Saeed Jalili, Top Student Who Got An “F” for Islam

June 9, 2013
2013 Presidential Elections
7 min read
Saeed Jalili, Top Student Who Got An “F” for Islam
Saeed Jalili, Top Student Who Got An “F” for Islam

In the run-up to the election, especially after the disqualification of Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani and Esfandiar Rahim Mashaei, many openly refer to Saeed Jalili as the candidate of Ali Khamenei and the regime, and some even call him “Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s secret candidate.”

Saeed Jalili’s official website quotes his father, Mohammad Hassan Jalili, as saying, “[I]f you wish to know Saeed better, ask Ayatollah Alam-ol-Hoda about him.”

Ahmad Alam-ol-Hoda, the Friday prayer leader of Mashhad, is an extremist cleric close to  Supreme Leader Khamenei and a key supporter of Jalili in the upcoming election. During the 2005 and 2009 presidential elections, Alam-ol-Hoda supported Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Alam-ol-Hoda’s background includes heading the Revolutionary Committee in a Tehran neighborhood between 1980 and 1982, membership in the Tehran Society of Combatant Clergy, and Vice Chancellor-Education of the influential Imam Sadegh University between 1982 and 2005.

In the 90s, Alam-ol-Hoda was a weekly speaker for the extremist Ansar Hezbollah paramilitary group, and  according to some sources, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad listened to his sermons. He turned into a major opponent of the reform movement once Mohammad Khatami came to power. After Khamenei appointed him as Mashhad’s Friday prayer leader in April 2005,  state media began referring to him as “Ayatollah” and he was elected to the Assembly of Experts in 2007.

Alam-ol-Hoda is well known for his statements and activities against women, culture and arts, and reforms. During the post-election protests in 2009, he was a defender of the crackdown on the protesters, calling them “goats,” “calves,” and “mohareb” (enemy of God). He has also called  Khamenei “a representative of the Twelfth Imam,” and has said that because he himself is appointed in Mashhad by the Supreme Leader of the Islamic Republic, “the Khorasan Razavi Province officials must not approve plans that are against [my] views, because [those decisions] are against Sharia.”

There are two stories circulating  that quote Alam-ol-Hoda on Saeed Jalili. The first refers to his statements at an internal meeting at Imam Sadegh University in 2003, where he referred to Jalili as an “[Islamic] values-conscious student,” and a “valuable force for Islam,” who tangled with his professor at that university and received an “F.” The second story concerns  Alam-ol-Hoda’s remarks at the Mashhad Friday Prayers about  Jalili in 2007, after he was appointed as Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council. During this speech, Alam-ol-Hoda referred to Jalili as Imam Sadegh University’s “top student.” In order to support Jalili’s appointment to the position, Alam-ol-Hoda praised his tenure and promotion at the Foreign Ministry under Rafsanjani’s presidency, and his continued work at the Foreign Ministry during  Khatami’s presidency, as Jalili’s points of strength.

The third audio file is of Alam-ol-Hoda’s speech on December 30, 2009 in which he calls the elections results protesters “goats.”

Ahmad Alam-ol-Hoda in 2003: Saeed Jalili received an “F” for Islam at Imam Sadegh University

Ahmad Alam-ol-Hoda: “We had a student here [at Imam Sadegh University] who is a part of the valuable forces of Islam, by the name of Dr. Saeed Jalili. He received his doctorate degree from this place. In one of his classes, he got entangled with the teacher of a class over an issue, and the teacher, with great cruelty, gave him a “zero” [“F”]. We mobilized with all our might to solve his problem, but we couldn’t. He officially told his teacher that the “zero” you gave me is more valuable than a “100” for me, because I received this “zero” for Islam, and I claim more virtue about getting this “zero” from you than I do about losing my leg in the war front. The teacher was basically crushed. Our university was baffled for a while over how this student was treated. Of course whatever we did, we could not resolve his problem, because by law nothing could be done.”    

Ahmad Alam-ol-Hoda in 2007: Saeed Jalili was a top student, in Mr. Rafsanjani’s administration he became inspector in the Foreign Ministry

Ahmad Alam-ol-Hoda: “Go and learn about Saeed Jalili also. You will know about him also. Do you know who Dr. Saeed Jalili is? From the year 1983 when he was a young man and graduated from high school, he separated from his simple, God worshipping, religious Mashhad family. He was accepted in the entrance exam of Imam Sadegh University. From that time on, I have been connected with him for 24 years. He finished his Bachelor’s, Master’s, and Doctorate degrees in Political Science from Imam Sadegh University. He was studying as the “Top Student” of this discipline in the University and was making progress when he went to the war front.  He participated in military operations in the war front.” 

“The senior commanders of the 5th Division of Khorasan consider him a well-known fighter. He lost a leg in a military operation, and he is a veteran who is about 60 percent disabled. He continued his education, and the day he received his Masters’ degree in Political Science, he was employed by the Foreign Ministry. In the administration of Mr. Khatami, he was head of the America Desk at the Foreign Ministry. In Mr. Ahmadinejad’s administration, he was Deputy Foreign Minister, and while working, he participated in the entrance exam for Doctorate degree in Political Science and he was accepted.”    

 “He received his doctoral degree in Political Science from Imam Sadegh University. I was myself his doctorate thesis advisor. He wrote his doctorate thesis about the Paradigm of Islamic Political Thinking in the Quran. He read the Quran from beginning to end ten times in order to write the thesis. In his thesis, he has presented about three thousand Quranic affidavits for Islamic political thinking.”   

“[He is] a person who has such high level of expertise, has a Doctorate in Political Science, is a full blown interpreter of Islam. In terms of his work experience, in most of the foreign affairs decision making in three administrations, he has either served as an expert in that decision making or he has participated in that decision making. A person like this has come and become the Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council.”     

“The Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council is a person like this. Is this of any concern? Why didn’t you come to know him?! The day that America, with its murderous followers, imposed upon us the eight-year war, they reckoned that they would either kill the young revolutionaries affiliated with the Imam, or they would become injured veterans, or at least while busy with the sacred defense of the country, the youth would be held back from mental and scientific growth. America and the West reckoned that the young generation of our revolutionary strata was busy with the war, and they could select banal elements from these useless people in the corners of the villas in Europe and America, raise them to be experts in politics and economics, and in the future their hand-raised experts would become authorities in the system, and then dump this country and its nation all together into America’s lap. They had reckoned it this way.”  

“They didn’t know that these kids in the trenches, these fighting youths would come out of these trenches with their cut off legs and become the first political expert of the country at the highest level of experience and would take the key position of the Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council. America had not reckoned this.”          

“Saeed Jalili becomes the Secretary of the Supreme National Security Council, meaning he is our revolutionary people’s ideal. This is the pinnacle of glory and power of our system that today a giant political expert is made from this war front trench dweller kid with a cut off leg, and he goes to battle Europe and America. ”       

Ahmad Alam-ol-Hoda in 2009: A bunch of goats and calves insult the Supreme Leader

On December 30, 2009, in a speech in Tehran’s Revolution Square, Ahmad Alam-ol-Hoda called Mir Hossein Mousavi and Mehdi Karroubi “disobedient” and called the protesting people “mohareb” [enemy of God] and “goats and calves”.

Ahmad Alam-ol-Hoda: “This country was in the hands of the oppressing kings and the people with barren breasts were welcoming hot bullets, drop by drop they have given their blood till they have put the Supreme Leader in power, then a bunch of goats and calves come and insult the principle of Supreme Leader before the people’s eyes?!”  



Saeed Jalili: The View From Across the Table

June 9, 2013
7 min read
Saeed Jalili: The View From Across the Table