[Translator’s notes appear in square brackets.]

[Personal information has been redacted.]

[The excerpt below is from the section of the article that pertains to the Baha’i Faith]


[Newspaper:] Ashofteh

[Date:] 28 Ordibehesht 1334 [19 May 1955]

[Issue No.:] 19


From: Abbas Foroutan

Visiting Ayatollah Borujerdi

What happened at the meeting of the acting Prime Minister, [Mr.] Entezam, with Ayatollah Borujerdi?

What is the opinion of the gentlemen scholars of the Qom seminary about the campaign against the Baha’is? My few hours’ discussion with the religious scholars of Qom at Ayatollah Borujerdi’s residence: Why did the campaign against the Baha’is suddenly begin? Was the ayatollah already informed of the speech of Mr. Falsafi or not? The religious circles of Qom refer to the present government with a positive attitude—the story of the verbal argument between two of the students at the ayatollah’s residence and many other issues....

Since the day the recent campaigns against the Baha’is began in Tehran, followed by Ayatollah Boroujerdi’s meaningful letter, read by Mr. Falsafi, the attention of most political circles in Tehran was directed towards the Shi’a leader. There are various interpretations and translations of this matter heard but none of them—to be honest with you—was convincing for the author, until I decided to meet with Ayatollah Borujerdi in Qom to find out more information about it.

In Tehran, most of the friends from the press would portray the matter as overly important and challenging. However, I took advantage of [my] three-day holidays and headed to the religious City of Qom. Afterwards, I asked some questions of the clergy, in a friendly manner, about the recent campaigns against the Baha’is. They all unanimously said that their views were the same as those in the letter of the ayatollah that you have read and heard. One of the gentlemen, for explanation, said:

“Basically, after Shahrivar 20, all the governments which have come to power, have been unable to take action to eliminate and prevent the propaganda of this perverted sect, and the inattentiveness to the Baha’is has led them to infiltrate the vital organs of the government agencies, to the point where the Abarghou incident came up five years ago, and the judicial system, yet again, made so many obstructions in the case of the Baha’is that only one of the eleven Baha’i murderers was executed, and that was due to the persuasions of the clerical authorities.

Reaching this point in the speech, I politely asked if the execution of eleven people because of one single offence, was in accordance with the judicial measures or not? One of the clergy vaguely said that there was nothing wrong with that; however, the obstructions of the persecution organ prevented it.

Our get-together was gradually warming up; each of the clergy would raise a matter until I asked what preparations had been made for the recent campaigns against the Baha’is, which had suddenly begun since the beginning of the holy month of Ramadan? Was the ayatollah already aware of Mr. Falsafi’s speech against the Baha’is? In short, did the course of speeches begin in Tehran by order of and in consultation with the ayatollah in Tehran?

Here, once again, Mr. Khademi provided some explanations to the following effect:

A campaign against the Baha’is does not require an introduction or an epilogue. It has been many years since this perverted sect, in the name of religion, developed its political establishments in Iran. For years, every day, numerous letters and grievances on their violations have reached the office of the ayatollah, and the Abarghou story can be one such example....

The clergy, in the presence of the ayatollah, often praised the military occupation of the Haziratol-Quds, and considered it as a wise and divinely ordered act, and overall would refer to the government with a positive attitude, saying, “In our view, the plan that the clergy has prepared to ban the perverted sect is a good plan and should be approved and communicated to the government for implementation.”  One of the clergy added, “After the approval of this plan, our work will be complete, because as it has been pointed out in the letter from the ayatollah, the best and most qualified authority that can put an end to the political activities of this group is the government, and certainly the government would, according to the requirements of the situation and the public interest, be taking appropriate actions about this matter…