Full speech of Hezbollah Secretary General Sayed Hassan Nasrallah on January 5, 2020, commemorating the death of Qasem Soleimani and Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis.
[Nasrallah begins by praising God and invoking His blessings on the Prophet and his family, then recites this Quran verse:
“Think not of those who are slain in God’s way as dead. Nay, they live, finding their sustenance in the presence of their Lord. They rejoice in the bounty provided by God: And with regard to those left behind, who have not yet joined them (in their bliss), the (Martyrs) glory in the fact that on them is no fear, nor shall they grieve. They glory in the Grace and the bounty from God, and in the fact that God suffereth not the reward of the Faithful to be lost (in the least).” (Quran, 3, 169-171.)
Then Nasrallah briefly recalls the identity of the martyrs.]
What happened on the night of Thursday, January 2, 2020 is a pivotal point between two stages in the history of the region. It’s the beginning of a new phase, a new history, not just for Iran or Iraq, but for the whole region.
[Nasrallah stresses that if Qassem Soleimani worked tirelessly for the Liberation of Middle Eastern Peoples, on a personal level, he ardently desired martyrdom, just like Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis. Nasrallah sends his congratulations and condolences to their families, and insists that their death is an illusory success for the enemy but a real achievement for the Resistance Axis.]
Today, I will speak directly about this major and decisive event. What happened? Why did it happen? Why was Hajj Qassem, and alongside him Abu Mahdi, targeted? What are the objectives of this assassination? Where is the region going? And finally, what is our stance, what is our duty, what is our responsibility? Because I said that we are now at a completely new stage (of the confrontation against the United States).
Of course, this will not be the topic of my speech, but if I wanted to talk about the personality of Hajj Qassem, his qualities, his characteristics, his piety, his courage, his aptitudes, his knowledge & knowhow, his strategic thinking, his humility, etc., etc., etc., all these beautiful qualities that were his, if I wanted to talk about his successes, his efforts, his jihad, his sacrifices, and the same for Hajj Abu Mahdi, I would have to speak for hours, days and weeks. But we will find another time for that, God willing. What I have to mention is the heart of the matter, in order to base our reaction on the facts. What happened?
On the evening of Thursday, January 2, overnight… I take 2 minutes to clarify all this in detail, because this will be the basis of all my speech. Hajj Qasem and a brother of his have publicly left Damascus Airport for Baghdad Airport. At Baghdad airport, Hajj Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, accompanied by his brothers-in-arms among those in charge of the Popular Mobilization Units (Hachd al-Cha’bi), were waiting to greet him.
After they got into cars, and drove a certain distance, the whole procession, all the cars in the procession were hit by sophisticated missiles from the sky, fired from American planes, in a barbaric manner. You all saw the pictures. The destruction of the cars and the dislocation of everything inside was ensured by the barbarity of the strike. Our two dear commanders found martyrdom, with all those who accompanied them, all of them becoming shredded and cremated corpses to the point that it was very difficult to reconstruct the bodies.
Let me say that I knew Hajj Qassem, Hajj Abu Mahdi and the brothers who accompanied them very well, and I know that Soleimani (ardently) desired martyrdom. But maybe what happened to him exceeded his expectations. He ended up headless, like Imam Hussein, and without arms, like Abbas (brother of Imam Hussein), and his body was completely torn to pieces, like Ali Akbar (son of Imam Hussein, all killed in Karbala ). I don’t know if that’s what Hajj Qassem and Hajj Abu Mahdi had in mind.
So they all became shredded and burnt corpses to the point where it was very difficult to put the body pieces back together.
After a few hours, the United States Department of Defense issued a statement in which it claimed responsibility for the operation, stating that the assassination was carried out on the orders of President Trump. Then, the American press releases taking credit the operation followed one after another, as did the press conferences: the US Secretary of State, the Defense Secretary, the National Security Advisor, up to Trump himself in his various Tweets, in which he boasts of having personally ordered the assassination of Hajj Soleimani, mentioning the reasons which led him to do so, and which are nothing but shameless lies.
So we are faced with a public and clear crime, perfectly clear. The one who ordered it admits himself to having done so: Trump. The perpetrator of the assassination makes its guilt clear: the United States Minister of Defense and the United States military, and American forces operating in the region, whether inside or outside Iraq, which is merely a detail.
Therefore, we are not facing a secret or opaque assassination operation, such as a car bomb, a suicide attack, a trap by unknown perpetrators, which would require a commission of inquiry to identify the culprits, with assumptions and uncertainties, etc. not at all. We are faced with a clear, extremely clear crime, for which the US frankly claims responsibility.
These are the two lines on which we must base our response: Trump, the US President, ordered the U.S. military to commit this crime, and U.S. military forces did it in the manner I mentioned. Things are therefore very clear.