Hazrat Abbas's (as) nobility arose from loyalty to Truth in difficult times: Ayatollah Khamenei
The value of those martyred at Karbala is that they defended the sanctum of Truth in the most difficult conditions one can ever imagine.
The nobleness of Hazrat Abalfazl al-Abbas is due to his endeavor, sacrifice, sincerity and his awareness of the Imam (as) of his time. It is due to his patience and resistance. It is because he abstained from drinking water [he was extremely thirsty] when water was right in front of him; and during this time there was no religious or customary law that would've prevented him from quenching his thirst. The value of those martyred at Karbala is that they defended the sanctum of Truth in the most difficult conditions one can ever imagine.
July 27, 2005
In the praying texts and in annotations by Imams (pbut) on Abbas Ibn Ali (ra), two characteristics are emboldened; insight and loyalty.
On what occasion is the loyalty of Abbas Ibn Ali perceived? All followers of Imam Hussein (as) were in possession of insight but in all practicality Abbas was more intuitive. On the day of Tasu'a, this evening, when the opportunity arose for Abbas to rescue himself from a disastrous situation - they offered him a safety in exchange for surrendering, the enemy said,”we will protect you” - his reaction was so courageous that it made the enemy feel remorseful. He said, “Am I supposed to leave Hussein? Shame on you! Fie upon you and your safe conduct!”
More so than any other time, the loyalty of Abbas Ibn Ali is revealed, clearly, upon events that he approached at the Euphrates river - where he refused to drink water.
April 14, 2000