The Ayatollahs Mean What They Say
The Ayatollahs Mean What They Say

With Netanyahu's speech to Congress as a backdrop, Israel has demanded allowing the negotiations with Iran to reach the implementation stage, in order to prevent deterioration of the relationship between Iran and the West. It also hopes to prevent a military show of force or sanctions that will push the Iranian regime to the wall, causing it to engage in radical and uncontrollable behavior – on the line of "may I die with the Philistines" (the biblical judge Samson's words as he brought the Philistine temple down on himself as well as on his enemies).

A long term examination of years of Iranian publicized information, starting with the Ayatollah's 1979 takeover of the country, shows that the Iranian leaders are motivated by several factors.

But no matter what the situation or context, one motivating factor moves to the fore, while the others continue to have background influence. This article will survey the Ayatollahs' motivation for acquiring the weapons that will deter anyone who tries to face them in the future, starting with the main one.

Regional Hegemony

Iran's rulers see their country as a regional power, and they will do anything to strengthen this position. They feel that they are the key actor in the international arena, because of their military power, the size of their nation, its territory, daring and willingness to suffer for the fulfillment of its aspirations. They feel that a country like theirs does not have to be satisfied with being "just another country", and that it ought to be the primary force in the region by right.

Shiite Victory over the Sunnis

Iran's leaders see themselves as obligated to rule over Islam as the descendants of the fourth Caliph, Ali Ibn Abi Talib, founder of Shia.  Many Shiites, from all over the world, have a burning hatred for Sunnis in their hearts, seeing them as followers of Mu'awiyah ben Abi Sufyan, who rebelled against Ali, and this hatred has been nourished by 1300 years of persecution, murder, torture and death meted out by the Sunnis to the Shiites.

The Shiites especially remember the murder of the son of Ali, Husayn, in the city of Karbala in southern Iraq in the year 680, because he wasn't just murdered; in fact, his severed head was brought to Damascus as proof that the mission was accomplished. Umayyad Caliph Yazid ibn Mu'awiyah put the head on his table and left it there for a month, so that all his opponents could see and tremble at what would happen to anyone who rebels against his rule. The Shiites memorialize this event at a yearly Tazya (consolation) ceremony, during which they flog and wound themselves until they bleed.

The Ayatollahs dream of conquering Mecca from the hands of the Sunni Saudis so as to return the rule of the House of Ali. This is one of the sources of the deep and burning hatred that exists between the Iranians and the Saudis.

Taking Revenge on the Arabs

The Persians did not forget the destruction that the Muslim Arabs wreaked upon them when they defeated the Sassinate Persian Empire in the seventh century, nor did they forget how the Islamic armies slaughtered them, nor how they treated the Persian wives and daughters,  how they sold them as slaves in the market and forced them to convert to Islam. The Persians, Azars, Balochs, and Kurds – the nations of Iran – did not forget or forgive what the Arabs did to them, and many are still waiting for the moment for vengeance against the hated Arabs.

They especially hate the Bedouin of the Arabian Peninsula, from where the Arab tribes emerged to conquer the world and subjugate its peoples. Today the Saudis live in that peninsula, and that is why Saudi Arabia is seen as a country that must move over and allow Iran, a better and more legitimate nation, to take over.

Returning the Persian Empire to its Former Glory

The Persians dream of a return to the dimensions of the Persian Empire that reigned from "India to Africa" – that is, from the Indian Subcontinent to Northern Africa. This imperialist aspiration was expressed by Ali Khomeini in a speech given on Marsh 25, 2006, part of which appeared in a weekly Hezbollah publication, when he said most clearly: "The strategic depth of the Iranian people ranges over Palestine, Northern Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia and the Indian Subcontinent."

Ruling the West

The West, headed by Britain and America, are the modern world powers considered hostile by the Iranians. The UK is a power that exerted the greatest influence on the borders and regime of Iran starting with Iran's establishment in the '40s. The Americans also interfered more than once in the internal administration of the country and if there is one thing the Iranians abhor, it is outside interference in their affairs. 

They call the West "Istikbar" – those filled with undeserved  pride – and  under the title "Oh the Istikbar", Khomeini  is quoted as saying: "This is our message to the worldwide  Istikbar:  May the worldwide Istikbar know that the Iranian people are solid and strong. The young and old of this vast Islamic nation and the generations that followed upon one another in this powerful nation that lives in the center of events and that has been hardened by experience, carry the banner of protecting Islam. Our banner flies over this land to which one and a half billion Muslims raise their eyes from all over the world, and that is our nation's strategic depth and its revolutionary [capacity]  in the Islamic lands of the region…."

The worst blow of all to the Ayatollahs  is that the heretic West's cultural poison has managed to infiltrate Islamic society – bringing permissiveness, materialism, equal rights, secularism, democracy – and destroying their morals and values, their regime and economy, in order to neutralize their will to fight the West. Western propaganda is blamed for the fact that most young Iranians would emigrate to the USA or Europe if they could.

Hatred of Jews

Shiite tradition has a special place for Jews and attitude towards them. On the one hand, the Jews were a small minority among the Sunnis like the Shiites, causing them to take the Shiite side most of the time and in most locations. Some Shiites view the Jews as 'Najes" – ritually impure – a fact that is obvious in the marketplace, where when a Jew comes to buy foodstuffs he is not allowed to choose, but has to allow the merchant to decide for him and hurl the goods into the Jew's basket. It was only natural that the Jew got the rotting merchandise that no one else wanted.

Modern Jews and the State of Israel are the "small Satan" in the eyes of the Ayatollahs, while the USA is the "large Satan". The Jews have no right to a land, making the State of Israel illegitimate and a candidate for disappearance.  The Jews have no right to defy Muslims and certainly not to kill Muslims even for self defense, which is why all the Jews in Israel are deserving of death.

Jerusalem, which has absolutely no standing in Shiite tradition, has been adopted by the Ayatollahs in order the show the Islamic world that they are no less anti-Zionist than the Sunnis. Hezbollah uses the same language.

This is the source of the burning hatred of the Iranian rulers for Israel. They will do anything they can to destroy the Jewish state, and they know that many of the nations of the world will not shed a tear if Israel vanishes, so that destroying Israel will not adversely affect their international standing.

One of Iran's leaders has already called Israel a "one-bomb country", because one atom bomb on Tel Aviv is enough to destroy the entire state. We, and the world, must take them seriously, remembering that we didn't pay attention to warnings in the '30s.

Israel's Prime Minster must shout the dangers from every possible stage in order to wake up the world and its leaders to the Iranian catastrophe that faces Israel and the entire world.