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Speech by Hezbollah Secretary General Sayed Hassan Nasrallah on Friday, May 31, 2019, on the occasion of Al-Quds (Jerusalem) International Day.Translation: resistancenewsunfiltered.blogspot.com
Transcript:[…] I now get to the heart of the matter after this introduction that (presented) this commemoration (of the International Day of Al-Quds / Jerusalem). Today, the key challenge that Palestine and Al-Quds must face is the ‘Deal of the Century’, or ‘Trump Deal’. And today, all slogans around the world (chanted during the protests in support of Palestine) were in unison: “(We walk) toward Al-Quds” and “No to the Deal of the Century” or “Trump Deal”, because this is the threat that now hangs over Al-Quds, Palestine and the Palestinian cause.
Of course, our duty… We begin by stating our duty, and then we’ll analyze the facts. Our duty is to fight against the Deal of the Century. It is a legal, religious, humanitarian, ethical, national, patriotic, political, jihadi and revolutionary obligation… Call it what you will, because it includes all criteria. Why? Because frankly, it is the ‘Deal of Evil’, the Deal of definitive renunciation of Palestinian, Arab and Muslim rights, which ratifies the loss of the holy places. No need to argue extensively over all the (legal and moral) criteria and principles to establish that this Deal is unfair, null and void; it is a historical ‘Deal of Shame’, a historical crime. In all respects, it is necessary to face it, and all must oppose it (with all their strength).
I ask a question —for our obligation is clear, our duty is clear, our responsibility is clear. Can we face this Deal (successfully)? Can we block it? Can we make it fail? Yes! In all certainty, we can, with God’s grace. And all the realities that I will mention —I’ll mention some, because I do not have time to discuss them all— confirm that we are (already) on this path.
Today, the US administration, the Trump administration, and alongside it the Zionist entity, as well as some Arab regimes, some of which are seriously involved (for the success of the Deal of the Century), and some of which are not serious in their involvement —I also will talk about this in a moment—, are working night and day for the implementation of this Deal and for its success. And against them, there is a (Resistance) Axis made of many and very powerful countries, and supported by a large part of the public opinion in the region, in the Arab-Muslim world and even in the world at large, that stands to prevent this Deal from occurring and succeeding. These two groups (of countries), these movements and these two orientations are clashing.
Are we, on our side, kidding ourselves? Are we wasting our efforts in vain (fighting against the inevitable)? Are we toiling for nothing? No, absolutely not! We must have the greatest hope, the greatest clarity and the greatest lucidity. And I do not speak by relying only on us Lebanese. I speak of the Palestinians, Lebanese, Syrians, Iraqis, Iranians, Yemeni, Arab and Muslim peoples, and of anyone (in the world) who supports the Palestinian cause and the rights of the Palestinian people. It is on them all that my judgment and (high) expectations are based. We must have a strong hope because we are able to achieve this objective, and prevent this historical crime to occur in our region and in our lands.
O my brothers and sisters, today, the American-Zionist project has always been… The key point in this project was the existence of the State of Israel, its strengthening and rooting, the normalization of its existence with the countries of the region, so that Israel becomes the (dominant) Axis: the Axis of politics, security, economy, etc. And that means, in return, the liquidation of the Palestinian cause, which it had to be terminated once and for all. Any (palestinian) claim on Al-Quds (Jerusalem), the lands of 1948, the West Bank or the Gaza Strip, or on (the return of the) Palestinian refugees in the diaspora, or on an independent Palestinian State, regardless of its extent, had to cease definitively and get out of all calculations and all considerations. This has always been the (American-Zionist) goal. And they relied on the passage of time (and peoples’ despondency and forgetfulness).
I will not revisit the whole History, because I have many things to say tonight, but I want to stop on its final stage. I’m not talking about the stage we are experiencing today, which is the current stage, I speak of the penultimate stage before 2011 (and the events in Syria), (precisely) from 2000 to 2011. There were US attempts to liquidate the Palestinian cause, but in a way that could give the Palestinians something, if only crumbs. After the victory of the Resistance in Lebanon in 2000, after the outbreak of the Al-Aqsa Intifada in Palestine after the 2000 Lebanese victory, and the appearance (and rise) of the power of the Resistance and of movements of Resistance in the region, the United States tried to regain the initiative. They exploited the September 11 (2001) events, and occupied Afghanistan and Iraq, knocked on the doors of Syria, threatened Lebanon and threatened Iran, and have prepared a project to end all movements and States of the Resistance, starting with Palestine, until (the) 2006 (war) in Lebanon, which, had they succeeded (to destroy Hezbollah) would have led them to attack Syria, and up to the isolation of Iran. And we all remember, especially we the Lebanese will never forget, what Mrs. Condoleezza Rice said when she came to Beirut (in the heart of the 2006 War) and talked about the birth of a New Middle East, a New Middle East that would entrench the State of Israel as a normal, authentic and powerful State in the region, give some crumbs to Palestinians and eradicate any status, any position and any movement or existence for the States of the Resistance. This project failed, didn’t it?
It suffices as a summary, let us now talk about the current situation. After 2011, and in the face of genuine popular uprisings in our eyes (in Tunisia, Egypt, Bahrain…), and (taking advantage of) the flaws of these popular revolts —the lack of united leadership, of clear plans, etc.—, the US administration succeeded, with the help of some Arab regimes, to absorb the popular revolutions in the Arab world and divert them from their natural course, or to liquidate and confiscate them, and to direct them towards the wrong direction, as was the case in Syria. This is the stage we have lived since 2011 until just a few months ago, and that we continue to live.
The United States, with at their side all those who came in the way of what has been called the Arab Spring, wanted to pick a rotten fruit on the Arab Spring: the rotten fruit is the Trump Deal, the Deal of the Century (to be announced imminently). What is their bet? They relied on the fact that during all these recent years, through the real earthquakes that hit many of our countries and our societies, they could, at a moment of fatigue and weakness, impose the Deal (of the Century) on the Arab and Muslim peoples, on all their States and all their governments. That’s what happened from 2011 to today.
We can not deny that our societies, our countries and our peoples in the region were faced with overwhelming and substantial pain, a real exhaustion (of blood and resources), be they States, armies, governments, peoples, economy, safety and security, etc. (Our countries have been hit by) hatred, tyranny, crushing, tearing apart, on religious, sectarian, racial, national, territorial, regional, identity grounds, etc. It is an (undeniable) truth.
(The United States and Israel) have supposed that now, with the accession of Trump (to power), with… I do not know what are the right words (to describe the character). With his (massive) attacks, his willingness to scare (everyone) in the media, his personality, his speech, his dealings, threats and intimidation… And now, everyone is exhausted, has no time to devote to others, nobody cares about anybody, and all peoples of the region, all regimes, governments, armies and peoples of the region are absorbed and overwhelmed with their own situation, and nobody has time to worry about Palestine, or Al-Quds (Jerusalem). It is therefore the right time (to liquidate the Palestinian cause). This is, so to speak, the strategic context as Trump, Netanyahu and those who stand beside them among some Arab countries imagine it, (seeing it as a golden opportunity) to enforce this Deal (of the Century), settle (the Arab-Israeli conflict), liquidate the Palestinian cause and completely isolate the Islamic Republic of Iran (for which the support for Palestine is unshakable). That is all. It is in this context that the Deal of the Century came up. We have the duty to fight it, and that’s what we do, at our respective levels.
This analysis or diagnosis of the United States, Israel and some of these (Arab) regimes is wrong. And it proves that they do not read History and do not understand it, that they do not know the peoples of the region, or their religious, civilizational, cultural and intellectual mindset. (It proves that) they do not know the values and ideas (of the peoples of our region), which are foreign to them because they are foreigners (they are not from this region, as Israel and the US), or are incomprehensible to them because they were imposed (in power) by external forces (such as Saud & the Gulf monarchies, which are emanations of Western imperialism, not of the history and culture of Arab-Muslim peoples). And that’s why they were wrong in their diagnosis. Their analysis is wrong.
So let’s make a brief and succinct summary (of the situation) to see where things really stand. Let us consider our situation in the Resistance Axis, on the path of Resistance and on the Resistance Front, and (our enemies’) own situation, and this without any exaggeration. Any one of you, if he knows the facts (a minimum), can easily tell whether or not I exaggerate.
Today, I affirm that the Resistance Axis and the Resistance Front, at least since 1982 —so that no one tries to refute us by referring to the 1950s or 1960s. I’m talking about the time we lived, my generation and the two generations after, these stages that I and most people of my generation went through. I can say that the Resistance Axis is stronger than it has ever been before, contrary to what some people are trying to make us believe when they talk about some weaknesses here and there. What are my proofs? What facts (confirm my words)?
First, let us start with Gaza, with Palestine, the Palestinian Resistance. The most advanced (weapons) that the Palestinian Resistance had… In its golden age, where was it? In Lebanon, South Lebanon, in the 1970s. It had weapons in quantity, very large numbers (of fighters), capacity, rockets… But the maximum that the Palestinian Resistance could do was to launch an operation at the border or on the former border strip, or seep (briefly) across the border, or to mobilize certain groups within occupied Palestine for some (limited) action, but then these incursions became too hard and unfeasible. And all the rockets they had were Katyushas, that is to say that they could strike at a maximum range of 19 or 20 kilometers away. Can anyone claim otherwise? That’s all they had. Tel Aviv was immune from Palestinian rockets. Ashkelon, Beersheva were safe from Palestinian rockets. All these cities were too far away, and no one thought of the mere possibility of hitting them.
Today, the Palestinian Resistance… I’ll just give some examples without making a complete list, in order to be brief. Yesterday we heard the live speeches of some leaders of the factions of the Palestinian resistance in Gaza (for the International Day of Al-Quds), speaking about the abilities in their hands and what they did during the last confrontations (against Israel), and the last one (in particular). They said in all clarity: “We hit Tel Aviv, and we are capable of hitting Tel Aviv with a large number of missiles.” Today, Gaza is capable of hitting Tel Aviv and beyond Tel Aviv —towards Lebanon and not the other way round—, and is capable of hitting a large number of Zionist settlements. When, in its whole History, has the Palestinian resistance been capable of such a thing? I speak of such obvious facts, (just like the arithmetic operation) 1 + 1 = 2. These are not (idle) slogans. Today, the Palestinians’ ballistics ability is developing, and there is also a new force that entered into the equation, namely drones, as we have seen during the last confrontation, and there is no parade against that. There is absolutely no parade. The proof is what happened in Saudi Arabia, in Yanbu, I’ll talk about in a moment.
Gaza has therefore larger military capabilities, and tens of thousands of fighters, who are able —let us broaden our perspective— in case of major war in the region to seize very important areas of the land of (occupied) Palestine, around the Gaza Strip. When did the Palestinian Resistance have such capabilities (in the past)? Yesterday, we also heard some leaders of these jihadist factions declare that they were getting close to the equation “Every time you strike Gaza, we will hit Tel Aviv!” This is an exceptional, major and very positive development in the equation of the (Arab-Israeli) struggle.
Now let us speak about Lebanon. About Lebanon, no need to speak in great lengths: there is no doubt, and there’s no debate on the fact that Lebanon never had a Resistance facing Israel with this level of power, manpower, equipment, sophistication, capabilities, experience, training, preparation, etc., etc., etc., that exists in Lebanon today (with Hezbollah). The current situation can not be compared to any other, not only since 1982, but since 1948. There has never been anything like that in Lebanon, absolutely never.
Today, Israel fears the Resistance in Lebanon, and Israeli officials talk every day about the situation of deterrence, which gets reinforced (in favor of Hezbollah), the restructuring of a large part of the Israeli army to a defensive position north of occupied Palestine (whereas throughout its History, Israel has always been on the offensive), the ballistic capacity of the Resistance, etc., etc., etc. That is enough for Lebanon.
Thirdly, Syria has overcome what was plotted against her. Those that have been brought (from all around the world) to destroy Syria and the Syrian army, (then) enter Lebanon and destroy it, and enter Iraq and destroy it, and go to Iran to fight (the regime), and (spread) throughout the region, cooperating and coordinating with Israel, (were defeated). And every day we discover new information on the extent of Israel’s cooperation with the armed organizations in southern Syria. All (the terrorists) were defeated, collapsed and breathe their last breath. I mean Daesh, the takfiris and what remains of Al-Nosra. And the Syrian political opposition, which had promised to make peace with Israel, and some of them had even promised on television to give up the Golan for Israel, are now (secluded) in their hotels and homes, and we don’t see their mournful and blackened faces on television anymore, because they have nothing more to say. Syria thus overcame (this ordeal), and it is still in its position on the Front of the Resistance and in the Axis of Resistance. And Syria will fully regain its strength and health as well as its courage and tenacity (against Israel).
(Let’s consider the situation in) Iraq. Even after 2011, and after the US withdrawal from Iraq, all US attempts to take back Iraq and control it completely in political and security matters failed. They helped Daesh to use it as a pretext for the return of US forces, and this double-dealing was exposed. The position of Iraq in regional equations is very different today, even at the official level. I will comment on the Iraqi position during the recent Arab summit (in Mecca). It’s the same at the popular and jihadi levels regarding the causes of the region and Palestine.
Regarding Yemen —let’s keep Iran for the end—, the force that has withstood the (Saudi-US) aggression for 4 years, and we enter the 5th year. There is a real Resistance in Yemen, a popular, political, jihadi, military force… The Saudi regime and all the mercenaries they hired from all over the world, with all the assistance and help of the US and Britain, and of British & French weapon factories, and others as well, failed to impose their will on the Yemeni people and to force him to surrender.
In response, today, why was this (exceptional) Summit of Arab and Muslim countries summoned? Why this Arab summit in Mecca… My God! During the last 10 days of Ramadan (May 30 to June 1st), while fasting, when every (Muslim) was fasting, and in Mecca proper… Why (was this special summit summoned)? Why did King Salman convene a (triple) summit of the Arab League, of the Conference of Islamic Countries and of the Gulf Cooperation Council? I’ll tell you in familiar terms: Arabs, Muslims and the Gulf Countries, heel! That is all. What is the background of this call? I will return to it when I speak (of the possibility) of war in the region. Why (did this summit happen)? Because drones of the Yemeni army and of the Popular (Defense) Committees of Yemen managed to overcome all the measures, all the sophistication and all the US, Israeli, British, etc. technology (protecting Saudi Arabia) to achieve their goals with precision, and hit oil installations (in Saudi Arabia) that were targeted. Neither Trump protected them, because he is unable to protect them, nor have they been able to protect themselves, even though they bought for hundreds of billions of dollars of (combat) aircraft, missiles, radars, etc. This is an (uplifting) example. And that is why the Saudis have called for help with the Summit which is being held at this very moment…
This Summit is a call for help from Saudi Arabia, expressing its helplessness and failure against the Yemeni people, the Yemeni army, the Popular (Defense) Committees, AnsarAllah, the intelligent, brave, thinking, fighting, heroic Yemeni young man. And this force is developing, grows and becomes more and more impressive.
Incidentally, I want to say to all those who have condemned the drone strikes against oil targets in Saudi Arabia, they condemned them, (but) I tell them to reconsider themselves on the moral, human and intellectual levels. You condemn a strike against oil installations, but you remained silent for 4 years about an Arab people, a Muslim people, an oppressed and destitute people who gets killed every night and every day, including children, women and men who are massacred, with neither living beings nor stones (constructions) being spared! You have remained silent about the graves (of hundreds of thousands of Yemenis killed), and you have swallowed your tongue! But when some oil pipes suffer damage in Saudi Arabia, you came out (from your silence), competing in ardor and in speed, to express your closeness and your adulation to the Saudis! Just look at your (abject) faces in a mirror! Give a grade to your level of ethics and humanity!
Anyway, all these condemnations and these summits will fail to protect the invaders, tyrants, despots and the armies of the (Saudi-US) aggression from the punishment of (the Yemeni) men of God, because God is with them! God is with them in Yemen. He was with them, He is still with them and He will stay with them because they are a people of faith, wisdom, principles and sacrifice!
[Audience: At your service, O Nasrallah!]
This Yemen is now a key member of the Resistance Axis: it rejects the Deal of the Century, it demonstrates (in millions during International Quds Day) despite the bombings and massacres and shouts “No to the Deal Century”, and expresses its complete solidarity with the Palestinian people and Al-Quds (Jerusalem). The people and the forces in our region that have arisen during these days in the occasion (of the International Day of) Al-Quds to express their rejection of the Deal of the Century are also part of our strengths.
And one of our major strong points in our current situation and our (Resistance) Axis is Iran. The Islamic Republic of Iran. The great regional power. The first regional power. Holder of an inner and authentic power. The power which, at the beginning of the (Islamic) Revolution, fought and successfully resisted eight years (during the war imposed by Saddam Hussein) while being besieged by the whole world.
Some speak of (rival) regional powers. Some declare for example that today, the main power in the region is Saudi Arabia. Very well. The leader of the enemy Axis, Mr. Trump, what does he say about the (alleged) major regional power that Saudi Arabia is? “If your planes take off without our help, they wouldn’t land on the ground (they’d crash).” “Without our support, you wouldn’t hold two weeks (in power).” “If we do not defend you, within a week, you will all speak Persian (because of Iranian hegemony).” But I do not understand how they could learn Persian in a week. They do not even know how to speak (proper) Arabic! Saudi Arabia is described as a regional power, but it has no inner strength or capacity. It relies (fully), for its existence, its maintenance and its apparent strength, on the United States, the West, the CIA, the intelligence services, the (US) warships and US military bases. This is the truth. This is the situation. But this is not the case of Iran. Iran is a real state (not fabricated like Saudi Arabia), powerful, promising and rising (in power), and it is becoming increasingly prominent in this (Resistance) Axis.
Such is the situation of our Axis. We have very important elements of strength and a very great and unprecedented power. Neither the Resistance in Lebanon, nor the Resistance in Palestine or Iran have held in the past a power comparable to that of today. Neither Yemen nor Iraq have ever been in the position (of strength) they hold today. And with the grace of God, Syria will come back stronger than ever in the Resistance Axis.
Now let us consider the opposing Axis (US-Israeli-Saudi). In the opposing Axis, who are the main powers who want to impose the Deal of the Century?
Among the main (enemy) powers, let us first consider Israel. I am not saying that Israel is weak. It would not be realistic. Israel is a powerful state. Israel is an army for which a State was built (from scratch, which is merely a US military outpost). But the Israel of 2019 is weaker than ever, or let’s say it is less powerful than ever, to be more precise. We can say that Israel is weaker than ever, or less powerful than it ever has been throughout its history. Both statements are correct. How is that?
Political and military Israeli leaders themselves recognize that for many years, Israel, this considerable military power, failed to win a single battle. Its prestige and influence declined considerably. Who is still afraid of Israel today? Lebanon? The Palestinian people? The peoples of the region? (No way!) All this was destroyed in 2000 and after 2000. The strength of their infantry dropped significantly, as they all agree unanimously, and it mostly entrenched itself in a defensive position. The Israeli home front is now more exposed than ever to the missiles and forces of the Resistance. Today, Israel, the Zionist entity, fears the missiles from Gaza, the missiles from Lebanon, the missiles from Syria, it is said that there are missiles in Iraq (capable of hitting Israel), the missiles from Iran, and perhaps even Yemeni missiles. When, in all its History, was the Israeli home front exposed and threatened to this extent? Even in the golden age of Arab power (1973), they were fighting at the border, but fighting today will be carried deep into the home front.
(There is) unprecedented corruption in Israel at the leadership level, among judges and generals. (There are) deep internal divisions at the social level, deep political divisions at the political level. The recent spectacle related to elections and the failure of Netanyahu to form a government (led) to new elections. The absence of (Israeli) leaders (worthy of the name and making unanimity). The pressing need for direct US support. Today, Israeli generals say that in any future war, they want the US to be with them on the battlefield (and fight). When was Israel in such a situation? One of the announced reasons for the presence of US warships in the area is the protection of the State of Israel against the Resistance Axis. When, in Israel’s History, did Israel need American destroyers for its protection against the Resistance?
Now consider the essential element of the opposing Axis, their leader, namely the United States themselves. What is Trump doing? Trump wages a psychological war and exerts a huge moral pressure on the (whole) world. But the United States today are no longer what they once were, some 20, 30, 40 or 50 years ago. The United States sent their armies in our region and had to leave defeated, broken and seriously diminished (by their losses) whether in Lebanon, Iraq, Somalia, and they continue to eat (suffer casualties) in Afghanistan. And at every sign of trouble, they start to worry (seriously). Not to mention Yemen and elsewhere. The United States today, my brothers and sisters, during this period, show me a single (military) project (they undertook) in which they have registered a success. Of course, for our part, we were in a defensive position, foiling such and such a project, we all together (Lebanon, Gaza, Yemen, Iraq, Syria, Iran…).
Consider the internal situation of the United States, the social, economic, financial situation. Just a few days ago, His Eminence Imam Khamenei said —I have not consulted the original report, but I heard this information from him— that an official report of the US Ministry of Agriculture talks about 40 or 41 million American citizens on the verge of starvation or suffering from malnutrition. And these are the United States that claim to dominate the world? With their economic situation, can the United States support a barrel of oil at 150 or 200 dollars? Where would end Trump (should it happen)? You know where he will end? In Congress. In Courts. In prison. Such is (the actual situation) of the United States.
What about the status of the US in the world? The respect of the world for the United States? Even among their own allies, be it Europeans or others! (The United States wage) battles against the world: China, Russia, even Europe, Latin America, Venezuela, Iran, North Korea, the Deal of the Century, which is a challenge to the entire (Arab-Muslim) Community… And most important now with this (US) administration, it is its fear of starting new wars. And (Trump) says frankly: launching a new war would lead to (considerable) financial and human losses. And be very careful, read his statement, you will see it says “financial and human”, because what is most important for Trump? Financial (losses). Human (losses) come only second. And that is why the US strategy since the arrival in power of Trump is (financial) sanctions and economic wars. As for sending soldiers to fight, (it’s out of the question). I will speak about that in the next section (devoted to the possibility of war with Iran). (Trump) who opposed all his predecessors for having sent American armies in the region, having fought for the sake of the countries of the region and spent 7 trillion dollars in the region without getting anything in return (or so he says)… This Trump, with his way of thinking, his culture, his mentality and his calculations, would be a man of war and a military leader? Certainly not ! He put (everything on) the economic aspect.
Third, consider (the state of) their instruments in the region (Saudi Arabia and the Gulf States). They are in a state of confusion, scared, anxious, bewildered. The takfiri on which they placed their hopes are living their last days, with the grace of God. The Saudi regime and the mercenary armies have failed against the Yemeni people. Such is the state of the regimes on which the United States rely (to implement the Deal of the Century). They are unable to protect themselves, and ask the US to come and protect them. And some other Arab regimes are also in a state of anxiety.
Jordan is now worried about the Deal of the Century, (very) worried, because it fears that it’ll lead to a transformation of Jordan into an alternative country for the Palestinians and end the (ruling) Hashemite dynasty. And regularly, Jordan is faced with problems in terms of security, politics, economy, etc.
Egypt, even Egypt, despite its advertised position, is (very) concerned about the future of the Deal of the Century, and has no idea what will happen to its position and its regional role if the Deal of the Century was implemented. Because the Deal of the Century is based on three key elements: the United States, Israel and Saudi Arabia. All the other countries can only be followers.
Anyway, the States of our Arab and Muslim world… Look, my brothers and sisters, this is a double edged sword. An edge is in our favor, and an edge is against us. Against us, there is the fact that they are busy with their own internal situation. Today, most Arab and Muslim countries are concerned only with their internal troubles. But for my part, I try to see the glass half full, as they say. This situation may be beneficial. (All these crises are negative in themselves), but they may have a positive side. You know why? Because (most of) these regimes, if they had not so much to do to solve their own problems, they would have been with the US side, and with Israel, and not on the side of Palestine. They certainly wouldn’t be with the Palestinians. This is why I consider this situation as beneficial in general terms and as regards the direction where things are heading.
Based on all this analysis, no, I say that today, the Resistance Axis, the Resistance Front and the Front of those who reject the ‘Trump Deal’ or ‘Deal of Shame’ are very powerful, and can fight this Deal (successfully). […]
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“Any amount counts, because a little money here and there, it’s like drops of water that can become rivers, seas or oceans…” Hassan Nasrallah