To The Islamic Republic Of Iran
Imam Achmad Cassiem
February 4th 2003
Early morning Tehran, Iran
In February 2003 we were
invited to Tehran for the founding meeting of the International
Union of NGOs for the Protection of Palestinians Human Rights.
There we met Imam Achmad Cassiem, a fellow delegate. We asked
him a few questions about his visit to the Islamic Republic.
Imam Achmad Cassiem (left) at the NGO meeting.
Imam Achmad Cassiem is the
National Chairperson of the Islamic Unity Convention (South
Africa). At aged 15 he joined the armed struggle against the
oppressive apartheid regime in South Africa and at the age of
17 he was one of the youngest people to be imprisoned on Robben
Dr. Zahra Mostafavi, daughter of Imam Khomeini,
was one of the delegates at the founding meeting.
She is head of the Society for Defence of
Palestinian Nation (SDPN)
through the streets I observed no liquor adverts, no night
clubs, no pornographic display boards - the billboards
along the roads had no
semi-naked women as in all western and unfortunately most
Muslim countries, but
instead beautiful revolutionary slogans, photographs of
some of the great leaders of the revolution. That was
"On that day when United States of America
will praise us we should mourn", Imam Khomeini
You visited both the house Imam Khomeini lived in and the
mausoleum where his body rests. Please describe what you
saw and what imprints the visits left on you.
Answer (shift-click) (4.8Mb)
The main room in Imam Khomeini's house
Imams slippers still visible
in the room
room measured 3 by 4.5 metres, the floor was carpeted by
two old rugs and
a curtain covered the back wall which lead to a sleeping
The room was furnished with four shelves, a circular mirror,
a couch, a coffee table and two little foot stools which
were used as tables for writing on and reading the Quran.
was the reception room where
the leader of the revolution, Imam Khomeini (RA) received
Imam Achmad Cassiem visiting
Imam Khomeinis home
The Imam at home with his books,
notice the huge cracks in the back wall.
the Soviet foreign minister, visited Imam Khomeini with
Gorbachev's response to Imams historic letter forecasting
the collapse of communism and inviting the communists to
was actually shivering in front of Imam because here was
a person who commanded the respect of a nation of 60 million
people, living in such humble conditions..."
Following his heart
problem and hospitalisation a few months after the victory
of the Islamic Revolution, Imam Khomeini was not allowed
to return to Qum due to its bad weather. Doctors recommended
he stay in Tehran.
After rejecting the
first house he was shown as being too luxurious, the
leader of the Ummah agreed to rent this simple home.
After sometime, the
army began to build a helicopter pad for emergency landing
of a helicopter to take the Imam to safety should something
serious happen. As soon as the Imam found out about
this he stopped the work immediately. He didn't want
any special treatment.
When the army built
a bomb shelter so that Imam could go there during the
air raids he again refused to use it - "if the
poor people do not have air shelters how can I have
The footbridge from
the house leads to Imams Mosque.
The footbridge from the house leads to the door
on the balcony from where Imam delivered his message.
Imam Achmad Cassiem sitting with Revolutionary
listening to poetry being recited in Imam Khomeini's Mosque.
Some of the delegates from the NGO meeting
(Imam Achmad Cassiem on right)
with members of Sahar TV visiting Imams
Mausoleum located next to Beheshti Zahra,
the martyrs cemetery, on the outskirts of Tehran
Imam Achmad Cassiem paying his respects
inside Imam Khomeini's Mausoleum.
Imams son Ahmad and Allamah Tabatabai,
the great scholar of Islam and author of Al-Mizan,
are also buried under the same dome.
Imams revolution secure? What advise would you give the
young generation born after the revolution on whose shoulders
will pass the responsibility of sustaining the revolution?
Answer (shift-click) (420Kb)
Mural showing how America
is using satellite TV broadcasts to
corrupt the youth of Iran - destroying the flowers of the Revolution.