by Hassan Nasrallah (Islamic Movement, Crescent International Vol. 31, No. 22, Dhu al-Qa'dah, 1423)
The example and inspiration provided to the Palestinian mujahideen by the Hizbullah in Lebanon has been widely acknowledged. Here we reprint a speech by Hizbullah leader Shaikh Hasan Nasrallah on the occasion of Al-Quds Day last Ramadhan (November 29).
In the Name of Allah, Most compassionate, Most Merciful. May Allah protect us from evil. All praises and thanks be to Allah, the Lord of all mankind, and all that exist, may peace and praises of Allah be upon our master and prophet Muhammad (saw) and his pure progeny, faithful followers, and all martyrs and combatants for Allah’s teachings, from Adam (as) to the Day of Judgment...
To begin with, I would like to thank and pay respect to all brothers and sisters who shared a part in this blessed celebration for hours, within this cold, rainy and stormy weather. This indicates your loyalty, your commitment to your leader and to the way of the departed martyrs, in addition to your commitment to the main cause of this people, which is the cause of al-Quds that deserves any sacrifice of ours. Perhaps it is a divine command for us to celebrate this day of al-Quds, as we are celebrating it in rainy weather for the second time since September 11, in order for this message to become a clear message, which expresses strong will and determination, and that we are a people who do not avoid either cold winter or hot summer, or the heat of swords, or the dread of battles, and that we will remain one united people.
We meet on al-Quds day with the great spirit of Imam Khomeini (ra), who announced that this day should become a day that lives in the conscience of the people, and this is due to its sacrifices. We come to the city of Imam Hussein (ra), and the city of the martyrs and prisoners, to the city that was at the frontier for almost 15 years, fighting, sacrificing, enduring and offering martyrs, including children, where it achieved victory by the blood of its martyrs.
Al-Nabatiya was the city that sparked the domestic confrontation with the Zionist enemy in early Ashura 1983. We have come to this city to be as near as we can to the frontline. Year after year the celebration will move from one city to another, in the various Lebanese regions, in order to recreate for each city and region its access to the day of al-Quds, and recreate the commitment and vow to al-Quds, the people of al-Quds, and the Imam of al-Quds, so that this cause will never be forgotten.
On this day we must bring to the attention of this complicit world the criminal Zionist policies which are demolishing the houses of the original citizens of the city of al-Quds, in addition to terrorizing the citizens of al-Quds to scare them out of the city, which is surrounded by armed settlements to separate it from the rest of Palestine. What is most dangerous is the grave situation of the sacred places of Christianity and Islam in Palestine. Al-Aqsa grand mosque has another story, and here we are talking about a real danger threatening the first qibla of the Muslims. This danger is shown by the attempts made to destroy this mosque, an issue that is anxiously awaited by the Zionists, especially at this time, when the so-called Zionist Christianity is controlling American decisions. Whoever attempts to read the mind of Zionist Christianity or Talmudic Zionism, which are planning to destroy al-Aqsa Mosque in order to build the temple of Solomon in its place, will realize that we are approaching this crisis day by day. This danger must not be ignored by Arab rulers, Muslims, and Arab and Islamic countries. Ignoring the issue will encourage the Zionists, backed by the American Zionist Christianity, to destroy the mosque. Our possessions are not sacred; rather it is al-Aqsa mosque and the Church of the Nativity that are sacred.
The Zionists and their supporters must understand that any damage to al-Aqsa mosque will provoke the entire region to erupt. If they want to destroy the mosque, the people of the mosque will destroy this usurping entity, by the blood of the martyrs in each house, village and city in Lebanon, Palestine and all the Muslim lands.
This al-Quds day has come after more than two years of the liberation of a great part of our Lebanese land through the resistance, and after more than two years of the intifada, which is now widely known as the al-Aqsa Intifada. This occasion confirms that our choice is clear, and that it is the only choice that will restore the land, sacred places and al-Aqsa. The international resolutions are applied only when they benefit Israel and the US, whereas the resolutions that concern our oppressed lands are nothing but black and white sheets; the proof is resolution 425, about which no one has done anything for more than twenty years: it was the resistance that expelled the enemy [from southern Lebanon]. Nowadays there are tens of UN and UNSEC resolutions on the issue of al-Quds, and which reject the inclusion of al-Quds in the projects of the settlements, and reject what threatens the sacred places, but these resolutions are only black ink on white paper.
What restores and protects Palestine is what the Palestinian people have chosen, such as its great martyrs who astonish the world, and who broke into the fortresses with their bodies and weapons to shake the security of this enemy and its settlers. This is the way in which we are looking forward to conclusive victory, God willing. This intifada will not end with political reconciliations. Since the first moment it was ordained for this intifada to ignite in the name of Allah and the blood of the martyrs that was shed in al-Aqsa Mosque. Its martyrs are seekers of God’s love and His meeting, and nothing will weaken them or their will. This is why this is the intifada of victory and liberation.
On al-Quds day, we must declare the following: we are a people who does not aggress against anyone. The resistance in Lebanon was a movement that defended the country, people and dignity, and it still is. Today in Palestine, the intifada is also a state of defence. The Palestinians did not assault anyone. They did not go to Russia, Ukraine, Poland or Ethiopia in order to kill Jews. Instead, these Zionists came from all over the world in order to usurp the land, sacred places, cities and villages of others. The Palestinians are doing nothing but defending themselves, and all the martyrdom operations are moral, humane, legitimate, honorable, because they aim at eliminating tyranny, occupation, evil and corruption. So we unveil the unjust treatment inflicted on Lebanon, Palestine, Arabs and Muslims, especially where the people are defending themselves. We do not want war, and we do not want to wage war against anyone. But whoever assaults us, occupies our land, soils our sacred places, and wants to disgrace us, will find that our flesh is not edible, and our blood will turn into erupting volcanoes that will shake the land under their feet, regardless of the identity of the aggressor. If they come to violate our sacred places, they will find in the region men and women who are willing to sacrifice themselves, men and women who bear the culture of courage and who reject humiliation. Their slogan is as it has always been: “we are too proud to be humiliated.”
We would like to bring the attention of this people to the great dangers that are threatening our region and us at this stage. We are facing an American-Zionist project to lay hands on the region, in order to reform its political map. We must think with a wide horizon for far objectives, and we must not be misled by the false slogans that are launched by the American government. Why did this American government not wake up earlier to save these peoples? We must be aware of the satanic objectives that they pursue.
The rulers of our countries are invited to make a further approach towards their peoples. This will protect and solve the problems of their peoples. Racing further towards the American government will only increase the feebleness of these rulers. If you want to maintain your strength and dignity, your must turn to your own country, culture, peoples, and you can do so. The chance is not over yet. These peoples and nations are forgiving, and can ignore and forget the past, once they find their rulers standing with them in the positions of defence, defending the interests and dignity of the people. These peoples are ready, but they are frustrated by the regimes and their oppressions and injustices. However, they are ready to overcome their suffering and wounds, once the battle turns into a battle to defend the nation, its dignity and its future.
It is also our obligation on al-Quds day to maintain our alertness and give attention to the American government and Israel, along with the autocrats of this world who are working to crush our remaining strength. Therefore we will witness more incitement to provoke the Arab and Muslim peoples against each other by inflaming sensitive issues. We are beginning to hear once more of satellite TV channels that show programmes inciting Arabs, Persians, Afghans and others against each other. We will see how enmities will get worse.
What is even more dangerous is playing the religious and sectarian cards. The Americans have spoken about “crusades” in order to provoke Muslims and Christians against each other, especially in the eastern region of the Arab and Islamic world. What is worst is that they will try to provoke sections against each other, especially the Shi’ahs and the Sunnis.
We are coming to a time in which the Muslims, all Muslims, especially the Shi’ahs and Sunnis, need to unify and cooperate, while maintaining their distinct characteristics. They all must cooperate in order to restore al-Quds and to defend the Palestinian people, the religion, and the prophet Muhammad (saw), who has been accused by American Zionist Christianity of being a “terrorist.” At this time we must all unite to defend the dignity of the Ummah against those who want to change the map of the region and cause more separation and divisions, causing people to search for a “Shi’ah country” here, or a “Sunni country” there; an “Arab country” here or a “Kurdish country” there. There are now several new satellite TV channels in London and other places, financed by American and Zionist capital. Their mission is to make Shi’ah and Sunni ulama restart the arguments and disputes of the past, in order to fulfill the dreams of America and “Israel”.
I call upon all the people to maintain their alertness and awareness, and to boycott these American-Zionist satellites. Those intellectuals, ulama, and ideological and cultured people are wrong if they ever thought that they were being given the chance to express their thoughts. They must realize that they are nothing but tools played by American and “Israeli” hands, in order to divide Muslims and incite hatreds.
At this stage, we need to unite. The people have committed all to the intifada in Palestine, and their commitment was true and correct. The intifada is winning by martyrdom, tears and blood. The crisis is increasing day by day. What is left for the intifada is its commitment to the nation, and its commitment must be true and correct, and the nation must prove as committed to the intifada.
In conclusion, al-Quds day confirms the existence of the fighting spirit within us. We are the ones that were raised at the hands of our absent Imam, Mousa al-Sadr. We were raised to love al-Quds and march on the way that leads there. We have offered our best pioneering martyrs on this road, led by the master of the Islamic resistance martyrs, Sayyed Abbas al-Musawi (ra).
On this day we confirm in the city of Nabatiyye, the city of martyrs, that we are present at the frontline, and that we are ready to defend our land, people and sacred places. We refuse to be frightened of anyone. We will work together to be strong, and work to increase our strength by all possible means, in order to support those we love, and to fight our enemies.
All the accusations thrown at us by the Zionists, concerning our support for the intifada, whether these accusations were correct or false, we consider them as our medals of honour. We will continue to bear this responsibility, and we are ready to confront all the consequences of our presence in the arena of conflict.
Dear brothers and sisters, we are standing today on the land of the resistance, maintaining our steadfastness, and digging our heels in, with lion hearts. We depend on Allah, and by our reliance on Him He has granted us victories. In addition we are depending on the good men and women, and the good parents who brought up all these generations of martyrs and fighters. Today your message is inspiring your brothers in Palestine, and the beloved relatives and friends. Your message is also strong against “Israel,” America and all the enemies of this nation. We will remain here on this land, here we will fight and die, and here is our resting place. This is our land, and we will never abandon it, as we never have done in the past.
At this time we are coming closer to fulfill the dreams of Imam Khomeini, Imam Mousa Sadr, and the martyrs: the restoration of al-Quds, and praying inside its mosque. This day is closer than anyone expects, and it is coming. Victory comes from no one but almighty Allah.
May Allah’s blessing and peace be upon you all.