Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corp took delivery of a new surface-to-surface missile-system, called Shahab 3, on July 20. Here we publish an abridged version of the speech delivered by Imam Sayyid Ali Khamenei at the event.
In the Name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate.
I would like to express my gratitude to Almighty God because of the existence of you faithful and dear young people. Faithful, highly motivated and efficient human beings are among the most precious assets of every nation. Today, alhamdulillah, we are at a gathering of such human beings. I would like to pay tribute to all of you dear young people, officials of the air force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps and all the personnel of this force. I would like to thank all of you for your efforts.
Alhamdulillah, over the years, the air force of the Corps has emerged as a praiseworthy group. It has maintained a good level of readiness. Good forces have been brought together in this group. Precious work has been done. Every nation needs to be strong in order to defend its lofty ideals.
Religious and spiritual logic defines power in a vastly different way from capitalist logic. Capitalist logic detects power in instruments and equipment. It observes it in atoms, chemical weapons, biological weapons and various advanced instruments of material. Those things do not represent the totality of the concept of power. The major part of the concept of power inheres in the souls of the human beings who want to exercise power. A righteous group is one which works for the establishment of justice and struggles for lofty ideals and values. Such a group is ready to do its utmost, and use all of its resources and do everything in its power to do so. Then it will be able to acquire real power.
A group which works for justice, and for just values, will not exercise its power as an animalistic concept. It will not establish tyrannies. It will not be imperialistic. It will not humiliate human beings. It will not encroach upon or commit acts of aggression against others’ territories. It will not prevent various nations from furthering their interests or deprive them of their resources in order to acquire such things for itself. That is the moral code of spiritual power. Material power, however, does not care about or know anything about morality. Financial power is not used in the quest for justice or righteous values.
The logic of some of those who possess financial power is the logic of the jungle. They think that they are right because they have financial power. This equation is wrong. Today, if you look at the world scene, you can see that that America’s imperialist face has been exposed. The Islamic Revolution stamped an expiry date on the forehead of that imperialistic and nihilistic government. Its true nature has been exposed to the entire world. You can see how it is acting in the global arena.
The only thing they are not thinking about are the rights of human beings or nations. They are not thinking about human morality or observing the rights of the downtrodden people of the world. What is most important to them is securing their own imperialist interests. Financial power may give one a lot of weight when it is used for that purpose. However, one cannot have any hope of gaining victory.
When power is defined in divine terms, then financial resources can be used so effectively – by relying upon spiritual values – that the rights of human beings will not be violated. Then no one’s rights will be infringed or violated. Therefore they will be righteous and work for justice. Final victory belongs to them. That definition of power, the main element of which is popular willpower and the movement in defence of lofty and commendable values, has successfully passed its test in the last 24 years.
Those who have had financial power could not put up resistance against the spiritual strength of the righteous in Iran, Lebanon, Palestine or any other part of the world where the righteous who exercised power entered the arena. They could not bring the righteous to their knees. They could not drive them out of the arena by relying upon their sheer numbers. That is the reality of the situation; it existed in the past and it will exist in the future. In Iraq, the Americans faced the Saddam regime, which was a financial power like themselves, albeit a much weaker one. So they managed to advance and gain victory. However, today, after apparently gaining military victory, they are facing the willpower and demands of the people of Iraq. They feel weak and they think that they have been defeated and they want to retreat.
What is facing the occupiers of Iraq today is not just a military power. It is not just sophisticated military equipment. It is the deeply-rooted willpower of a people - a people who do not want occupiers in their land. They do not want occupiers to dominate them or their vital resources. They do not want their Islamic or national identities to be belittled by the occupiers. That is precisely what creates a righteous power. If it remains in the arena and if human beings remain committed to the resistance, then there is not a power in the world that will be able to put up resistance against them. Palestine is a case in point; Lebanon is another. The Islamic republic defends justice as an ideal. It defends the rights of human beings. It defends the national and Islamic identities of its own nation. It defends the lofty status of a nation that deserves to have a lofty status. It does not retreat in the face of injustice.
Since its inception, the Islamic Republic has said, and it has proved this not just in words but also in deeds, that it would not retreat in the face of bullying, tyranny, domination, pressure and the arrogant demands of global imperialists. It will not abandon its lofty ideals.
That is the correct logic. That is a humane and righteous logic. It also relies upon spiritual power. During the last 24 years, the Iranian nation has demonstrated this spiritual power. Throughout the imposed war [the 1980-88 war], the armed forces and the same young and faithful personnel of the Guards demonstrated this. One cannot possibly say that the miracles performed at Faw and Shalamcheh were simply the result of the use of firepower or military equipment. This was achieved thanks to the quest for martyrdom and steadfastness. It was achieved by their human will and relying upon God and their faith. They combined those factors with the resources at their disposal.
Today the Iranian nation and the armed forces, the army and the [Islamic Revolution] Guards Corps and the Baseej [Resistance Force], are ready to use their forces and their material power by relying upon this spiritual force, namely their faith and willpower. They are going to demonstrate it wherever it is necessary to do so and against any enemy that is intent upon committing aggression against the Islamic state. Victory belongs to such spiritual powers and strengths.
Our dear young people who are in the air force of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps – and this force is playing an extremely sensitive role as a result of the new situation brought about by global confrontations – must maximize their readiness. Alhamdulillah, today one can see signs that this force is indeed ready. I know about this because of the reports I have received.
However, there are still opportunities for continuing efforts and activities. This can be done both in terms of spiritual values, namely doing more to attain one’s ideals and motivating oneself and ensuring one’s material preparedness. You must do your utmost, you must do your best to be innovative and creative, and you must draw upon all of your knowledge and expertise, as well as your faith, honesty and spirituality. You must be able to play your historic role and your role will be decisive for the entire world, not just for Islamic Iran.
We beseech Almighty God to enable us to maintain our steadfastness so that we can continue the path of our martyrs. We call upon Him to ensure that we will also have the same blessed fate as that of our martyrs. May God bestow His peace and blessings upon all of you. Ameen.