Beheshti, the iconic figure

June 28, 2022 - 21:47

TEHRAN — June 28 marks the martyrdom anniversary of Ayatollah Seyyed Mohammad Hossein Beheshti, one of the great figures behind the victory of the Islamic Revolution. Little is known about him, but he was a cleric who played a key role in establishing the Islamic Republic in 1979.

Beheshti was not an ordinary cleric. That can be understood from his background. When graduated from Qom Seminary, he traveled to Europe to teach the Iranian students in West Germany. To this day, many refer to him as one of the clerics who was years ahead of his time. 

He was also reputed as an astute planner and one of the prominent figures behind Shah’s downfall. 

On February 3, 1979, Imam Khomeini appointed him a member of the Islamic Revolution Council, and he soon became the council’s first secretary. He also became leader of the newly founded Islamic Republican Party (IRP), which was the major bloc in the Islamic Republic’s first parliament. 

Beheshti played a leading role in drafting the Islamic Republic of Iran’s Constitution and was instrumental in the dismissal of Abolhasan Bani Sadr, the first President of the Islamic Republic in June 1981.  

Feeling endangered and carrying bitter wounds from Bani Sadr’s ouster, the terrorist MKO group detonated the IRP office that martyred Beheshti and over 70 other members of the party, including ministers and parliamentarians. 

His last words at the meeting right before the deadly explosion speak volumes. Reportedly, the IRP was supposed to evaluate the country’s condition regarding the next presidential elections. 

Beheshti began his remarks at the meeting, saying, “Once again, we must not allow the colonialists to prepare their players for us and toy with the fate of our people. Let's try to elect those who are committed to the school (of thought) and do not toy with the fate of the people…” and boom! There came an explosion that sent over 70 people to heaven. 

At that time, Beheshti was in charge of Iran’s Supreme Court. 

The MKO was proudly jubilant. They imagined “gone is the progressive ideas of Beheshti!” Yet, time proved them wrong. Being famous for his iconic sentence, “U.S.! Be angry at us and die from this anger!” Beheshti was an anti-imperialist who stood up against those who wanted to sell the country to the foreigners at the early days of the Revolution. 

Prior to his assassination and after the ratification of the Constitution, the enemies, realizing his innumerable capabilities, had resorted to character-assassination by accusing him of fraud while he was in Hamburg. When that plot failed, they tried insulting him in pro-Western media. But neither of these cheap tricks worked. 

He believed in the core principle of introducing the Islamic Revolution to the outside world. Therefore, he was one of the main advocates of the Tehran Times. He said the Tehran Times “must be the voice of the oppressed all around the world.” 

“That the Tehran Times doesn’t belong to the government,” clearly reflects his vision of the paper and the mission it must accomplish. Therefore, the Tehran Times is determined to devote its time and energy to reflect the voice of the oppressed all around the world and fight imperialism. 

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