The 326th Night of Memory -2

Blessings of Presence in Kurdistan

Compiled by: Iranian Oral History Website
Translated by: Fazel Shirzad

2021-11-02


Note: The 326th Night of Memory program was held in person on the Thursday of 29th July 2021, in the open space of the Arts Center, with the performance of Mr. Davood Salehi. In this program, with the theme of "Morale Unit"; a narration of the warriors of the War Propaganda Unit ", General Mohammad Ali Asoudi, Mr. Ismail Mahmoudi, and Dr. Mohammad Ghasemi shared their memories.

At the beginning of this program, the presenter called the holding of the Night of Memory program as an honor in the provinces and several other countries. He also quoted some the words from Martyr Haj Qasem Soleimani about the Propaganda Unit of the war front and as follows: "Martyr Haj Qasem Soleimani refers to the invention of the comrades of propaganda who had bought diary notebooks and distributed them among the fighters and created an opportunity for the fighters to write their memoirs, which was very effective." He also point to the interesting work of the Propaganda Unit, which distributed will paper among the fighters, and he stated that there were fewer fighters who did not write a will after that, and this was very effective in boosting the morale of the fighters.

This great martyr also refers to the colored flags on which the names of the Imams or the word of Allah Akbar /  الله اکبر/  are written and installed on the roads, which helped to strengthen the morale of the warriors through a wave in the wind. Last but not least, the Propaganda Unit had a key role in unsuccessful operations, this unit was very effective in maintaining the morale of the fighters and improving emotions and organizing pledges of allegiance and holding ceremony for the martyrs.

The presenter then invited the second narrator of the program, Mr. Ismail Mahmoudi, to share her memories.

The second narrator of the program, Mr. Ismail Mahmoudi, at the beginning of his speech, uttered some words from Martyr Dastgheib: "Under this blue sky, there is no worship higher than service in Kurdistan." Martyr Mohammad Boroujerdi,[i] known as the Christ of Kurdistan, also had said: "Leaving Kurdistan means losing blessing, but what did the warriors do in Kurdistan that if we wanted to go from there, we would be a blessing for the infidels?" The various information that we now have after 35 years of sacred defense is in the hands of General Asoudi, who spends his time and money and makes every effort to record these memories.

The narrator said: "With the entry of the IRGC ( Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps) into the security and military situation of Kurdistan, the duty of the warriors was "They are stubborn against the disbelievers, and they are kind among themselves"[ii]. To encounter Kurdish forces, we first tried to encounter them compassionately and kindly, and then strongly and hard. There, the IRGC was versatile in terms of software and hardware, and the issue of software was propaganda. The propaganda forces, without weapons and ammunition, had to go inside the people's gatherings and communicate with them to separate the people from the counter-revolution. Imam Khomeini has repeatedly said that we are not at war with the Muslim people of the region. In the Provincial Security Council, although the IRGC was an advisory member, it was the mainstay of those meetings. All the efforts of General Asoudi's propaganda supporters were to create an atmosphere for separation between the people and the counter-revolution.

Mahmoudi continued: " As the baby needs mother's milk, the people of that area also needed information, beliefs, morale, books, and films, and the propaganda forces had taken over this task and were doing it in these three provinces. At that time, we had machines like morale machines in about thirty cities, and supplies such as books, necessities, even for children, and they traveled in cities and villages, performed psychological operations, and provided security to the people. They gave material aid to the people. The perpetuation of these memories was done with the sacrifice of the propaganda forces in the region.

The narrator continued his speech: "In one of the military bases in the region, hours after midnight, when there was a martial law and all the headquarters were ready to counter the counter-revolution, a person came to this base although he was ordered to stop, said: "She says that my wife is pregnant and I have to take her to the hospital." After the examination, the person in charge of the propaganda takes the patient to the hospital in a propaganda unit's car, through about five Iraqi headquarters, where they may be shot, but God willing, no one saw them and they took her to the hospital safely. Along the way, the patient's spouse asks for the driver's name. Two days later, he arrives at the headquarters with a box of sweets and goes to see him. He told him that I named my child Alireza. It so happened that these Shiite names were given to a baby in an area where all were Sunni.

Mahmoudi continued: "Another person goes to the headquarters of the IRGC and goes to the muezzin there and asks him to say the beautiful call to prayer that he used to call every day on the headquarters in the ears of his newborn child. The important point here is that he asks him to say "I bear witness that Ali is the supreme guardian of God" and "I bear witness that Ali is the supreme authority of God" in the call to prayer."

The narrator went on to say: "The people of Kurdistan were thirsty for reading and we responded to the needs of these people by creating exhibitions and bookstores." Also, holding various ceremonies such as the first children's theater festival in Mahabad, celebrating the Holy Defense Week and the Fajr decade were other activities of the Joint Chiefs of Staff propaganda forces that were carried out in these areas. Another action of the Propaganda Unit's forces was to create a photography unit for the fighters so that their photos and videos would not be given to the counter-revolution. People from different cities gave their videos and photos to this unit because they only trusted it."

"The type of our cultural operations in the west and south was different," Mahmoudi said, "for example, from Tehran to the depths of the front, we used to put up a sign "Smile Fighter!", but we didn’t do it in the West. Ali ibn Abi Talib's (PBUH) army had come to the region for foreign operations, but because they were not familiar with the atmosphere in the region, they used the signs "Smile Fighter!" with a southern propaganda background, without realizing it.

The narrator continued his speech: "Martyr Mohammad Boroujerdi was martyred on the first of June due to the collision of his car with a mine. The next day, the Democratic Party's radio announced at 4 pm that the commander of this camp (in our words) had been martyred yesterday due to the operation carried out by the Democratic Party in the central building of Hamza military base in Urmia province. It was a psychological blow to the people of the region and our fighters. On the same day, I formed a team of ten to twelve people along with the head of the Special Brigade of the Martyrs, Radio, and Television of Urmia and Sanandaj province, as well as various local and national newspapers, and neutralized that psychological work of the counter-revolution by providing photos, videos, and interviews. In the end, Mahmoudi mentioned Hojjatoleslam Hassani, the Friday prayer leader of Urmia, who sent a provocative message to the people of West Azerbaijan while he was in London, telling them:" the heroic people of Azerbaijan, the companions of martyr Bakri, I speak to you from the depths of disbelief and I want you not to leave his bulwark alone" these words made these people help us.

 


[i] He was an Iranian militant who was one of the senior commanders of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps during the first years of the Iran-Iraq war.

[ii] Quran, holy Sura Al-Fatah, verse 29.



 
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