Mission & Name
US Foreign Policy (Dr. El-Najjar's Articles)
Ghazza Is Truly Karbala
A Speech By
January 2, 2009
The Secretary-General of Hizbullah, Seyed Hassan Nasrullah, addressed
a crowd of Lebanese supporters in a videoconference on December 28,
The following is the text of his speech, sent by Hassan Shabbir:
In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
Thanks and praise be to Allah, the Cherisher and Sustainer of the
Peace and prayers be to the seal of the prophets, Prophet Muhammad,
his infallible progeny, his chosen companions and all the prophets and
Brothers and sisters,
It is with great
misfortune that we begin the new Islamic year and the Christian
Gregorian year at a time when we are seeing a huge humanitarian
catastrophe in Ghazza (Gaza), which has led to the death, martyrdom and
injury of countless people.
The number of the martyrs has now
increased to over 300 and the number of those injured has risen to over
1,000 in the Gaza Strip, which is under siege, isolated and oppressed.
Yet Gaza resists with perseverance.
Today, we need not speak
about examples of history as we are witnessing the model of a new
Karbala. Today, moment to moment of our lives has become the repetition
of the tragedy of Karbala. What is taking place today helps us better
understand what happened in the past.
Karbala's reality is
about a handful of faithful, non-yielding believers, who held on to
their dignity and stood up for the rights of their Ummah and refused to
be humiliated and yield to tyranny. Those believers were made to choose
between humiliation and unequal confrontation that may lead to
martyrdom...and so they chose martyrdom.
This group of
believers after being subjected to hunger, thirst, intimidation and
threats, came under attack, yet did not retreat. The martyrs then fell
one after the other. Is this not what happened to Imam Hussain (PBUH) in
It was in Karbala that Imam Hussein (PBUH) set an
example and laid the foundation for this Islamic, humanitarian school of
thought. Throughout history the followers of this school have never
parted with a well-known saying by the Imam. This saying is especially
associated with the tenth day of Muharram.
claimer, the son of a claimer, [pointing to 'Ubaidullah Bin Zyiad] is
overwhelmed by shame and disgrace! He has placed us between two choices,
to either fight in a disproportionate confrontation or a humiliating and
Hussain (PBUH) made his choice: "And how
far disgrace is from us! Allah refuses us the life of disgrace, His
Messenger and believers do too."
Why did he declare "And how
far disgrace is from us", Why did he say "we shall never be disgraced?"
It was not an emotional outburst! The matter was rather one of
humanitarian, ideological spiritual, religious and humane commitment
springing from human values, dignity and human rights. As Hussain (PBUH)
later tells us "...Allah refuses us the life of disgrace, His Messenger
and believers do too. Indeed, proud, exalted and lofty spirits will
never prefer to obey the vile people, rather than the death of the
This is the Hussaini-Mohammedan Prophetic
school of Karbala. When man chooses the martyrdom of the honorable and
the dignified over living the life of vile people, who have been
deprived of their honor, dignity, rights and sanctities, man is actually
acting in harmony with his innate nature, humanness, religion, Islam and
Thus was the choice in Karbala. This was also
the choice we made during the July 2006 war when you, the resistance
community, and all who had embraced the resistance, were to choose
between surrender and confrontation: either a humiliating surrender, in
which you had to accept the conditions of America and Israel to end the
war, or suffer destruction and massacres.
You chose to stand up
and refuse disgrace regardless of the tens of thousands of homes
destroyed and the hundreds of those martyrs and injured. You stood up
against collusion, betrayal and disgrace for a dignified and honorable
Hence, some of you were martyred, yet with your
martyrdom, you created the historic victory in Lebanon.
the destruction of tens of thousands of your homes, the martyrdom of
thousands of your people and the injury of your men, women and children
and the small number of supporters by your side and despite facing
conspiracies, it was with this Karbala mindset of Hussain (PBUH) that
you rejected humiliation and shame and insisted on resistance.
The outcome was a victory of the blood over sword.
happening today in Gaza is not similar but identical to what happened in
July of 2006.
As Lebanese, we can well understand what is
happening in Gaza. It is the same as what happened here, the same
choices, the same battle, the same conspiracies and God-willing there
will have the same outcome.
When we look at the Gaza Strip,
which is subjected to hunger and thirst and surrounded by fire and
intimidation and gave martyrs and wounded by the hundreds yesterday, we
find that its people remain patient and firm. They do not express
weakness or frailty... We see the legitimate Prime Minister Ismail
Haniya coming out from under the rubble and fire to say "even if they
wipe out Gaza completely, we will not surrender or back down, and we
will preserve our dignity and our rights".
This is truly
Karbala...when men facing fire day and night with the martyrs still
being mourned, reject humiliation and shame.
and sisters, let me speak openly about certain aspects of this
confrontation that I left unsaid in the July War. I well understand the
situation faced by our brothers in Gaza. Their situation is more
difficult than our situation [in the July War].
are more concerned about carefully considering and weighing what they
say, but let me today call a spade a spade, come what may!
Today, we must express the truth loud and clear, so that the entire
nation will become aware of its responsibility in the face of the
Brothers and sisters,
In Gaza as in
Lebanon, the situation is very clear. Let me describe what is happening
clearly and explicitly.
It is clear that America and Israel are
pursuing a project in the region that seeks to impose an unequal
settlement on the rest of the Arab world. After Egypt and Jordan signed
so-called peace treaties with the Israelis, only Palestine, Lebanon and
Syria remain, and the Americans and Zionists now want to settle the
issue according to their conditions.
They want Palestinians,
Lebanese and Syrians to obey and surrender to these conditions without
having any other option.
To impose these conditions, Americans
and Zionists are using force, pressure, blockade, internal strife,
provocation of internal sedition among resistance movements, media,
political and psychological warfare, assassinations and wars.
Their intention is to subdue those who have so far refused to yield to
the will and conditions of America and Israel. Some Arab regimes have
also been true accomplices in this project.
It is not true that
there is Arab silence. We see help extended to Israel, I do not mean all
Arabs or all Arab regimes; only those which have signed so-called peace
treaties with Israel. Today they are helping Zionists politically,
psychologically, socially, culturally and media-wise, through security
and the military, on preparing the circumstances for the surrender of
the resistors against the American-Zionist project in the Palestine
So let us be very utterly clear. In our region, Arab
countries are forging partnerships with the Israelis.
war was waged against us in Lebanon with Arab consent and upon Arab
request. The Israelis were crystal clear when they exposed this, and the
Arab regimes cannot deny it because the Israelis may produce evidence of
this collusion -- that they were contacted and asked to rid them (Arabs)
When the war started, they were comforting the
Israelis after their initial failure in the first few days. Yet, those
Arab regimes continued to demand Israel to eliminate of Hezbollah and
that Israel sever Hezbollah's head.
The same thing is happening
in Gaza today. Those same sides are asking Israel to eliminate Hamas,
the Islamic Jihad and the rest of the resistance factions to do away
with and settle this battle once and for all. The truth is that they are
helping the Zionist entity in this.
We have heard, and this is
very unfortunate, that Israeli officials say that the magnitude of Arab
support for the war on Gaza well exceed the support they extended for
the Israeli war on Lebanon in July 2006.
This is the true
picture. I can even tell you that some of these Arab regimes are the
real cause behind the division among the Palestinians.
regimes contributed, instigated, financed and armed, so that fighting is
drawn to Palestinian factions, exactly what they did in Lebanon before.
The former [Lebanese] cabinet would not have dared to make such
notorious decisions on May 5, had it not been for the encouragement and
support of these Arab regimes. They wanted to drag Lebanon into the grip
of a cruel internal war and internal sedition, but the performance of
the opposition in those days made all their efforts in vein.
They are not neutral. They are convinced that what they do is right and
have committed themselves to this project, which is very unfortunate to
When infighting and internal division in Palestine or
Lebanon happens, these very same Arab regimes use this as an excuse for
inaction and say "Well, look at the Palestinians, what are we to do when
they are killing one another?" They only use this excuse to rid
themselves of their responsibility toward Palestine and Lebanon.
No one asked these Arab regimes in the July 2006 war nor today in the
Gaza Strip to fight for the Lebanese or the Palestinians but only to
adopt a fair and appropriate political stand on media issues to say the
least. Yet again, as in the July War, we find the Arab regimes hold the
Yesterday, we heard an Egyptian official
holding the side that ended the Palestinian national dialogue efforts as
responsible for what is now happening in Gaza. By 'side', he meant
Hamas. He also said, that in the Egyptian view, since they had issued
warnings, those who have not heeded their calls are responsible of what
become of them.
How can one believe that such statements have
come from an Arab person or official?
When at the height of the
blockade on Gaza and when Gazans was suffering from hunger and illness,
that same person said, "we will cripple the leg of anyone attempting to
cross into Egypt!"
By God, brothers and sisters,
me to draw on history. When we see such examples of officials, leaders
and figures in the Arab world, I personally understand something in the
words of Hossain (PBUH) who said, "Life under tyranny is death and under
such circumstances martyrdom is freedom."
By God, there is no
value for life under the control of such figures and leaders who plot
and plan against their nation. When 300 people are massacred in Gaza in
a matter of minutes, an Arab official holds the victims and martyrs
responsible for the confrontation. It is as if they expected Hamas, the
Islamic Jihad and the Palestinian factions in Gaza to consent to an
extension of the blockade, the calm of the starvation and the calm of
the humiliation that they were being subjected to for the past six
Today, we hear the same rhetoric we heard during the
July 2006 war, an attempt to hold the resistance in Gaza responsible for
the war and its consequences. This is shameful and unfortunate.
Some Arab satellite channels, which may as well be called Hebrew
channels, that I have been watching yesterday and today covered the Gaza
massacre as if these people had died in road accidents in an obscure
part of the world!
They report the deaths and then they go back
to their regular daily programs, as if nothing happened and no
humanitarian calamity is taking place in the Gaza Strip, simply because
these channels would feel embarrassed in front of their viewers if they
called the victims 'martyrs' rather than 'dead'.
sisters, this is the reality of today, the people of Gaza have made a
difficult decision: they are in effect exercising that decision with
their steadfastness, resistance, defiance, honor and glory as you
yourselves did in 2006.
No amount of sacrifices, destruction,
tears, blood and abandonment prevents them from continuing to insist on
their right to resistance. But what is the responsibility of the nation
As a nation our main goal has to be stopping Zionist
attacks on Gaza and preventing Israelis from achieving any of their
objectives. In this manner, Gaza will be secured despite the gravity of
the sacrifices that have to be made. Every state must work toward this
goal and not only the citizens of Gaza.
governments have resorted to inaction must force them to act. There is
no justification for anyone to say that they cannot do anything because
of their repressive regimes.
We must take to the streets in the
Arab and Muslim world. We must raise our voices and pressure our
governments even if they shoot us, it is still a duty -- for whoever
falls martyr in these protests is a martyr on the path to al-Quds
(Jerusalem), a martyr of Islam, and a martyr of a whole line of prophets
and divine missions, they are martyrs of humanity.
cannot apologize for their inaction and nations cannot complain that
they have suppressive rulers.
In the July war, I did not ask
this of the Arab people, but in the case of Gaza, I say all of us are
duty-bound to take to the streets by the thousands, by the tens and
hundreds of thousands, and demand from these government to act
responsibly. These governments know full well what they are capable of
doing, particularly at a time when the United States and European
countries are suffering from financial and economic turmoil.
First of all, today the Arab world possesses oil, money and political
strength and with modest efforts can stop the aggression against our
people and the people in Gaza.
Secondly, the Arab and Muslim
worlds must demand that the Egyptian regime, which has a crucial role in
what is happening in Gaza today, not to enter war but to simply open the
(Rafah) crossing for food, medicine, water and even weapons to reach our
people in Gaza. The people in Gaza are men and women are victory-makers
capable of resistance and steadfastness and have performed very well in
In the July war in Lebanon, we did not ask any Arab
country to open a battlefront but yes, we did ask for borders to be
This is where we must acknowledge Syria for its
assistance that led to our victory in the July war, because despite
repeated aerial bombardment of all our border crossings and the main
roads, Syria did not close its border with us.
We only ask of
Egypt to indefinitely open the crossing for the sake of the living and
not for the injured or the martyred.
Egypt, the largest and
most important of Arab States, is not a Red Cross or a Red Crescent
institution and will not be asked to deal with the people of Gaza in
What is required of the Egyptian leadership and
regime is to resolve this issue and not to politically take advantage of
the war to pressure Hamas and those of the resistance in Gaza in a bid
to accept Israeli conditions in return for a ceasefire -- as some of us
here in Lebanon did in the first days of the July aggression.
But they must politically help the people of Gaza and stop the
aggression without forcing them to accept certain conditions. This is
their real responsibility. This is what the Arab and Muslim worlds must
be demanding of Egypt.
Up until now, we have been cautiously
making appeals but after what happened yesterday, we say to the Egyptian
If you do not open the Rafah border crossing, if you do
not come to the rescue of your brothers in Gaza, then you are have a
hand in the siege and the killing and in causing the Palestinian
Egyptian officials have to hear this from all the
people of the Arab and Muslims worlds, from religious scholars,
political parties, elites, intellectuals and media professionals from
all walks of life. They must know that they will be the condemned by
history, the entire nation, the prophets and the martyrs if they are not
quick to make a humane and historical stand today.
This part of
my speech is directed at the people of Egypt, its Muslim, its Arabs, its
proud people, the defiant, generous, resistance-loving, decent,
courageous and noble people of Egypt, whom we all know what goes on in
their hearts and minds. We know their mentality. Let the Egyptian people
take to the streets in their millions.
Can the Egyptian police
arrest millions of Egyptians?
No! They cannot!
upon the people of Egypt because they are the ones facing the regime
which has closed the Rafah crossing.
People of Egypt, you must
open the Rafah crossing with your bear hands if you must. I am talking
of the position of a member of the resistance that fought for 33 days,
and on behalf of the people who fought, sacrificed and gave martyrs.
What we know and what we hear about the officers and soldiers of
the Egyptian armed forces, who are still proud of their Arab roots and
continue to oppose Zionism, despite decades having passed from the Camp
David peace agreement.
This is what we know them for. I am not
calling for a coup in Egypt, and I am in no position to call for one.
But I am calling for generals and officers to ask their political
leadership whether it is their devotion to the military, the
responsibilities entrusted in them and their rows of medals that prompts
them to guard Israeli borders while watching our own people being
slaughtered in Gaza?
The presence of everyone today is what
will change the equation. The people in Egypt, its political parties,
religious scholars, the Al-Azhar religious institution and the armed
forces as well as the political elites are what will change the
equation. I do not think there is an excuse for anyone to sit back and
watch for the way to change the equation today is to modify Egypt's
That is what rulers of the Arab world and the
Egyptian peoples must demand from the rulers of Egypt. If the Rafah
crossing is opened for water, medicine, food, money and weapons to our
people in Gaza, the epic victory that took place in Lebanon will be once
again be repeated. We are confident of this victory despite all the
harsh conditions of our people in the Gaza Strip.
sisters, should Gaza endure this onslaught for days or weeks, the
aggression will stop, as this enemy does not endure a war of attrition
nor withstand the long days of war. This enemy will eventually end the
aggression; it will fail in its objectives and with that their leaders
who wanted to take political power by shedding Palestinian blood will
Yes, some will tell us, in Lebanon too, that the solution
lies in comprehensive peace. They will tell us this is the solution that
will end the tragedy! Regardless of our ideologically principled
position on the subject of comprehensive peace, I ask them what they
have achieved from talks with Israel since Madrid and even before Madrid
other than being subjected to further massacres, killings, aggression
and more humiliation and the yielding to various conditions?
the Palestinian settlement, the negotiations at Camp David by the late
Palestinian president Yasser Arafat were not held with the Likud or
Kadima, but with the Labor Party and Barak himself. However, at Camp
David, the Palestinians were not even ensured the minimum of their
legitimate rights, not even enough to save face.
Which kind of
just and comprehensive peace can be achieved be accepting humiliating
Israeli conditions that exclude the 'right of return' to al-Quds
(Jerusalem), the Palestinian territories where a viable Palestinian
state can be established? What is all this nonsense when people are
being killed and slaughtered in Palestine?!
As in the past and
now in Lebanon, some talk about 'just and comprehensive peace'. I ask
them whether they have managed to first convince the Israelis that a
'just and comprehensive peace' can be established that they now demand
resistance movements to lay down their arms?
Have the Israelis
ever made any concessions until now, in Lebanon, Palestine or anywhere
for that matter?
Have the Israelis ever returned your
legitimate rights, at least the minimum of them? Never! Some tell us
such nonsense that in Lebanon the international community will protect
us; well where is the international community that is supposed to be
protecting the unarmed people in Gaza, the children and women of Gaza?
They say that we are protected by international resolutions.
Where are the international resolutions in the Arab-Israeli conflict, of
which not even a single one has been implemented not even Resolution
Arab solidarity will protects us. What Arab solidarity?!
Arab rulers waste days before they can agree on holding a meeting and
have yet to agree on holding one now as a result of reservations here
Brothers and sisters, what happened and is still
happening today in Gaza, and what took place during the July 2006
aggression should be enough to convince each and every Arab and every
patriot living in his homeland that what can protect our people and
restore our rights is resistance and jihad. All other options are mere
To wake us up from our slumber -- in both Arab and
Muslim worlds -- do we need a hundred more massacres like Qana and Gaza?
Do we need the repetition of massacres like Dair Yassin? Do we need
hundreds more massacres like that of the Ibrahimi Mosque?
God, this matter is deeply regrettable because this enemy, whom you want
peace with, offers you a new massacre every year or so as proof of its
inherent terrorist, criminal and racist nature and its thirst for the
blood of the innocent.
Your calls for peace will only be met
with more slaughters and murder. Do we need more massacres in order for
our leaders, people and elite to realize that we are before an enemy
whose inherent nature is brutality, racism and terrorism, with whom it
is impossible to establish peace under any circumstances. How then can
peace with humiliating conditions be achieved with such an enemy? Do we
need more blood to be convinced of that?
We are confident that
the people of Gaza and the resistance have unshakable faith in God and
divine victory, although some may not believe in this.
on your behalf, on behalf of the resistance of Lebanon, the families of
the martyrs, of prisoners, the wounded, and on behalf of every
resistance member and honorable Mujahid in Lebanon, I congratulate
Gazans on their martyrs as we pay our condolences to the families of
martyrs and ask God Almighty for a speedy recovery of their wounded.
The Gazans are on the field, steadfast in battle and have limitless
devotion. They are a people of dignity, defiance and resistance.
These are the real factors that will bring victory. Faith, loyalty,
honesty, consistency and steadfastness is what will bring victory, and
God is your aide. The entire Arab world is duty-bound to stand by your
side. It is not permissible for anyone to lag from their abilities and
potential in your support and aid.
As for Lebanon, I like to
say a few words about the current events. Since the beginning of the
bloody Israeli aggression on Gaza, Olmert, Barak, Livni and a number of
Israeli officials, made strong threats and warnings to any other front,
by which they particularly meant Lebanon. They took the proper
precautions on the border and are on full alert on the northern border
of occupied Palestine.
Today, they sent calls to the settlers
in occupied northern Palestine to prepare and equip their shelters.
I do not want to frighten anyone or cause concern, but we cannot
mislead anyone here as there are two possibilities:
is that everything the Israelis say or do in the northern occupied
region of Palestine may be preventative precautions to deal with any
developments on the Lebanese front.
The other is that the
Israeli enemy is conspiring with some Arab regimes and with the world
preoccupied with the financial crisis and the political vacuum created
in the US because of the departure of Bush and Obama taking power, it is
pondering an act of aggression against Lebanon.
may take advantage of this situation in the world to strike Lebanon as
they are in need of creating such a situation to gain political leverage
in their elections or to restore its deterrent image.
not be reassured by such claims that Israel cannot fight on two fronts
at the same time. It has fought on 3 and 4 fronts in the past. This must
make the Lebanese government, army and people as well as the Lebanese
resistance more attentive and cautious not to be tricked by such
statements. For instance, one issue is of the missiles discovered eight
days ago and just before the military attack on Gaza! I would like to
ask: Who placed these missiles where they were before the war began?
When several Katyusha rockets were discovered in al-Naqoura, some
Lebanese figures made statements and pointed the finger of blame at us.
So much so that one of them even said that no one can make moves in that
region, but Hizbullah. Yet, we did not hear these same figures say
anything when the Zionists kidnapped the two Tarraf brothers from the
Southern Blida within this same period. Their was no evidence of their
patriotic concern and bleeding hearts for Lebanon when this happened.
Moreover, if the information upon which they build their
political analysis, then this is a disaster as such information has
proven to be both incorrect and false and has shown to be someone's
attempt to shift the blame on the Hezbollah for that matter.
would like to say to them that Hezbollah possesses the courage to take
responsibility for any action we take. We do not hide or shy away from
our responsibilities as some do!
We possess such courage and do
not need to defend ourselves against such accusations, but what occurred
is, yes, suspicion of the other side. Could Israel have not penetrated
southern Lebanon to set up missiles of this type?
many individuals and networks in Lebanon that collaborate with Israel
not have carried out such acts to provide a justification for Israel to
launch an aggression against Lebanon? Unfortunately, those politicians
provided a justification and helped engineer up. When they condemned the
Katyusha, they said that this provides a pretext for Israel to attack
Lebanon! Who says it provides a pretext?!
Had such an
occurrence taken place before, would it have justified an assault on
Lebanon to destroy and confront Lebanon?
You are providing
Israel with excuses through such rhetoric and absurd and unfounded
statements. I will not delve deep into this matter now, but I am in the
process of inviting Lebanon, as I do the region, yet my focus now
remains on Lebanon specifically, the country that rattled Israel twice,
and many more times, the most well-known of such defeats were those of
the years 2000 and 2006.
Yes, we must be on alert. I do not
want to frighten you but to avoid this subject from becoming a media
frenzy, I will tell you that I asked the brothers in the south
particularly, to be present, vigilant and cautious as we face a brutal
and treacherous enemy. We do not know the size of the schemes hatched
around us, regionally and in the world; we are not fearful of what
happened in 2006 or of what happened or what is happening in Gaza.
We believe in the choice we made, and are quite prepared to repel any
assault on our land, country and dignity. We have written our slogans in
blood and are both willing and prepared to confront all aggressors, no
matter who they may be.
Brother and sisters, all of us in
Lebanon, and throughout the Muslim and Arab worlds, are duty-bound in
these historical days, especially in the ten days leading to Ashoura, to
shoulder our responsibility toward what is happening in Gaza. The burden
of what happens in Gaza is not only for the Gazans and Palestinians to
We must continue in our efforts and actions, and should
not settle for a protest here and a sit-in there, an action here and
another there; we ought to invest every effort in defending our people
Tomorrow has been announced as a day of mourning by
His Eminence Seyed Ali Khamenei, for all resistance fighters and all
free souls. Tomorrow is important for us to express our solidarity with
and sympathy for our people in Gaza and to mourn the martyrs who passed
I invite everyone tomorrow afternoon to participate
in a large gathering at al-Rayah stadium to pay tribute and participate
in the mourning of the martyrs of the resistance in Gaza and to express
our solidarity with the people of Gaza. I know there are many Ashoura
gatherings scheduled to be held in neighborhoods, mosques and Hussainiya
I call for the cancellation of all of these
gatherings and I urge everyone to attend the al-Rayah gathering instead.
I invite all men, women, children, young and old to come together in a
stand of solidarity with Gaza and its martyrs.
ought to make the world hear our voice and see our fearless Hussaini
fists risen in declaration to the world that we will remain standing and
unyielding to murder, the shedding of blood and intimidation.
would always invite you to the al-Rayah stadium on the tenth of
Muharram, but tomorrow is the day of Ashoura for us since everyday is an
Ashura and every land is Karbala. Tomorrow is a call to Hussain and an
answer to his call; tomorrow it is upon you to respond to Hussain's
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