Hezbollah Secretary General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah’s speech made during AlQods International Day
In the Name of Allah the Compassionate, the Most Merciful. Peace be upon our Prophet, the last of the Prophets, Abi Al Qassem Mohammad Bin Abdullah, his Household, the Purified, his chosen companions and all the prophets and messengers. Brothers and Sisters, peace be upon you all and Allah’s blessing and mercy. Allah Almighty says in His Holy Book speaking about Pharaoh and the Children of Israel: “So he resolved to remove them from the face of the earth: but We did drown him and all who were with him. And We said thereafter to the Children of Israel, dwell securely in the land (of promise): but when the second of the warnings came to pass, We gathered you together in a mingled crowd.” (Verses 103 – 104 Surah Al-Isra). Almighty Allah doesn’t mean with (the second of the warnings) Doom’s Day but rather the second warning made for the Sons of Israel in this World. In the onset of Al-Isra Surah, one of the verses says: “So when the second of the warnings came to pass, (we permitted your enemies) to disfigure your faces, and to enter your Temple as they had entered it before, and to visit with destruction all that fell into their power.”(Verse 5 Surah Al Isra). True says Allah Almighty. Praise be to Allah for helping our generation to witness with their own eyes the disfiguration of the Zionists’ faces on the hands of the resistance fighters in Lebanon and Palestine.
Brothers and sisters, thirty years after the announcement made by Imam Khomeini (may Allah bless his soul), this occasion is still beating with life and is forcefully present thanks to the assertions and support of the follower of the Imam, his successor – His Eminence Imam Khamenai. Thanks also to the commitment, love and faith of the peoples of our Arab and Islamic world to AlQods, Palestine and the people of Palestine. Since the beginning of its announcement, AlQods Day aimed at stressing several concepts that are confirmed, recurred, consolidated and established year after year and with the accumulation of experiences and the disclosure of several conflict arenas of clear and definite consequences. Tonight, I will try first to concentrate on several concepts. The main aim of AlQods Day was and is still reviving this cause – the cause of AlQods and the cause of Palestine. The cause of AlQods was and is still subject to liquidation, bargaining and oblivion. Some even view it as an embarrassing cause. AlQods Day aims at asserting that it’s a central cause that has to do with the present, future and fate of the nation as well as its status, religion, faith, prophets and upcoming generations. The occasion aims at reviving the cause and not shedding tears at the ruins, the misfortune, catastrophe and loss here or there. It’s a revival in the mind, heart and conscience. It’s a reassertion on one’s determination and will. AlQods Day also asserts to Muslims especially amidst their prayers in the month of Holy Ramadan, on the last Friday and amidst their prayers, fasting, Koran reciting, reverence to Allah Almighty and renouncement of this world and its mortal belongings to assert to this nation several essential concepts including: the nation must feel the extent of humiliation brought against it in the past decades when its holy sites got occupied and fell in the hands of its enemies. We must view the occupation of AlQods and the occupation of the holy sites of Muslims and Christians on the hands of a racial Zionist group as the worst humiliation brought against this nation in the past century especially as the occupation persists. Another concept has to do with asserting the historical, religious and legal responsibility of the nation from the recesses of praying and fasting – the responsibility towards AlQods, Palestine and the Palestinian people. Among the concepts asserted by AlQods Day is that AlQods and Palestine – from the sea to the river – is the property of the Palestinian, the Arabs and Muslims. No one possesses an authorization to dispense with not even one grain of soil, a wall nor a stone in this holy land because its soil is holy, its stones are holy, its neighborhoods are holy, its olive trees are holy … everything in it is holy. No one possesses an authorization to dispense with what is sacred at all. All these holy sites must be restored unblemished to their true owners.
Still, among the concepts stressed by AlQods Day is correcting the concept which the Imam sought to correct: the equivocation which says that Israel rules the world. This is not true. The equivocation also says Israel that we fight rules the United States. This is not true. Indeed we do not deny the influence of the Zionist lobby but the true understanding is that Israel is a functional entity founded by Britain and its allies to perform a definite function. This was inherited by the successive US administrations. Israel is a functional entity performing its mission in the framework of the western-US imperial project which aims to control, tear, humiliate and take control over our nations and goods. Israel plays the role of the spearhead in this project. To understand this concept we must perceive well that liberating our land and the holy sites does not take place through pleading with the Americans and the West – those who founded and created Israel and are investing it to break up our region anew in the framework of a new Middle East. The Lebanese brought down this equivocation during July War 2006. This understanding reveals that the way to restore the land and the holy sites and to liberate man in Palestine and the region comes through the will and determination of the resistance and the sacrifices of the peoples of the region which can impose their will on this functional entity and on these employees. Among the concepts stressed by AlQods Day is asserting that Israel is not the enemy of the Palestinian people only. It’s the enemy of Lebanon, the Arab peoples and the Islamic peoples. Israel is a cancerous gland the goal of which is exterminating all around. Consequently this feeling, this position and this culture must remain present so that the course does not deviate from its true path.
Today as in the past we like -on AlQods Day and from our position as resistance fighters and depending on our experience- to stress that the only way to restore the land and the holy sites is resistance – the resistance of the Palestinian people, the Lebanese people and the peoples of the nation. This was and is still possible. I even say that today it’s more possible than in any other time in the past. Such an outcome is not a dream anymore. Today the time of Zionist dreams coming true came to an end. Our dreams started coming true. Today we do not dwell in dreams anymore; we are rather realizing our dreams in several stances and domains. Following year 2000, and after the historical victory in southern Lebanon, Al Aqsa Intifada took off. It was a lofty experience and a historical golden chance to make hopes come true. Unfortunately – frankly speaking- the nation did not take the appropriate stance with the Palestinian people. Today this chance is not lost yet especially when it had become clear more than ever that the horizon of a settlement is dim. The Palestinian people are still amidst the catastrophe and suffering. Palestinians are being killed daily in the West Bank and Gaza is under siege suffering from hunger and terrorism. Still the will of the Palestinian people did not die neither did their arms on the background of whatever upcoming possibilities on the Palestinian and regional level. The Palestinian people are determined on remaining steadfast, resisting and not giving up their legitimate rights. The Palestinian people might differ in many domains but they unanimously agree on not giving up Al Qods. This is a stance, a position and a conduct toward which the nation must assume a great responsibility.
No one is asking the Arab governments to dispatch their armies to fight Israel. As we did in July War, we did not ask anything from anyone. But there are several possible means for support which the nation can do but still doesn’t do. Today Arab and Palestinian families in East Al Qods are being subject to the worst forms of purgation, displacement and expulsion under various pretexts. These families must be supported to remain in AlQods. Just the present of Palestinian and Arab families –both Muslims and Christians – in Al Qods is a form of resistance. It’s rather one of the noblest forms of resistance which must be supported. Arabs who own thousands of billions of dollars are able to support the steadfastness of these families in Al Qods to prevent its Judaism. In the West Bank also – whether we noticed or not – there is programmed gradual displacement due to security and difficult living conditions. This case must be confronted through supporting the steadfastness and the remaining of Palestinians in the West Bank. Gaza Strip is still under siege threatened with hunger. People there might be provided with help. The nation is responsible of lifting the siege off Gaza and is able to do that. Today the Palestinian people hope the extensive Arab nation would work to lift the siege. Unfortunately, only some foreign men and women go on board of boats in seas to deliver some supplies to Gaza. As we express our respect, appreciation and regard to the courage and boldness of those who run the blockade, we feel very much embarrassed when comparing them to the nation of billion and several hundred million Muslims who watch the people of Gaza die from hunger. This is a part of the responsibility of media and political support as well as a continuing summoning of the Palestinian suffering and assertion of their right to return and to achieve their legal rights. These are among the obligations of which the nation is unfortunately performing a small portion. Among the most important obligations: the nation –governments and lively forces- must work industriously to bury alive the ordeal among the Palestinians and to unite their stances and work hard and seriously to make a local reconciliation. Unfortunately some Arabs benefited from the interior Palestinian conflict so as to shake their hands off the Palestinian people and the Palestinian cause. They even find themselves pretexts to ignore and turn their back to this cause. This is neither chivalry nor Arabism nor Islam. I think that on the basis of the current developments and the competence of the lofty human capabilities, should the nation assume part of its responsibilities in supporting the Palestinians, achieving the goal of restoring AlQods and Palestine will not be far but rather it’ll take place in the near future.
AlQods Day coincides this year with a number of important developments; the falling of the last leaders of July War -Ehud Olmert; though naturally and logically speaking he must have fallen following Winograd Report. However the Israeli press and Israeli information talked about direct American intervention to prevent the fall of Olmert at that moment because that will be recorded among Lebanon’s and its Resistance victory in July War. But he was planned to fall at this moment.
Among the developments also is that Israel after July War is experiencing leadership crisis whether on the political or military level.
Among the developments is Olmert’s confession that the dream of Great Israel has came to an end. He was preceded by a confession made by Netanyahu in 2000 concerning the extinction of Zionism among Israeli youths.
Among the developments is the lack of Israeli choices in confronting the Iranian atomic program. We noticed that Israel fell in turmoil as regarding this file.
Among the developments is the lack of trust the people of this entity have in the future of this entity. This is a natural outcome to the lack of trust in political and military leadership and in the army. The latest polls released in Israel say that two thirds of the Israeli people consider themselves present in a region they refer to as “dirty”. Why do they call it “dirty”? They explain because they do not feel safe anymore. The Zionists came to Palestine with the promise of the land of milk and honey; security and protection. They were promised of being the nation number one in hegemony and control, in tyranny and arrogance, in injustice and dictatorship; the nation which kills and is not killed, captures and is not captured, wounds or is not wounded, humiliates and is not humiliated, and aggresses and its aggressions are not confronted. But today and after these years of resistance, Intifada and the new life that took off in this nation, it’s natural that two thirds of the people of this entity feel that this region is not anymore the promised region on the basis of which they came.
Among the developments also is the horizon of any settlement with the Palestinians has came to a dead end. What took place in Annapolis is worse than what was before.
This was on the Zionist level. On the regional level, among the important developments is that the resistance in Lebanon and Palestine has surpassed the stage of risk of existence. This stage is surpassed; it came to an end. Nothing can threaten the very existence of the resistance neither in Lebanon nor in Palestine. We surpassed this stage.
Among the developments, the opposition nations especially Iran and Syria have surpassed the isolation conspiracies. These countries have asserted their active presence on the regional and international arenas.
Among the developments is the failure or stumble (if we are not to say failure because some people might say we are making haste in saying the failure) of the US plots on the region and in more than one domain and country.
These factors increase the power and the influence of the region’s peoples and governments on the events taking place in this area and in our region.
On the international level, the international tension after Georgia War which caused defeat to the US-Israel axis and the severe financial crisis the US is facing currently show clearly that the world is moving toward a multi-polar system whether politically, militarily, financially or economically. These changes also are to the benefit of our region’s peoples and governments. We see in these changes whether in the enemy’s entity or on the regional or international level much hope in the future to achieve the interests of the peoples of the region and to distance our region from the policies of imposition, hegemony, tyranny and colonialism practiced by America and in which it invested Israel to serve its project.
Our obligation – brothers and sisters – in this stage is to clear the dust away from what the current stage will lead to, to be more steadfast in our positions and stances and to fortify our arenas because what’s to come brings good tidings of many victories, breakthroughs and hope achievements, if God wills.
Hereof I come to Lebanon, Talking about Lebanon also and in the framework of AlQods Day I will handle two sections: the Palestinian section and the Lebanese section.
As for the Palestinian section, I say that it is the responsibility of Lebanon as a nation, government, people and political forces to struggle and carry on working along the Palestinian brethrens to achieve the right to return. It’s not enough in Lebanon to refuse settlement; we must be part of the Arab and international struggle to achieve the right to return for the Palestinian refugees to their homes, properties and lands.
Secondly: Yes Lebanon is concerned in totally refusing settlement. On the national dialogue table before July War this issue was discussed. Our political group presented a constitutional amendment in the Lebanese Constitution that says that accepting settlement in Lebanon necessities the consensus of the cabinet. At the time the other political party did not agree. Lately we have seen in the media that some deputies of the other political party presented a suggestion of a constitutional amendment setting a condition on agreeing on any settlement of the Palestinians in Lebanon, namely the consensus of the cabinet. Good thanks God. Today I announce our total approval to any constitutional amendment of this kind which fortifies the Lebanese national stance in confronting the risk of settlement which I as well as you know is a US plot to which Arab finance is all ready.
When we refuse settlement, we do so in the framework of our resistance to the Zionist project, our resistance to let rightness prevail, our adhering to rightness and our struggle to restore rights to their true owners. It’s Lebanon’s responsibility to support the Palestinian brethrens in the camps in Lebanon to avoid any security clash. It’s the responsibility of the Palestinian factions also to exert every possible effort in this field. Anyway Israel is present in Lebanon in many shapes and colors. It’s always seeking ordeals among the Palestinians in the camps and ordeals among Lebanese in all national arenas.
It’s among Lebanon’s responsibilities on the Palestinian level to show interest on the human and services levels in the status of the Palestinian camps in Lebanon which are suffering from difficult conditions. Man can not imagine that in his neighborhood live a fellow people suffering from such hardships. Finally in the Palestinian section I express my praise to the stance of the Palestinian factions in Lebanon as a whole which consensually agreed on remaining neutral and is still neutral towards Lebanese interior political divisions. This is a wise and sound stance which is to the benefit of the Palestinians as well as the Lebanese.
As for the Lebanese section, I say that what we look forward to in Lebanon – and this is the truth which I say in internal speeches and not only in public speeches and hereof I say again – what we look forward to is that our country and nation be strong, powerful, integrated and safe. Our interior instructions to our brothers and sisters – and several days ago to the families of our martyrs – say that we do not want to dominate over Lebanon neither do we want to hold the reigns of power in Lebanon. We believe that Lebanon’s interest and our interest in Lebanon on all levels that we stay together, work industriously, build and face challenges. Indeed if someone gave up confronting struggles, threats and Israeli aggressions for example that does not mean that we do as such. This is our aspiration; that we be together in all positions, arenas, issues and projects. This is what we aspire for and what we look for.
Today and after the news circulated in some newspapers and news media about an Israeli opposition against America providing the Lebanese Army with some kinds of arms I ask how can we build a strong national army able to defend Lebanon’s territory, sovereignty and people this way? Is it possible that we wait (I’m not saying that somebody is waiting. I’m speaking in general) for a permission from America or from Israel to arm our national army and to provide it with what enables it of performing its main national obligations? This is not possible at all.
The Resistance has disturbed them because it does not ask permission from anyone to obtain arms whether in quality or quantity and because it hides its arms from the enemy and the friend alike. That’s because hiding the arms is a source of power. The resistance also doesn’t wait or fear the approval or disapproval of anyone to perform its duty, get ready, prepare and fight. Thus we need from the national unity government a brave decision that says that we in Lebanon want to provide the Lebanese national army with what enables it to defend Lebanon’s sovereignty and every grain of soil in Lebanon and we do not need permission from anyone to do so. We must set a ministerial group who believes in money and searches in markets. It’s legal and legitimate that our government fetches arms to its army even if it’s from the black market as the Resistance does. If we are to wait for Mrs. Condoleezza Rice to give us permission we will not receive but Rio Trucks, feeble jeeps and tanks but we will never receive what might enable our army to confront Israeli aggressions.
National power and capacities are not built upon a foreign permission but rather with national determination and will. On this very basis – that we want a strong sound capable and intact country – we always express our adherence to national stability, civil peace and coexistence. Thus I say to some editors: do not search for problems on the bases of the reconciliations we are making. We have no problems in that at all. When we staged a sit-in demanding a national unity government, dialogue, concurrence and unity – even after July War when I stood on September 22 Celebration and said disregarding all what took place let’s put hand in hand and shoulder each other to build Lebanon together and defend Lebanon together. When the people who does not hear but this speech see that hands are put together and shoulders are supporting each other and people are meeting in an attempt to heal wounds, people will consider what is taking place as going harmoniously with their aims, culture and aspirations. With such a background we moved towards making conciliations. Reconciliation is not a one-sided decision. Reconciliation can never take place on the basis of a one-sided decision. It is a two-sided decision. When both sides took the decision, reconciliations came successively. In such reconciliations we are serious, truthful, attentive and ready to all what promotes a positive atmosphere in our nation. Details are not of any value. We are ready to all what might reassure the people in Lebanon – all regions in Lebanon especially our dear capital, the city of Beirut, and its noble people. Indeed when we talk about reconciliations we do not talk about new political alliances. They as well as we are stressing that. We remain on our political position on the side of our allies to whom we express our sincerity and commitment and they on the side of their allies. Reconciliations do not mean a transition in political alliances. Reconciliations aim at creating a positive peaceful atmosphere so as to put an end to the series of factional tensed atmosphere and sectarian provocation and at creating a sound atmosphere instead so as to address several issues in Lebanon and to move towards sound civilized competition in the upcoming parliamentary elections. Yes, we reconcile and accept that the rule on us be the upcoming parliamentary elections. We’ve always been looking forward to these elections. We’ve been seeking them and in our speech since the first sit-in in Down Town we’ve said let’s appeal to people and to referendum. Some answered saying this is heresy and added that in Lebanon there is no referendum. We said OK; let’s resort to early parliamentary elections. We’ve always been callers for people to be the arbitrator. We always do respect people and their will and choice. We are all concerned in insuring in Lebanon a positive agreeable atmosphere for a sound and noble political competition that’ll lead to parliamentary elections that’ll give birth in turn to a new authority. I do not want to make anticipations but my colleague and I are not among those who alter their promises and commitments. Here I tell you should the opposition win the majority in the parliament God willing, Hezbollah will call and assert its support to a national unity government in which the other party is represented so that it be a partner in the nation’s administration. We do not look forward to parliamentary elections that give birth to a new majority that’ll annul anybody. We must learn from the events of the past decades in our history – from the last century onwards. We must learn that this Lebanon can’t be ruled with majority. (Every now and then a group of people give theories saying that Lebanon is a special country. But we do not agree that Lebanon is a special country. Even if we were the majority we must accept that Lebanon is a special country.) Should Lebanon be a special country we can’t address its issues and crises with the mentality of minority and majority but rather with the mentality of mutual assistance, cooperation, solidarity and national integration among all the major national forces that represent various sects and factions.
Are we to head towards ideal choices and consequently deepen the current crises? We call for practical conduct. This is the statue quo of our country. We appeal to the elections and people to rule between us. Thus parliamentary blocs are formed in the Parliament where there would be a majority and a minority. Here I say again Lebanon is a special country which might be ruled by the mentality of majority and minority but as such its crises and problems will not be handled and with such a mentality challenges and risks can not be confronted.
The reconciliations made so far and the meetings held and are to be held in the coming days and nights God willing will promote such an atmosphere. Perhaps the current government and political forces will be given a chance to let security prevail in the country so that we will be able to devote ourselves to some issues and special crises now that the new school year has come altogether with winter on our people in all regions. Unfortunately there are no poor and rich regions anymore. Poverty has become among the common features that unite more than two thirds of the Lebanese people. How are we to face our difficult living and social crises at a time when many of our families do not own the minimum means for living and maintaining livelihood? Let the country breathe freely for a while and take repose from the speeches and debates in this context. As along as there is national dialogue table, national unity government, a parliament that is convening again, let’s all take a break and think and exert all possible positive efforts. The future political status has been put on the safe rail as the elections law is to be endorsed within days God willing what will take the country to parliamentary elections at its due time.
It goes without saying that when we talk about the Lebanese issue, our eyes remain gazing at the South, our borders with the land of beloved Palestine and our hills and mountains from which we smell the fragrance of Palestine and the pure scent of Al Qods. Thus we stress at Al Qods Day that we, in the Resistance and with our brethrens in the Lebanese Army, will not neglect any challenge there no matter how difficult were our interior preoccupations and crises. Today we heard from some Israeli analysts quoting the enemy’s chief of staff that he does not expect a war with Lebanon this year or in the coming year. That’s good. But what is the reason? What’s the secret knowing that a couple of days ago Barak as well as Mofaz, Olmert and Levny among others issued their threats and warnings?
I’ve always said that the Resistance program is not that of war. We are clear even as concerning liberating Palestine. We are saying that it’s our duty as Lebanese to support the resistance of the Palestinian people. Today the Palestinian people have enough men and own the human capacity as well as patience, national, religious and moral values and characteristics that enable them to make that achievement but we must all provide them with support and assistance in various forms. The project of resistance is not a classical war, but when an aggression is staged against Lebanon, the resistance will not stand still. The latest amendment since Ehud Barak’s term is that he mentioned eight instead of five squads. It seems that he thought deep and found out that with five squads there’ll be a problem taking into consideration Lebanon’s geography: Amel Mount and the remaining of the region. Thus he began working with eight squads. You as well as I will tell him again your eight squads will be destroyed in our hills, mountains, valleys, houses and under the feet of our fighters.
Talking about eight squads is better than about five squads taking into consideration military, geography, the battle field and the extent of the achievement. My understanding of the issue is that if Israel committed this sin – I’ve said in one of my previous speeches that that will lead to the extermination of its entity because imagine if five squads of the Israeli enemy were destroyed what will that take Israel to? – There will be no more army or morals. In fact there’ll be no more a nation. Then our Palestinian brethrens with their available capacities in Gaza and the Bank will be able to end to the battle to their good God willing. This is concerning five squads. But should he (Barak) ask me: shall I come with five or eight squads? I’ll tell him come with nine squads! He knows as well as you. The enemy knows as well as the friend that this is not sheer speech making that go to the days of Arab defeat but rather they are promises and commitments that belong to the Arab victory era.
At a time when people were preoccupied with the interior political crisis and interior clashes, there were in Hezbollah men who do not sleep the night following July War on top of whom was the leader Martyr Imad Mughniyeh (May Allah bless his soul) and they are still working to achieve and realize this promise.
On AlQods Day I say that when we possess the will, determination, spirituality, capacity and power and when we become strong in a world were only the strong is respected, doors to honor will be opened before us and humiliation will abandon us. Our dignity and holy sites will be restored. With this eye we view Al Qods, and we in Lebanon and Palestine and in the Arab and Islamic worlds feel that we are closer than any time in the past to Jerusalem, Al Aqsa Mosque, the Prophet’s night journey and The Resurrection Church. God willing our generation will be the one who will witness the return of our nation to its dear Al Qods when there’ll be no more Israel, Zionists, occupation or humiliation. Peace be upon you and Allah’s mercy and blessing.