Al-Ghadir: A Strong Source of Unity for Muslims Everywhere
Circumstances regarding the event of al-Ghadir indicate the comprehensiveness and foresightedness of Islam, highlighting qualities required of Islamic Ummah’s leadership: namely, the qualities that characterized the Commander of the Faithful. His holiness Imam Ali (peace and greetings be upon him) was the paragon of piety; with absolute adherence to religion, he treaded on the path of truth while obeying Allah; he was also characterized by knowledge, wisdom, prudence, strong will and firm determination.
The appointment of Imam Ali (peace and greetings be upon him) as successor to the Holy Prophet of Islam (peace be upon him and his household) also had a symbolic aspect, it laid the foundations of leadership down for the Islamic Ummah during the era after the holy Prophet (pbuh): Al-Ghadir reveals this reality.
We, as Shi’a Muslims and followers of the holy Prophet's household (pbut), are grateful to Almighty Allah, because He made us aware of this reality and enlightened our hearts to embrace this truth--which is a great, divine blessing.
Nevertheless, one point that should be heeded by the followers of the holy Prophet's household (peace and greetings be upon them) and all Muslims is that the significant event of Al-Ghadir--which is a sign of the grandeur and comprehensiveness of Islam--should not be used as a pretext for undermining Islam.
I am duty-bound to warn the Iranian nation and all Muslims, throughout the world, that the enemies are trying to turn circumstances of Al-Ghadir into a pretext for fomenting fratricidal conflict, war and bloodshed; meanwhile, the Al-Ghadir event can be a source of solidarity and brotherhood among Muslims and help to promote unity in the Islamic world.
Today, overconfident powers are making every effort to incite division within the Islamic world. They tried, in other ways, but failed. As you have witnessed, the United States has experienced defeat during its several invasions led against the Middle Eastern region; it could not achieve its objectives, either in Iraq or Lebanon, in Afghanistan or Palestine; in spite of incurring great expenses and suffering defeat in all these places, now it (USA) is feeling the bitter taste of defeat. One day--some three or four years ago--we were talking about this reality, but today it’s the American (US) leadership who are admitting to this reality.
They may be able to suppress the Islamic awakening, which has been instigated by the hoisting of the Islamic Republic of Iran’s flag, in several ways. One scheme, is to portray the Islamic Republic of Iran as a “Shi’a Republic,” in order to set it against the great Sunni community; this is a very dangerous plot, which their (Western) politicians are attempting to carry out, currently.
We should do our utmost to thwart off these arrogant powers from achieving their goals: all Muslims should be aware and vigilant. Our entire nation: elites, scholars, and the dedicated and diligent clergymen must all be careful, do not to say or do anything that would be conducive to the enemies' plot.
The Shia community must tread on its path with poise and dignity. We will not renounce our motto of, “All praise is due to Allah, Who created us among those holding to the velayat of the Commander of the Faithful." We will hold fast to the velayat of His holiness, Imam Ali ibn Abitaleb, (greetings be upon him) —which is a great, divine blessing; moreover, we will not quarrel with those who do not cling to this strong rope: this is the duty of the Shi’a community. What the enemies want is that we wrangle with one another.
The Sunni community also has a similar duty: Our Sunni brethren should be aware of the fact that the enemies are seeking to foment discord and fratricidal conflict; they (the enemy) would not settle for anything less than this. Presently, you (Sunni) bear witness to what the enemies are doing in Baghdad and other Iraqi cities! They (the enemy) instigate explosions in Shi’a mosques and other holy sites, and they instigate the killings of innocent people.
Ayatollah Khamenei, Jan 8, 2007