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Iran Document: Mousavi's Call for The Religious Month of Moharram

UPDATE 1650 GMT: Mir Hossein Mousavi has also made a number of interesting comments in an interview with Gholam Sabz. We have posted the highlights in our Sunday updates.

On Saturday, the English text of Mir Hossein Mousavi's message for the upcoming religious month of Moharram was published. The analogy between the sacrifice of Imam Hossein, oppressed and killed by authorities in the 7th century, and those oppressed today is clear. So is the concluding call: "It is our responsibility to help protect the traditional social centers by organising and attending the ceremonies for commemorating the epic of Ashura [on 16 December] in this memorable month."

In the name of God

“Those who say: Our God is Allah, and afterward is upright; the angels descend upon them, saying: Fear not nor grieve, but hear good tidings of the paradise which you are promised.” (Holy Quran: Chapter Fussilat, Verse 30)

Once again we are in the month of Muharram and approaching the anniversary of the commemoration of a movement that was initiated centuries ago to return humans to their innate high stature....[Imam] Hossein stood up at a time when what was left from the movement of his grandfather [Prophet Mohammad] was attacked by the totalitarian storm of the power seekers and the religion was slaughtered for the magisterial of the palace of oppression and narcissism.

Hossein was witnessing that they [the Government] were wearing a cloak of justice over their fallacy....The intention of the power seekers was not only to gain control over all power but to keep it at any cost by relying on money, force and deception. He saw that this time it was the religion itself that was the target of the narcissists...[who] were destroying the religion and the religious to stay in power just a little bit longer.

Hossein knew that the mortar between the stones of the palace of power was lies, and it was the call of truth-seeking that would erode it. Hossein knew what great sufferings were waiting for him in his path: hired clerics would accuse him of abandoning the religion and creating sedition, would sacrifice the family of the Prophet in difficulties and repeated disgraces, and would put him at the cross road of choosing between a shameful life [of being silent to live] and standing for justice [and dying for this].

And he chose to stand. Hossein broke his silence to protect the religion of his grandfather from annihilation and accepted the leadership of a movement that was not for fame and power but for fixing wrong doings and cleaning abominations. This is why the noble men and women, who followed him, from any religion and sect, considered him the everlasting symbol of the pursuit of freedom.

Centuries later, the Islamic Revolution happened in a land with a deep-rooted culture and civilization, [with] people who had previously proven their leadership in recognizing their best interests in a transformed world and in this part of the world  by the Constitutional Revolution [early 20th century], the movement to nationalise oil [1950s]. and the movement of Khordad 15 [1963]  and the creation of a dialogue on the pursuit of freedom, justice, and the search for independence [from foreign influence], bringing progress and achieving a society in which humanity can reach financial peace and pious blessing.

We all remember how the roaring flood of the protestors on Tasua (the day before Ashura) and Ashura of 1357 [1978] ended a tyrant regime that had shut down all peaceful means of criticism and objection and in the last years of its life had hallucinations that more than anything were the results of being disconnected from the realities of the society.

The tyrant rulers were surrounded by their limited toadies and flatterers such that, instead of hearing the sound of their legitimacy cracking they were looking for hearing the voice of support from paranormal powers in their hallucinations, oblivious to the fact that the greatest asset of any country is the support of its people for the officials by free and informed participation, oblivious to the fact that legitimacy must be sought in daily improvement of people’s living condition, oblivious to the fact that the majesty must be sought in the hearts of people not in the armed parades and show of weapon stockpiles. And this is why the people of this land turned back on the rulers and the greatest revolution of the century was formed.

The millions of people, who took on the streets on days of Tasua and Aashura (of 1978), found their demands of more than a century in the call of the man [Ayatollah Khomeini] who persevered in undertaking the path they had tested. In the rallies of those days, everyone was participating with their ideas and beliefs. Those who were unfamiliar to each other yesterday would become familiar faces that day, selfishness would turn into selflessness, and “I”s to “We”.

Since the next day of victory, those people were enthusiastic to build and reconstruct the wreckage, putting hands in each others’ hands with kindness. Even when disagreements escalated, they were united in front of the invading enemy [Iraq] and defended their inherited land. And who has forgotten that all across Iran was the scene for heroism: the frontlines and behind the frontlines, factories and farms, schools and universities, homes and offices, all and all were the scene for struggle and work to defend this land. And who has forgotten that when we had to accept the peace deal, the same suffering but resilient people, stood in front of those few who had sought shelter and help from the invaders, and showed that the decision to withdraw from the war was not based on fear and lack of belief but rather was based on wisdom and foresight.

They showed that they consider the mistakes of their leaders forgivable because of they believed thatr sincerity and confession to mistakes not only would not lessen the stature of their leaders but rather increase their affection in the hearts of the people. They showed that they have adopted a religion to guide their actions that has logic for its war and peace. They showed that for them, religious beliefs are guidance for them that would bring them to their destination in the mist of sand storm of the time. That was why whenever they would see themselves straying from the path, they would attempt to fix it: Khordad 2nd [when Mohammad Khatami was elected to President in 1997 with the birth of reform movement] and Khordad 22nd [ the Presidential elections of 12 June 2009] came from this vigilance.

But what a pity that the totalitarians that consider monopoly in power as their only way of surviving this time didn’t care about these just demands [of the people] at all. The totalitarians lined up all their facilities and media in front of the will of the majority, and shot their deadliest ammunition of allegations and false accusations toward the people who wanted change. And when, because of the unprecedented presence of the people, their routine cheats and tricks did not work in the process of election, they found the solution in an election coup d'état: they put aside counting the votes and announced their victory; they attacked the oppositions’ campaign centers and arrested activists.

And when angry and humiliated people took on the streets to peacefully and quietly demand their indisputable rights and respect for their votes, they (the totalitarians) declared shedding the people's blood was not a sin with bloody events like the [Tehran] University dormitory attack, Kahrizak [prison abuses],and others. 

You remember what they did to the protesting mourners during last year’s Ashura: They  threw the protestors off the bridges, ran over their defenseless bodies with cars, and shot at their love-filled hearts. And then they shamelessly called this the reaction of angry people by showing incomplete and selective footage in their media as the riot of foreign-supported goons, as they [the regime] cried that Islam is in danger.

Was that person whose body was run over twice by the police car an American or Israeli? Or those who were shot directly on midday during Ashura while calling [Imam] Hossein’s name? After that [the authorities] arrested several men and women of the best sons and daughters of this revolution and land so that they would silence these voices. Little did they know that suppressing the anger of informed and oppressed people is more dangerous as these voices seek justice.

My Green-minded companions:

These days the religion and its practice are going through difficult times and these days many of you ask, given all these deceptions, how one can save the pure hearts of this land’s youths from the constant waves ofthose  rejecting the religion? The answer of this humble companion of yours is that rejecting the religion extends itself when [it] violates the very basic foundations of moral principles such as honesty and not lying, [when] in the name of the religion, horrific crimes are committed, and when, to defeat the opposition, the preaching of false accusations and lies against them  from the holy platforms of the Friday Prayers is not only allowed but desired, [when the Government] mobilizes all platforms and mosques to spread false accusations and lies against the opposition by issuing memos and at the very same places the rights of the teachers and workers are ignored, and [when] the social gap, corruption, and prostitution caused by unprecedented poverty, the [high] divorce rate, and unemployment are considered normal.

In such situation, how can youths identify that all these oppressions, violence, and hatreds, that are assertively presented as Islam by those on official platforms, have nothing to do with Islam? And while they are the innocent witnesses of massive financial and cultural problems as well as the extensive presence of lies in all affairs, how can they believe that preserving the establishment is based on preserving the moral and Islamic values and the national interests and not based on preserving the individuals in power by any means?

Now, instead of facing the true face of the religion which is a kind and merciful one, they are facing an ugly face which knows no other language but violence and force. They witness how the rights of the people which have been stated in the Constitution are being ignored, how the separation of the branches [of the Government] which is a barrier against creation of...unlimited powers is being violated repeatedly, how the independence of the judiciary, judges and courts is destroyed by the security authorities, how the Parliament that is supposed to be on top of all affairs is influenced by orders, how reckless adventures in the foreign policy are becoming norm, how military officials end up in greed and the acquisition of money instead of fulfilling their duties how absolutely no opposition voice is being tolerated, and how prisons are filled with women and men that do not put up with these views of the rulers.

In these critical times, let us take action as Zeynab [the sister of Imam Hossein] did and give the true message of religion with its spiritual face to those who are thirsty for truth. It is our responsibility to learn and to teach others that the false claims of those pretending to be religious should not be considered as what the religion truly is. It is our responsibility to tell the true story of the Revolution for this generation...and in this telling the facts we should not be afraid from fairly criticising the past and at the same time we should avoid denying its great achievements.

It is our responsibility to tell the truth like Zeynab and erode the mortar that holds the palace of lies together. It is our everlasting responsibility to keep alive the memory of high-statured martyrs of the Revolution, the war, and the events after the [2009] election with the noble women and men in the prisons, just like all the family of Imam Hossein. And it is our responsibility to help protect the traditional social centers by organising and attending the ceremonies for commemorating the epic of Ashura in this memorable month.

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