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the full text of the speech delivered on August 12, 2012 by Ayatollah Khamenei the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution in a meeting with professors.

Supreme Leader’s Speech to Professors   
 The following is the full text of the speech delivered on August 12, 2012 by Ayatollah Khamenei the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution in a meeting with professors.

In the Name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful

Dear brothers and sisters, welcome. This is a very valuable and pleasant meeting and the atmosphere is spiritual. Last night was the last Night of Qadr. Hands were extended to God in prayer, tears were shed, hearts became tender, and by Allah's favor massive provisions of spirituality were provided for this country, for our pious people and for you dear people who have attended this meeting.

I deem it necessary to express my respect for you honorable professors because of your scholarly position, because of the role that our esteemed professors play in the progress of the country. The primary purpose of this symbolic meeting is to show respect for knowledge, knowledgeable people and professors. Of course, we will definitely make use of the comments which were made by the friends and we hope that what was said in this meeting will be used in large-scale decisions in the country. The points which were made in the meeting were enlightening and very good, and I express my gratitude for those points. However, the primary purpose behind arranging this meeting was to show respect for knowledge, knowledgeable people and scholars.

Today's meeting has been attended by the esteemed families of the martyred nuclear scientists - Shahid Ali-Mohammadi, Shahid Shahriari, Shahid Rezaeinejad and Shahid Ahmadi-Roshan - and I would like to welcome them in particular. The memory of these martyrs will never be wiped off from the minds of our people or the history of our country.

There were very good points in the statements which were made by the brothers and sisters, and I wrote down some of the points. The majority of the things which were mentioned and stressed by the friends are the same concerns that I have. And I am happy to see that the intellectual current in our universities has been directed towards these main concerns. The issue of preparing plans and investing in research and fundamentals, both in humanities and in experimental sciences - which was highlighted by some of the friends - is among my concerns and it is necessary to take care of it. The issue of forming a relationship between industry and university has been among my recommendations. Good points were made in this regard and it became clear that good things have been done as well. Some of the friends made essential points about the need to establish a department for major industries and to specify the value of labor. The issue of scholarly articles and ISI citation indexing was among the points which were made in this meeting. This issue is among my concerns, among the things that I speak about. It is necessary for the high-level managers and decision-makers who are in charge of scholarly issues of the country to sit down together and think about this issue and find the appropriate solutions, some of which were discussed in the meeting. The need to prepare plans for implementing excellent ideas is among the things that I always highlight. The ideas which were put forth in this meeting were very good ideas, but it is often necessary to prepare plans for operationalizing them. This is one of the things that should be done in universities. For example, "ethics-based economy" which was mentioned by one of the friends is a very good idea. It is absolutely correct, but what are the ways in which it can be implemented. As for the need to form a relationship between university and industry - which has been discussed extensively over the past years and fortunately good measures have been adopted in this regard - there are certain shortcomings. What are the __executive solutions for these shortcomings? This issue is among our needs and I ask our esteemed scholarly professors to work it.

In any case, I am grateful for the comments which were made by the friends. I would also like to express my sincere gratitude to Dr. Rahbar for his competent management and efforts. I ask the friends who work for my office, the President's office or our ministries - the Ministry of Science, Research and Technology and the Ministry of Health - to work on the points which were raised by the professors in this meeting. They should sit down together and think about these points. It is necessary to make the best of this meeting in order to move forward.

What I want to say is that today nobody can deny the fact that the world is entering a new stage. You can witness this. If there is enough time to discuss all the points that I have in mind, I will present a general outline and then I will pose a question. Finally, I will offer a few recommendations regarding universities.

The world is currently in a state of change. Global structures are changing. If we wanted to find a parallel for current conditions of the world in the recent past - in the past couple of centuries - the conditions of the world after the first world war would be a good parallel. Of course, change is happening in the opposite direction. After the first world war, the political and economic structure of the world changed dramatically. Or before that, during the time Europeans started colonialism, new conditions were created in the world and the general structure of the world changed. The transformations that can be witnessed today are of this nature, a change in the general structure of the world. Of course, the change that is taking place is happening in the opposite direction, in the direction of a balance between the powers and general capabilities of the east and those of the west or between one group of nations and the rest of the nations. It is clear that we are moving towards a transformation. What are the signs of this transformation? I would like to provide a few examples.

One sign is Islamic Awakening. Throughout our history, we have never witnessed such conditions in Islamic countries. There is a general sense of identity and awakening, not only among the people of one country, but also among the people of different Islamic countries. We have never had this before. This is a new development. This is a sign, a sign of change. There are 1.5 billion Muslims in the world. There are tens of countries which are mainly populated by Muslims and these Muslim countries are located in sensitive parts of the world. For this reason, this awakening is not an ordinary event: it is indicative of a change in the new structure, map and system of the world.

Another sign is the failed campaign of the west - led by America - to further spread its hegemony over our region. They started a campaign, but their campaign was unsuccessful. The events that happened in Iraq and Afghanistan did not happen abruptly. Those events did not take place as a result of a prompt and abrupt decision. No, everything had been fully planned and the goal was to spread full western hegemony over every part of this region under the leadership of America.

Of course, I insist on calling this region "West Asia", not "Middle East". The terms "Far East", "Near East" and "Middle East" are not correct. Far from where? From Europe. Near to where? To Europe. This implies that Europe is the center of the world. Anywhere that is far from Europe should be called "Far East", anywhere that is close to Europe should be called "Near East" and anywhere that is in between should be called "Middle East": this is a definition that was presented by Europeans themselves, but this is not acceptable to us. Asia is a continent. It has an eastern part, a western part and a middle part. We are in the western part. Therefore, our region should be called "West Asia", not "Middle East".

Another sign is the efforts to have complete domination over this sensitive region. Why is this region sensitive? The reason is that first of all, there are massive resources in this region, resources that the west needs. And energy resources are a priority for the west. Second, an Islamic wave has always been expected in this region. They always vaguely expected this Islamic wave, especially after the Islamic Revolution and the emergence of the Islamic Republic. And this was because they wanted to take control of this wave. Therefore, simultaneous domination over the valuable resources of the region and the Islamic wave forced them to start a campaign to occupy this region, but they failed in the middle of the way, just like somebody who gathers all his strength to jump across a canal but does not make it and falls into the canal. This is a sign of change.

Another sign is the events that are currently happening in Europe. The uncertain future that has cast a shadow over the wealthy countries in Western Europe is a very important event. The economic problems are not because of tactical errors, so we cannot say that they made the wrong tactical move at a certain stage which led to these consequences. No, this is not the cause. The cause is more fundamental. They made fundamental errors. What is happening today is due to fundamental errors in the west's philosophical and intellectual perspective of the world and mankind, errors in world view. Of course, unlike tactical errors, the consequences of such errors do not reveal themselves quickly. Unlike tactical errors, the consequences of such errors do not reveal themselves in the middle term. The consequences of such errors reveal themselves in the long term. These errors are revealing themselves after the passage of two, three centuries. And know that these errors will bring them down.

Another sign of this fundamental change in the map of the world is that America's credibility is declining. As the top country in the world in terms of wealth, science, technology and military power, America enjoyed credibility for several decades and this credibility increased America's influence. During the early decades of the second half of the 20th century, America's credibility had reached its peak. This was the case in our country as well. An elected government like the government of Dr. Mosaddeq would run away from England and seek protection from America. Such things would increase America's credibility. This was the case in the entire world. Today this credibility has completely disappeared. That is to say, America is condemned in the world. The American government does not enjoy widespread credibility among the people of any country. "Death to America" is not just a slogan that is particular to the Iranian nation. This slogan is chanted in many other countries as well. A government that supports oppression, war, accumulation of weapons, domination of nations, bullying and interference in the affairs of all countries has acquired such a bad reputation and this is another sign. Therefore, change in the world is inescapable. There are other signs as well, but I will not discuss them in this meeting. This is one point.

The second point is that it cannot be denied that our country enjoys a special position in this change, in this event, in this long story. We are not just a bystander in this matter. Our country enjoys a special position. What are the factors that give us this special position?

First of all, Islamic Awakening started in our country. Everybody is saying this. Everybody understands this. Everybody knows this. What we call "Islamic Awakening" started in our country over thirty years ago. Lives were sacrificed, selfless efforts were made, and Islamic Awakening reached its lofty goal - namely the establishment of the Islamic system.

Second, the Islamic Republic has been founded on a firm system whose foundations are faith, rationality and affection. At the foundation of this firm system, the faith of the people and government officials, rationality and affections play a role. God willing, I will mention some examples of this rationality if there is enough time. Such a firm system has been built and I do not know of any other system in the world which is similar to this system: a system that simultaneously relies on the faith of the people, on ideological principles, on rationality and on strong emotions.

Third, a major portion of the wealth that the west is trying to plunder is in our country. For a hundred years, the western world has been feeding on this wealth - namely, energy resources, oil and gas. A few years ago in a meeting in this Hussayniyyah, I presented details and statistics and said that we make up around one percent of the world population, but that we enjoy more than one percent of the essential resources that sustain human life on earth. Apart from oil, we enjoy two, three, five, seven percent of the global sources of essential metals. Moreover, our sources of manpower and our capacities are far more than this. Our country enjoys capacities that exceed the global average. Therefore, we are living in a country that enjoys such enormous natural and human resources, resources which are needed by the west. Today you see that they are after our talented youth, our outstanding people. They identify each and every one of our outstanding professors, students and elites and they try to take them away. We are suffering from certain weaknesses and they successfully use these weaknesses to their advantage. In any case, this shows the existence of this wealth in our country. This is another factor which shows that our country enjoys a special and sensitive position in this global change.

Fourth, the Islamic Republic is intellectually productive, as opposed to the inability of the west to produce novel ideas. After the introduction of humanism and the schools of thought which rely on humanism, after the introduction of the philosophies that originate from western humanism, the west was no longer intellectually productive and it no longer produces novel ideas for humanity and human life. We have new things to say about issues related to human spirituality, social issues related to humanity and issues related to government. When we say we have novel things to say, it does not mean that the world will accept our novel ideas once we present them. It only means that our novel ideas will create a new intellectual current, a new wave in the world. Today we have presented "religious democracy" in the area of political matters. We have presented "spirituality-based civilization" in the area of general social issues. We have proposed "human dignity" in different areas. We have put forth the idea that religion and life are intertwined. These are novel ideas which have never been put forth in the world previously. Even before the era of materialism and western humanism, even before secular ideas had gained ground, religion was not intertwined with life. Not at all. It is true that in certain parts of the world, the clergy were in power - the rule of the church. In the context of the long and complicated history of Europe, there was a war between the church and governments. But in any case, the church was also in power. This does not mean that the life of the people was intertwined with religion or that the laws and regulations for the life of the people were extracted from religion. There was no such thing in the west. There was no such thing in Islamic countries either, except during the early years after the introduction of Islam. This is a novel idea that we are presenting to the world. We are saying that religion is intertwined with life. What is life? Life is politics, different activities, trade, economy and everything else. This is a novel idea that we are presenting to the world.

The fifth point and the factor which gives our country a special position is remaining steadfast in the face of the common methods that the west uses to advance its goals. The west has been using certain methods during the time it has had political domination over the world. You have witnessed these methods many times: they make threats, they wage wars, they assassinate, they kill, they bribe and they foment discord. These are the well-known methods the west has been using over the two, three hundred years of its domination. Iran, the Islamic Republic, the Iranian nation and outstanding Iranian personalities showed steadfastness in the face of these methods. Their threats have proven ineffective. Their efforts to foment discord - which is a very important issue - have proven ineffective. They have not been able to take control of the general movement of the Iranian nation. Well, this is the special position that our country enjoys.

Therefore, it cannot be denied that the world is on the verge of a transformation or that it is going through a transformation. And the fact that our country enjoys a special position is also undeniable.

A question comes to mind: do our universities and Islamic seminaries have a responsibility in the face of the events that are taking place in the world? I ask you honorable professors, esteemed scholars and outstanding personalities of the country to pay attention to this point. Can our universities and Islamic seminaries afford not to specify a responsibility for themselves in such important and sensitive conditions? Can our universities and Islamic seminaries afford to stand by and watch? Let alone, God forbid, play a role in supporting the camp that has deployed its forces against the camp of truth.

It appears to me that it is necessary for our universities and Islamic seminaries to shoulder a heavy responsibility in these conditions. The primary responsibility to help Iran and the Iranian nation to achieve success at this critical and sensitive stage lies on the shoulders of our scholars. Our universities also play a very important role in this transformation. Our universities can help our country and our nation become a winner in this transformation. They can also do the opposite. I believe that our universities have a very sensitive and great responsibility to play in this regard.

What our friends spoke about in their speeches are very good and necessary. Of course, there have been very good advances. The friends who spoke in today's meeting mentioned certain positive points. They also mentioned certain negative points, but they did not explain. We are suffering from certain negative points: in the area of managing scholarly matters, in the area of different plans which are made on the basis of the knowledge that is produced in our universities, in different parts of our country and our society. It is necessary to eliminate these shortcomings. These shortcomings can be eliminated by universities themselves. Universities can play a role in this area as well. Today our government officials, our ministers, our __executive officials and many of our officials who work for the legislative and judiciary branches of government are university graduates. They come from academic environments. They are professors. Intelligent and goal-oriented relationships can help our experts improve things in the country and eliminate the existing shortcomings. On the one hand, this is a responsibility that lies on the shoulders of universities and on the other hand, it lies on the shoulders of government officials and managers. Today I have the opportunity to speak to you university people, and I will remind our managers of their responsibility at the right time. By Allah's favor, my recommendations will prove effective.

A fallacy might be proposed in this regard. Sometimes they propose certain fallacies, fallacies about the impartial nature of science. They say, "Do not mix up science with politics because science is impartial." Yes, science is impartial at the level of discovering realities. When science wants to discover a material or spiritual truth about the world, naturally it cannot do so with prejudgments. It must go ahead and explore without prejudgments. Here, science is impartial. But when science wants to be at the service of a certain orientation, it is not at all impartial. In the modern world, science is not impartial. Those who sometimes yell at the Islamic Republic and pious academics and say, "You made science political and gave it an orientation" - the same people put science at the service of colonialism, at the service of dominating nations, at the service of shackling different countries. It was science that gave rise to colonialism. If they did not have science at their disposal, they could not have colonized all those countries and accumulated all those weapons. The large number of wars that westerners, Europeans and finally Americans imposed on the world and on peoples, the large number of human beings who were killed in the process in the remote parts of Asia, in Africa and in Latin America - they did all these things through science. Science was put at the service of oppression. It was put at the service of the arrogant powers. It was put at the service of hegemony. Why did science fail to serve justice? Why did science fail to serve values? Why did science fail to serve the spread of the message of Islam, namely the message of freedom and happiness for mankind?

Another fallacy - which I do not want to explain in detail - is to divide the scientific apparatus of the country into governmental and non-governmental and to use labels such as "government-affiliated organization", "government-affiliated student" and "government-affiliated professor" as an insult. One can see that foreigners are promoting these things and they are also reflected inside the country. I believe these labels are not an insult: they are an honor. A student who supports his divine and Islamic government, an organization that helps such a government, a professor who helps the Islamic system as an ideological principle should feel proud. What is really insulting is when a professor, a student or an organization serves America and Zionism. This is a source of disgrace. If a person is accused of being at the service of America, Zionism and the opponents of our national independence and dignity, this is truly a source of disgrace for him. It is an insult. But it is not at all an insult when a student, a professor or an organization is described as "government-affiliated". Being government-affiliated is not bad. It is a source of honor. Being government-affiliated means being affiliated with the Islamic system.

The culture of hard work and selfless struggle for the camp of truth should be promoted in universities. The culture of spirituality and ethics, or as one of the gentlemen said, art in the sense of liberation, pride and values: this was among the points which were mentioned by the friends and it is completely correct. It is necessary to promote this culture in universities. In this regard, the role that professors play is very important. And this is the same thing as acting the commanders of the soft war which I have mentioned many times. I have repeatedly said that university professors are the commanders of the soft war.

I would like to offer one last recommendation on establishing a national system for innovation. Currently there is a vacuum in this area, which has prevented the comprehensive scientific plan from being implemented the way it should have been. We do not have a national system for innovation, namely a network of activities and chain interactions among scientific organizations of the country at large, medium and small scales, both in scientific environments and outside these environments. It is necessary to have such interactions, which may be referred to as the national system for innovation. And the function of this national system is to manage, observe and evaluate knowledge and innovation. This is a necessity today and I believe our government officials and managers should think about this issue.

Dear God, make what we heard and what we said serve You and Your cause. Dear God, help each and every one of us play a role - on the basis of our capabilities and position - in the victory of the camp of truth over the camp of falsehood. Dear God, make the holy heart of the Imam of the Age and the immaculate soul of the Last Prophet satisfied with our people, our nation, our scientists and those who struggle on this path. Associate the immaculate souls of our dear martyrs, our martyred nuclear scientists, with Your saints.

Greetings be upon you and Allah's mercy and blessings

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