ten days in a way that God will be pleased with us and in a way that great bliss will be bestowed on our dear nation.
The reason why we are deprived of meetings with the people
Well, one of my comforts and solaces in the course of all these years has been the meetings with the people. One of my attachments and passions has been meetings with the people as I could listen and talk and see people from various social backgrounds. However, this little and dangerous enemy, the coronavirus – which is both little and mean and at the same time, very dangerous and perilous – has prevented this. It has taken away from me this attachment like many others. Instead of this program, I was supposed to have a videoconference with the medical personnel of the country and volunteers in this area, but they would have to gather together somewhere and because the regulation passed by the National Anti-Corona Headquarters stipulates that no more than 10 people should gather in one single place, I cancelled it. So, we organized this videoconference instead of that and I am addressing you dear people at a distance.
The exemplary sacrifices made by the Iranian nation during natural calamities, the Sacred Defense Era and the coronavirus pandemic
I wish to discuss a number of issues. The first issue is about the services rendered and great endeavors made by the mujahids in the area of health and treatment. By Allah’s favor, these services should continue. Today, the entire world is afflicted with a pandemic. In other words, it is not particular to a certain country. Today, the entire world and the entire planet is more or less afflicted with this incident. Perhaps, there are many individuals from among ordinary people who help the affected. There is help, more or less, in some countries, but I do not reckon that there are as many people in the world as in our dear Iran who voluntarily help the affected. I do not know of any country like this. I have not heard of it and I have not received a report about the existence of so much popular dynamism and popular support as in our country. Such sacrifices are one of the characteristics of our nation. Their assistance is witnessed in natural calamities such as floods, earthquakes and the like and in non-natural calamities such as imposed wars. During the eight-year Defense Era, the same great movement of sacrificing oneself existed and it created a big epic. The movement managed to organize the fronts in a very firm manner and until the end of our history, it will be remembered as a prominent era.
The same is true of today as we witnessed such an epic on the issue of the coronavirus. Well, the medical personnel were in the frontlines. Physicians, nurses and other medical staff really sacrificed themselves. Words fail me when I want to describe the significance of their sacrifices. Behind them, there stood certain volunteers who entered the arena and who helped in the area of treatment. They learned how to do the tasks that could be accomplished by non-experts and as a result, great achievements were made in this area. In the present time, considering that the disease has reached its peak again, the same services and supports should be offered and presented.
The necessity to continue doing pious work in order to make up for the serious problems that the people are encountering
Another issue is about offering pious help. A number of people were really damaged during these incidents. Of course, most people faced certain problems concerning their livelihood, their business and the like, but not everyone was as seriously damaged as some people. Some individuals really suffered from serious damages and faced many problems. This should be made up for. Who should make up for it? The people themselves. The entire burden cannot be placed on the shoulders of the administration. Of course, governmental and semi-governmental officials have certain duties which should be, and are being, carried out. I am aware that they are working, but it is not enough. All the people should help in the true sense of the word, as they did so in the first stage – which happened in the days close to the month of Ramadhan.
This is a competition for doing good deeds. In the Holy Quran, there are several ayahs which speak of this: “They hasten in emulation in all good works. They are in the ranks of the righteous” [3: 114]. In another ayah, God says, “It is these who hasten in every good work, and these who are foremost in them” [23: 61]. In several ayahs, He says, “Then strive together as in a race towards all that is good” [Sura al-Baqarah: 2: 148]. This is a kind of competition. The Holy Quran really says to us that we should compete with one another over doing good and pious deeds. It means that we should overtake others in doing good deeds. In my opinion, this is important. Even when it comes to charitable Muharram vows – during which time religious committees and the people with enough financial capabilities make food for others as a religious vow and the like – it can be done in the form of pious help to needy families and it can be done in a sanitary way without any risk of spreading the disease.
This is revolutionary behavior in the true sense of the word. These are among the definite elements of revolutionary conduct. Revolutionary behavior is not achieved with words, rather it is achieved with action. Action should lead us ahead of our tongue. Those who are active in these areas are really doing revolutionary work and these are manifestations of revolutionary conduct. Of course, some people might not be prepared to do this. It is not the case that everyone can do outstanding work in this regard. However, when they see that some people are moving in the frontline of these activities in an enthusiastic and passionate manner, they too become enthusiastic and they find a place for themselves in the ranks and they will enter the arena as well.
Last year – in the beginning of the year 1398 – Shahid Soleimani and Shahid Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis were both present in the middle of the streets when the flood incidents occurred in Khuzestan. Both sides connected the borders [of Iran and Iraq]. Shahid Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis helped transfer from the other side of our borders – from Basrah, Iraq, and from other places - the resources and equipment that were needed in Khuzestan. That was a great help. The mere presence of those dear personalities – those prominent stars in the arena of jihad – encouraged many individuals both from Iran and Iraq to enter the arena. Of course, in those events, our people passed their test. The people from Khuzestan and other places really rushed to help and they worked hard.
The necessity to cooperate and to organize the forces in the face of enmities
Today, there is a great deal of enmity towards the Iranian nation. When there is a great deal of enmity, the level of cooperation and diligence should increase as well. When an enemy attacks, we should organize and rally our forces and work hard. This is how things are in the present time – later on, I will expand on this matter. The enemies are trying to irritate the Iranian nation. As Bani Israel irritated Hazrat Musa, our enemies too – some of whom are from among Bani Israel – want to irritate and hassle our people who follow the Holy Prophet, Hazrat Musa, Hazrat Isa and other prophets. When they wish to irritate, we should organize all our forces and endeavor hard, just like the Sacred Defense Era.
One of the important tasks that we can do in this era is to do scientific work. I have information indicating that they are seriously working in different areas in order to understand the virus, find the ways to hamper the activities of the virus and to find a treatment. They are doing a lot of scientific work and these pieces of scientific work contain many blessings for us.
These tasks will naturally bring about important achievements for us, as was the case in the Sacred Defense Era. Take the case of Shahid Baqiri for example. At that time, he was a young man who worked in a newspaper or had an ordinary job elsewhere. However, when he became engaged in the war and in the Sacred Defense, he turned into an outstanding military commander and strategist. In other words, he managed to show his talents. The same is true of this area. Those who are doing research might turn into outstanding researchers who will be able to accomplish impressive breakthroughs, God willing. Well, these points were related to the issue of rendering service.
America’s goals in imposing sanctions
The next issue that I would like to discuss is about sanctions. The sanctions that the Americans have imposed against the Iranian nation are a crime. There is no doubt about this. It is a grave crime that they have committed against a nation. Apparently, they have been imposed against the Islamic Republic, but in reality, they are committing this crime against the entire nation. I wish to raise a number of points in this regard. The first point is: what is their purpose of doing this? They pursue short-term, long-term and mid-term goals as well as a supplementary goal.
1. Short-term goal: Exhausting the Iranian nation
Their short-term goal is to exhaust the Iranian nation. They want to exhaust and perplex the Iranian nation so that they will finally stand up against the government. This is their first goal. They want to exert as many pressures as they can until the people get exhausted and stand up against the system, the government and the administration. This is their short-term goal. That is why last year, the year before that and this year as well, they spoke about a “hot summer”. “Hot” connotes that the people will stand up against the system. However, they themselves have been afflicted with a “hot summer”.
2. Mid-term goal: Creating obstacles in the way of the country’s progress
Their mid-term goal is to prevent the country from making progress – primarily, scientific progress - with the help of sanctions. They have specifically spoken about these goals and these are not my conjectures and analyses. These are words that they have uttered in their speeches – whether speeches made by their politicians or those who work in their political think tanks. So, they have explicitly announced these goals. Their goal is to bring about certain restrictions, through sanctions, so that the country will not make progress, in particular in scientific areas. They have even gone as far as to say that they have martyred nuclear personalities and other such figures in order to prevent Iran from making scientific progress. This is their mid-term goal.
3. Long-term goal: Bankrupting and making the Iranian economy collapse
And their long-term goal is to drag the country and the administration into bankruptcy. In other words, they want to destroy the economy of the country and make it collapse. Naturally, if the economy of a country collapses, it will no longer be able to survive. This is their ultimate goal and they want to pull this through.
Supplementary goal: Cutting off the relations between the Islamic Republic and Resistance forces
They have a supplementary goal as well: by doing so, they want to cut off the relations between the Islamic Republic and Resistance forces and organizations. This is because they know that the Islamic Republic will help and support these forces as much as it can. They want to cut off this relationship.
These are the enemy’s goals and they have entered the arena to accomplish these tasks. Of course, one should say to them, “dream on!” The enemy wants to reach these three goals simultaneously – the short, mid and long-term goals, but thankfully they have failed.
The enemy’s sanctions have failed to achieve their purpose
Of course, sanctions have caused certain problems. There is no doubt about this. Of course, not all problems are due to sanctions. Part of our problems are due to our own weaknesses in managing the country. Some recent problems originate from the coronavirus and some originate from sanctions. Problems exist. For example, the people have livelihood problems – I will return to this issue later on. There are certain problems, but what they wanted to achieve has not and will not materialize. What they had in mind has not happened. The enemy’s sweet dreams has not come true. As it happens, they themselves have acknowledged the fact that their dream has not come true. The many pieces of news that we receive from various countries – from western and European countries and from the US – indicate this: those who are busy working in their think tanks are admitting that the huge pressures exerted through sanctions and the maximum pressure policy that the US employed did not work and they failed to do what they wanted to do to Iran. This is the first point: sanctions were a criminal act with the goals that I already mentioned, but the enemy has not attained his goals and will not attain them in the future either.
The truth distortion movement working alongside the sanctions
The second point is that simultaneously with the sanctions – please pay careful attention to this – there is a movement of distorting the truth as well. There is an orientation to distort the truth as well: Distorting the facts and portraying realities in the reverse order including the realities about our country. This is also one of the things that they do. They pursue two goals in distorting the truth: one is to damage the people’s morale – later on, I will explain how they want to damage the people’s morale – and another is giving the wrong address concerning the lifting of sanctions. The distortion movement covers these areas and it pursues these two goals. They are also spending a lot of money to distort these truths. In the present time, as you can see, their chief politicians, their Secretary of State, their President and others are killing themselves to speak against Iran in their trips here and there. On every occasion, they wish to somehow bring up the issue of Iran. They are really killing themselves to do so. Therefore, this distortion movement exists.
Since the beginning of the Revolution, the enemy has been trying to undermine the people’s morale, enthusiasm and hope
As for the first goal – damaging the people’s morale and undermining their enthusiasm, dynamism and hope - this has been continuing since the beginning of the Revolution. Since the beginning of the Revolution, the enemy’s definite policy has been to suggest to the Iranian people – via television and radio: at that time, they had more limited means of communication, but today they have all sorts of media outlets available to them – that they are ruined and finished and that no one can do anything for them, and that they are in a dire situation and so on and so forth. Since the early days of the Revolution – of course, in the very beginning, they were a little confused, later on: they pulled themselves together and took the propaganda machine in their control – one of their goals has been to say to the people of Iran that after cutting off their relations with the US and after the bond was broken between neo-colonial Iran of the Pahlavi era and the US, the Iranian nation has been ruined. They have been pursuing this policy since the beginning. In the present time, the same policy exists. They are pursuing it these days as well.
They are portraying a dark picture of the situation with hundreds of tongues and hundreds of means. If there is a strong point in the country, they deny it outright. They either maintain silence or deny it completely. Well, good tasks are being carried out in the country, but none of them, whatsoever, is reflected in our enemies’ propaganda. If there is a weakness, they magnify it ten, and sometimes, a hundred times. Why do they do so? They do it in order to undermine the people’s morale and hope, in particular that of youth. This is because when youth are hopeful, they become extraordinarily dynamic. Youth play a pioneering and leading role. However, if they have no hope, they stop moving, like a car which runs out of gas. They stop moving without hope.
These are their goals. They want to disappoint our youth and take away their enthusiasm and dynamism in a way that they will lose their pioneering and leading role. This is their goal and of course, it works on some people. Inside the country too, some individuals repeat their words. For example, you hear something from someone who is the member of a political group outside the country and two days after that, you see that the same writing is reflected in cyberspace or in such and such a newspaper in our country. These things are unfortunately done in our country.
The condition for defeating sanctions: defeating the distortion movement in the war of wills
As for the second goal – giving the wrong address – this is how they do it: they say that if we want sanctions to be lifted, we should come to terms with the US. The gist of what they say is that we should get along with the US and stop resisting. Later, I will explain this more. This is how their distortion orientation functions. Of course, I would tell you that it affects some individuals as they repeat what they say. This happens in the case of the country’s weak points – which are magnified tens of times – in the case of underplaying the country’s strong points and achievements and in the case of giving the wrong address. Well, this touches some individuals, but it does not affect the majority of the Iranian nation. The majority of the people know the US and the enemy. They know that they are lying and that they have ulterior motives. Therefore, the distortion movement has not produced the desired results for them.
I will tell you that if the distortion movement fails, the sanctions movement will definitely fail as well. This is because the arena is an arena and a war of wills. When the truth distortion movement fails and when the Iranian nation’s willpower remains firm and strong, the nation will certainly overcome the enemy’s will and it will win. This is the second point.
Sanctions have brought about self-sufficiency and national self-reliance
The third point is that as I said, sanctions are undoubtedly a crime committed by the US. They are a blow delivered on the Iranian nation at the hands of the US. However, ingenious Iranians have made the most of this attack and this enmity. In other words, they have achieved certain things despite the foolish attempts made by the enemy. Our people, our youth, our officials, our scientists and our political and social activists have used the sanctions as a means to increase national self-sufficiency. As you know, the US has imposed secondary sanctions. In other words, it says to all companies and all countries that they do not have the right to give Iran such and such a product that it needs. Naturally, we will not get what we need from the outside. However, this has caused certain people inside the country to think of producing them inside the country as they saw that they cannot get them from other countries. And this has happened in numerous cases – hundreds of cases, not just one or two.
For example, we needed trainer jets, but they would not sell them to us. So, what did we do? We embarked on building advanced trainer jets – called “Kowthar” – inside the country. If they had sold us trainer jets, we would not have built them inside the country today. Or many of our machines and factories needed various pieces and components, but the enemy had imposed sanctions on them and he would not let us import them. At first, they said that dual-purpose components – the ones that can be used for both military and non-military purposes – were under sanctions. Later on, they extended it to other components and did not let us buy them. Nonetheless, that measure helped us launch a movement to build them inside the country.
In the present time, a component-manufacture movement has fortunately been launched with which they are building very sensitive and delicate components for various machines. If they had given them to us in the first place, no one would have thought of building them inside the country. If factory owners needed them, they would go and import them into the country. However, when they cannot import them from the outside, they refer to universities and research centers asking them to do their best and to build the components for them. Therefore, by Allah’s favor and grace, we have managed to utilize the sanctions in the service of the scientific blossoming of the country. This was the third point.
The important economic, military and scientific projects in the country have frustrated the enemy’s sanctions
The fourth point is that as I said before, sanctions have not paid off. That is to say, the enemy failed to attain his goal by imposing them. What is the reason for that? The reason is the important projects that were carried out in the country during the time of sanctions. For example, several thousand knowledge-based companies were established in the country. This is a huge breakthrough. It is evident that the scientific and economic movement of the country has gained its momentum. Before the imposition of these harsh sanctions, we did not have these several thousand knowledge-based companies. Another achievement is the Persian Gulf Star Refinery which was established by the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps. It is a great and magnificent feat which was accomplished during and despite sanctions. People throughout the world are impressed at this achievement.
We can also refer to the great achievements in military areas or the great feats in South Pars. In South Pars, our important gas condensate field, certain achievements have been made while we were under sanctions. We could equally cite the great projects carried out to revive Khuzestan and Ilam lands which are very important projects. I do not know how much work has been done to promote these achievements and how much the people know about them. Great endeavors were made in connection with reviving the lands that needed drainage in Ilam and Khuzestan – primarily in Khuzestan and to some extent in Ilam. Many lands were revived and utilized again. All these tasks were carried out during the time of sanctions.
Liberating the economy of the country from the export of crude oil: an outcome of sanctions
Other achievements include the projects undertaken by the Ministry of Energy. I have mentioned before that they are important projects which cover areas such as water and electricity. Let us not forget about the projects set up by the Ministry of Roads and finally our impressive military products which are really astonishing. They themselves have acknowledged that Iran managed to manufacture such defensive products during the sanctions.
In my opinion, one of the achievements that can be included in this list is the practice of separating the economy of the country from oil. This is a very difficult task. I used to speak about it at length for years, but it would not show any sign of progress, but in the present time, it has naturally happened. Well, they buy less of our oil or they buy very little of it. All our previous customers do not buy enough oil. This has caused the relationship between the economy of the country and oil – which was a detrimental and harmful relationship – to be undermined. This is like a practice that we can continue to do in the future as well.
Of course, by “oil”, I mean crude oil. Otherwise, I am not opposed to selling and exporting the kind of oil that has turned into value-added. What I am strictly opposed to is the exportation of crude oil. I hope that by Allah’s favor, this task will be accomplished with more follow-up measures adopted by the administration and the Majlis as there are many capacities in the country which can replace oil and resolve our budget problem.
Resistance against the US: the cure for sanctions
The fifth point is: can the sanctions be cured or not? The answer is that they are definitely curable. The second answer is that certainly this cure does not lie in retreating in the face of the US. Some people argue and promote the notion that if we want to put an end to the US’s greed and bullying, we should retreat. However, this is not the case. It naturally occurs that when you retreat in the face of someone who is greedy and transgressing, he will advance. This is a natural and clear phenomenon. If you retreat and give in to the US’s demands, he will present new demands. Today, this is what the US is saying to us: it says that we should completely abandon our nuclear industry, that we should reduce our defense capabilities to one tenth of what they are – that is to say, we should put aside our defense missiles and resources which have a deterring function, thus rendering ourselves defenseless – and that we should let go of our nuclear power.
We have a strategic depth in the region on the basis of which many regional nations and governments support and love us and are willing to work in favor of our goals. However, the Americans say that we should abandon them. This is what the US wants from us. Abandoning these privileges will not make him retreat though. When you agree to reduce your defense capabilities, to destroy your own regional power and completely forget about your nuclear industry, which is vital for our country, he will not become satisfied and will demand another thing and will make another request. No sensible mind is willing to fulfil a transgressor’s requests in order to make him stop.
Nuclear energy is a definite need for the future of the country
Notice that under the influence of the enemy’s propaganda, some people unfortunately say, “What is the use of nuclear energy for us?” There are some people who write these things in newspapers and other media. I have said before that nuclear energy is a definite need for the future of our country. In a few years, we will be needing at least 20,000, 30,000 megawatts of electricity generated by nuclear energy. We cannot obtain this otherwise and the other methods are not economically reasonable. Well, what should we do the day when we need it? Whose door should we go and knock on? Should we go and beg the US and European countries to give us nuclear electricity or develop the enrichment process? Will they do that? Today, we should think about tomorrow! These needs cannot be fulfilled in the space of six months, one or two years. These needs should be satisfied in advance and we have prepared the ground for it. Despite the fact that we have suffered a great deal of loss because of the Bar-Jaam [the JCPOA], the essence is fortunately still there and good and dazzling tasks are being accomplished in this regard. The enemy does not want this though. The same is true of defense and missile areas.
The reason why the Islamic Republic is opposed to negotiating with the US
When the Americans say, “Let us negotiate”, this is what they want to negotiate over. I strongly ask everyone to pay attention to this. Of course, I have repeatedly spoken about this, but I have to say it again because some people do not understand or pretend that they have not understood it: When the enemy says, “Let us negotiate”, it means “Come and sit at the negotiating table so that we will instruct you not to build missiles, which you have to accept of course.” If you accept their terms, well, you will be ruined as you have actually rendered yourselves defenseless. And if you do not accept their terms, there will be the same story: there will be more skirmishes, more sanctions and more threats. This is what negotiation means. The reason why I say that we will not negotiate with the US is that it is pointless. Of course, they will benefit from negotiations. The poor thing – the old man who holds office in the US – seems to have made promotional use of negotiating with North Korea. He wants to take advantage of these negotiations either for electoral or non-electoral purposes. In any case, he has personal interests, but beyond these matters, the US political system claims to be pursuing vital issues in the case of the Islamic Republic of Iran. In other words, they say that we should forsake our defense capabilities and our regional and national power. Well, this is not possible. An honorable person who is interested in preserving the country’s interests will not give in to these demands. This is what negotiation means. This is the reason why I am against negotiating with the US. Otherwise, we will negotiate with the entire world except for the US and the fake Zionist regime. We are having relations, negotiating and interacting with others and we have no problem with that. This is America’s problem with us.
The necessity to rely on national capabilities and pursue the economy of resistance
So this is another point: sanctions are definitely curable, but the cure is not to retreat. So, what is the cure? The cure for sanctions is only and solely reliance on national capabilities. We should preserve every capability that we have in this respect and we should be after discovering new capabilities, bearing in mind that we certainly have many capabilities. Then, we should rely on and revive them. We should bring our youth to the arena and pursue the main pillars of the economy of resistance – growth from the inside and working with the outside. We both have domestic and international capabilities. We are capable of producing inside the country in a way that various scientific, economic and other such capabilities will start to bubble up and we are also capable of working at an international level. We have good friends with whom we can work. This requires effort and diligence. The economy of resistance includes both growth from the inside and working with the outside and in both areas, we have numerous resources which we can benefit from. Our capacities are really infinite. The more we move forward, the more capacities will show up. Of course, these things will be acquired with a jihadi management. They are achieved with real acumen and jihadi management.
We have influential friends in the world. Of course, it is not the case that we get dependent on our friendly governments. This is not the case. Our reliance is on Allah the Exalted and on ourselves. Even if we did not have powerful friends in the world, we would do our job and we would move forward.
In the Sacred Defense Era, both eastern and western blocs were against us. Both the Soviet Union of those days and the US and European countries were against us, but we managed to resist without them for eight years and defeat the enemy. We managed to bring Saddam to his knees and create a disastrous situation for him. We managed to pull this through. In other words, our reliance is on God and on ourselves, but we will make the most of our friends’ resources and potential, God willing.
Foreign enmities and domestic treacheries against self-sufficiency
You should also know that there is enmity against domestic capabilities. Some of these enemies are foreign and some are domestic. I will tell you that those who are prepared to import a certain product from foreign markets to create competition inside the country and ruin domestic factories only for the sake of his own personal benefits – this is because they reap some profits from imports – are committing an act of treason. Unfortunately, despite the fact that I stressed this matter before, we still see that some people import certain products from foreign countries while such products are manufactured in the country – and they have good quality. The poor factory owners who have invested in their business with a lot of trouble will not be able to sell their products. We should know that such oppositions and enmities exist inside the country.
Since long ago, there has been enmity against domestic independence. More than 150, 160 years ago, Amir Kabir wanted to make the country’s economy and vital capabilities independent. However, with its malice, despicable nature and temptations that it provoked, the British Embassy coerced Nassir al-Din Shah into discharging him from chancellery. Later on, they murdered him which was the English’s doing. Also, on the issue of the nationalization of oil industry, as soon as the Iranian nation managed to stand on its own feet, the Americans and the English created the events of the 28th of Mordad. After the Revolution too, they have been creating all kinds of problems. Therefore, we should pay attention that this matter [national self-sufficiency] has serious enemies.
The Europeans’ empty promises after the US withdrew from the JCPOA
We should not take heed of others’ promises either. I have said this before, but I wish to repeat it again: in early 1397 – two years ago – the US had withdrawn from the Bar-Jaam and we kept saying that the Europeans should do this and that. They said, “Ok, but you should wait three, four months.” After the passage of four months, they said that we should wait five, six more months. They kept prolonging the process. In other words, they conditioned the country’s economy and rendered it dependent. Our investors, our businessmen, our exporters and our economic activists waited impatiently to see whether Europe would do anything or not. This is really detrimental to the economy of the country. We should not trust in their promises because they do not honor them. We should not make the country wait for this and that’s decision. We should do our own job.
The Europeans did not do anything. Their last miracle was a stupid game called INSTEX, which has not become operational yet. It has not been put in place yet. In sum, INSTEX means that Iran should give to their European excellencies – for example, to the French and the English - the money that others owe to us so that they will buy every product that they deem good and send it to Iran. This is what INSTEX means. This is a wrong measure in itself, but they have not fulfilled this very promise either. The cure for sanctions is to activate domestic capacities. Of course, this requires hard work and diligence. We should work hard. This is another point.
Certain points about economic problems: 1. The necessity to control high prices
I wish to say something about the economic issues of the country. Well, the country has certain problems in terms of the people’s livelihood issues. Families really have serious livelihood problems. Prices are high and this should be remedied. Of course, I have spoken to officials in private meetings or I have sent them messages about the things that should be done. I have spoken to Mr. President and I have also sent messages to other officials so that they will do certain things. However, I wish to stress again that the organizations in charge should pay attention to this point: in the area of economic problems, certain issues are urgent and certain issues require long-term and mid-term measures.
The urgent matters are primarily related to curbing high prices. Effort should be made in this regard. Economic experts believe that this is possible. Executive managers in economic areas believe that prices could be controlled and curbed. Of course, when prices sometimes go up, this is because of a shortage of goods and products, but in certain cases, there is no shortcoming. There are goods and products and there are plenty of them, but they keep them in warehouses and do not put them on sale. The organizations in charge, primarily executive organizations – organizations affiliated with the executive branch and also the judiciary branch if it can help – should enter the arena and confront such individuals. So, one issue is to stabilize the market. This state of affairs, where goods have a different price every day, is harmful to the country.
2. The necessity to preserve the value of national currency
Another issue is preserving the value of national currency. If a foreign currency is given a free rein to go up on a daily basis, this is a very bad phenomenon. This is one of the short-term measures and officials should carry out their duty in this regard. Of course, I know that the Central Bank is putting in a lot of effort and by Allah’s favor, it will succeed. I have received reports from reliable sources saying that there are security and political reasons – rather than economic reasons – for this matter. Of course, this does not mean that there are no economic reasons, rather it means that the main reasons are related to security and political matters. If this is the case, it should seriously be confronted. There are some individuals who add fuel to the fire.
3. The necessity to channel the money flow towards production
Another necessary issue which can also be done according to experts is the issue of channeling the money flow towards production. Of course, two years ago, I said in my Eid ul-Fitr sermons that the money flow is a grave danger for the economy of the country, but this danger could be turned into profit. If we can guide it towards production with correct measures, then not only will it not be harmful, but it will also be profitable. Experts say that this is possible, but it requires planning and follow-up. By Allah’s favor, such measures should be implemented.
4. The necessity to identify and to eliminate the obstacles in the way of the “surge in production”
Another issue is about the obstacles in the way of the surge in production. I have named this year “The Year of Bringing About a Surge in Production”, but there are certain hurdles on this path. I have received a proposal in this regard and I will mention it here. The honorable heads of the three branches of government should pursue and study this proposal. It has been suggested that the heads of the three branches appoint a special team – the representatives of the heads of the three branches – so that it will try to identity and eliminate these obstacles. The heads of the three branches should discuss this in their meeting and reach a certain conclusion. They should seriously pursue the matter and see what the obstacles in the way of a surge in production are. Perhaps, one of these obstacles is unnecessary imports which is very important.
5. The necessity to reform the budget structure and the banking system, to improve investment and employment rate and to boost the business environment
These are tasks that should be carried out in the short-term with immediate effect and they should be given priority. All organizations – governmental, private and semi-private – organizations should cooperate with one another in order to do this, but the main reforms are the ones that I announced two years ago to the economic council of the three branches of government: one is reforming the budget structure which is very important. Another is reforming the banking system and the last one is improving investment and the employment rate. Of course, since long ago, investment has been undermined in the country and the necessary measures have not been adopted in this area. This problem has been there for 10, 12 years, but it should be made up for. This is one of the long-term actions. Another task is to boost the business environment. I have put forward these demands and the honorable gentlemen are working hard, but no noteworthy progress has been witnessed. Nonetheless, we know what we want and this is what counts. We know what we are looking for and what our plans are. These tasks should be accomplished. These were a few points about economic matters.
The necessity to show patience and stability
I want to say something about the future as well. In my opinion, in order to ensure future progress, we need patience and stability. We should make our steps firm: “Our Lord, forgive us our sins and anything we may have done that transgressed our duty: Establish our feet firmly” [The Holy Quran: 3: 147]. One of the things asked in this dua is making one’s step firm. Patience and constancy are what we need. Of course, our people are fortunately patient. We have experienced this and we know that thanks to their faith and thanks to their trust in the system, in the country and in the Islamic Republic, the people are really patient and firm. Officials too should show their patience and firm steps with jihadi work. In my opinion, jihadi work is really necessary. Having hesitations and concerns about whether this or that will happen or not or whether we should do this or that or not do them at all is really harmful. Officials should pay attention to these points.
The big and overwhelming problems of American society
We should notice that the big problems that have engulfed our main enemy – our main enemy is the US government and regime – are not comparable to ours. They are tens of times bigger than ours. In the present time, the Americans have been surrounded by various problems: on the one hand, class inequalities have widened in a surprising manner and on the other hand, there is racial discrimination which has reared its ugly head and it has made everyone line up against the US system. Moreover, there are insolvable economic problems. It has been reported that 45 million people are unemployed in that country. This is a very important figure and a strange phenomenon in that country. We can also refer to the managerial problems which showed themselves on the issue of the coronavirus. These are the US’s problems. The behavior of their cruel police is another indication of managerial problems. In other words, the management of social issues in that country has panned out in a way that they cannot prevent a police officer from torturing someone to death in a savage way and in front of the people. They cannot put an end to these killings. This indicates the existence of grave managerial problems which have caused the US to be hated and to become isolated at an international level. The fire under the ashes has blazed again. They might be able to suppress and extinguish the movements launched in the middle of the streets, but the fire under the ashes will linger and will become ablaze again.
These phenomena will destroy the current US system. The reason is that it is a false system. The economic and political philosophy of the US system is a fallacious one. However, wrong and fallacious philosophies do not show themselves in the space of 10, 20 years. They will show themselves in the course of time and in the present time, they are indeed showing themselves. In sum, US management is suffering from confusion and dizziness. Of course, as I said, they constantly speak here and there, but this only exists on the face of it. They speak for the sake of appearances, otherwise, all of them have domestic problems and all of them are concerned about their own future.
The American people themselves are the biggest enemy of the US regime
In my opinion, the Americans are trying to find an enemy. They sometimes mention Iran and they sometimes mention China and Russia as their enemies. They want to fabricate an enemy. In my opinion, the US has no bigger enemy than its own people. In the present time, the biggest enemy of the US regime are the American people themselves. They should not look elsewhere for an enemy. And it is the same enemy which will bring that regime to its knees. The US’s problem with us is that it can neither eliminate us nor make us surrender. It is trying to make us give in to its demands or eliminate and destroy us, but it can do neither of the two. That is why it is upset. Therefore, in my opinion, patience, stability, resistance and, God willing, jihadi work are our responsibilities.
Well, our present administration is at the end of its term. In the past seven years, they have accomplished certain tasks and they have done whatever they could. After that, by Allah’s favor, there will be a fresh administration and I hope that it will do things in a more serious way, God willing. Some divisions of the administration have really done well in their term. One could not perhaps say the same thing for all divisions, but in some divisions, they have done good tasks. Therefore, by Allah’s favor and grace, we will continue our work, we will move forward the path, and the Iranian nation will be victorious.
The necessity to observe health protocols and the regulations announced by the Anti-Corona Headquarters during Muharram mourning occasions
I wish to say something about Muharram. There are many debates about Muharram. People have been speaking about Muharram for a long time. Well, they will hold the mourning ceremonies one way or another, but what I want to stress is that in mourning ceremonies, the main criterion is what medical experts – the National Anti-Corona Headquarters – announce to us. I myself will observe whatever action they deem necessary. My firm recommendation to all those who wish to participate in the mourning ceremonies – including mourning committees, those who take the minbar, the organizers, panegyrists, performers of elegies and the like – is this: before you do anything, you should see what they say. If the National Anti-Corona Headquarters issues certain regulations for these occasions, all of us will have a duty to observe them. The issue is not a minor issue, rather it is a very important one. In the present time, there is supervision and control to some extent. However, if God forbid, these measures are taken lightly and if people do not observe them, then there will be a disaster with unclear consequences at the end.
I hope that Allah the Exalted will help. I hope that the Imam of the Age (may our souls be sacrificed for his sake) will take our hands and rush to our help, as has always been the case. I hope that the pure souls of martyrs and the immaculate soul of our late Imam (may God bestow paradise on him) will pray for us and ask God to bestow success on the Iranian nation, God willing.
Greetings be upon you and Allah’s mercy and blessings