[PROVISIONAL TRANSLATION FROM Persian]
[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:] Neday-e Hagh
[Date:] 15 Khordad 1334 [6 June 1955]
[Issue No.:] 36
From Qom: Ali Davani
What if Muslims Refrain from Drinking Pepsi Cola?
In the last issue, the great blessed scholar, Mr. Haj Seraj Ansari, wrote a commentary titled “Pepsi Cola or Pest and Disaster”. Since there were some unmentioned points, I consider it necessary to write this description to complete his article so that these points are clarified and Muslims truly understand the clergy’s opposition to Pepsi Cola, and do not hesitate in this regard.
There is no doubt that since fifty years ago, the Iranians have changed from the religious point of view. The [most likely] reason is that when the monopoly of tobacco [production] was given to the British, the late Ayatollah Mirza Shirazi, God elevate his station, issued a fatwa that said, “Today the use of tobacco is exactly like fighting with the Lord of the Age (peace be upon Him).” This caused such commotion and excitement among the people that Nasereddin Shah was forced to cancel the contract to protect his throne and keep the country calm!
But today, so much hypocrisy, lying, pessimism, and baseless rumour have been planted among the people, that unfortunately it has been so effective that if one day a decision is taken by the Marja-e Taghlid [the Emulating Authorities] to prevent the strengthening of the infidel’s front, those who pretend to be Muslims, influenced by the foreign propaganda, will paint it political and in this way leave the matter neutral and unfinished, and as a result, the scales are lowered in favour of the enemies of religion!
Like the struggle against the Baha'is two years ago, when the matter was very clear and Ayatollah Borujerdi himself had decided to end the issue of the Baha’is by awakening the Muslims, some still believe that it was politics?!
Today, if we state that [Pepsi] Cola is an establishment that has been organized to strengthen the Baha’i Party and deplete the capital of the Muslims, since its boss, subordinate, and manufacturer are Baha’is, and basically the difficulty of its uncleanliness remains a concern, again one will say, “How do you know that it belongs to the Baha’is?” Another one says, “Ayatollah Borujerdi said, I do not drink it [but] this does not mean that Muslims should not drink it either!” And the third one says, “I will not give it up until he directs a boycott in writing.”