Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah spoke Sunday in a ceremony marking one week on the martyrdom of Haj Qassem Suleimani, Haj Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis and their companions with a US drone attack on their convoy in Baghdad. As his eminence highlighted in his speech the great qualities of both leaders, he assured that gratitude to Allah for these leaders is essential so that His blessings continue.
“Haj Qassem was an example of the true Islamic leader that is raised under Islam, the school of Imam Khomeini, and the values and concepts of this blessed revolution. Martyr Qassem Suleimani stood by many countries in the region in the face of global arrogance, and he was the best of whom raised the slogan of resistance in the region, as he established special and strong bonds with Hezbollah leadership until we felt he was one of us,” Sayyed Nasrallah said.
“He was always present among us in the battlefield and in the front lines… Since he became in charge of the Quds Force he came to Lebanon and met with us, there were no barriers since the beginning, he even learned Arabic very fast… he carried our grieve, concerns and needs… he offered intelligence, financial and moral support as well as being constantly present among us, yet no one knew or spoke about that,” he added, noting that “Haj Qassem first came in 1998, and if you remember the date you will know that the peak of the resistance operations and victories was in year 1998, 1999 and 2000.”
“One of the reasons behind the great developments in the resistance operations at that time was the follow up and support of Qassem Suleimani who was like the messenger of the Islamic Republic and a partner in the liberation of Lebanon on the 25th of May, 2000,” Sayyed Nasrallah stated, stressing that “it is our duty today to reveal this truth. Haj Qassem used to follow up with us on daily basis, and if we got tired, lost focus, or needed rest, he used to tell us “dear brothers you don’t have much time to rest.”
“During 2006 war, Haj Qassem Suleimani said he wanted to come to Beirut, so he went to Syria then to the Southern Suburb and stayed with us throughout the war, under the bombardments, in the operation room… When I argued him about that, his answer was “I either live with you or die with you”. He stayed with us until the 14th of August, and when the war was over he went to Tehran to bring financial support so we could help the displaced people whose houses were destroyed, and later came the Iranian aid of reconstruction,” he added.
After that were the developments in Syria and Iraq, Sayyed Nasrallah said, pointing out that “in the battle against ISIL, which pushed the threat away from Lebanon, starting from Arsal barrens to the Eastern Mountain range, East of the Euphrates, and Deir Ezzor, Haj Qassem Suleimani was present in person with us and with the Syrian fighters.”
Hezbollah SG assured that “neither Iran nor Haj Qassem ever asked anything from us in return. Haj Qassem was the faithful messenger of the leader of the Islamic Republic of Iran, yet he never reminded us of this favor. Instead, he used to say ‘this is my duty in front of Allah and I am your servant’. This is a rhetoric that many people today will not understand. It is unreal or divine for them. Yes, there is a leadership in Iran in the era of Imam Khomeini and the era of Imam Khamenei that thinks about the oppressed people from a religious, moral, and humanitarian eye, and believes that it has the duty to offer support without anything in return. This is something the US and many others in the world will not understand, this is why they dub the resistance movements as “tools of Iran”, they don’t understand the loving and friendly relationship.”
Moving on to Martyr Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandis, his eminence pointed out that “Haj Qassem and Al-Muhandis had many qualities alike and they were humble despite their power. They had a strong relationship and Al-Muhandis, even though he was older in age, stated that he was the student and soldier of Haj Qassem. Being the second-in-command of the Popular Mobilization Forces (Hashd Shaabi) which has over 120 000 fighters, he was once blamed and asked “how could you state that while you are in this position and he is Iranian?” His answer was “I am an honest person and I express my feelings, and I feel that I am his, son, student and soldier. You either accept me that way or you don’t.”
“This humbleness, love, brotherhood, mercy and journey of jihad together, to finally get martyred together is not a coincidence! Why did Abu Mahdi himself go pick Haj Qassem from the airport, knowing that before his arrival, Hajj Qassem was with us and Abu Mahdi called and asked him not to go to Baghdad because the situation was tense, but Haj Qassem insisted. Knowing that the situation was bad, Abu Mahdi went personally to pick up Hajj Qassem. In my opinion Allah has chosen this martyrdom for them to have a great impact on the nation,” he added.
On another level, Sayyed Nasrallah asserted that “if ISIL wasn’t defeated in Iraq, it would have been a threat on the whole region, and its defeat in Iraq helped in defeating it in Syria. If it wasn’t for this defeat, all the countries in the region, Iran, Turkey, and even the Gulf states, who helped and funded ISIL, would’ve been in danger,” he added. “Haj Qassem, Abu Mahdi Al-Muhandes, and many others have defeated ISIL, and the whole region must thank the PMF leadership, soldiers and martyrs, because with their battle against ISIL they defended them all.”
On the massive processions that took place in Iran, Hezbollah SG stated: “We used to say that the funeral of Imam Khomeini over 30 years ago was a unique event throughout history, and today the funeral of Haj Qassem Suleimani in Tehran is unprecedented, just as the Iranian people are incomparable on earth. The Iranian people have expressed their sorrow in various Iranian cities while US experts assured that the scene terrified Trump and his administration.”
Furthermore, his eminence added that “the procession in Khuzestan sent a very important message to some Arab Gulf regimes who are conspiring against the Islamic Republic in Ahwaz and Khuzestan, and are trying to ignite racist and sectarian tensions there… In front of this scene, we feel that we are witnessing the re-invigoration of the Islamic Revolution, with the blessing of this virtuous blood.”
Hezbollah SG pointed out that “while this martyrdom carried a significant message about jihad, martyrdom, morals, and dedication for the sake of the oppressed around the globe, there are massive efforts to degrade the values of jihad and martyrdom using sarcasm and mockery.” In this context, Sayyed Nasrallah added that “one of the most significant outcome of this great martyrdom is that it reminded our people and governments of the true face of America.”
“When they killed our great leaders and brothers they restored their real position in the region as the number one enemy and head of arrogance in today’s world. Every suicide attack that took place in the Islamic world should be tagged “made in USA” because ISIL is a tool for the US to return to the region through civil wars and incitements. America is the number 1 threat, and Israel is just a military tool or base. It is the number one robber of the wealth of our countries,” he stressed.
Concerning the Iranian revenge “Just Retribution”, Sayyed Nasrallah considered that the massive processions in Iran reveal that revenge is not the decision of the leadership but of the people who want to defend their rights and dignity and avenge the martyrdom of Haj Qassem Suleimani. “The Iranian missile attack broke US terror in the region, and the Iranians have informed the Americans through mediators that if the latter responded to the attack, Iran will hit all the US bases as well as the Israeli entity,” he added.
Moreover, he stated that “the attack on Ain Al-Assad put the region in a state of war. Shortly after the missile attack, US media and Arab media – which is more American than the US itself – started preparing for the US response. At that moment I understood that trump will not respond. They claimed there are no injuries or deaths and they downplayed this slap. However, the attack was massive and carried many messages to the US and the Zionists who mourned the attack on Ain Al-Assad, and whether there are causalities or not, the losses cannot be denied and they will be revealed eventually.”
His eminence said the strike revealed Iran’s military power. “These missiles were manufactured in Iran, not purchased with billions from the US. The officers were Iranian, and not rented from the US unlike in some regional countries, and the missiles hit their targets accurately. This means all US bases in the region are in Iranian missile crosshairs, and Iran has even more precision missiles but is awaiting to use them,” Sayyed Nasrallah assured.
The Hezbollah leader pointed to the US military leadership which lined up behind Donald Trump day after the strike. “Look at their faces. Did their faces show victory? And Trump even addressed a different matter, that he wouldn’t let Iran acquire a nuclear weapon. But Iran doesn’t want to have it. Trump came the next day asking for negotiations with Iran and cooperation on common interests. Is this someone whose forces had swallowed 11 missiles the day before?”
“I direct people to look at the Washington Post caricature on the missile strike,” Sayyed Nasrallah said, adding that the Iranian strike should give people confidence that they can confront America. Sayyed Nasrallah assured that Donald Trump is the biggest liar in the history of US presidency, stressing that Qassem Suleimani was not planning for any attack against any US embassy, this was a lie fabricated by Trump to hide his real motives.
Hezbollah SG further stated that “the response on the assassination will be a long track that will end up in pulling the US out of the region starting from east Asia, and what happened in Ain Al-Assad is not the end. It is only a first, strong, convulsive slap on a long track to take revenge of the martyrdom of Haj Qassem Suleimani.”
Sayyed Nasrallah considered that “the first country concerned with retaliating is Iraq because it is where the crime took place, under its sovereignty, and the target was a great Iraqi leader and other officials in the PMF, along with Qassem Suleimani and other Iranian officials who defended and sacrificed for the sake of the Iraqi people.”
He addressed President Massoud Barzani, reminding him that “when Kurdistan was falling in the hands of ISIL and no one accepted to help you, the only one who responded to your call was Haj Qassem Suleimani who arrived the next day along with officials from Hezbollah to Arbil. Rest of the Axis of Resistance must begin operations. We are serious, and our goal is to force the US out of our regions. This is a long-term goal.”
Finally, his eminence said: “The resistance axis is working on a great goal and the Americans must leave our region. The only alternative for them to be leaving “horizontally” [in coffins] is for them to leave “vertically”, on their own. This is a decisive decision, and it is only a matter of time.”
He added: “Whoever thinks that this dear martyrdom will be forgotten is mistaken, and we are approaching a new era. The US Administration and the assassins will pay a heavy price and they will discover their miscalculation. After Suleimani, there will be no place for those tyrants, and you will learn, through blood, that by killing Qassem Suleimani you are not safer.”