Speech by Hezbollah Secretary General Sayed Hassan Nasrallah on June 23, 2017, on the occasion of the International Day of Al-Quds (Jerusalem)
This day was instituted by Imam Khomeini in 1979 to reaffirm the attachment of the Muslim community to the Palestinian cause and the holy places of al-Quds, and is celebrated each year on the last Friday of Ramadan.
[Israel didn’t win any war since 1967]
[…] Well, the sixth (force element for the Palestinian cause) is the persistence and endurance of Resistance movements in Lebanon and Palestine. They did not run away, nor withdraw, nor have disarmed nor destroyed their missiles, nor threw them into the sea, nor threw them in the trash or have bartered them, nor have changed their line, alliances or positions, despite everything we have just mentioned: threats, intimidation, terrorism charges, arrests, killings, imprisonment, blockade, drying up sources of money, laws imposing sanctions, (inscription on the) list of terrorist organizations, etc. This is also something (very) important.
But most importantly, let me emphasize, which also constitutes a success for the Resistance in Lebanon and Palestine through all these (six or seven) past years: this resistance that works to its perpetuation, its strength, its readiness, to increase its workforce, on moral, psychological, material, military and security levels, this very Israel, at its (annual conference) of Herzliya (June 2017), considering the countries he called “the moderate Sunni Arab countries” (and in reality, the responsibility to respond to these statements lies more with Sunnis than with us) but at the same time, Liberman, the fanatic extremist, what did he say? When speaking of the problem of why Israel has not reached compromise agreements in the region, he lists a number of reasons, and I’ll just read two lines and a half (of his statement). One of the reasons he sets out, listen well because these words have cost (a lot of) blood, and are a (true) success, a victory, a recognition of the enemy (himself) (that should be taken into consideration by) those who are still discussing (this reality).
In this speech at Herzliya, Lieberman said: “I consider that one of our problems is that since 1967, we haven’t… we haven’t… (laughs) we haven’t won any battle.” This is what Liberman (says). I resume my reading: “I consider that one of our problems is that since 1967 we haven’t won any battle. In fact, the last battle, and the last time we won (a war), it was the war of the six-days. Who won and who lost (then) was not a matter of doubt for anyone.” That is to say, in 67, no one had any doubt that Israel had won, and that the Arabs had lost. “The lack of victories is something that leads to low confidence (in our abilities) of the opposing party.” I’m going to quote again from his words (after my comment).
Well, so they now recognize (their successive defeats). And so after 1973, he had to get a victory (hence the invasion of Lebanon), just like now, they must destroy Syria and work (to undermine) the resistance movements because Israel needs a victory. Israel needs a victory. To reach a compromise agreement (with Arab countries), Israel needs a victory. Now, of course, there are some sneaky aspirants (to power) or ancient occupants of trembling thrones that want to offer Israel a political victory without a fight, for free. I will also return to that.
The other element that must also be recorded to the credit of the Lebanon and Palestine Resistance… I still hope everyone will be very attentive to these words, because in Lebanon, in general, we follow such statements: an Israeli official rises (regularly) to make (threats of war), one claims to send Lebanon back 20 years, the other 50 years, yet another 200 years… Regularly, the ambassadors also, some foreign embassies (trying) to intimidate the Lebanese officials, (implying a hint) there will be a war or not, that the summer will be hot or not, etc. Of course, I will read these two excerpts, but we do not trust the Israelis, (so) it does not mean that we are sure (of the veracity of their statements). But (I read them) to show what was the state of mind of the conference, what was said between them.
(I will read) an extract of statements by the Israeli Minister of Defense, the Minister of War, and a text of the Chief of Staff of the enemy Army. These are the two people most concerned by matters of war, with Netanyahu. Liberman said (I quote him so that some frightened Lebanese will be reassured): “People always ask me: ‘What is going to happen in Gaza? Are we once again face a war? What will happen with Hezbollah? What will happen in Syria?’ And once again, I repeat what I always say…” Who is expressing himself here? Liberman, the one who (kept) threatening, promising (military action), foaming (with rage), etc. “We have no intention of taking the initiative in any military action, neither in summer nor autumn, neither to the North [that is to say with us] nor South [that is to say to our brothers in Gaza]. Our goal is prevention without war. And it is possible to [take action of] prevention without starting a war by creating a real and effective deterrence, about which we can discuss.” Thanks to the deterrence, war is prevented.
Well, who is speaking here? The enemy Minister of War. Of course, he spoke in a lot of open and transparent manner in his speech. Well, why? Why does he not want war? Neither with Gaza nor with Lebanon? Because such a war would be (very) expensive, my (dear) brothers and sisters. It is with such statements that we must understand the importance of the achievements in Gaza and the importance of the achievements in Lebanon. The success of the Resistance, the success of the golden equation Army-People-Resistance. The success of national harmony, even in general terms. That’s success. But fundamentally, it is the Resistance, which has the ability to make any war with Israel extremely costly for Israel.
And [Lieberman], what did he say just before? He wants a victory. And he knows that a war in Gaza will bring no victory. And a war against Lebanon will bring no victory. He can destroy, kill, violate… Nobody disputes the bestiality of the enemy and its abilities [of destruction]. But it cannot achieve a victory because it (faces) willpower, resistant fighters, heroes, a nation that embraces (the Resistance) a people, families of martyrs, political leadership, scholars, forces, etc., etc., etc.
Therefore, the Resistance (has nothing to fear), and continues to achieve victories hour after hour. This very situation is a deterrent to the enemy. The situation in which the enemy knows he has neither door nor window, nor any hole to launch a successful war against Lebanon, or to conduct a successful war in Gaza is what deters him. And it is a proof of the strength of the Resistance in Lebanon, proof of the strength of the Resistance in Gaza and this is the fundamental consideration taken into account by the enemy regarding the Resistance and its battles.
The Chief of Staff of the enemy Army also said, after extensively describing the (alleged) Israel’s ability to act, destroy, break, eradicate and anything you want, finally, he says: “And despite the facts that we have described, and our strong desire to remove the organization Hizballah south of the Litani, as called for in (UN) Resolution 1701, we have an interest… [to what?] … we have an interest that this calm continues for many years ahead.” This is not the Foreign Minister who speaks, it’s not a diplomat: it’s the head of the Army, whose role is to threaten, promise, terrorize, frighten… What does he say? He says that “our interest is to stay calm, sensible, we want peace for many years, as long as we can achieve that calm by this deterrence.” Well, why not? Why does Israel consider the Resistance like that today?
So, seventh (force element for the Palestinian cause), with the Islamic Community (besides Iran and Yemen widely mentioned before), and despite all the injuries, look today the people of Bahrain who manifests, and to whom are shot (live) bullets.
O Palestinian people (I speak again to our Palestinian brothers), your brothers in Bahrain demonstrate for you, for your cause, for your holy places for your rights, and the regime of Khalifa shoots them on their heads and on their chests, and it stops them, tortures, imprisons, hits them. But the people of Bahrain, faithful and loyal (to Palestine) too, showed up (massively) today to say that Palestine for us is a religion, a principle (of faith), a brotherhood, a family, an Islamic community…
It’s the same when we consider Nigeria. Their leader and Sheikh is in jail [Sheikh Zakzaky] because of a Saudi plot, thousands of them were killed, thousands of them were arrested, but today they demonstrated by hundreds of thousands, tens of thousands and in several cities for Palestine and Al-Quds (Jerusalem). And we see the same in Iraq, Syria, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Tunisia, Turkey, Mauritania… in Western capitals, London and elsewhere.
What does this mean? This means that the Islamic Community, despite threats (against them), distractions and overwhelm [caused by crises], its being teared, its sectarian, religious, racial, partisan and identity incitement, to which it is subject, and all you want, Al-Quds (Jerusalem) and Palestine are still present (in the hearts and minds), and will be so more and more.
I wanted to mention all that to show that no, in the opposite Axis [facing the USA-Israel-Europe-Saudi Arabia-Gulf Axis] the important goal of the liquidation of the Palestinian cause, the exclusion of Palestine and the Palestinian cause from the equation has not been realized, it failed. They failed to realize it, and even more, the Resistance Axis grows in presence, efficiency and power. That’s what I wanted to say last (before the conclusion soon to be translated). I wanted to talk about the internal situation in Lebanon but unfortunately I will not have time.
[100 000s of combatants from the Muslim world are ready to fight Israel]
In conclusion, our message on this Day of Al-Quds (Jerusalem), through all the facts (that I have mentioned), from the battlefield to the political terrain, to the popular event venues, celebrations and festivals commemorated this day, we arrive at the following result and determine the following responsibilities:
First, the Palestinian people and all those who believe in this cause in the Arab-Muslim world must not despair, despite all the difficulties that we discussed in the first part (of my speech). Because despair would achieve the goal of the enemy. Do not despair, do not be disgusted, exhausted and tired; you must remain patient, determined and persevere (towards Resistance) because before us, there is a lot of hope, a lot of success, a lot of open horizons. Therefore, we have no right to despair or give up (the fight), or to be tired, or surrender at the end. The Palestinians and their supporters must remain firmly attached to their rights.
Second, everyone should know, both the friends and enemies – the friend [also] needs to be reassured because a psychological war is waged against him day and night, against our popular base, against our people, against all supporters of the Resistance in the Arab-Muslim world. And the enemy must also know, as he is plotting his calculations and considerations, everyone should know that the Resistance Axis is very powerful, and he demonstrated this great force. It has not fallen, it has not collapsed or crushed, it took charge of the situation and has taken the initiative in more than one field, in more than one country and more than a terrain. Today the Resistance Axis has not abandoned the field and will never abandon the field.
Today the Resistance Axis feels it has expanded considerably, true allies who were not with him a few years ago, have now joined him: 6 years, 7 years and 10 years ago, we were only Iran, Syria, the Resistance in Lebanon and the Resistance in Palestine, full stop. The rest consisted only of people who had empathy for us (nothing more). But today, there are two major qualitative additions to the Axis of Resistance, (two allies) powerful, genuine, authentic, effective and influential in the region and for the future of the region (joined us): (I speak of) the developments in Iraq, and the developments in Yemen. These countries were not present (with us before).
Today, the whole world should know that the Resistance Axis is stronger, and the Israeli enemy must know that if he launches an Israeli war against Syria and against Lebanon, it is not sure the fight stays Lebanese-Israeli and Syrian-Israeli. This does not mean that I say that other countries will intervene directly. But it may open the door to tens of thousands and even hundreds of thousands of [battle-hardened] mujahideen and fighters from all over the Muslim world who will participate in this battle.
[Public : At your service, ô Nasrallah!]
From Iraq, Yemen, and other places: Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan… Who says that if the enemy decides to attack or launch a war, that the war will be as in 2006 or the like, no. Today the Resistance Axis considers that it is bound by a common destiny and behaves accordingly. It is linked by a common destiny.
Thirdly, everyone should be aware that the situation in the region will not remain as it is, and the plans of the enemies have already failed for some, and others will also fail. And they failed to achieve their most important political objectives. Their most important policy objectives (failed). (They failed) on military, political and media levels. And those who endured and resisted offering their blood, their martyrs and their sacrifices in these battlefields continue their actions to transform the situation in the region.
Fourth, faces, states and regimes (who fomented and supported Daech) have been completely unmasked. It is in this fourth point I will explain the slogan that appears behind me, “The honor of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) refuses…” This sentence was pronounced by His Eminence the Imam leader Sayed Musa al-Sadr, may God return him safe and sound with his brothers and his companions, he said so in the 1970s, at a very large conference at UNESCO if I remember correctly, in the presence of the Palestinian leadership, the nationalist parties, etc. And he said in his speech, to quote in full, “Know therefore O Abu ‘Ammar [Yasser Arafat], that the honor of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) refuses… The honor of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) refuses that this holy city is liberated by others than (sincere) believers.” Maybe if one of us, today, holds such a speech, his words will have no impact, whether in Lebanon, Iraq, Syria, Yemen, if he said such a thing in Sana’a, Baghdad or Tehran, it would not cost anything. But when the Imam Musa al-Sadr spoke these (then unthinkable) words at UNESCO, it was different, it was abroad.
Anyway, faces are now exposed. Some say that the masks have fallen. I prefer to say that the faces are now exposed. The game of hypocrisy has ended. (Relations) under the table and above the table with Israel, it’s over. That’s what I mean. Look, some consider that what is happening today between Israel and some Arab countries [open relations] is a proof of defeat (of the Palestinian cause). But I tell you that this is a positive sign announcing the victory. Why? When the hypocrites come out of your ranks, it means that you are approaching victory. When the sorting is done between the wheat and the tares in a battle whose goal is the ultimate good in this world (the Liberation of Palestine) this means that the victory approaches.
The honor of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) refuses that it is liberated by the hypocrites, perverts, agents of the enemy, desperate to sell to the highest bidder, bums, crumbling and traitors. Al-Quds (Jerusalem) will be released only by (sincere) believers in God, in the divine messages, in the Prophets, in the Holy Places, those who believe in their peoples, in the rights of their peoples, the sincere, faithful and loyal, who sacrifice (to defend their beliefs). And that’s what we are now approaching.
What is happening now is not a bad sign, it is a positive and beneficial sign: the fool’s game is over, the game of hypocrisy, of under the table and over the table (is over). So let all things (appear as they are). This differentiation (between the sincere and the hypocrites is very beneficial). O my brothers and sisters, O the Palestinian people, do not despair, do not be sad, do not be sorry. Rather, this differentiation is an extremely positive sign, which transposes the battle on a new, more advanced stage and closer to victory.
Fifth, whatever the developments, the US and Israel, as well as the [Arab] regimes that work with them, must know that the Palestinian people and the peoples of our Islamic community will never recognize Israel, will never accept (the existence) of Israel, will never normalize their relations with Israel. The Egyptian people, the Jordanian people, never! Maybe the leaders would normalize relations, as well as some political, cultural or media figures, because of their emptiness, weakness and baseness, they would normalize relations. As for these people, these (Arab and Muslim) people, it is impossible that they normalize their relations with Israel, whatever may happen: civil, racial, religious wars, sectarian sedition, expatriation, dangers, whatever you want. It’s impossible ! And this is a true verdict, unsurpassable. I am not exaggerating, I do not give hopes. The facts and reality confirm what I say.
And that’s why this Israel will remain a stranger to the region, imposed (from outside) in this region, an occupying state, a terrorist state. And the day comes that this terrorism and occupation will be uprooted from the land of Palestine. They just… well… They are fighting against fate. But the fate of this community and this region is this one (the end of Israel).
[Saudi Arabia wants to sell Palestine to Donald Trump]
Sixth, the regimes conspiring against the Resistance Axis must know that they will not prevail in this battle. They can do whatever they want but they will not win this battle. Devise your plots, make use of all your tricks, deploy all your efforts [words of Zeynab b. Ali to the tyrant Yazid after the martyrdom of Imam Hussein], do whatever you want, but you will never be able to prevail in this battle. If they wanted to win, if they wanted to end the war and be victorious, it had to be done six years ago, three years ago, but now it’s over, (they do not stand) a chance. But for the future, whatever you do, yes, it will shed more blood, cause more martyrs and destruction, but you will not be able to achieve these evil and ominous objectives you strive to achieve.
Similarly, with the same frankness that I promised you, I have to say this about the current regional Arab-Muslim political situation: the one who constitutes the backbone of the war against the Resistance Axis, plotting against him, at the media, cultural, ideological, security, political, military and material levels, and working day and night (against him), the one who – I say “the one who… the one who…” and then I’ll name him – the one who now offers rewards to Israel without it costing him any effort (any concessions), the one who is opening the doors to Israel in the Islamic world to establish relations, normalize, (establish exchanges) and economic cooperation, is the Saudi regime. Why hide behind our fingers (like an ostrich and deny the obvious)? Why?
Today, Saudi Arabia, by its regional status, its privileged position in the Arab-Muslim world, after all (countries) got weakened, were shredded, scattered and hungered, because of the position it represents, its monetary resources, influence, on behalf of the two Holy Places (Mecca and Medina) and in the name of religion, (Saudi Arabia) did all this. Is not that the truth? And that’s why… That’s why the Islamic community, scholars, parties, forces, people, officials… (I do not speak only of the Lebanese point of view, but at the whole Arab-Muslim world level) must know and recognize this truth and face it.
And this (Saudi) regime must know that he is condemned in the Islamic Community, we should not applaud them, pet them and congratulate them. For it is preparing to sell Palestine. It is preparing to sell the entire region to Trump, it is not to give him only 450 billion. It is about to sell everything to Trump and the Americans.
And what’s even sadder is that this regime wants to found an ideological center to combat terrorism. I suggest to them: it is useless to spend money, to create a center, to study, and all the trimmings, two words would suffice for (terrorism) to disappear. Stop and change the (religious) curriculum in Saudi Arabia that teaches Wahhabism, stop exporting Wahhabism to the world, and the world will be just fine. Without that, all you can do is nothing but rubbish. The security, political, economic agreements… These are only empty words. The source (of terrorism) is the (Wahhabi) thought.
Today, when there is fighting in Iraq and Syria, and that hundreds of suicide bombers pounce on us, is not that a (great) sin? Hundreds of suicide bombers. Do they fight for money? No! Are they fighting for this world? No! Never mind, we must acknowledge this reality. These individuals carry out suicide operations because someone stuffed their heads, convinced them that if they blow themselves up among Muslims, Christians, souks, mosques, churches, events or villages, znywhere among soldiers or civilians, if they blow themselves up, they will go directly to lunch with the Prophet. They will go directly to dinner with the Prophet. Their reward is paradise.
And they will be very surprised when they (are resurrected) among those whose actions are the most vain. [“Those whose efforts in this life, are being made in vain, and yet believed they were doing the right thing.” (Koran, XVIII, 104)]
The question goes before the security, military, alliances, war against terrorism and empty words. The first thing (it must confront) is (Wahhabi) thought. Where is it from ? From Saudi Arabia. From Wahhabi schools. From the [Saudi] Body of Senior Scholars. And therefore, the war against terrorism must begin there. Everything else is but waste of time, effort and sacrifices.
The sad thing is that this is the source of the terrorist thought that finances terrorism, but today, it calls to account his associates and neighbors [Qatar], accusing them of supporting and financing terrorism. This is of course a scandal. This means that there is no discomfort, no shame, all is revealed in its most raw truth, they really are not ashamed of anything with each other.
Anyway, today, on this Day of Al-Quds (Jerusalem), I declare that all the Islamic Community, all Muslim peoples must demand the Saudi regime to put an end to the war against Yemen, to stop interfering in the internal affairs in Bahrain and elsewhere, Syria, Iraq, Iran. It is not Iran that is interfering in your internal affairs. It must be demanded that the Saudi regime ceases to export the Wahhabi terrorist thought to the world. And it must be demanded that the Saudi regime ceases to open doors to Israel so that it would enter the Arab world after it was unable to do so for decades. These requests are a responsibility, and not (only) a recommended act. It is a most compelling duty today and it is part of the battle. Today our responsibility in Al-Quds Day (Jerusalem) is this one.
And we also, in Hezbollah, in the Islamic Resistance in Lebanon, with all our brothers and sisters, our people, our loved ones, martyrs’ families, the wounded, today, we also renew our faith in Al-Quds (Jerusalem), our faith in the Palestinian cause, our determination to follow the path of Resistance, our strong commitment to the Resistance Axis, our determination in this battle for the future of Palestine and the future of the Islamic Community.
And in this way, we make sacrifices every day: martyrs, wounded, and sometimes even prisoners. We make these sacrifices because we firmly believe that in this battle, we protect the security of Lebanon, in front of Israel and in front of the takfiri groups. For in this battle, we preserve our region and our holy places.
And because in this battle, we protect our country and our region from which is worse and more terrible, that is this ISIS model which yesterday detonated a mosque among the largest and the grandest of Mosul. And worse, it makes the inhabitants of Mosul human shields, and when one of them tries to leave, they shoot him in the back. Throughout history, we have never seen a cruelty such as that represents Daech today, which has been launched against us and against our peoples by the United States and Saudi Arabia. We have never experienced anything like this.
In this battle, we will persevere and we will be wherever we need to be, and I tell you that considering all the facts and all the data, we walk through blood, martyrs, patience, sacrifice and endurance, we walk towards the inevitable victory, the promised victory, the upcoming victory, God willing.
Happy [Quds] Festival to you, and Peace of God be upon you, and His Mercy and Blessings.