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Khomeini, the Revolution and Palestine

June 3, 2024 at 4:00 pm

Thousands of Iranian people stage a demonstration and carry Palestinian flag in support of Hamas and Palestinian resistance in Tehran, Iran on October 07, 2023. [Fatemeh Bahrami – Anadolu Agency]

The date of 3 June has vital significance for all the world’s free peoples. Imam Ayatollah Ruhollah (Spirit of God) Khomeini, a leader with no affinity for worldly life, of unwavering faith, a dedicated sage who guided his people to the patriotic and popular Revolution and founded the Islamic Republic of Iran on the ruins of the tyrannical and arrogant Government of the Palhevi dynasty, died on this date in 1989, at the age of 83. A leader totally dedicated to God who left the profound message of the Islamic Awakening in the minds of millions worldwide.

He was born in two well-known religious families on 17 May, 1902, the same date of birth as the Prophet Muhammad’s daughter, Fatima Azzahra. His father, the martyr Ayatollah Assayed Mustafa Al-Mousawi, was a great Islamic scholar and political leader of fair causes. His mother, Hajar Agha Khanum, was the daughter of Ayatollah Al-Mirza Ahmad, a member of the highest religious authority of his day. He got married to Khadijeh Saqafi, with whom he had seven children. His eldest son, Sayyed Mustafa Khomeini, was martyred in the Iraqi city of Najaf by agents of SAVAK, the Shah’s political police, in cooperation with Saddam Hussein’s forces.

Khomeini was firm in his faith and obedience to God; he truly loved his homeland, the people, the poor and the oppressed. This love and conviction for justice and rights made him the opposing leader of the Pahlavi dynasty for his pro-imperialist policies, to the detriment of the interests of the Iranian nation, and the false reforms that were aimed at Islam and Persian Muslims.

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After the 1953 military coup that deposed and imprisoned the prime minister who nationalised Iranian oil, Mohamed Mossadeg, there was brutal and open interference by the United States and the United Kingdom in all of Iran’s economic and political affairs, making the country a protective base of imperialist interests in the region. Imam Khomeini was one of the most prominent leaders of the mobilisation in opposition to the outside forces and the regime of Shah Pahlavi.

As a result of his leadership, security forces raided his home and took him to Castle Prison, a torture centre in Tehran. Thousands of people staged protests across the country, in which several were killed by agents of the regime, which was forced to release Imam Khomeini.

Khomeini was arrested several times for confronting the regime of Shah Reza Pahlavi, always with a firm stance before his executioners, until he was exiled to Turkiye in 1964, and then to Iraq, where he settled in the city of Najaf for 16 years, continuing his religious life and struggles. During this period, he wrote the book “The Islamic Government”, which was translated into Arabic and distributed throughout the region.

Due to the persecution suffered in Iraq, coordinated by the political police of Iraq and Iran, Khomeini decided to move to Kuwait, but was banned from entering the country. He then decided to go into exile in France and settled in the city of Luchat, from where he sent his speeches in writing and on K7 tapes to Iran, stimulating demonstrations, marches and strikes against the regime that was increasing oppression, arrests and barbarism.

Khomeini returned to Iran from exile on 1 February, 1979, and was greeted by a crowd of millions of Iranians, who hailed him as the leader and guide of the victorious Revolution that proclaimed the Islamic Republic on 11 February, confirming that Imam Khomeini was not only the man of the Revolution but also the man of the world’s first Islamic government, based on the Quran, God’s revelation to his Messenger.

Having won the revolution, US imperialism imposed a proxy war that lasted 7 years, 10 months, 4 weeks and 1 day through the regime of Saddam Hussein, intending to weaken the Revolution and bring chaos to the young Islamic Republic of Iran. The war caused thousands of martyrs and a cost of around 1 billion dollars.

Khomeini was aware of the problems of the Islamic Nation, especially the Palestinian question. One of his first messages was about the Revolution’s commitment to the liberation of Palestine, all of Palestine, and Lebanon’s creation of Islamic resistance to liberate its Zionist-occupied territories.

The Palestinian embassy replaced the “Israel” Embassy in Tehran. And the last Friday of the holy month of Ramadan was declared by Khomeini as the World Day of Al-Quds (Jerusalem), as the awakening of the awareness that the Palestinian cause is an international issue, of sovereignty and human rights, the symbolic day when every oppressed confronts his oppressor.

He emphasised that maintaining the unity of the resistance forces for the liberation of Palestine was the most important way to achieve victory. He did not believe that the intention of the great colonial powers (British Empire and the US) in creating the “State of Israel” was merely to occupy Palestine.

Khomeini believed that, if the way were open for the colonialism of “Israel”, all Muslim countries would eventually suffer the same fate as Palestine, namely occupation, destruction, colonisation and ethnic cleansing, for the resurgence of the “Greater Israel” theory. It was no coincidence that Imam Khomeini compared “Israel” and its Zionist regime to a cancerous tumour. He said that its defeat and eradication were mandatory to achieve peace in the region.

Forty years ago, who would have thought we would see so much opposition to the Zionist regime around the world? Those generations did not imagine that in 2024, the regime that occupied Palestine and that represents the interests of imperialism in the region would be so repudiated by the people. That millions of free people around the world, in Europe itself and the US, would become opponents of the Zionist regime and the powers that sponsor crimes against humanity and genocide in Gaza.

The world bid farewell to a great leader worthy of his people. Khomeini has passed away in his body, but his message lives on in the hearts, dreams and struggles of the believers and resisters of Iran and the world, which today translates into Palestinian resistance which, with its remarkable resilience and heroism, will continue the battle until the entire historical land, with blessed Jerusalem at its core, is liberated.

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