Iranian Journalist Nader Talebzadeh Interviews The Honorable Minister Louis FarrakhanBy The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan | Last updated: Jan 17, 2017 - 4:05:08 PM
Journalist Nader Talebzadeh (NT): As-Salaam Alaikum, Minister Farrakhan! How are you?
The Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan (HMLF): Wa-Alaikum Salaam Brother Talebzadeh! I am fine, and happy to see you again!
NT: Minister Farrakhan, I would like to dedicate this session to two parts. The first part is about the passing away of the great Fidel Castro, a man that is revered everywhere; in my country he is also revered. Knowing you as a leader of the Afro-American Nation of Islam, and beyond that—and I’ve been listening to your recent speeches, very passionate speeches, before the passing of the former Cuban president: What is your impression of Fidel Castro? I’d like to ask that question.
HMLF: I believe that Brother Fidel Castro is one of the greatest revolutionaries in the history of the struggle of human beings to attain their human rights.
NT: He lived to the age of 90, and many U.S. presidents wished that they would have assassinated him, and Allah willed that he stay alive until this point. And I heard he said that—and I don’t know if this statement is his or not, but, one of the last statements he had said was that “America is doomed, and I can rest now.” Have you heard that? And what does that mean?
HMLF: No, I didn’t hear that. But if he said it, he is right. America is on her deathbed. Not because of you or me or Fidel, but Allah Himself has ordered that any person, any nation, any empire whose evil outweighs its good, there is a force in our universe that moves that individual, that nation, that empire out of existence. America’s time, unfortunately, for judgment has come. In fact, the Honorable Elijah Muhammad taught us it’s not just the judgment of America, but it’s a judgment of the world that has been affected by the Shaitan, or “Satan” of America. So yes, Fidel is right: He can rest now—that which threatened his life, that Allah preserved and protected, is going down. And so, my brother rests in peace.
NT: Minister Farrakhan, your recent speeches have been very passionate, and they go beyond, I believe, the scope of only the Afro-Americans; it’s a message to all of America during this era. What has changed so suddenly in America, and where do you think everything is leading to?
HMLF: What is demanded by God today is not a message to a particular people alone, a message is demanded for the whole of humanity who has suffered under the 6,000-year rule of Satan (or “Shaitan”); whose evil is not confined to himself but is spread to all the corners of the Earth. So we believe that we, the Black people of America, were chosen by Allah: Not to be “special” in the sense that we are better than others, but chosen because of the uniqueness of our position inside of America, and 460 years under slavery, neo-slavery, and injustice, to carry a message to the whole of humanity. And so my passion today is not only justice for the Black man and woman of America, but for all those who cry out to the Supreme Being for justice in their lives—and that’s Black, Brown, Red, Yellow and White, for the whole of humanity has been deprived of that which The Creator has ordered for us, and that is freedom, justice, equality, and submission to the Will of Allah.
NT: Sir, we feel the vibrations of great change coming day-to-day in America. I mean, every day something else is coming up with this new president; and, there is a general havoc that is felt—the reverberations are felt outside. What is your interpretation of this sudden change of atmosphere?
HMLF: Nothing happens except by the permissive or active Will of Allah. This seemed so certain, for Mrs. Clinton: That she would be the first female president of the United States of America, and that she would follow in the footsteps of her predecessor, President Barack Obama, and keep much of that which he brought into existence by executive order, and continue it. But, as the world knows, he couldn’t bring everything into existence through Congress. Because from the day that he was elected president of the United States, the United States Congress, many of the Republicans met, and they declared that they would never allow his legislative program to succeed. And for eight years they fought him. So he had to do much of what he did through executive order; the Affordable Care Act was an act that came through Congress, the right of the homosexual community (same-sex marriage) came through Congress, but the rest of those things that President Obama initiated came through executive order. And now that Mr. Trump is the President-elect: If he chooses, he can, by executive order, repeal most of what President Barack Obama brought into existence, including the thawing of the relationship between the United States and the people of Cuba. And because there is a Republican Senate, a Republican House of Representatives, a Republican president, it is more than likely that his legislative program will be accepted; his nominations to the Supreme Court may very well be accepted. So America is on a course, now, that will lead to the final conflagration, The Final War—which has been cold, pretty much, up to now. But it will become hot, and the whole world will be engulfed in this Final War that I think these policies from our government will bring into existence.
NT: You know, I remember when I interviewed you last time (February 13, 2016 in Tehran, Iran), we talked about this one-sided media that is able and capable so easily to censor the Million Man March, and the likes of those popular movements which you heralded, your speeches, your leadership, during those days in Washington. And Trump has been very explicit in attacking this one-sided Zionist media ... I’d like to ask you what your thought is about this sudden explication of what the media in the U.S. is (by the President-elect) right now. For us, it’s very strange, because for 37 years Iran has been so completely demonized, to be a “world military threat,” which it is not. I wanted to ask you what your thought is about this expression—[President-elect Trump’s] expression about the one-sided, lopsided media; that, I don’t think anyone has ever confronted the U.S. media like this.
HMLF: Well first, my dear brother, every revolutionary thinker in America, White, Black, Brown or Red, never got the true representation from the corporate-controlled media. So it’s so interesting that President-elect Trump came up as a man that the media literally laughed off (“Oh, he’s just an entertainer; he is a reality television fellow, and I don’t know why he is running for such a serious office.”) They said, “Oh, he lacks experience. He is not presidential.” And I didn’t know what they meant by “presidential”.... Meaning, you come out in a suit and tie, and act like you are civilized, and then behind the door, plot the overthrow of nation after nation, and kill leader after leader, and sponsor coups in nation after nation, leading to the deaths of tens and hundreds of thousands of people? Is that what you mean by being “presidential”? So they fed him to the media like red meat to a wild beast; and every time he answered, and they thought that his presidential aspiration would implode and he would never see the light of another day, yet every day he got stronger and stronger!
So in that, he was destroying the effect of the media that had successfully demonized every revolutionary that has stood up, whether in America, whether in Central America, South America, Africa; the Caribbean. Even in the Iranian Republic: You have never had fair press in America. And I, too, join that wonderful host of good people who have been vilified by the American media; but I survived ... and so did President-elect Trump. So now that he has vilified the media, and showed them to be what they became (one-sided, controlled, directed, paid for, bought), then now that he is president they don’t know what to do with him. Because the media, as a force for elevation or degradation, has now been degraded from the mouth of the man who has won the most powerful position, politically, in the world. So yes, it’s a new day now! And they have to deal with that reality.
Mr. Trump is God’s man to dismantle, to upset, and to bring America—though he wants to make her great again. ... If he dismantles the agreement [the “Iran nuclear deal”] won by President Barack Obama with President Hassan Rouhani and the Iranian government and people: If he dismantles that, and puts greater sanctions on Iran, then we are leading to another war; another war inspired by Israel, another war that will bring China into war, Russia into war, Europe into war. And the Western world, in this war, will be taken completely down, and a whole new world is on the horizon. And that’s why we say that Al-Mahdi that we have been looking for and longing for is in the world today. And He is directing the events of the day.
So even though Donald Trump has the world shook up, he doesn’t have Allah shaken, or The Mahdi shaken, because he is being directed. You can take it or let it alone: [Trump] is an instrument of a Power bigger than himself, and bigger than all of the power that’s in America today, or in the world today.
NT: Minister Farrakhan, you are the leader, and inspirational leader, of millions of Afro-American Muslims and non-Muslims, I believe. Where I feel that your message, or your messages, will be towards the “buckling up,” or preparedness for this “phase” (can I call it that?), do you have a feeling towards this “we are/you are walking into a new era,” and are you warning your people about what is to come?
HMLF: I am not the leader; I am a representative of the leader. The leader is the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, whom we believe is very much alive, and is directing me from where he is. Yes, I am warning my people, but I’m also warning Iran, and warning Saudi Arabia, and warning China and Russia and Europe. We are at the end of this world. This is what The Qur’an and the Bible have been prophesying—the end of a world of evil and injustice: We are at that time, now. So The Qur’an says: “Surely the shock of the Hour is a grievous thing. The day you see it, every woman giving suck will forget her suckling and the pregnant one will lay her burden down, and you will see men reeling as though they were drunk, but they will not be drunk, but the chastisement of Allah will be severe.” (Surah 22, verses 1-2) That is where we are today. That’s where America is. That’s where Iran is. That’s where Saudi Arabia is. That’s where 196,940,000 square miles of Earth is. We are the end, and so many, many, many nations will be involved in this war; in fact, all will be involved. Let us pray that Allah will guide us safely through such a time as this.
But I do want to get back to the reason why we are together, because I want to talk about my brother Comandante Fidel Castro, and why it’s said he is the greatest revolutionary of the 20th Century, bar none.
NT: You encountered the man—going back to Fidel; you were in his presence. What struck you the most?
HMLF: First, he is a gifted communicator. He is a brilliant, brilliant mind. But the thing that struck me most about him was he was not a “nationalist.” He loves Cuba! But his love for humanity, if you’ll pardon the expression, trumped (smile) his love for Cuba: He was universal; he was an internationalist, and he put that spirit in the hearts and minds of the Cuban people through the Cuban Revolution.
What other leader do you know that would send their citizens to fight on foreign battlefields because The Cause of that fight on a foreign battlefield was a just struggle? He sent his people there into Africa, in the Caribbean; they died right alongside of others who were seeking the blessing of justice and freedom and equity. What other man do you know who did such a thing? He had universal health care for all Cubans, and universal education for all the Cuban people, no money required. ... This was his challenge. Che Guevara, the great revolutionary, was a doctor, and came to Brother Fidel as a revolutionary. He put down his doctor’s bag and picked up the gun, and became a revolutionary till the day that he was killed and left this Earth, but he still lives in the hearts of many who became free because of that struggle. Fidel kept the gun—but he picked up the doctor’s bag; and now he has more doctors per capita than any nation on this earth. He has sent hundreds of doctors into Africa, into South America, into the Caribbean, wherever his doctors were needed. They never thought about your color, they never thought about your religion, they never thought about your ethnicity.
So some people say to me, “My God, but he is a communist!” In my tribute to him [Ref. “Statement on the passing of ‘El Comandante’ Fidel Castro” released November 29, 2016 —www.noi.org/fidel-castro], I said: “No, he was a messenger of God.” And some of my brothers, Muslim brothers and sisters, may say, “How could you say that? He wasn’t praying, he wasn’t fasting; he wasn’t following the principles of the Religion of Truth!” Let me tell you hypocrites something: Prayer has never made you right, because right now our world of Islam is filled with abject hypocrisy in its religiosity. What good is it to be faithful in your prayer and unfaithful in your duty to Allah and your duty to the people whom you desire to serve? No, no, no! The Holy Qur’an teaches us, and Al-Mahdi, through the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, taught us from The Qur’an—it says like this: “Set your face for religion being upright, the nature made by Allah in which He has created the human being.” Every human being is a Muslim by nature, not by religious practice. By nature! So they want to know, “Well, my God! How did he develop this moral, ethical principle of universalism, of internationalism, of moral turpitude and ethical correctness?” How did he do it? He didn’t do it from The Qur’an; he didn’t do it from the Bible. He did it from The Nature of God quickened in his consciousness. So The Qur’an says of Abraham he was neither a Christian, nor a Jew, he was “an upright man, and was not of the polytheists.” (Surah 3, verse 66) So you see, my brother, “rituals” don’t make you righteous, it’s uprightness: living up to moral principles and ethical principles, and submitting to universal law established by God. That’s what Fidel eventually became.
I said to my brother in my last conversation, “Dear brother, The Qur’an says that every soul must taste of death. None of us can escape that, but for you, sir, there is no such thing as ‘death’.” The Qur’an says speak not of those who are slain in the way of God as “dead,” or die in the way of Allah as “dead,” “they are alive, but you perceive not.” A man like Fidel doesn’t die: He is in the hearts and minds of the children who lined the streets when his ashes were driven from Havana, tracing the route of the revolution back to Santiago de Cuba. ... El Comandante is loved down into the children. The Revolution won’t die! And as I said when I was in Iran (February 2016) [Ref. “Minister Farrakhan visits Iran” —www.finalcall.com/artman/publish/National_News_2/article_102908.shtml]: See, Ayatollah Khomeini was a true revolutionary spirit from the religious side of it. Castro was a revolutionary spirit from the practical spiritual side of it, but not with “religiosity”; not with prayer and fasting and charity in that sense, but he gave it all, to make humanity better. He gave it all to make his nation serviceable to all who desire real change. That’s why I love Fidel Castro, and that’s why he will never die. And neither will Imam Khomeini. And neither will those of us who seek Al-Mahdi; neither will those of us who say from The Qur’an: “My prayer, my sacrifice, my life and my death is all for Allah, The Lord of The Worlds.” When we live our lives not for vanity, but for the sake of God and the betterment of humanity, that’s what gives us immortality. So my brother Fidel is immortal. ...
And I tell you, when I was in Iran, I spoke to the former [foreign affairs minister], Brother [Ali Akbar] Velayati, and I spoke of “the evolution of the revolution.” [Ref. ‘Divine Instructions and Commands in the Pursuit of Justice, Part 2” delivered at Mosque Maryam in Chicago, Illinois, Sunday, February 28, 2016.] The Cuban people must never deny the sanctity of that revolution! Yes, he killed people. ... And Allah is gonna kill aplenty. So if you want to judge Brother Fidel, that he killed people; or judge Mao Zedong, because he killed people? Yeah, right. ... Who killed the people in the days of Noah? Who killed the homosexuals in the days of Lot and Sodom and Gomorrah? Who killed and drowned Pharaoh’s army in the Red Sea? It was Allah! And Allah is going to kill many today as He cleanses His Earth, and prepares those of us who will inherit the Earth after the Shaitan and the wicked ones are deprived of the Earth and life itself! Then those of us who survive, we will survive in righteousness.
So, my brother, this “religiosity” is not the standard by which true men of God are measured. In all the rituals that Islam has, deeply imbedded in those rituals are principles of truth. And sometimes we get lost in the religiosity; we get lost in the “symbol,” but we miss the substance of the truth that is buried in the ritual! Prayer is a ritual! But at the root of prayer is the idea of complete bowing down in submission to the Will of God. Fidel Castro bowed down to a Will superior to his own. And those of us who make prayer, but refuse to submit; those of us who fast and feel good, and fast during the month of Ramadan and come out for Salat al-Jumu’ah, and then go back to lying and stealing and forms of corruption, making mockery of the rituals ... Those of us who were blessed to go to Hajj, as I was blessed, and to make Umrah several times, as I was blessed: I knew that what I was taking part in was a ritual, and I understood “Hajj” was a sign of something bigger! The Kaaba was a sign of something bigger than itself! So those of us who preach religion: Preach the meaning of “ritual,” and stop burying the people and enslaving the people by religious rituals, and then showing them a hypocritical example in leadership!
Al-Mahdi said He comes to “break the cross” and to “kill the swine.” [Ref. Sahih al-Bukhari, Vol. 3, Book 43, Hadith 656.] Al-Mahdi didn’t mean He is going to take some wooden instrument and break it in two; but in that cross, there is a vertical and there is a horizontal. Too many of us live on the horizontal, vain level of life: We want to acquire more and more things; we want the material blessings of life and we are neglecting the elevated state of existence! And that’s why God said of Abraham he was neither a Christian nor a Jew, he was a Muslim: he was an upright man. How many of us are living like Abraham in uprightness? See, so many have judged Fidel as an irreligious man (“He is a communist”). Do you know why, Brother Talebzadeh, he rejected religion? Because religion had become infected by Satan’s wickedness when he said, “I am going to come at you in the straight path, and I am going to make all of you deviate.” What did Satan mean by that? He has turned religion, as the communists say, into an “opiate of the people.” The people are drugged with religion; and that’s why the elites—who understand that it is just a ritual, and understand the truth of it but won’t teach the truth of it to awaken the masses of the people: so, the leaders live in luxury at the expense of the weak, at the expense of the poor.
My brother Fidel: He looked after the poor, he looked after the weak, he looked after the widow, he looked after the orphan—he did all the things that Prophet Muhammad did from the spiritual perspective.
Prophet Muhammad was not a ritualistic man; he was the example of this Qur’an. Yes, he prayed; yes, he visited the Inner Sanctum of Allah and gave us five daily prayers, but he wanted us to live the meaning of that prayer. Yes, we took off our national garments during Hajj, and put on the ikram garment, a simple garment (no diamond rings, no national flags, no fine raiment, but a simple dress), because before Allah nothing of our material existence impresses Allah. It is our righteousness and our uprightness alone that impresses God. That’s why I love Fidel, and that’s why I love Imam Khomeini. And that is why my heart is bursting at the thought of Al-Mahdi coming to set up a universal government of peace.
NT: God bless you, Minister Farrakhan. I, along with my friends and people in Iran who wish to see you soon among us: we missed the opportunity of hearing your sermon on Friday (we wished to have you speak at the Friday prayer). So we hope to have you in the future, during these critical months ahead of us. So I hope that the opportunity comes; and after you’re invited, you will be able to travel to my country, and we’ll be able to see you in person and to be able to communicate to the people of Iran about what is going on on that side of the world. We need to hear it! Everything...it’s so much edgier; and, we know things are going to happen. Thank you very much for your very substantial speech.
HMLF: Thank you, dear brother. May Allah (SWT), bless Iran, bless the leadership of Iran, and bless our Muslim Umrah to throw off the yoke of neo-colonialism, and the divisions that Shaitan is exploiting, causing us to fight and kill one another. I hope to come back to Iran again if it pleases Allah; I hope to be your guest again, and I hope that Allah will bless me to speak at Salat al-Jumu’ah. I pray for our success and the success of all good thinking righteous people who want to see a world come into existence that is better than the world that we inherited.
Thank you so much for the honor of this interview. And may Allah bless your wife, and bless your studio and bless all those who make this interview possible for the people of Iran and Azerbaijan and all of the neighboring countries that are growing to love the Nation of Islam and Brother Farrakhan. Thank you again, dear brother. As-Salaam Alaikum.
NT: Thank you so much ... [for] your presence; and my greetings to the crew who is with you, and to your family, and to Brother Akbar Muhammad. And most of all, best wishes for you, and the future.
HMLF: Thank you! As-Salaam Alaikum!
NT: Wa-Alaikum Salaam, wa rahmatu Allah (and the Blessings of Allah).