Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei says Iran's battle is not with a bunch of rioters who have recently wreaked havoc in the country, adding "the main confrontation is with the global hegemony".
“These few people are either oblivious, ignorant, or mercenaries,” the Leader said in a meeting with members of the volunteer Basij force in Tehran on the occasion of Basij Week.
Ayatollah Khamenei said the recent riots are part of the West's pressure campaign against Iran to arm-twist it into compromising on its rights in the negotiations, which have deadlocked over Washington's lack of commitment.
"A group of people who claim to have political understanding, but whose analyses in newspapers and virtual space really sadden one, state that in order to end these riots, you should solve your problems with America and listen to the voice of the people,” the Leader said.
Ayatollah Khamenei touched on Washington’s bad faith in the 2015 nuclear deal known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) under which Iran agreed to curtail its nuclear energy program in return for relief from sanctions.
“First they say you stop 20% enrichment, then 5% enrichment, then they demand stop to the entire nuclear industry, then change to the constitution, then locking us up behind the borders and emptying Iran's hands and shutting down its defense industries,” the Leader said.
Ayatollah Khamenei said the enemy's insistence on the second and third JCPOAs, which some people inside the country were also regurgitating probably out of negligence, can be explained.
“JCPOA 2 means that Iran completely abandons its regional presence, and JCPOA 3 means Iran commits not to produce any strategic and important weapons such as missiles and drones and becomes empty-handed in the face of aggression.”
No zealous Iranian, even those who possibly do not like the Islamic Republic, will submit to paying such ransoms, Ayatollah Khamenei said.
“Therefore, negotiating with America will not solve any problem unless ransom is paid in all basic issues and all red lines are crossed.”
The Leader also turned the tables on those who recommend that the Islamic Republic listen to the voice of the people.
“The thunderous voice of the nation was raised on November 4 this year; did you hear it? You should rather hear the voice of the nation,” he said, referring to the massive rallies held across Iran to mark the 1979 takeover of the US embassy in Tehran.
“That huge crowd of more than 10 million was the voice of the nation at the funeral of Martyr Soleimani. Today, the funeral of martyrs in different cities and people's slogans against terrorism and rioters are the voice of the nation. Do you not hear the voice of the nation?” the Leader said in reference to huge rallies held across Iran following the US assassination of Iran’s legendary commander General Qassem Soleimani in January 2020 and recent processions held for those who lost their lives in the fight against rioters and terrorists.
Ayatollah Khamenei also touched on the colonial powers’ attention to West Asia, especially Iran and the reasons behind their efforts to dominate the region.
“Western colonialism, which at first was represented by Europe and then by America, paid special attention to our region because the West Asian region is the main center of oil, energy and natural resources and the crossroads between East and West.
“That is why the fake and usurper Zionist regime was established in this region so that the West could have a base in the West Asia region to plunder resources and create war and division,” he said.
Meanwhile, the most important and sensitive point in the strategic West Asian region is Iran, the Leader stated.
“Hence, at first the British and then the Americans made a special investment, especially for raising mercenaries in Iran, in order to have complete domination,” Ayatollah Khamenei added.
The outbreak of the Islamic Revolution “at the focal point of the Western colonial rule in West Asia” in Iran in 1979 “suddenly broke the doze of the colonialists and dealt a fatal, dizzying and shocking blow to their colonial policies”, the Leader said.
The Islamic Revolution, he said, became a strong bulwark against the presence of America and the West in the region and created a new identity.
“The Islamic Revolution transformed the identity of the country's dependence into that of independence and strength and the spirit of standing on one's own feet and speaking from the position of power and not paying ransom. This thinking was naturally not limited to Iran and had an impact in the region.”
Ayatollah Khamenei touched on the plots of the Americans against the Islamic Republic, which according to revelations by “prominent figures” commenced with targeting Iran’s allies.
“Their plan was to overthrow the six countries of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Sudan, and Somalia, so that ultimately Iran's strategic depth and extension in the region would be destroyed, and by weakening the country, the Islamic Republic of Iran itself would ultimately be overthrown.
“But the thinking and extension of the Islamic revolution in Iraq, Syria and Lebanon became effective and a great and important work was done, which was the defeat of America in these three countries,” the Leader said.
Ayatollah Khamenei said the volunteer Basij force is one of the best initiatives of the late founder of the Islamic Revolution, Imam Khomeini, describing the group as the school of love and spirituality.
“Basij should be present in all scenes and spheres. It is not merely a military force; it is a body to serve people without any expectations.”
Basij forces, the Leader said, have also been successful on the scientific front, and some of Iran’s prominent nuclear scientists assassinated by the enemies were members of the force.
Basij forces sacrifice themselves to serve people, Ayatollah Khamenei said, citing the recent riots during which they fought vandals, lost their lives or sustained injuries.
The Leader finally called on state officials to keep a watchful eye on the unfolding developments, stressing that the enemies are trying to dominate the minds and influence the world public opinion through spreading lies and fake news.