HOW ARE IRAN AND THE “AXIS OF THE RESISTANCE” AFFECTED BY THE US ASSASSINATION OF SOLEIMANI?

 

The US President Donald Trump assassinated the commander of the “Axis of the Resistance”, the (Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps) IRGC – Quds Brigade Major General Qassem Soleimani at Baghdad airport with little consideration of the consequences of this targeted killing. It is not to be excluded that the US administration considered the assassination would reflect positively on its Middle Eastern policy. Or perhaps the US officials believed the killing of Sardar Soleimani would weaken the “Axis of the Resistance”: once deprived of their leader, Iran’s partners’ capabilities in Palestine, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq and Yemen would be reduced. Is this assessment accurate?

A high-ranking source within this “Axis of the Resistance” said “Sardar Soleimani was the direct and fast track link between the partners of Iran and the Leader of the Revolution Sayyed Ali Khamenei. However, the command on the ground belonged to the national leaders in every single separate country. These leaders have their leadership and practices, but common strategic objectives to fight against the US hegemony, stand up to the oppressors and to resist illegitimate foreign intervention in their affairs. These objectives have been in place for many years and will remain, with or without Sardar Soleimani”.

“In Lebanon, Hezbollah’s Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah leads Lebanon and is the one with a direct link to the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. He supports Gaza, Syria, Iraq and Yemen and has a heavy involvement in these fronts. However, he leads a large number of advisors and officers in charge of running all military, social and relationship affairs domestically and regionally. Many Iranian IRGC officers are also present on many of these fronts to support the needs of the “Axis of the Resistance” members in logistics, training and finance,” said the source.

In Syria, IRGC officers coordinate with Russia, the Syrian Army, the Syrian political leadership and all Iran’s allies fighting for the liberation of the country and for the defeat of the jihadists who flocked to Syria from all continents via Turkey, Iraq and Jordan. These officers have worked side by side with Iraqi, Lebanese, Syrian and other nationals who are part of the “Axis of the Resistance”. They have offered the Syrian government the needed support to defeat the “Islamic State” (ISIS/IS/ISIL) and al-Qaeda and other jihadists or those of similar ideologies in most of the country – with the exception of north-east Syria, which is under US occupation forces. These IRGC officers have their objectives and the means to achieve a target already agreed and in place for years. The absence of Sardar Soleimani will hardly affect these forces and their plans.

Front left: President Rouhani, Sayyed Khamenei, IRGC-Quds Chief Ismail Qaani

In Iraq, over 100 Iranian IRGC officers have been operating in the country at the official request of the Iraqi government, to defeat ISIS. They served jointly with the Iraqi forces and were involved in supplying the country with weapons, intelligence and training after the fall of a third of Iraq into the hands of ISIS in mid-2014. It was striking and shocking to see the Iraqi Army, armed and trained by US forces for over ten years, abandoning its positions and fleeing the northern Iraqi cities. Iranian support with its robust ideology (with one of its allies, motivating them to fight ISIS) was efficient in Syria; thus, it was necessary to transmit this to the Iraqis so they could stand, fight, and defeat ISIS.

The Lebanese Hezbollah is present in Syria and Yemen, and also in Iraq. The Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki asked Sayyed Nasrallah to provide his country with officers to stand against ISIS. Dozens of Hezbollah officers operate in Iraq and will be ready to support the Iraqis if the US forces refuse to leave the country. They will abide by and enforce the decision of the Parliament that the US must leave by end January 2021. Hezbollah’s long warfare experience has resulted in painful experiences with the US forces in Lebanon and Iraq throughout several decades and has not been forgotten.

Sayyed Nasrallah, in his latest speech, revealed the presence in mid-2014 of Hezbollah officials in Kurdistan to support the Iraqi Kurds against ISIS. This was when the same Kurdish Leader Masoud Barzani announced that it was due to Iran that the Kurds received weapons to defend themselves when the US refused to help Iraq for many months after ISIS expanded its control in northern Iraq.

The Hezbollah leaders did not disclose the continuous visits of Kurdish representatives to Lebanon to meet Hezbollah officials. In fact, Iraqi Sunni and Shia officials, ministers and political leaders regularly visit Lebanon to meet Hezbollah officials and its leader. Hezbollah, like Iran, plays an essential role in easing the dialogue between Iraqis when these find it difficult to overcome their differences together.

Sayyed Ali Khamenei and IRGC General Ismail Qaani during the Iraq-Iran war

The reason why Sayyed Nasrallah revealed the presence of his officers in Kurdistan when meeting Masoud Barzani is a clear message to the world that the “Axis of the Resistance” doesn’t depend on one single person. Indeed, Sayyed Nasrallah is showing the unity which reigns among this front, with or without Sardar Soleimani. Barzani is part of Iraq, and Kurdistan expressed its readiness to abide by the decision of the Iraqi Parliament to seek the US forces’ departure from the country because the Kurds are not detached from the central government but part of it.

Prior to his assassination, Sardar Soleimani prepared the ground to be followed (if killed on the battlefield, for example) and asked Iranian officials to nominate General Ismail Qaani as his replacement. The Leader of the revolution Sayyed Ali Khamenei ordered Soleimani’s wish to be fulfilled and to keep the plans and objectives already in place as they were. Sayyed Khamenei, according to the source, ordered an “increase in support for the Palestinians and, in particular, to all allies where US forces are present.”

Sardar Soleimani was looking for his death by his enemies and got what he wished for. He was aware that the “Axis of the Resistance” is highly aware of its objectives. Those among the “Axis of the Resistance” who have a robust internal front are well-established and on track. The problem was mainly in Iraq. But it seems the actions of the US have managed to bring Iraqi factions together- by assassinating the two commanders. Sardar Soleimani could have never expected a rapid achievement of this kind. Anti-US Iraqis are preparing this coming Friday to express their rejection of the US forces present in their country.

Sayyed Ali Khamenei, in his Friday prayers last week, the first for eight years, set up a road map for the “Axis of the Resistance”: push the US forces out of the Middle East and support Palestine.

Iran general Ismail Qaani with Hamas Leader Ismail Haniya and various Palestinian leaders in Tehran.

All Palestinian groups, including Hamas, were present at Sardar Soleimani’s funeral in Iran and met with General Qaani who promised, “not only to continue support but to increase it according to Sayyed Khamenei’s request,” said the source. Ismail Haniyeh, Hamas Leader, said from Tehran: “Soleimani is the martyr of Jerusalem”.

Many Iraqi commanders were present at the meeting with General Qaani. Most of these have a long record of hostility towards US forces in Iraq during the occupation period (2003-2011). Their commander, Abu Mahdi al-Muhandes, was assassinated with Sardar Soleimani and they are seeking revenge. Those leaders have enough motivation to attack the US forces, who have violated the Iraq-US training, cultural and armament agreement. At no time was the US administration given a license to kill in Iraq by the government of Baghdad.

The Iraqi Parliament has spoken: and the assassination of Sardar Soleimani has indeed fallen within the ultimate objectives of the “Axis of the Resistance”. The Iraqi caretaker Prime Minister has officially informed all members of the Coalition Forces in Iraq that “their presence, including that of NATO, is now no longer required in Iraq”. They have one year to leave. But that absolutely does not exclude the Iraqi need to avenge their commanders.

Palestine constitutes the second objective, as quoted by Sayyed Khamenei. We cannot exclude a considerable boost of support for the Palestinians, much more than the actually existing one. Iran is determined to support the Sunni Palestinians in their objective to have a state of their own in Palestine. The man – Soleimani – is gone and is replaceable like any other man: but the level of commitment to goals has increased. It is hard to imagine the “Axis of the Resistance” remaining idle without engaging themselves somehow in the US Presidential campaign. So, the remainder of 2020 is expected to be hot.


By Elijah J. Magnier
Source: Elijah J. Magnier

Willfully and Consciously Demonizing Shia: the Leadership of the Pious

Mansoureh Tajik for The Saker Blog

January 23, 2020

Bismillah-ir-Rahman-ir-Rahim, “In the Name of God, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.” This essay may be billed as a companion to, or a rebuttal of, or a commentary on Pepe Escobar’s article titled, “The Roots of American Demonization of Shia Islam” posted here. I am uncertain about a suitable label. Perhaps the readers could formulate a mental tag & file as they deem appropriate.

The core thesis of Pepe Escobar’s article relates to “Shia Islam and the failure of the West to understand it.” It is stated, “the congenital incapacity of so-called US elites to even attempt to understand Shi’ism – thus 24/7 demonization, demeaning not only Shias by also Shia-led governments.” Let’s suppose we know what is meant by “US elites” here. Let us suppose it means a network of formal and informal financial, military, and political entities that have the power and the means to influence and control the ultimate decisions and the actions of the United States as a collective. The statement, as structured, appears to suggest that “demonization and demeaning Shias and Shia-led governments” is a consequence, a product, an effect, if you will, of an “incapacity” by those elites “to attempt to understand Shi’ism”. In other words, they bash it because they do not have the capacity to understand it. No evidence was provided to support this causal link.

In the essay before you, I assert precisely the opposite and provide empirical as well as logical evidence that demonstrate the demonization and demeaning of Shia and Shia-led governments is because those elites understand EXACTLY what Shia is all about. I would go even further and explain, with evidence, what core elements about Shia make those so-called elites so scared and horrified that they have little choice but to continue their demonization campaign against Shia. Before filling these two very tall orders, however, it would be useful to first discuss and respond to several key points raised in Pepe Escobar’s article as a prelude to the essay itself.

Firstly, the article upholds there is a “congenital incapacity of US elites to attempt to understand Shi’ism.”  To the best of our knowledge, there is no congenital (present at birth) defects that adversely predisposes anyone to be incapable of understanding Shia. Nor is there any evidence of any genetic disorder or hereditary predisposition in the world and among people (elite or non-elite) that bars anyone from understanding Shia people and/or governments established based on the principles of Shia school of thought. If there is, we, the Shia, would like to see it.

Of course, this is not to disregard freedom and rights afforded by poetic license and/or to show that effectiveness of caricatured expressions to drive a point home are not appreciated. Rather, we do not wish to help corner anyone, not even figuratively, into any sort of inescapable trap of imagined incapacitation to understand Shia.

Secondly and with respect to “some serious academic research about the appeal of Shi’ism,” there is already a large body of serious academic research that explores and examines not only the appeal of Shia school of thought but also the essential features that make it an effective force. Indeed, these are the very evidence that when we look into and examine, we realize the animosity of the “Western elites” (with the US being its current façade and flag bearer) is not out of some misunderstanding or a random and/or institutionalized ignorance but a calculated, deliberate, and conscious malevolence. A few of these research is addressed in the essay as well.

Thirdly, regarding the suggestion for “visits to selected sacred sites across Southwest Asia: Najaf, Karbala, Mashhad, Qom and the Sayyida Zeinab shrine near Damascus,” by all means, this is an excellent advice. But those who visit should do so with an open heart in order to truly experience how it feels like to be welcomed with open arms by true patrons of those holy sites. Knowing who they are, how they lived, and what they did is paramount to gaining a better understanding about why they are so revered and avidly guarded by the Shia.

Fourthly, with respect to the statement by Dr. Marandi quoted in the article, “The American irrational hatred of Shi’ism stems from its strong sense of resisting injustice,” more needs to be said. It is true that resisting oppression and aggression, fighting against injustice, and defending those who are oppressed in the world are all core beliefs in Shia school of thought. Also, it is true that we have living examples of martyrs who sacrificed everything they had for their belief. However, that is neither the whole story nor unique only to Shia. There are other schools of thought that might be engaged in similar efforts but are not demonized as Shia is. Not only that, some of those ideologies are even propped up, by these very elites, as examples to follow in Shia’s stead and to even fight Shia. Since I am familiar with Dr. Marandi’s work, I presume the above statement may have been extracted from a much larger and more comprehensive context and explanation.

Fifthly, with regard to Blake Archer Williams’ argument titled, A Reaction from Tehran to the Martyrdom of General Qāsem Soleymānī,” it is evident that he provided his real-time reaction to the news of the martyrdom of Shahid Sardar Soleymani in that essay. An analytical response to the question posed to him at a time when he is not in the midst of grieving will certainly produce a more cogent and focused response. Nevertheless, he wrote, “So the role of the politician in democracies seems not to be to try to understand anything but simply carry out the agenda of the elites who own them.” This is a fair assessment of the referenced politicians. However, it does not directly answer the reasons behind a serious aversion of their elite handlers and the barrage of sustained multi-pronged attacks against Shia. The answer is somewhat hidden within layers elsewhere in the article in a reference to the history of the West and Muslim interactions in the 18th and 19th centuries.

Furthermore, martyrdom is cited as a key deciding factor. Yes, martyrdom, by its very nature and design, makes things easier for Shia to fight and resist earnestly and robustly. At the same time, it makes it costlier for the oppressors to regress further into their corrupt and criminal ways. But martyrdom explains only one part, albeit a critical part, of Shia’s effectiveness. It does not explain the full picture. And it does not explain it as cause for adamant aversion demonstrated by US elites against Shia.

Lastly, regarding Princess Vittoria who “would rather frame the debate around the unquestioning American attitude towards Wahhabism” and stating she does not think “this has anything to do with hating Shi’ism or ignoring it,” for the sake of clarity, I must first state that Wahhabism to Islam is what homosexuality is to nature: an anomaly and a deviance. Full stop. Without sustained propaganda and active support by the West to shove either of them as anything legitimate down people’s throat, neither will see the light of the day and neither will amount to anything more than arbitrary aberrations meant to be expelled.

Therefore I found it odd that real origin of Wahhabism, both as an ideological tool and as a movement, which was adopted and perfected by Western elites, particularly Britain, to counter Islam and Muslims is overlooked. Given that Shia is (and has been) on the top of the Wahhabies’ hit list, based on what logic it could then be deducted that this has nothing to do with Shia? Here, too, I imagine extraction of a few lines out of a much larger context might have made the statement a curious one.

As for “Iranian revolution and Shia groups in the Middle East are today the only successful force of resistance to the US, and that causes them to be hated more than others. But only after all other Sunni opponents had been disposed of, killed, terrified (just think of Algeria, but there are dozens of other examples) or corrupted.” The point is well taken but it raises two more serious questions: 1) What made Shia the only successful force of resistance (thus the target of severe hatred. as asserted)? 2) What made the other Sunni opponents so disposable, terrified, and corrupt? The answer to these two questions, too, are addressed in this essay.

With this brief forward, we attend to main aims of the essay. One is to show so-called US elites demonize and demean Shia and Shia-led governments because they understand EXACTLY what Shia is. And the second is to answer the question of what the absolute essential elements of Shia are that make those so-called elites so horrified that they have no other choice but to continue their demonization campaign against Shia. We begin attending to the two aims using a few relevant examples in recent history.

In November 1891, Seyyed Mohammad Hassan Husayni Nouri Shirazi, better known as Mirzaye Shirazi, issued a short fatwa which simply read:

“Bismillah-ir-Rahman-ir-Rahim, On this day, use of tobacco and tobacco products in any way and shape is equivalent to a war with Imam-e Zaman (May God Hasten his return).”[1]

Handwritten Fatwa by Mirzaye Shirazi regarding Tobacco Prohibition

This seemingly simple line began what is now known as “Tobacco Movement” in Iran. Immediately following the distribution of that fatwa among the public, the people of Iran burnt and destroyed any and all tobacco products and any related paraphernalia. The fatwa, in effect, made null and void a series of concessions made in secret by then corrupt king, Naseriddin Shah Ghajar, to the British company, Talbot. The concessions had given Britain the exclusive rights to everything that had anything to do with tobacco in Iran for a period of fifty years. In exchange, Naseriddin Shah would receive an insignificant sum which itself was to be used to pay back for an extortionate loan the king had received from Britain for his decadence and wasteful indulgences. All these at the expense of the Iranian nation.

Plenty of archived documents, books, and articles are produced in English around this movement.[2,3,4] A simple search in the literature using relevant key words produces hundreds of documents dating back to the beginning of the movement in 19th Century. Everything including the roles played by the clergy, the merchants, the devout Shia population, the women of the royal court, westoxicated[5] intellectuals[6], and more is studied by academic and not-so-academic centers in Britain, France, US, and others in the West. It would take a unique form of tenacity to flip through page after pages of these documents and not admit that the West knows what Shia is all about.

From our side of the hedge, it is evident that Iranians, especially the clergy, knew what challenges would follow. In his memoires, Ayatullah Seyyed Hasan Modarres (1871-1937), revered scholar and Mujtahid, wrote,[7]

“When I went to Najaf, I visited Mirzaye Shirazi who was in Samerah. I told him the story of our triumph over the tobacco event. I saw signs of worry appeared on his face. He remained silent and tears began rolling down his face. I was surprised by his reaction. I had expected to make him happy with that news. When I asked him about it, he said, ‘Now, the malevolent powers and enemies of Islam realize where the main power of this nation and the focal point of Shia movements’ strength is. I am now seriously worried about the future of the Islamic nation.” [Page 138]

Ayatullah Modarres further wrote about the dynamic interplay between the role of the people and the role of ulama (pious and learned scholars of Islam and Quran) and in bringing about an effective outcome,

“Mirza’s fatwa was a flame that was set in caches of gunpowder hidden deeply within the hearts of the Iranian people. If these hearts were not filled with such gunpowder, a piece of paper with a few broken lines written with a faded ink could not have possibly produced such blazing flames.”[8]

Elsewhere he wrote,

“The tobacco event was like a canon fired at dawn. It awakened an astute nation from its slumber and informed people that a relentless quake must follow. The masses of people had not been informed of the depth of the matter but they felt the danger since they trusted their ulama. So, they mobilized and followed them.”[9]

Tobacco movement, or Nehzat_e Tanbakoo as it is called in Iran, and what transpired thereafter were only an exercise and a practice run for the next nehzat (movement), Nehzat_e Mashrooteh, or Constitutional Movement[10] of 1906. The pivotal role ulama played in this movement, too, is well studied —indubitably more by the outsiders than by the insiders. Those interested could do a literature search and find plenty of sources to keep them busy for months. A note of caution though, the framing of various research in this area to examine the role various groups played (like any other research in the world) often betrays the hidden agenda of those who financed the research for exploitative purposes. Therefore, it is important to “follow the money” as part of your overall assessment of any document. Beware, as well, that they often pull “a Harvard”[11] or “a Reuters”[12] and the actual sources of funding may be kept hidden for decades.

Notable clerical figures[13] in the constitutional movement included Sheykh Fazullah Nouri, Akhound Khorasani, Seyyed Abdullah Behbahani, Hasan Modarres, and Seyyed Muhammad Tabatabei. The clergy, again, played a critical role in informing, mobilizing, and leading the masses in support of the constitutional movement. The basic rationale was that anything that limits the power of corrupt kings and cuts off the hands of foreign powers is a positive step forward.

However, once the clergy and believing people realized the influence of Western agents and their operatives, secular and westoxicated intellectuals in drafting the constitution, they began their open defiance.[14] Every single one of the cleric directly involved in the constitutional were killed.

Late Imam Khomeini (God rest his soul) in a couple of his speeches dissected this tragedy as follows,

“In the constitutional [movement] they saw one or a few mulla in Najaf, a few turban-headed mulla in Tehran turned the foundation of tyrannical and despotic rulers upside down and established constitutional limits. Here, those who opposed did not sit still. They were active, too. If we were to tell the story, it gets really long. But about this very constitutional limits, Sheykh Fazullah Nouri (God rest his soul) stood up and said, ‘the constitution must be based on the rule of God. The rules must agree with Islamic rules.’ At the same time as he was saying these things, he also worked on the addendum to the constitution. That was his efforts, too. His opponents and the foreigners, when they saw such power in the clergy they pulled such tricks that, in Iran, Sheykh Fazlullah who was a Mujahid and high status Mujtahid, they fabricated a show trial and they put a deviant cleric look-alike to try and convict him. Then they hanged him in the middle of Tupkhaneh and in the presence of a large crowd.”[15]

“You gentlemen have all heard about the constitutional period. A bunch of people did not want Islam to have any power in this country. And they were after turning the situation to their own advantage. They poisoned the atmosphere so much that someone like late Agha Sheykh Fazlullah who was a notable figure in Iran then, and was favored, they made such a poisonous atmosphere that they hanged him in the middle of a square and some stood around and clapped. This was a plot to cast aside Islam. And they did. After that, the constitution was not the sort of constitution that the ulama in Najaf wanted. Even the subject of late Agha Sheykh Fazlullah was portrayed in such a distorted way that not even a peep came out of there [Najaf]. This climate they created in Iran and elsewhere, this climate facilitated Agha Sheykh Fazullah’s conviction in the hands of some of these very clerics of Iran itself. Then they brought him into the middle of the square and hanged him. Then, they stood and clapped. They struck a blow against Islam at that time. And people were heedless. And even the ulama were heedless.”[16]

A series of similar movements that followed could be presented, dissected, and examined at length. The Iranian oil nationalization movement in 1951 to cut off the British hand[17, 18], for example, in which Dr. Mohammad Mossadegh, then elected prime minister, was able to bring about (though it was very short lived) again with the help of very influential clerics such as Ayatullah Seyyed Abulghasem Kashani, Ayatullah Vaez-Zadeh Khorasani, Ayatullah Mohammad Taqi Khansari, and more who rallied the masses of people behind him. Once Mossadegh succeeded, however, he and his secular cabinet became too trusting of and too lenient toward another foreign power, the US. The coup d’etat of 1953 (Operation Ajax) by the US, followed by the Iranian Oil Consortium Agreement of 1954[19] gave foreign companies 40% of Iranian oil, effectively replaced Britain by the US as the master of the Pahlavi regime followed by decades of killing, imprisonment, torture, and sending to exile of thousands of people.

Imam Khomeini’s speeches in June 1963 and the uprisings that followed, his powerful speech in 1964 and the movement by the religious scholars, his exile that year and unrelenting struggles that led to the Islamic Revolution of 1979, have all been well examined and documented.

Finally, a fully functioning Islamic Republic based on tenets of Shia Islam was established thanks to two significant factors: 1) An active, aware, fearless, and devout Shia community ready to receive the message of its believing, pious, wise, and brave religious leaders; 2) An active, aware, fearless, and pious imam and leader. Article 1 of the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran confirms the establishment of an Islamic system of government based on “Iranian Nations’ long lasting belief in Quran’s authority in Truth and Justice following a victorious revolution under the leadership of eminent source of emulation, Grand Ayatullah Imam Khomeini.”[20]

Article 2 of the constitution clearly spells out the 5 pillars (primary principles) of Shia Islam and the responsibility of the Shia community as follows,

“Islamic Republic is a system based on a belief in:

  1. The Oneness of God (there is no god but God), the Governance and Laws belong to Him, the necessity to submit to God’s laws [Tawhid];
  2. The revelations and the essential role they play in describing the laws [Nubuwwah, or Prophethood];
  3. Mi’ad [The Hereafter, the Day of Judgment, Return of everything to God] and its constructive role in propelling human evolution toward God;
  4. God’s Justice [Adl] in all creations and rules;
  5. Imammat (the guardianship of infallible Imams) and uninterrupted leadership of the pious and their role in the continuation of the Islamic Revolution;
  6. Human dignity, human excellence, and liberty integrated with responsibility before God by means of: a) ongoing scholarship by the learned and fully qualified Faqih based on the Book and the tradition of the infallibles (God’s Peace be upon them all); b) use of science, technology, and progressive human experiences and struggle to move them forward; c) defiance of all oppressors, tyrants, and any form of oppression, and establishment of justice, equity, and independence in political, economic, social, cultural, and that which ensures national unity.”[21]

On March 21, 1979, nearly 98.2% of eligible voters in Iran said “yes” to an Islamic Republic. After 40 years, 9 months, and 13 days of sustained, relentless, and unparalleled multifaceted military, economic, and media attacks by so-called elites of the West, tens of millions of people poured into streets to mourn one of their most beloved soldiers of God. Why? Because he heard the commands of his wise and pious leader, his devoted wali, Seyyed Ali, and he obeyed in upholding the constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the end. We congratulate and envy his martyrdom.

So, what is so special about this constitution? A lot but we will focus on what is more relevant to this essay. It contains the answer to the question why “24/7 demonization, demeaning not only Shias by also Shia-led governments by so-called US elites” that was posed by Pepe Escobar.

The constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran says the leadership, the governance, the imamat, if you will, the guardianship of the people and nations of the world and their affairs cannot be and must not be entrusted to anyone other than pious, righteous, non-corrupt, just, wise, learned, fearless, and selfless leaders. For Shia, it would be an Imam. In his absence, his rightful Nayib or vice-Imam, the one who most closely resembles him in piety of thoughts, words, and deeds.

The so-called elites would have had nothing to fear if Shia, too, accepted any corrupt, depraved, and sinful jester as their leader and the guardian of their affairs. Only if Shia could have been a normal community and satisfied with the choice between bad, worse, ugly, or the lesser evils. أَعـوذُ بِاللهِ مِنَ الشَّيْـطانِ الرَّجيـم (I seek refuge in God from the accursed Satan).

References

[1] Najafi M (1398). “Andisheh-ye Siasi dar Nehzat-haye Islami Tariq Mo’aser Iran” (Political Thoughts in Islamic Movements of Contemporary History of Iran). Special Collection No. 12On the Occasion of the 1st of Jamadi ul-Awal, the Anniversary of the Issuance of Fatwa in Prohibition of Tobacco. Available online at: http://moaser.iki.ac.ir/book/export/html/339

[2] Gillard D, Bourne K, Watt DC (1985). Great Britain Foreign Office. British documents on foreign affairs. Reports and papers from the Foreign Office confidential print. Part I, From the mid-nineteenth century to the First World War. Series B, The Near and Middle East, 1856-1914. Vol. 13: Persia, Britain and Russia, 1886-1907. Vol. 14: Persia, Britain and Russia, 1907-1914. University Publications of America.

[3] Keddie NR (1966). Religion and Rebellion in Iran: The Tobacco Protest of 1891-1892. Frank Cass & CO Ltd. Publisher. ISBN:071461971X, 9780714619712.

[4] Oxford Dictionary of Islam (2020). “Tobacco Protest (Iran): 1891 – 92.” Available online at: http://www.oxfordislamicstudies.com/article/opr/t125/e2389

[5] Westoxification is a term used as a translation of the term “Gharbzadegi” coined by Iranian scholar, Jalal Al-e Ahmad in his well know book by the same name.

[6] Mahmoodi K & Jelodar ES (2011). “Orientalized from Within: Modernity and Modern Anti-Imperial Iranian Intellectual Gharbzadegi and the Roots of Mental Wretchedness.” Canadian Center for Science and Education. doi:10.5539/ach.v3n2p19. Available online at: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/272693398_Orientalized_from_Within_Modernity_and_Modern_Anti-Imperial_Iranian_Intellectual_Gharbzadegi_and_the_Roots_of_Mental_Wretchedness

[7] Najafi M, Isfahani Karbalaei H, and Ja’afarian R (1373 HS), Sade-ye Tahrim-e Tanbakoo (The Century of the Prohibition of Tobacco), In Persian. 1st Edition. Amir Kabir Publishing. Tehran, Iran.

[8] Ibid. Page 130.

[9] Ibid. Page 139.

[10] Oxford Islamic Studies Online (2020). “Constitutional Revolution (Iran).” Available online at: http://www.oxfordislamicstudies.com/article/opr/t125/e450

[11] Camila Domonoske (2016). “50 Years Ago, Sugar Industry Quietly Paid Scientists To Point Blame At Fat.” National Public Radio, September 13, 2016. Available online at: https://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2016/09/13/493739074/50-years-ago-sugar-industry-quietly-paid-scientists-to-point-blame-at-fat

[12] Guy Falconbridge (2020). “Britain secretly funded Reuters in 1960s and 1970s: documents.” Reuters, January 13, 2020. Available online at: https://www.reuters.com/article/us-britain-media/britain-secretly-funded-reuters-in-1960s-and-1970s-documents-idUSKBN1ZC20H

[13] Hermann D (2012). “Akhund Khurasani and the Iranian Constitutional Movement.” Journal of Middle Eastern Studies, 49(3): 430-453.

[14] Shirkhani A & Rezaei M (1390 HS). Naqsh_e Rohaniat dar Enghelab Mashrouteh (The Role of the Clergy in the Constitutional Movement). Islamic Revolution Studies, Summer 1390. In Persian. Available online at: http://ensani.ir/file/download/article/20120419195128-8054-21.pdf

[15] Sahifeye Noor, Collection of speeches, messages, interviews, decrees, religious permits, and letters by Imam Khomeini. Vol. 13, Page 175.

[16] Sahifeye Noor, Collection of speeches, messages, interviews, decrees, religious permits, and letters by Imam Khomeini. Vol. 18, Page 181.

[17] Keesing’s Record of World Events (formerly Keesing’s Contemporary Archives), Volume VIII, July, 1951 Persia, Iranian, Page 11569 © 1931-2006 Keesing’s Worldwide, LLC -All Rights Reserved. Available online at: http://web.stanford.edu/group/tomzgroup/pmwiki/uploads/3195-1951-07-Keesings-a-OEP.pdf

[18] International Court of Justice Reports of Judgments, Advisory Opinions and Orders Anglo-Iranian Oil Co. Case (United Kingdom v. Iran) Preliminary Objection judgment of Jul 22nd, 1952. Available online at: https://www.icj-cij.org/files/case-related/16/016-19520722-JUD-01-00-EN.pdf

[19] Heiss MA (1994). “The United States, Great Britain, and the Creation of the Iranian Oil Consortium, 1953-1954.” The International History Review, 16(3): 511-535. Taylor & Francis, Ltd. Publishing.

[20] Fathi M & Koohi Isfehani K (Editors.). Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Iran with Commentaries and Interpretation by Guardian Council (1359-1396). Guardian Council Research Center, Tehran. 1397. Article 1, Page 14. Available online at: https://www.shora-gc.ir/files/fa/news/1398/9/21/4354_236.pdf

[21] Ibid. Article 2, Page 14.

IRAN IS READY TO ATTACK AGAIN: WILL THE US FORCES WITHDRAW FROM IRAQ?

Posted on  by Elijah J Magnier

By Elijah J. Magnier:@ejmalrai

Iraq is preparing for demonstrations by a million protestors, called for by Iraqi Shia leader Sayyed Moqtada al-Sadr, as a show of solidarity among Iraqis insisting on the immediate withdrawal of the US-led coalition and all foreign forces stationed in the country. Preparations are set for civilians, families, militants and armed companions of the commander of the Popular Mobilisation Forces (PMF) Abu Mahdi al-Muhandes to march in the streets to send a message to US-led foreign forces. This is a peaceful message, the first of its kind. However, it is most unlikely that subsequent messages will be peaceful. Can the US-led coalition leave in peace?

According to a high-ranking officer within the “Axis of the Resistance”, “Iran has sworn to avenge its officers assassinated at Baghdad airport. These are Major General Qassem Soleimani and his companions Brigadier General Hossein Pour Jafari, Colonel Shahroud Mozaffari nia, Major Hadi Taremi, and Captain Vahid Zamanian. This attack was a real blow. Iran did not expect the US to declare open war when President Donald Trump was about to start his electoral campaign. Iran did not anticipate the US’s misjudgement of the consequences of such an act of war. Now Iran has taken stock of the situation, has come to terms with its losses, and is preparing to ensure that the assassination of its officers will be remembered in the US for many years.”

For US forces in Iraq, what options are available? How will the Iraqis deal with these forces, soon to be considered an occupying force, thus legitimising armed resistance attacks against the US? Is Iran preparing for a “war through its allies”?

The options, in fact, are simple: either US forces stay in Iraq and come under attack – or they leave, permanently. The US forces cannot stay in areas under Shia control. It might be possible to manage a short stay in the western al-Anbar desert, close to the Syrian borders, or a departure for Iraqi Kurdistan. 

US bases in Kurdistan are not isolated, and therefore not exempt from potential Iranian reprisals. The Iranian bombing of Ayn al-Assad and the US base in Erbil was a message to Trump that no base in Iraq is secure. Iran has friends and allies in Iraqi Kurdistan and can make life for the US forces very difficult.

Any US attempt to divide Kurdistan from Baghdad will be met with harsh Turkish and Iranian reactions. It will also force Baghdad to stop its financial support to the region, which will have an impact since oil-rich Kirkuk is under the control of Iraqi government forces and no longer part of the Iraqi region of Kurdistan.

All military bases in Iraq are occupied by two distinct forces: one part is under the Iraqi forces’ control and the other under US forces’ control. The Iraqi Prime Minister will have no choice but to order the withdrawal of all Iraqi forces from bases where US forces are established, once the US forces are formally designated an occupation force and refuse to withdraw. This will make it possible for the Iraqi resistance to attack the bases without risking Iraqi casualties.

Furthermore, it has now become too dangerous for the US to conduct military training programs. US forces can be attacked during training sessions by Iraqis who want these forces to leave. The friends of brigades 45 and 46, the two brigades attacked by the US on the Syrian-Iraqi borders, and those faithful to their commander Abu Mahdi will be just waiting to strike US service personnel at the first available opportunity.

In addition, no US oil company can stay in Iraq: US personnel risk becoming “soft targets” for kidnapping or killing by local Iraqis. No force can protect the US companies and Iraq will not find it difficult to allow China – the Chinese have already expressed their readiness to compensate foreign companies willing to leave – to replace them. The consequences of the targeted killings will be dire for the US in general.

Iran has delivered precision missiles to the Iraqis, who are eager to avenge their assassinated commander Abu Mahdi al-Muhandes and expel the US from Mesopotamia. Iran would be happy to supply the necessary precision missiles to fill up Iraqi warehouses and see the number of US casualties increasing just before the US forthcoming electoral campaign! There is little hope for Trump to end his years as President without US casualties in Iraq and Syria.

In Syria US forces are present around the oil fields, but with no real benefit to the US. Trump has said he “doesn’t need the oil from the Middle East”, avowing in effect that his decision to stay is linked to another objective, not hard to find: to please Israel. 

Israel is taking advantage of the US presence at al-Tanf and in north-east Syria to attack targets in Syria by violating Iraqi airspace. Israel hides behind the US presence to intimidate Iran and its allies, dissuading them from retaliating for the hundreds of attacks carried on in the last years. Trump will find it extremely difficult to justify US service personnel casualties on the grounds of stealing Syrian oil. The US presence represents a legitimate reason for the Syrians and their allies to hit back at the occupation forces who are forcibly taking the Syrian oil and no longer fighting ISIS. 

Any attempt to mobilise the street with protests and the burning of offices and governmental institutions will no longer be met lightly nor idly by the Iraqi resistance, if (as is not only possible but expected) there is evidence of US involvement behind the scenes.

Sayyed Moqtada al-Sadr has assumed the lead of the resistance against the US presence. He is now acknowledged as the leader of the resistance, gathering under his wings all groups who fought against ISIS in Iraq and in Syria. This is a suitable position for Sayyed Moqtada as long as he fulfils this role and maintains it. 

The Sadrist followers can easily create havoc for the US forces. Moqtada al-Sadr’s long experience in fighting the US is not unfamiliar to Washington. And if he hesitates, other leaders will emerge. Iraq’s allies within the “Axis of the Resistance” are also present in Iraq, ready to help. It won’t be long before the US realises the consequences it will have provoked for its criminal targeted assassinations and violations of Iraq sovereignty and its virtual declaration of war on Iran.

The cards are now on the table. Trump and Iran are fighting an undeclared war. The US forces are standing on a ground very familiar to Iran and its allies, who can move more freely than the US forces. The designated battlefields are Iraq first and Syria second.

Proofread byMaurice Brasher and C.B.G

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Copyright © https://ejmagnier.com  2020

هشاشة «دولة نتن ياهو العظمى» انظروا إليه يتهاوى ومعه كيانه

محمد صادق الحسيني

يجمع مخاصموه في الداخل كما أعداؤه خارج الكيان على أنه يتساقط ويأفل نجمه مهما حاول أن يظهر بمظهر البطل…!

وحال كيانه المنتفخ رغم تراجع دوره الوظيفي ليس بأحسن من حاله مهما طالت أيام بقائه بعض الوقت وهي الآيلة للنفاد وباتت معدودة…!

وإليكم شهادة من جنسه ومن جنس كيانه:

1 ـ نشر موقع ديبكا الاستخباري الإسرائيلي، وهو بالتأكيد ليس صديقاً لمحور المقاومة، يوم 19/1/2020، موضوعاً حول الضربة الصاروخية الإيرانية، لقاعدة عين الأسد الأميركية في العراق، أهمّ ما جاء فيه هو التالي:

ـ انّ إيران قد استخدمت تكنولوجيا ملاحة (أنظمة توجيه وتحديد مواقع) روسية المنشأ اسمها غلاسنوس Glasnoss، وهي أنظمة تشبه نظام تحديد المواقع الأميركي لتحديد المواقع المسمّى: GPS.

ـ كما انّ إيران أطلقت 19 صاروخاً، على قاعدة عين الأسد، أصابت 17 منها قلب الأهداف التي ضربتها (تسمّى هذه النوعية في الإصابات بالانجليزية🙂Dead Center Strike ).

ـ وتابع موقع ديبكا قائلاً إنّ مصادره الاستخبارية، الأميركية والإسرائيلية، التي لم تكن تعلم شيئاً عن هذه القدرات الإيرانية، قد أكدت دهشتها من دقة الإصابات الإيرانية.

ـ وأردف الموقع قائلاً: بغضّ النظر عن منشأ تكنولوجيا الملاحة والتوجيه، التي استخدمها الإيرانيون في الضربة الصاروخية، فإنّ الحقيقة الثابتة هي: أنّ كلّ الأهداف (هم يعنون الأهداف الإسرائيلية إضافة إلى الأميركية) التي تقع ضمن دائرة قطرها 700 كم معرّضة للإصابات الدقيقة.

تقييمنا: عندما تعترف الأجهزة الاستخباريّة والأمنية الإسرائيلية، بما ورد أعلاه، فإنها تقول لمنفوش الريش، (الطاووس الأجوف) نتن ياهو، انّ تبجّحاتك عن أحلاف تقول إنك نجحت في إقامتها، عبر الشرق الأوسط لا قيمة لها على الإطلاق، طالما أنّ حلف المقاومة يملك قدرات صاروخية هائلة، ذات مديات مختلفة وقادرة على ضرب وتدمير أيّ هدف في الكيان وهي تملك الآلاف منها.

وبما أنّ القيادة العسكرية والأمنية الإسرائيلية تعرف تمام المعرفة أنها وسيدها الأميركي عاجزتان عن ضرب المدن الصاروخية الإيرانية او صوامع الصواريخ الدقيقة المقامة تحت الأرض، التي تمتلكها قوات حلف المقاومة في فلسطين ولبنان وسورية والعراق وايران، فإنها تعرف أيضاً أنّ أيّ حرب ستدخلها ضدّ قوات الحلف ستنتهي بزوال «إسرائيل» حتماً وليس أقلّ من ذلك.

2 ـ أما صحيفة «جيروزاليم بوست» فقد نشرت، يوم 19/1/2020، موضوعاً على موقعها الالكتروني، بقلم الصحافية أنّْا اهارونهايم (من أصل ألماني)، أكدت فيه على نقاط عدة مهمة توضح هشاشة جيش «دولة نتن ياهو العظمى» وعدم استعداده، لا بل عدم قدرته، على الدخول في أيّ حرب ضد قوات حلف المقاومة. إذ ركزت الصحافية على نقاط عديدة أهمّها:

ـ إنّ 32,9 % من المكلفين بالخدمة العسكرية، من الشبان والشابات في «إسرائيل»، يتخلّفون عن أدائها. بالإضافة إلى ذلك فإنّ سلطات الجيش تقوم بإعفاء 15% من الفتيات، المكلفات بالخدمة العسكرية، من هذه الخدمة لأسباب متعدّدة.

ـ أضاف موقع «جيروزاليم بوست»، الذي نقل معلوماته عن صحيفة «يديعوت أحرونوت»، التي نشرت بدورها إحصائيات رسمية للجيش «الإسرائيلي»، أضاف قائلاً إنّ 9,47 % من المجنّدين لا يكملون مدة الخدمة العسكرية الإلزامية. كما انّ مجموع من يتمّ اعفاؤهنّ من الخدمة العسكرية من الفتيات، ولأسباب عديده، يصل الى 3,44%.

ـ أما الطامة الكبرى فتتمثل في رفض ما مجموعه 65% من المجنّدين الخدمة في الوحدات القتالية في الجيش، حسب إحصائيات الجيش، التي نشرتها صحيفة «يديعوت أحرونوت»، عن سنة 2018. بينما أشارت إحصائيات سنة 2011 الى رفض 81% من المجنّدين الخدمة في الوحدات القتالية.

تقييمنا: بالرغم من تراجع نسبة الرافضين للخدمة في الوحدات القتالية، من 81% سنة 2011 إلى 65% سنة 2018، حسب ادّعاء كاتبة المقال، فإنّ هذه النسبة تعني أنّ ثلثي عديد جيش «دولة نتن ياهو العظمى» يرفضون الخدمة في الوحدات القتالية في الجيش. أيّ أنهم يرفضون دخول الحرب او حتى معركة بين الحروب، كما يحلو لأبي الريش المنفوش وقيادته أن يسمّوا اعتداءاتهم المتواصلة ضدّ الشعب الفلسطيني واللبناني والسوري والعراقي.

وهذا يعني أيضاً أنّ التهديدات التي أطلقها رئيس أركان الجيش الإسرائيلي قبل أيّام، حول استراتيجية تدمير أهداف العدو، من خلال الهجمات الجوية والبرية المنسقة والمركزة، ليست سوى قرع في طبول حرب فارغة.

فأين هي القوات البرية التي تخطط لزجّها في هجوم بري على أهداف العدو؟ وهل أنت متأكد من انّ سلاحك الجوي سيكون له أيّ دور في الحرب؟ ولماذا لا تضع في حسبانك ان تتحوّل أجواء «دولتك العظمى» الى منطقة حظر طيران؟ ما يعني أنّ قواتك المدرّعة والقوات المحمولة وقوات المشاة ستتحوّل إلى لقمة سائغة وطرية لقوات حلف المقاومة، سيتمّ القضاء عليها قضاءً مبرماً خلال ساعات قليلة، مما يضع حداً لوجود «دولتكم العظمى» وتتحرّر فلسطين كاملة.

ألَمْ تفاجَأوا بنظام الملاحة الذي استخدمته إيران، في توجيه صواريخها الى قاعدة عين الأسد، في العراق؟ وألمْ تفاجَأوا بدقة إصابات تلك الصواريخ لأهدافها في عين الأسد؟

فلماذا لا تتوقعون تدمير أهدافكم، العسكرية والاستراتيجية بما فيها مفاعلكم النووي، من خلال استخدام أضعاف أضعاف عدد الصواريخ التي ضربت عين الأسد، وربما بقوة تفجير أكبر بكثير؟

إنّ العقل السليم يقول إنّ عليكم أن تفكروا بطريقة مختلفة وأن تتعلموا نظرية «الرِيال بوليتيك السياسية» (Realpolitik ـ تكتب بهذه الطريقة لأنها كلمة ألمانية وهي نظرية ألمانية أسّسها المستشار الألماني السابق فيللي براندت، والتي طبّقها في تعامله مع المعسكر الاشتراكي في سبعينيات القرن الماضي).

وهو ما يعني تحديداً انّ عليكم البدء في الاستعداد لترحيل مستوطنيكم الى بلادهم الأصلية، التي قدموا منها الى فلسطين، لأنّ الواقع وموازين القوى الميدانية، لا يسمح لكم بأكثر من ذلك…

فكروا بالهروب الآمن قبل فوات الأوان.

فكروا في تفكيك قاعدتكم والحفاظ على أرواحكم…

تأكدوا أنه لا مكان لكم بيننا أكثر مما مكثتم حتى الآن.

حان وقت رحيلكم كما حان وقت استرداد حقوقنا كلها المادية منها والمعنوية دون أيّ تفريط حتى في قطرات الندى فوق أوراق أشجارنا وطنين حشرات بلادنا والبحر والأنهار ودورة الليل والنهار…

لا تبديل لحكم الله.

بعدنا طيبين، قولوا الله…

مقالات متعلقة

Hezbollah Deputy SG Sheikh Naim Qassem: Murderer Will Face Thousands of Hajj Soleimani’s Likes Who Will Avenge Him

By Fatima Deeb Hamzah

Lebanon – Hajj Qassem Soleimani wasn’t just a person. He was also a project, and a project does not die. From Beirut to Tehran to Kerman, Baghdad and Damascus, Soleimani was at every place and at every time, specifically in al-Quds [Jerusalem], the final destination of the broader jihad in the project of the resistance and its axis.    

But the international and regional scene changed significantly. The assassination of the commander of the axis, which extends along the aforementioned cities, has reshuffled cards and accounts. What comes after the assassination? How did the crime impact the capital of the Islamic Revolution? And what about Lebanon?

In an attempt to outline the features of the coming stage, al-Ahed sat down with Hezbollah’s Deputy Secretary-General, His Eminence Sheikh Naim Qassem, just days after his return from Iran.

Hajj Qassem Soleimani’s martyrdom reignited the revolution

Before talking about the dimensions of the developments and their importance, Sheikh Qassem talked about what he saw during his participation in the funeral procession and consolation ceremony of Hajj Qassem Soleimani.

From Tehran to Kerman, His Eminence described a monumental scene.

“Neither contemporary nor ancient history witnessed a funeral procession on this scale. Various Iranian regions saw million-man marches in which the youth element was predominant. This aspect bears the connotations of a revolution that is still radiant and rooted in the spirituality of the Iranian people.”

Sheikh Qassem recounted how the large crowds on the streets and squares prolonged the journey from their place of residence to the University of Tehran. He also told us how he saw Soleimani in all the faces of the participants and those who loved him. After talking about the family of martyr Soleimani and the manner of reception, communication and solace, Sheikh Qassem said that “the conclusions that embody the reality that took place is that Hajj Qassem’s martyrdom reignited the revolution. It was as if we are at its beginning when everyone took to the streets to confront the tyrant.”

A new reality in the region

“Hajj Qassem accomplished a lot in his life. His project was to drive the Americans out of the region, so his martyrdom fueled the decision to expel the US military forces from our region. Hence, we are facing the stage of ending the American presence in the region, and this carries significant implications, dimensions and effects on regional states and their peoples,” Sheikh Qassem added.

The Deputy Secretary General of Hezbollah pointed out that “the significance of the assassination, its nature and magnitude created a new reality in the region, a foundational and fundamental reality, one in which the American prestige will be broken in preparation for expelling its forces from here.”

The killer will face thousands of Qassem Soleimani’s likes who carry his thoughts and will avenge him

Sheikh Qassem asserts that “Qassem Soleimani was the field commander of the axis of resistance, which is a liberation project. Despite his assassination, the project will not die. Rather, it will continue with greater and stronger momentum and a renewed thrust that will be sensed by the murderer soon. The murderer will know that he did not get rid of this project, and that after Hajj Qassem, he will face thousands of Qassem Soleimani’s likes who carry his thoughts and will avenge him.”

Hezbollah is continually working on addressing complications in the government

As for Lebanon, the problem is not in any regional or international change or developments, but rather in “the mentality that this country suffers from. It requires a bit of modification and attention to the reality of the people’s lives and their deteriorating conditions, especially as we are at a stage that is farthest from external influences on Lebanese internal affairs.”

The Deputy Secretary General of Hezbollah concluded by saying that “Hezbollah is continuing to seek resolutions to complications in the government. It will talk with the prime minister-designate and the parties concerned with the formation of the government to get some facilities and concessions that will contribute to the formation of the government as soon as possible because without that we will face further deterioration.”

Comrades in Battle: Soleimani’s Journey of Resistance Narrated by a Hezbollah Commander

Fatima Deeb Hamzeh

The night was coming to an end when the curtains were brought down on his last journeys of jihad in Syria. The final scene was at Imam Hussein’s Iraq, the way Hajj Qassem wanted it to be and always asked for in his prayers. It was loud. It happened on the battlefield of jihad alongside his comrades in arm and peace, the people he loved. And for the story in his prayers to be completed, the villain was the most wretched of villains. Cowardice was the credibility of their claim. They were not able to get him except by assassination.

Hajj Sadiq tells us: He was the clearest example of leadership in Islam.

He spent twenty years and more working for the Palestinian cause. He knew the mission and the goal when he was appointed the commander of the Quds Force in the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps in 1998. Everyone who knew him well acknowledges that he was a man who was tireless and uncompromising in his pursuit. He, too, was one of those who believed in the certainty of achieving the goals set on the path of the divine promise.

He had many traits. Others surrender to his attractive but simple characteristics. The region’s recent events and developments were the gateway to this “jihadi by nature”.

From Palestine, to Lebanon, to Syria and Iraq and farther away, the martyred lieutenant general went on a jihad streak helping the oppressed against the oppressor and the weak against the arrogant.

But how was he present, how did he fight, lead battles, negotiate, raise morale and bring together the alliances and the axis? How was he killed? And what comes after him?

To answer all these questions, Al-Ahed news website conducted an exclusive interview with Hajj Sadiq, a field commander in the Islamic Resistance who accompanied martyr Qassem Soleimani on his jihadi rounds.

Hajj Sadiq begins talking about Soleimani, “In the name of Allah, He who Smites the Necks of the Cruel (qasim al-jabarin). It is impossible to summarize this leader’s career or his jihad.”

Calmly and with great accuracy, Hajj Sadiq reveals to us some of Hajj Qassem’s qualities.

“Work wise, he was the clearest and most recent example of the concept of leadership in Islam. Because I know him and have accompanied him, I believe that theories of leadership, management as well as military and field control need to be reviewed looking back at this person’s role, impact and behavior.”

The Islamic Resistance field commander adds, “Through his positions and words, he – Hajj Qassem – expressed the concept of the Imamate in Islam whereby the minds are attracted to him without will or effort.”

What jihad legacy did he leave behind?

“It is enough that he was practically the one who created what is now called the axis of resistance. He was at the forefront of establishing it after it was just a mere idea spoken about behind the scenes,” Hajj Sadiq replies quickly. “Martyr Soleimani was able to translate this idea into practice, accurately and with unimaginable craftsmanship.”

He adds, “In his jihadist thought, he wanted to go beyond the idea of the axis. And those who know the literature of the Islamic Revolution, know who Soleimani was, what he gave, and what he left behind.”

Hajj Sadiq, one of the people who knew martyr Soleimani, repeats that talking about him is not for the sake of writing about Soleimani’s personality after his martyrdom. Rather, to reveal possible aspects of “this leader, whose services for the Islamic causes were not confined to a place or time. On the contrary, his military, administrative and diplomatic vision, activities and movements tightly linked the organizations and countries of the [resistance] axis together.”

Hajj Sadiq does not hide Soleimani’s great, influential and pivotal role in confronting the Zionist and American projects in our region.

“Soleimani was a supporter of the resistance in Lebanon. He was present alongside the resistance during the July 2006 war. He was also in Iraq from the start of Daesh’s invasion until the announcement of their end as a danger to the state and the people. He was also in Syria. He was not only a military leader but also a clever diplomat and administrator.”

How Soleimani saw us and how we saw him

Hajj Sadiq talks more about the military commander who was close to the arenas of jihadi and mujahideen, saying “He was keen on the subject of advice. It was one of his well-known practices, and it was not a formal behavior. Rather, it was realistic and practical. He practiced it with conviction as well as action. He was always on the fields and at the forefront. He always sought to involve field leaders in decision-making. He always reminded us that our weapon, which is directed at our most powerful enemy, is our morale.”

Hajj Sadiq stresses, “Hajj Qassem’s physical presence cannot be compensated. However, the model of a moral jihadist and leadership school that he established will make up for his absence. This will be reflected in the price his murderers will pay as they will be expelled from the whole region.”

The martyred commander’s companion tries to convey to us the image of the relationship that Soleimani was most keen to weave with the mujahideen.

“He was concerned with the mujahideen’s most accurate daily and combat details, including their sleeping accommodations, their sustenance, their psychological and spiritual conditions, their communication with their families and everything that could make them feel secure and belong to this holy jihadist line. He was even concerned with the conditions of ordinary citizens who support the organizations that were fighting us and made sure not to harm them.”

“Killing him this way, during this time, with his companions, is a juncture in the struggle with our enemy. Soleimani succeeded in breaking the prestige and power of the American giant in the region. He paved the way for us to get rid of it. He showed us the shortest way to expel it humiliated. He was, without a doubt, the largest nail in the coffin of the Americans in our region. And the coming days will bear witness to this,” Hajj Sadiq concludes his talk about martyred leader Soleimani. “I am happy for him for attaining this great martyrdom and this end. We, who remained after him, will continue his path and work to achieve his goals and carry his banner in all arenas. Taking just retribution on the killers of the mujahideen will be the responsibility of all the resistance fighters.”

Also read it in Arabic

السبب الحقيقي لاغتيال سليماني والحسابات الخاطئة

ناصر قنديل

قدّم الرئيس الأميركي دونالد ترامب تفسيراً لقرار اغتيال قائد فيلق القدس قاسم سليماني، ربطه بخطة شرع سليماني بتنفيذها لاستهداف أربع سفارات أميركية في المنطقة، ورغم عجز ترامب ومستشار أمنه القومي ووزير خارجيته عن تقديم أي إثبات استخباريّ يُعتد به إلى الكونغرس في إطار الإحاطة حول العملية، اضطر وزير الدفاع مارك إسبر لنفي المعلومات في تصريح له أمس، وجاء وصف السيد حسن نصرالله لترامب بالكاذب على خلفية الاتهام تأكيداً من موقع ما يعلم، لعدم صحة التبريرات المرتبطة بالاغتيال.

محور المقاومة في إطار القراءة السياسية التي قدّمها للعملية بلسان قائد المقاومة الذي يمثل عملياً الناطق الأبرز بلسان المحور، ربط الاغتيال بالفشل الأميركي في المنطقة على جميع المحاور والجبهات، ولم يتبقَّ له بعد الفشل الميداني والسياسي، أي العجز عن تثبيت المواقع أو فتح قنوات التفاوض، سوى اللعب على حافة الهاوية بضربة يراهن عليها لإضعاف هيبة إيران ومحور المقاومة، وإرباك قوى المقاومة وهيكليتها في مختلف مناطق الصراع، حيث سليماني محور التنسيق والقيادة، والرهان على أن تؤدي الضربة إلى خلق الذعر وفتح الباب للتفاوض المنشود؛ بينما تحدثت مصادر أميركية عديدة عن رهان موجود لدى العديد من المسؤولين الأميركيين على عزلة شعبية يعانيها النظام في إيران وتعيشها قوى المقاومة، خصوصاً في لبنان والعراق في ضوء التحرّكات الشعبية الناتجة عن الضائقة المالية بفعل العقوبات الأميركية، والرهان على الاغتيال بتوفير مناخ يساعد على استثمار هذه العزلة بتصعيد انقسامات سياسيّة تخلق توازنات داخلية جديدة في هذه الساحات.

بالرغم من نسبة عالية للحقيقة في القراءتين، يبقى التوقيت في مطلع العام الرئاسي، وليس في نهايته، مرتبطاً بحسابات أمنيّة لا بدّ من محاولة تفسيرها، ولعل للاغتيال في العراق ما يساعد في التفسير، حيث الساحة التي يشعر الأميركيون أنها تهتز تحت أقدامهم مع التقدّم الهائل في التعاون الاقتصادي العراقي الصيني الذي أنجزته حكومة الرئيس عادل عبد المهدي، التي استقالت بضغط أميركي ولم تنجح محاولة استبدالها بعد، بينما يتوسّع التموضع العسكري للحشد الشعبي على الحدود السورية العراقية في منطقة القائم البوكمال، ليس لضمان الخط البري بين العراق وسورية، بعدما كان هذا المعبر البري خطاً أميركياً أحمر، بل لضمان خلفية الجبهة العسكرية التي ستفتح بوجه الأميركيين في شرق سورية من قبل وحدات مقاومة سورية تتهيّأ للمهمة، وتنتظر نهاية معركة تحرير إدلب، وهي معركة طرد الأميركيين من سورية، التي ستعقبها حكماً معركة طردهم من العراق. والرمز القيادي المعنوي والمادي لترابط هذه المعارك وقيادتها، هو القائد سليماني، والرسالة الرادعة لصرف النظر عنها أو لتأخيرها عملياً كان اغتيال سليماني.

السؤال الحقيقي الذي يواجه الرئيس ترامب، بعد انكشاف كذبته حول السفارات المستهدفة، واتضاح طبيعة عمليته الاستباقية المرتبطة بتمديد بقاء القوات الأميركية في سورية والعراق، وخشيته من فتح معركة طردها قبيل انتخاباته الرئاسية، هو ما إذا كانت عملية الاغتيال جعلته اقرب أم أبعد عن هذه المعركة، وليس خافياً أن الشعار الذي وضعته قيادة محور المقاومة وأعاد السيد حسن نصرالله تأكيده كمسار، هو أن إخراج القوات الأميركية من المنطقة، وخصوصاً من سورية والعراق، يشكّل القصاص العادل على جريمة الاغتيال. وهذا الربط ينطلق من معادلة اعتبار تحقيق الهدف الذي كان يسعى لتحقيقه سليماني وحدَه الرد المناسب على اغتياله، والذي بات من الواضح اليوم، أنه هدف يملك زخماً واندفاعاً وجهوزية ومشروعية، لم تكن كلها متاحة بالنسبة ذاتها قبل عملية الاغتيال، وبات على ترامب التعامل مع النتيجة الحتمية المرتقبة وهي أزوف ساعة الرحيل، والاكتفاء بالبحث عن مخرج مناسب لعودة قواته عمودياً، لأن العودة الأفقية مؤجّلة، لكنها قيد التحضير، كما قال السيد نصرالله، وحكماً قبل ذروة الحماوة الانتخابية الأميركية.

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