Cultural NATO: when the West plans cultural dominance over the world
In the case of essential and fundamental developments in society, we might sometimes act in the wrong way. We might forget our independent national identity, instead of preserving the foundations or instead of insisting on providing what we lack and what we need. Unfortunately, this long and tragic story goes back a long way in our country as well as in many other Islamic countries. I might briefly discuss this issue later on.
What is even more dangerous than that is the fact that the control of these international developments might fall into the hands of the wrong people. These people might decide to achieve their own personal goals—be it wealth or power—by riding on the wave of these international developments and changes. Such people do not have any respect for national identity. Unfortunately, this has been the case in the world over the past 100, 150 years. That is to say, the developments in Asian, African and Latin American countries have fallen into the trap of the machinations designed by international gangs of power, by the Zionists and international capitalists. Therefore, what is important for these people is achieving political power so that they can infiltrate European and non-European governments and countries, accumulate wealth and establish big companies, cartels and trusts. This has been the goal of such people. Whenever it required to spread moral corruption among the people, they would easily do that. Whenever it required to promote consumerism among the people, they would easily do that. Whenever it required to promote a tendency among the people to ignore national identity and cultural foundations, they would easily do that. These have been their major goals. They have always had a host of cultural and media facilities as well as numerous newspapers and different tools of propaganda. These things are being disclosed in the world little by little. Yesterday I read a newspaper article about the establishment of a "cultural NATO". Of course, I had seen the article three, four months earlier. The Americans established NATO—which is a powerful military organization—in Europe and they announced that they needed it to counter the former Soviet Union, but they have been using it to suppress all dissenting voices in the Middle East, Asia and other places. Now they have established a cultural NATO as well. This is a very dangerous thing. Of course, it is not a new development: they did this several years ago. A group of interconnected media outlets—including websites, satellite channels and TV and radio stations—are moving in a particular direction in order to take control of the developments that happen in different societies. And their work has become very easy and straightforward [...]
The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund are in fact two pieces of this big puzzle. If the control of global developments falls into the hands of international gangs of power, the situation becomes very dangerous. And this is what has happened today. The people who are in control of these developments are Zionists and capitalists most of whom live in America and Europe. These were a few points that I wanted to discuss regarding change. Therefore, it is wrong to run away from change. It is wrong to be afraid of change. Change must not be confused with chaos and anarchism. Change is both good and necessary [...]
However, you should pay attention to the fact that when they present these standards [of progress] to us, they try to pass off certain things that are irrelevant to progress and development. They put forth certain things that have been designed to export their cultural norms, norms that run against the culture and national identity of the countries of destination and create a tendency for dependence. The majority of those who have prepared these standards and are presenting them to developing countries are scholars, but many of them are not independent people. That is to say, many scholars, intellectuals, artists and men of letters are affiliated with "cultural NATO" I explained earlier. Change must be based on the main elements of national identity, and essential national ideals are the most important elements among them. Achieving industrialization and going beyond, achieving scientific progress and making progress in the area of social services and health: these things are necessary. But national identity should be the basis. A country that enjoys all these characteristics, but fails to preserve its national identity, is culturally dependent on other countries, fails to preserve its cultural legacies, loses sight of its past and loses respect for its past—such a country will never make progress because national identity is the basis of all progress.
Nov 9, 2006
There are certain challenges that have been imposed on us, both by ourselves - as a consequence of our weaknesses - and by others. Let us be frank. Today the most important foreign challenge that we are faced with has been imposed by America. There is no doubt in this regard. The west has had plans for the Middle East since the 19th century because the Middle East region connects the Mediterranean Sea to the Indian Ocean. The Mediterranean Sea was where colonial governments used to deploy their forces and the Indian Ocean was where their colonies were located. And the Middle East was the region that connected these two locations to one another and they could not afford to ignore it. England used its influence in the 19th century and pressured Iran in order to protect India, which used to be Britain's colony at that time. We were sacrificed for India and the same was true of the entire Middle East region. This was how the foundations of Israel were laid. Different other factors emerged as well: the issue of oil, the issue of carving up the Ottoman territories after the First World War, the emergence of the Soviet Union. And the emergence of these factors made things worse.
The west and its heir, America, have plans for the Middle East. In this sensitive region - which is oil-rich and is strategically and politically important - suddenly a government called "the Islamic Republic" emerges with its own principles and opposes the oppressive principles and aggressive policies of America. Some people say, "Why do you provoke America?" It was you, the people of Iran, who provoked America: you established the Islamic Republic and now America has become hostile. What should we do? During the first decade of the Revolution, they started with "hard" plots - the imposed war and the economic sanctions - to overthrow the Islamic Republic, but they were not successful. The imposed war and the economic sanctions provided the Iranian nation and the Islamic Republic with opportunities in one way or another. The dark clouds that they created above the heads of the people of Iran showered the people of Iran with advantages and benefits. The war made us more determined and steadfast. The economic sanctions they imposed on us made us think of relying on ourselves and they brought about all these blessings for us. Later on, they followed a policy of "soft" overthrow - cultural invasion - which did not get them anywhere. After many years, their efforts led to the establishment of an administration that relies on our principles, which makes it obvious that their cultural invasion has not been able to achieve the kinds of things they wanted. There will be other plots against us in the future as well and we need to make ourselves immune to those plots.
Jun 19, 2006
The role of cultural ambush in the collapse of the Soviet Union
Talking about the American plot leading to the collapse of the Soviet Union, we should mention three points to clarify:
The first point is that when we say the U.S. plot, it does not mean that other western powers were not involved in this matter. Indeed, all the West, the whole of Europe outrageously cooperated with the U.S. For instance, the role Germany or the UK played was evident. They were seriously involved.
The second point is that when we say the U.S. plot it does not mean that we ignore internal factors leading to the collapse of the Soviet Union. There existed internal factors which the enemy took the most advantage of. What were the internal factors?
Extreme poverty, pressure on the people, severe suffocating atmosphere, corruption in administration and bureaucracy as well as national and ethnic motivations played a role.
The third point is that the American or western plot—whatever term we may use to refer to it—was not a military action. It was primarily a propagandist plot, implemented mainly through billboards, pictures, newspapers, movies, etc. If one calculates, it will be revealed that about 50 to 60 percent of it consisted of the impact of the media and cultural tools.
My dear people, take the issue of cultural invasion—which I mentioned some 7or 8 years ago— seriously. Cultural ambush is no joke. After media and propaganda factors, political and economic factors followed in the next place; there was no military factor involved.
July 9, 2000
A massive cultural invasion on Islam
Today there is a vast cultural invasion against Islam which is not directly linked to the revolution. This invasion is more extensive than only targeting the revolution: it targets Islam. This is a huge and extraordinary attack targeting all cultural, social and political dimensions of Islam. There is only one exception which is the type of Islam depending on colonizing entities: that of Fahd [of Saudi Arabia]. Otherwise, even Islam as believed by the grassroots is under invasion. That taken into consideration, the true revolutionary Islam—Islam of Iran, as they call it—is clearly attacked and opposed.
November 28, 1989
Culture war on Iran: a reality or a conspiracy theory?
Once I said that we were the target of cultural invasion. It was 12, 13 years ago. If I had been asked to show the instances and signs of cultural invasion, I could have easily showed the signs because it was as if I could literally see cultural invasion with my own eyes. And I pointed out the signs in a few speeches, but some people started to deny cultural invasion. They said, "No, there is no such thing as cultural invasion."[...]
As I said, at first they denied the existence of cultural invasion. Later on when they accepted the existence of cultural invasion, they went after theoretical discussions. "What is invasion?" "What is culture?" "What are the elements that make up culture?" These were the types of questions that they asked. How are these questions related to our problem?
Nov 9, 2006
. A few years ago, we addressed the issue of cultural invasion, but some people denied any attack. They said, "What invasion?" After that, they gradually saw that not only do we speak about it, but many non-western countries also address this issue and they say that the westerners have launched a cultural attack on them. Then they saw that the Europeans too say America has launched a cultural invasion on them. Perhaps you have heard or read that the Europeans say, "What a great cultural invasion American movies and books have launched on us. They are overshadowing our culture". Finally, because other people had acknowledged this issue, what we said was also acknowledged by the people who had not accepted this issue at first. Cultural invasion is a fact. Hundreds - perhaps it is thousands, but because I want to be cautious about figures, I say hundreds - of audio and visual media networks, Internet websites and writings targeting Iran! They are not doing other things. Rather, they are targeting Iran. Normally, a national radio or TV station works on its own programs, but this is not the case with such media networks.
The goal of such networks is our country. They broadcast Farsi programs and they coordinate them with the local time in Iran. They follow up our issues and they prepare their programs according to these issues. So, it is quite clear that their goal is Iran. They themselves acknowledge this and they do not deny it. Therefore, cultural invasion is a fact which exists. They want to influence the minds and the behavior of our people - our youth, our teenagers and even our little children.
Dec 10, 2013
We are encountering a wide-ranging cultural, religious, and political unannounced war; you might believe it as I mention it; however, you may not actually be informed of what is going on; but I know what is going on; I can see it. The political and cultural troops of the enemy are attacking us by all the equipment in their disposition, to weaken our religious beliefs, to weaken our political beliefs, to increase dissatisfaction within our country, to attract the youth, in particular active and influential youth in all levels, to use them for their goals.
October 5, 2015
Cultural invasion or cultural massacre?
The enemy is trying to take our youth away from us by spreading inappropriate cultural behaviors—by a culture of perversion and corruption. The cultural measures taken by the enemy make up a cultural invasion; or, we better call it a cultural ambush, a cultural pillage, or a cultural massacre.
July 13, 1992
Today no one can deny the fact that the most immediate goal of the enemies of the Islamic Republic is domination over cultural bases in the country. They seek to obliterate Islamic and revolutionary beliefs—which are the most essential factors of the Iranian nation’s resistance against the Front of Arrogance—from the hearts and minds of the people and replace them with beliefs that make them submissive to the West. Apparent efforts were made on various cultural arenas by mediators and puppets of wealthy and powerful empires that aimed at causing doubts about fundamentals of Islam and the revolution. These efforts have challenged even those who did not believe in it, in the first place; as well as those who previously did not take seriously the warning of a cultural ambush, now observing it firsthand, today.
Undoubtedly, the first targets of this ambush are the youth. In particular, the youth who step in the path of acquiring knowledge and wisdom; and in their hands lies the political and cultural future of the country. It is true that the enemy—despite their enormous efforts and expenses—has not been able to achieve their desired outcomes; however, we clearly know that the most important and effective response to the malicious enemies represents awareness, insightful belief and the ability to carry out political analysis.
September 1, 2001
Who is not affected by cultural ambush?
The enemy and its institutions have learnt from experience, that human beings are vulnerable [liable to be perverted]. They say “anyone can be corrupted. It is possible to mislead anyone, whoever that person be.” Well, they are right; however, there is an exception: except those who are pious (muttaqeen). The pious cannot be corrupted. But they do not understand the meaning of piety. Yes, mankind can be corrupted, can be tempted by exposure to worldly attractions and illegitimate practices before their eyes to deceive their heart; so they abandon their values and sacrifice them for the sake of material attractions. Nevertheless, this is true only if piety is absent. Piety has an impact in the hereafter, in this world, in politics, in maintaining the political system, and during wars. You have felt and experienced it.
January 5, 1995
What is the main reason the Islamic Republic is the target of a massive cultural invasion?
There used to be a military war and battle against us, too, but this has stopped at the present time. Nonetheless, security, economic, and cultural wars are more difficult and we are engaged in an ongoing war in these areas. No one can deny this.
Of course, there are some individuals who have complaints about this situation. They say, "Why should we be engaged in a war with the world?" There are some people who are opposed to this. They believe that the Islamic Republic has started this war. That is why they say, "Why are we like this?" or "Why are we in this situation?"--In my opinion, this is negligence.
The Islamic Republic has not started a war, with such a magnitude, against the world; rather, it is the existence of the Islamic Republic itself–the ideals, goals, and slogans of the Islamic Republic, which are encompassed by the government of religion and the authority of a religious society–that leads to the creation and emergence of enemies and wars.
Mar 15, 2018
Cultural ambush; to eliminate costs of a military action
Today, for attacking Iran's revolutionary nation and the Islamic Republic system, the front of arrogance and oppression rely on propaganda and deceiving tools on their front lines. This is an evident truth today: that the American coercers and bullies are making evert efforts to pillage ideological and spiritual sources and to deprive the Iranian nation of their sovereignty. Indeed these sources include belief, hope and inspiration of the Iranian nation.
The youth are the first targets of this cultural raid. The enemy's intention is to eliminate costs of a military action by launching a cultural invasion, so that they would achieve their goals without a military action. If they succeed in plundering our youth's hope, beliefs and inspirations, the U.S. will surely conquer Iran again at no costs.
What expected from the spirit of youth and studentship is brave and youth-led neutralization of this disastrous ambush. Students associations must feel responsible. Your will and effort, and your firm determination not to get tired of idiocy and malice is your major asset.
Ask for God, the Almighty's assistance, and call upon the pure spirits of God's greatest men and martyrs for help, and persevere on this path. And God is with us. "And God will help whoever helps God".
August 18, 2002
What are the main objectives of the enemy in its culture war on Iran?
The enemies focus on culture more than anything else. Why? It is because of the great influence of culture. The target of the cultural moves of the enemies is the people's faith and beliefs. The officials in charge of cultural affairs should take care of cultural rifts. Cultural rifts are very dangerous. They should be sensitive about these rifts and they should be vigilant.
Mar 21, 2014
It is many years now that the enemies have been trying to make our people turn away from the path of the Revolution, jihad and fighting by benefiting from cultural rifts. You see these things and you are aware of them. The people of Najafabad are intelligent, well-informed and well-read individuals who are aware of other people's motives. All of you have deep knowledge of deployments and allegiances and you know what is being done. There are certain efforts in this country, on the part of the enemies, to consign the Revolution and Imam to oblivion, and to make the clear path of the Revolution get lost among the various paths that exist.
And who are the targets of this attack? Primarily, it is youth. They are trying to separate youth – today's young generation which has witnessed neither the Revolution and Imam nor the Sacred Defense Era – from the Revolution. They are trying to convey non-revolutionary and anti-revolutionary concepts to this generation. Certain efforts are being made to that end. It is many years now that they have been making these efforts.
Oct 3, 2017
If the cultural rampart and the cultural trench in the country is shaky and frail, everything will be lost. I will tell you that today – after the passage of 37, 38 years from the victory of the Revolution – the enemies’ motivation for infiltrating the cultural rampart of the country is more than the first day. Not only has it not been decreased, but it has also increased, without a doubt. You can witness what methods they are using: these cyber methods, different promotional means, satellites and the like. This means that their motivation has increased.
And the target of this movement is what has become the main ingredient and nucleus of the Islamic Republic: religious faith. This is their target. They are opposed to the Islamic government, to the Islamic Republic and to the policies of the Islamic Republic because of their opposition towards religious faith. This is because they know that if it had not been for religious faith, this Revolution would not have achieved victory, the Islamic Republic would not have been established and this big earthquake and vibration would not have shaken the structure of global arrogance.
Aug 21, 2016
What methods can be used to fight against the cultural invasion?
in order to confront issues related to cultural invasion, we should know the phenomenon in the beginning of its arrival or even before it enters the country. Imagine that a certain phenomenon, idea and style is becoming popular throughout the world. It is clear that this will come to our country as well because today's world is the world of communications and interactions. We cannot build a wall to protect the country against such phenomena. Before it enters the country, you should think about a wise way to confront it.
This does not mean that we should always reject such cultural phenomena. Sometimes, there is a phenomenon which we can accept. Sometimes, there is a phenomenon which we can improve. Sometimes, there is a phenomenon which we can define certain guidelines for. These guidelines can solve the problem. Acting late and finding and thinking about cures when it is late have such consequences. In such circumstances, when you are faced with such problems, you cannot solve them. So, I am not saying that we should always adopt a defensive position. Of course, when an attack is launched, one should engage in defense. There is no doubt about this. However, my advice is not that we should always adopt a defensive position. We should adopt firm, offensive and proper positions.
Anyway, the worst thing one can do in the face of cultural invasion is to adopt a passive position. The most inappropriate and harmful thing is adopting a passive position. Those cultures which attack us should not make us adopt a passive position. If nothing can be done about it, we can say, "There is no specific measure that can be adopted in this regard". But we should not adopt a passive position. Being passive and giving in to the attack of the enemy is a mistake that should be avoided.
Dec 10, 2013
Islamic seminaries should create these capabilities in themselves. They should create in themselves the capability to confront and face this infinite and large enemy army which is advancing towards the faith, beliefs and moral health of the people and towards the morality of youth. There are numerous websites whose goal is to destroy the morality and modesty of Muslim youth – whether boys or girls. Their goal is to tear the veil of their modesty. This is their main effort and they are planning for this.
Well, some activities are criminal activities. Different government organizations are responsible for confronting such activities and they are doing this indeed. However, those activities which are related to one’s mind and heart cannot be resolved through security and military confrontations and through intelligence work. Such activities require instruments which are as efficient as the maladies that those activities contain. The cure for such maladies is something that is available to the clergy, religious ulama and wise personalities in the area of religion.
We should equip ourselves. Many of us are not equipped. Many of us do not have enough knowledge, either about software or hardware[...] We should see what fallacies exist in the present time. Of course, some of the fallacies that exist today are the same old fallacies, but they appear in new forms. Such fallacies exist, but sometimes, new fallacies appear as well. We should identify and understand these fallacies. These are the tasks that Islamic seminaries should carry out. It is Islamic seminaries that should get involved in such tasks.
Sep 6, 2016
Today, the enemy attacks our values. Who can defend these virtues? The young men or women who are not attached to the material world, nor to personal profits can stand and defend those virtues. Someone who is imprisoned and sinful would obviously fail to do that. But the young men or women with pure intentions can. They can defend the revolution, Islam, and Islamic virtues and values.
So, some time ago I said: "everyone is supposed to invite to the right and forbid the wrong." Now I say it again: forbid the wrong. This is mandatory. It is your religious duty. Today, it is also your revolutionary and political duty.
July 13, 1992
Guide the people. Enlighten their minds. Encourage them to learn about the religion. Teach them the correct and pure religion. Introduce to them the Islamic ethics and virtues. Nurture moral virtues in them through words and actions. Preach them; warn them about the torment of God, the wrath of God and the divine Inferno. Warn them. The warning is important. Don't forget that. Enunciate to them the compassion of God. Enunciate to the pious, the righteous, those with pure intentions, and those who act. Familiarize them with major challenges of the Islamic world, and those of the country. This will become the bright torch that will lighten the hearts, wherever you light it. Knowledge will be created. Actions will be initiated. Faith will be strengthened. This is the most effective weapon against the enemy's cultural invasion and its cowardly camisado.
I am particularly worried about this. They want to prevent young, pious, brave, intelligent, and knowledgeable mentors from doing their job in different environments: at the university, among the merchants, in villages, in towns, or in industrial environments. The exact opposite point to what they are doing is your efforts and endeavors for the sake of God, that should be done with piety, precision, and above all with pure intention, "not for a desire for power, nor for seeking anything from the insignificant material world" [Nahj al-Balagha, sermon 131].
March 12, 1999