In the Name of Allah, The Compassionate, The Most Merciful. Praise be to Allah, The Lord of the world. Peace be on the Seal of prophets, our Master and Prophet, Abi Al Qassem Mohammad, and on his chaste and pure Household, chosen companions and all prophets and messengers. Peace be upon you all and Allah's mercy and blessing.
Every year and with such a blessed ceremony we commemorate the anniversary of the Imam. In the past years and whenever I had the good luck of serving you, I used to tackle some of the achievements of the Imam and his deeds and biography which reveal the greatness of his personality, the haughtiness of his intellect and his strong, chaste and pure soul.
Today again we also stand before the hands of Imam Khomeini (May Allah sanctify his secret) in the time of revolutions in the region, the time of constitutional events and the time of remolding states and destines to be guided and inspired by the intellect of the Imam and his biography and giving and to stand before a new aspect of his grand character.
Among the well known achievements of the Imam, we tackled in the past his revivification of the group of values and the issues of resistance and jihad. Today, I would like to talk a little about the achievement of the state.
It is known that the Imam made a total and absolute victory at the level of the revolution which was launched in Iran and led to the toppling of the regime of the Shah that was a monarchial dictatorship tyrannical regime which was an agent to America. This corrupt regime was exterminated from its roots.
This is a total achievement. Still, the most important and significant achievement made by the Imam (May Allah reward him in Heaven) is the achievement of building and forming the state and the alternative regime to the regime of the Shah. Consequently he crippled all what might be called anti-revolutions which the US administrations were accustomed to - that had its precedent in Iran when the Revolution of Musadaq gained victory over the Shah.
The Shah was driven out but the American anti-revolution returned him on tanks to Tehran. With the Imam, the victory of the revolution was absolute and total, and the achievement of the state was the most important and significant achievement and challenge.
The Imam along with the people was before the challenge of building a new regime based on the views and the will of this people besides the civilization, culture and religion of this people. This regime has the ability to address crises, achieve goals and stand challenges and threats which never stopped since the victory and following the victory of the revolution until this day.
I will usher now in tackling the performance of the Imam, and I would like to use the term "Wali Faqih" when talking about the state though its name is the "Islamic Iranian Republic". I would like to use the term "Wali Faqih" intentionally and on purpose for a reason I will mention later on.
In the wake of the victory of the Islamic Revolution and the toppling of the regime, the Imam used to have a comprehensive view on the regime, its future and its structure. He had approached this view in a book be wrote 40 years before. However, the Imam did not impose his view on people. He rather called for a general referendum on the identity of the new regime. Before talking about the constitution, we will discuss the identity of the regime. We have to set a constitution. The question posed on the Iranian people with all their tendencies and currents was "what is the nature and identity of the regime you want?"
In Iran, there was a hereditary tyrannical monarchial regime. Do you want a similar regime, so we exchange the king with another king? Or do you want a monarchial regime but a constitutional monarchy - as is proposed in some states today? Or do you want a republican regime? If you want a republican regime, do you want this republican regime to have a convictional identity or do you want it to be limited to its general political national identity - a civilizational cultural intellectual identity?
What is the identity of this regime?
A date was set for this general referendum to have answers to this question.
All the political movements which partook in the revolution expressed their view points among people in universities, mosques, husseiniyas halls, conferences and demonstrations.
All the people made speeches. Everyone issued studies. Everyone wrote in newspapers. The chance was open before everyone to express his ideas and to give evidences to convince the Iranian people. Then the referendum took place. The overwhelming majority of the Iranian people partook in this referendum, and they said their word: Yes for an Islamic Republic.
Then this regime was chosen by the people and not imposed by the Wali Faqih.
We start hereof - from where the people decided on the identity of the regime with an overwhelming sweeping will. They announced their approval and will to have a regime which was blessed and backed by the Imam. The regime is based on two pillars.
The first pillar is that it is a republic or a republican regime - meaning that all the primary authorities in Iran are subject to popular elections whether direct elections as is the case in electing the president of the republic, the deputies or the municipality councils or indirect elections as when the Iranian people elect a large group of expert scholars who in their turn elect the Wali Faqih. This is contrary to what is prevalent. In Iran, there is not any primary authority which is not elected by the people whether directly or indirectly. This is the first pillar of the republican regime.
The second pillar is that it is an Islamic regime which is based on the values, teachings and rules of Islam which is able to accommodate with all the modern developments and needs through intellectual and scholar jurisprudence which takes time and place into consideration. Well Iran is pregnant with great men of intellect, scholars and specialized jurists.
Based on this identity for the new regime, the Wali Faqih - Imam Khomeini - wanted to have a definite and well-established constitution for this new regime. Thus he called for the election of the council of experts for the formation of the constitution of the Islamic Republic in Iran. The council of experts is elected by the Iranian people.
The people elected their representatives in the Council of Constitution Formation to put the constitution. This council of experts met and made extensive discussions. It included jurists, scholars, men of law and politicians and various elites. However it was elected and not appointed.
The Wali Faqih did not do as many rulers do today in many countries when they want to form constitutions. He did not appoint a council to form the constitution. Rather the people elected this council, and all the discussions were open and before the very eyes of the Iranian people. After they completed forming the draft of the constitution, the Wali Faqih could have told the people that your representatives have put this draft for the constitution, endorsed it and told them we will started working accordingly by the will of Allah. Still he did not do that. He rather set the constitution for a new general referendum. The Iranian people with their overwhelming majority stepped out willingly to approve on the Iranian Constitution which is still in force until now.
As such we had a regime and constitution. But the identity of the regime, the formers of the constitution of the regime and the constitution of the regime - all of that - expressed a popular will. The role of the Wali Faqih was limited to the role of the guide and organizer. He did not impose any will or viewpoint. Even when he went to the voting ballot he did not say: As I am the Wali Faqih, I vote for the Islamic Republic or the constitution. He rather said as an Iranian citizen, I vote for the Islamic Republic and for the constitution.
We move to the stage of execution: presidential elections take place in their due time. Parliamentary elections take place in their due time. Elections of the leadership experts' council which elects and ousts leaders take place in their due time. Municipality elections take place in their due time. In Iran, the regime is 32 years old. So far 31 elections on the national level took place. Within months this year there are parliamentary elections. They would be then 32 elections. Next year the regime would be 33 years old. There would be new presidential elections.
This is the state of the Wali Faqih. It's a state of true elections. Elections also always take place with a popular turnout unprecedented in the history of elections in the world. The participation in elections also exceeds the participation in the most ancient and most important democracies in the world. Forty million Iranians shared in the latest presidential elections.
Where can we find presidential elections which such magnitude and level of participation? That takes place in the state of the Wali Faqih.
Even more, the state of the Wali Faqih is a true state of law. The elected Parliament works around the clock. Indeed it does not legislate - so as we do not have legislative problems. It forms laws that are in harmony with the rules of Islam and which address the crises and needs of the people and the country. These laws are referred to the Council of Guarding the Constitution for verification. This council is not entitled to interfere in the details. It presents its viewpoint only. It answers one question only: Are these laws in harmony with the Constitution and does not contradict with the Islamic Code?
In case in contradicting with it, these laws are turned back to the Parliament which makes the amendments it finds fit. The Council of Guarding the Constitution does not impose amendments. In all this activity, things move in a normal way.
The Parliament is subject to the law. The Council of Guarding the Constitution is subject to the law. The Executive Authority is subject to the law. The Judicial Authority is subject to the law. The Wali Faqih himself is committed to the Constitution and the law, and he is responsible of the implementation of the Constitution and the law, and he orders that they be observed. So the state of the Wali Faqih is a true state of law. It is also a true state of institutions.
In Iran, there is not one person who runs the country, rules the country, sets programs and policies while all others execute. In Iran, there is an authority which they call codified authority. There is a true codified authority. There is a true executive authority headed by the President of the Republic. There is an independent judiciary authority which is able and strong and which takes initiatives. There is a true separation between authorities. Every authority knows its limits, competences and duties and works accordingly.
The guide or Wali Faqih supervises the authorities by preventing them from transcending their limits and competences. He coordinates between them if there is a need for coordination. He addresses problems of interference if they took place. He guides but he does not interfere whether in putting laws or in executing laws or in the judicial rules. He rather supervises.
In the state of the Wali Faqih, the authority is not for a person but rather for institutions which work in under and in the framework of the law and the Constitution. In the state of the Wali Faqih, everyone is held accountable before the various judicial and observance sides. Even the Wali Faqih is responsible before the judiciary authority if he had any personal conduct or in case of transcending the rights of others. He is responsible before the Council of leadership experts which may hold responsible, try or oust the guide or the Wali Faqih in case he perpetrates a wrong deed that might lead to his incompetence or the lack of some of the conditions for assuming power. These are some of the characteristics of the state of the Wali Faqih. I won't say more because I have something to say concerning the Lebanese affairs.
Also when we say the state of the Wali Faqih, one of the aspects of such a state is that the head of this hierarchal order is a personality that must enjoy definite characteristics. It can't be assumed by any human being. That means he must be a jurisprudent scholar. Here we do not talk about the costume but rather about knowledge. He must be a jurisprudent scholar which means in the current courtesies that he must be a first-class man of law. He must have his own vision in law. He must not seek the guidance of law professors. He has his vision. He is an expert.
Second, he must be just. That means that he must be very observant in his personal and public conduct of the law and the identity of the law.
Third, he must be a wise, brave administrator who is able to lead and rule. It is a source of pride of the regime and the people to be headed by a Wali or a leader who is a first-class man of law, who is very observant of the law and who is a wise, brave and patient administrator -let's put the costume aside here. Imagine a head of a hierarchal regime with such a personality. Let's take the personal aspect of the experience of Imam Khomeini (May Allah sanctify his secret) and the experience of Imam Khamenai (May Allah prolong his life span) and compare them with the scandals we hear of today that come as some results of the Arab revolutions. It was revealed that this president has along with his wife, children, children in law and relatives 70 billion dollars and that 50 billion dollars and that 30 billion dollars and that 100 billion dollars. Why? That's because there is no state of law, no state of institutions, no control and no judicial authority. There is absolute leadership. But what did Imam Khomeini own? What did Imam Khomeini inherit his wife and children? All of you know; Nothing.
Now what does Imam Khamenai own? How does Imam Khamenai live? What salary is Imam Khamenai paid? This is a sample.
Thus under this regime and this state, the Iranian people could remain steadfast before all risks, challenges and wars. Iran could turn to a major regional power, preserve its comprehensive sovereignty and complete independence and advance on all levels whether intellectual, cultural, economic, social, security, military or scientific.
In some time ago, a report was issued by one of the international institutions which says that the scientific development in this or that country is above or below the international average by two, three or four times said that the scientific development in Iran is 25 times the international average. Yes, this is the state of the Wali Faqih.
I was hesitant whether to say this phrase or not. But let me say it: "Yes in the state of the Wali Faqih there is not "Star Academy" because the young men and women in Iran participate in the Olympiad to compete in mathematics, physics, chemistry and medicine and win gold medals.
I want to wrap up this section which has to do with some aspects of the state of the Wali Faqih saying the following: One of the points of strength of this regime is its incessant tendency to develop. This is my lead-in to what I want to say on Lebanon: In a couple of words, I say that one of the points of strength of this regime is its incessant tendency to develop and find constitutional mechanisms to address the arising problems, and this is not a default.
Any modern state which is observant and responsible might every 10, 20 or 40 years or perhaps less make an assessment. It does not blow its special constitution. No, it only sees if there are any problems and try to find solutions. It searches for solutions. It needs constitutional mechanisms. It produces democratic mechanisms.
In Iran that took place after ten years when they discovered that there was disorder in the executive authority. Because there were a president, a prime minister and a government, they amended the Constitution: thus the president became the prime minister at a time. They canceled a post and simplified things.
In the judiciary authority they made amendments also as a result of experience. Still because this amendment is constitutional, it was subject to a new referendum by the Iranian people.
Problems used to rise on some laws between the parliament, the government and the Council of Guarding the Constitution. They could have said: When there is a disagreement, the Wali Faqih solves it. However the Wali Faqih did not do even this. He told them: No, we form an institution which becomes the reference in solving disputes between the parliament, the Council of Guarding the Constitution and the executive authority. It is the Council of Assessing the Interest of the Regime. Notice the stress on the importance of administration and institutions in addressing crises and decreasing the load on the person - whoever this person was and no matter how great he was and even if as great as Imam Khomeini (May Allah sanctify his secret) and Imam Khamenai.
From this prelude, I like to usher into the Lebanese issue with a couple of words. However I would like to say before I forget the remark I said at the beginning: The state in Iran is called the Islamic Republic in Iran and not the state of Wilayat Faqih or the state of the Wali Faqih though the Wilayat Faqih is an essential pillar among the pillars of the regime. However I insisted on repeating this term because there have been international, intellectual, cultural, studies and media efforts in the last few years for degrading all what is related to this state and its culture and elements of strength. There were efforts to degrade the concept of jihad and the values of jihad not only in the media but also in practices. There were efforts to degrade the concept of "martyrdom", the word "martyr" and the meaning of "martyr". There were efforts to degrade the concept and the term of "resistance". There were efforts to degrade the concept and the term "nation". Among the terms and concepts and theories which form a source of power in the Islamic regime in Iran is the Wilayat Faqih. They also worked at degrading it.
When they say Wilayat Faqih, they try to present the state of Wilayat Faqih as an oppressive, tyrannical dictatorship which wants to take people back to the Middle Ages, which does not take the needs of the people into consideration, which has no space for development and which has no room for participation. These are all misleading lies. People are invited to know the truth and to search for it.
Hereof, I usher into the Lebanese issues. All of us in Lebanon want a state and back the state. In principle, I do not believe that anyone in Lebanon among the Lebanese does not want that. Leave overbidding aside. When things worsen between March 8 and March 14 Blocs the former says the latter does not want a state and the latter says the former does not want a state. No, I personally believe that no one among the Lebanese - no matter who he is - is against having a state in Lebanon and the establishment of a state. Indeed we differ on how this state would be and what's its identity. This is another point of argument. I am talking in principle. Everyone lived painful experiences in the past decades - the experience of the security of militias (i.e. depending on militias to achieve security), the experience of local administrations, the experience of closed cantons, confrontation lines, and the Lebanese reaped the repercussions of these experiences.
Lebanon does not tolerate petty states or cantons or local administrations. Any auto-security will be a failure as it will be incapable and will remain critical situation. We believe that the condition for unity, security and development in Lebanon is the establishment of a unified and strong state.
All of us also say that we want a state of law and institutions. If we took the speeches, courtesies and political and electoral agenda, we talk the same rhetoric. This state exists relatively speaking. However, there are gaps and problems in the means of completing or integrating this state. One of these problems lies in the viewpoint of some figures in the formula, the constitution or in Taif Accord.
It goes without saying that our problem in Lebanon is that the formula which was adopted before the Taif Accord was the product of a settlement. The current formula, the Taif Accord, is the product of a settlement as well. As a result of the well known structure in the country, it is difficult to depend the normal ordinary ways of introducing or amending constitutions. Electing a council of experts who in turn forms the constitution which would be subject to a general referendum is something difficult and too complicated in Lebanon. We look forward for a day in which we would be able to act as such. Thus we find that this argument is evoked every time a crisis rises and the Lebanese are divided. Because last week there was a problem which has to do with communications and as a result of what took place, the argument was opened all again: the call to amend Taif Accord, and the counter call of adhering to Taif Accord. We therefore fear before any essential great demand of this kind that we return to sectarian divisions.
Today I call and make this suggestion: Let's step out of this vicious circle and benefit from the experience of the person whose departure we are marking today and thus approach the issue from another perspective. Let's avoid talking about adhering or amending Taif Accord. Let's say we really have a constitution, a law and a regime. After 20 years or more we have gaps or flaws which need to be addressed. New mechanisms need to be introduced. Consequently, let's take "developing the regime" as a title for approaching any problem of this kind. We do not want to move backwards with the regime that exists. Going backwards means going back to the previous problems. Let's talk about the future and about developing the regime away from sectarian and factional backgrounds. What does this sect gain? What does that sect lose? There are true problems and gaps that might be approached by specialized legal or political sides.
I do not want to suggest a definite mechanism. The parliament might appoint someone or a committee. The government might charge a committee. The national dialogue table can appoint a committee of men of law and politics and quiet individuals who do not have to do with daily politics and daily political crises to meet and assess this experience to find out where there are gaps, defaults or vacancies and propose constitutional and legal mechanisms to address the crises. Let the title of this act be developing the regime. Really we need today to develop the regime in Lebanon in a way that accommodates with the needs, developments and challenges on the financial, economic, social, political and security levels. We can't stay where we are.
However, indeed when we talk about developing, we talk about efforts to meet and agree with each other and not overpower one another. That's because developing through overpowering might lead to counter results that no one among us looks forward to.
The last point in the Lebanese affair that comes in the same framework and as a result of the regime crisis or rather the crisis of the society which Lebanon is witnessing from the very beginning springs always from the governmental crises and the crises of forming governments.
I do not want to talk about the history of government formation crises in Lebanon to simplify the existing crisis. The existing crisis is not justified no matter what the biographies of the previous government formation are. However, at the mean time we should continue working.
There is no other choice. We must carry on working, and we will no doubt reach a result Inshallah. As part of the new majority, we know the difficulties and complications and understand the concerns and fears of some allies and friends. We're not meant to comment or to share out responsibilities, repercussions and blames. Our priority is to carry on working and to cooperate with all parties and help the PM-designate to finalize the cabinet formation process. We will not take any reaction or conduct that might harm these efforts. Even if we were accused or oppressed against, we will have no problem in that. Forming the government in our viewpoint is a national need and not a need for the party. Thus we put it forth. Brothers and sisters, these difficulties and complications have always existed. They naturally lead to situations that sadden all of us. Thus before such situations, we are all saddened but it is not allowed that we be frustrated. We must not feel despair. All political leaderships assume responsibilities towards the status quo before the people and the nation. No one may spare himself this responsibility. Thus I say today that efforts are underway, and they were carried with a good efficiency. Inshallah they will carry on, and we will not stop until we reach a result. We hope the latest developments would push everyone to cooperate, integrate and collaborate to put a decisive end to this issue which is looked forward to by the Lebanese since months.
There is another point. The political leaderships in Lebanon - no matter to whatever movements they belong - must know very well that they assume a historic responsibility at this stage.
It is wrong to deal with the political and security situations in Lebanon apart from what is taking place in the region.
We still find that many among us act as if Lebanon is an isolated island in the region and neglect what is taking place around us, given that what's happening in the region is very critical. Days ago, I was listening to serious discussions on one of the Arab satellite outlets among a number of experts and politicians on dividing Yemen into four parts. They started dividing it from now. Sudan has been divided. Even Northern Sudan is subject to a new dividing conspiracy as regarding Darfor and others. Yemen is threatened of being divided. Libya is under the threat of being divided. If things went in a negative track in Syria - God forbids - and though we believe that this crisis will be overcome thanks to the awareness of the Syrian leadership and people, what is prepared for Syria is also division. What was being prepared to Iraq is division. When these states are divided, division will arrive to Saudi Arabia and division will not stop at any limit.
This is the American-"Israeli" plot in the region. The Neo Middle East which we destroyed its vanguards back in July 2006 War and our brethrens in Gaza demolished its vanguards in 2008 War is returning in a new costume and under new titles. We must be aware of it then.
Thus when we approach any kind of files in Lebanon, we must not neglect what is taking place around us in the region.
I have said that today in Lebanon the primary obligation is to work at forming the government. Hereof I add that one of the primary obligations is to maintain the institutions of the state, the structure of the state regardless of its current flaws or perplexed status-quo.
Every institution in the state must work today to preserve its unity and adherence especially security institutions and more particularly the national institution, the Lebanese Army, because maintaining the unity of the country, the security of the country and the stability of the country would at least keep us away from risks if we could not achieve the aspired positive points. This is a great responsibility which I liked to highlight today.
On the anniversary of the Imam (May Allah reward him in Heaven), it's inevitable that I make a final comment regarding Palestine and any Arab territory occupied since 1967. We are about to mark the anniversary of Naksa. This Naksa of 1967 set the foundation for the current tragic status quo for the Palestinian people and the Arab peoples and consolidated the establishment of the illegal entity.
While the Arab peoples were awaiting their armies, regimes, rulers and resistance to advance to the territories occupied since 1948 to restore them, we found ourselves losing all of Palestine as well as many Arab lands in Syria, Egypt, Jordan and some parts of Lebanon.
On the day of his anniversary, we recall another historic achievement made by Imam Khomeini - the Wali Faqih who toppled the Shah regime and took Iran with its distinctive magnitude to the axis of Palestine and restored the balance which was wasted by the Arabs after Camp David.
Some say that the Palestinian factions or the Palestinian people or Palestine was taken to Iran. In fact Imam Khomeini took Iran to Palestine. Imam Khomeini and Imam Khamenai took Iran to the Arab world to be a support and an assist and to assume the repercussions of this stance and commitment.
This is the stance of the Islamic Republic. This is the stance of the wise brave aware administrator Wali Faqih who assumes his legislative, moral, religious and historic responsibilities.
Whatever our religious affiliations are - all our religious, moral values and all our principles as Muslims, Christians and as followers of religions, nations or as scholars or whatsoever and from our humanistic position - we must stand by the oppressed, displaced and persecuted Palestinian people. This cause must remain our central cause as peoples and as a nation. We must exert efforts and offer help so that this oppressed people return to their land, decision, homeland and sanctities, especially that this people owns the will to return and is determined to return. Time, oppression by the close and the far, deprivation and pains did not harm the will of this people nor its young generations who expressed this will few days ago in Maroon al-Ras and Majdal Shams when the open chests of the Palestinian youths were subject to the bullets of the coward occupation soldiers.
Here I hail the families of the martyrs who are partaking in our ceremony. I address them saying: The blood of your sons and youths which was shed at the borderline at Maroon al-Ras and at the borderline in Golan Heights will not go to waste. This blood was shed to renovate a great holy cause and to remind the world of an oppressed people, a stolen right and a cause which they bet on you not to forget or waste. All through history, prophets were martyred to revive their causes. Karbala took place to revive a cause and not to make a direct military achievement. In Maroon al Ras and in Majdal Shams there is something of Karbala of Imam Hussein, the son of the Prophet of Allah (Peace be upon him). There a few advanced and faced death to remind the world of a stolen right.
On the anniversary of the decease of the Imam - as we always need to refer to him, to his warm bosom and great fatherly soul to be inspired by his intellect, methods and fragranced biology - we renew our vow to him and to his successor to continue in his path which leads only to victory, pride and dignity.
Peace be upon you and Allah's mercy and blessings.
Source: Hizbullah Media Relations