Imam Khomeini’s historic interview with British journalist

Imam Khomeini’s historic interview with British journalist

The historic interview was conducted during Imam Khomeini's stay in exile in Paris suburbs of Neauphle-le-Chateau.

The interview came just months before the victory of the Islamic Revolution in 1979

During the interview, Imam answered about a range of issue patiently and wisely.

The founder of the Islamic Revolution made it clear that the Iranian nation wanted to overthrow the dictatorial Pahlavi regime and would not spare any efforts to accomplish and shield the independence and freedom.  

What comes following is the full text of the historic interview:


Date: November 16, 1978

Place: Neauphle-le-Chateau, Paris, France

Subject: Evaluating Iran's condition

Interviewer: A British reporter of the Reuter News Agency

Question:] In your analysis of the current condition and development in Iran and the changes taking place there, aren't you afraid of a reaction? [

Answer: One thing that can be briefly said is that, the Shah's excessive pressure on the people brought them under such straitened circumstances that they started a public uprising. The Shah has destroyed our political, military, cultural and economic independence, and has made Iran dependent on the West and the East in every aspect. He has killed the people of Iran under torture and in prison dungeons. He has prevented all `ulama' and preachers from telling the truth. This is why the Muslim people of Iran want an Islamic republic ...- an Islamic republic founded on independence and freedom. But as to the cruel military reaction, aren't we already caught up with such a government? Have you seen more cruelties in the history than what the Iranian nation is facing now? Or, have you heard? Haven't we been facing cruel military reactions for fifty years now? A military coup d'etat cannot stop the people's struggle, just as a military government cannot. The struggle will continue till the overthrow of the monarchy and the fall of this dynasty.

Q: Why doesn't Your Eminence Ayatollah accept a moderate solution?

A: Moderate solution means surrendering to the Shah's regime because, everything related to the monarchy, every source of pressure and strangulation, and every plan that has brought Iran to this point and has put the regime at the current deadlock, still exists. Therefore, moderate solution means joining the Shah's regime, and this act, not only wouldn't break the deadlock, but also it would complete it, and not only does the nation negate those who listen to these solutions, but also consider them as traitors.

Q:] Aren't you afraid that you might become a covering for the Marxist groups? [

A: Basically, we don't know of any Marxist group or groups having any standing among the people, and such a group or groups don't exist except for a few kids who, not only have no understanding of the Iranian society, butalso haven't read but two or three books yet. You see how the Shah is supporting these few, pretending to be attacking them? As you see, they have made something out of a few kids. Our movement is deeply religious and its spiritual influence is so great that the world is frightened by it ... as much as we consider the Soviets as betrayers, we think of America and Britain as exploiters. China stands in the same row. Don't you think the Shah's regime has resulted in or is resulting in Iran being driven toward the Soviets?

Q:] How were the meetings of Mr. Bazargan and Mr. Karim Sanjabi with you?

A: I have repeatedly said that the Iranian nation demands the overthrow of the monarchial regime and the fall of the sinister and treacherous Pahlavi regime, and the establishment of the Islamic government. I have mentioned this issue to anyone who has come here; these two gentlemen also came and I mentioned it to them and they accepted it and left. Anyone addressing an issue against the wish of the nation is a betrayer to the nation and to the country.

Q:] The Arab and Western governments support the Shah. What effect will this support have? And what will happen if this support stops? [

A: Of course, if these governments stop supporting the Shah, the Shah's regime will soon fall apart, but this doesn't mean that if they support the Shah, we won't win. Our nation's victory is definite; the Shah is a goner and he must go ... whether the Arab and Western governments support him or not. But we expected our Arab brothers to at least have religious consciousness. The Arab nations are on our side, and all of their conditions will change once we win.

Q:] How are your relations with the French government? [

A: Recently, the restrictions have been lifted.

Sahifeh, vol4, Page: 488

Send To Friend