Sermons, Revolutionary Pamphleteering and Mobilisation: Iran, 1978
On 6 January 1978, the Iranian Minister of Information handed to a reporter of the newspaper, Ettelaˈat, a brown manila envelope containing an article that the newspaper was ordered to publish. The imposition of officially-inspired articles on the Tehran press was at the time standard government practice. When Ettelaˈat’s editors examined the article, they were appalled. The article was a scurrilous attack on Ayatollah Khomeini. It described him as a reactionary and contentious cleric, cast aspersions on his religious scholarship and suggested that he had sought to achieve through political demagoguery a prominence he had been unable to attain on the strength of his religious learning. It accused Khomeini of having been in the pay of the large landlords, reactionary elements and even British Intelligence. It suggested Khomeini had written love-poetry under the pseudonym of ‘al-Hindi’. Alluding to the fact that Khomeini’s grandfather had for a time lived in Kashmir, the article sought to cast doubt on the authenticity of Khomeini’s Iranian origins.2
KeywordsReligious Leader Security Force Islamic Republic Memorial Service National Front
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