Imam Khomeini’s (RA) Letter to Gorbachev is narrated by Ayatollah Amoli
The message was read with delineating some important points. Then the Kremlin’s special interpreters translate it for Mr. Gorbachev, the Soviet leader, and two other people that attended the meeting. If a point was not lucid for the interpreter, he asked and after understanding the point translated it to Gorbachev. During reading the message and translating it that took 65 minutes, translators wrote down some points and Gorbachev also took some notes himself.
The Iranian Delegation left Tehran for Moscow on January 3rd, 1988 (13 Day 1367) and returned to Tehran the day after. They stayed in Moscow for 23 hours and were given a warm welcome by prominent Russian officials and Moscow Friday pray leader.
Before the official meeting of delegation with the former Soviet leader, no contact was made with the head of the delegation, because the trip was just for submitting the message and clarifying its deep content. From the airport to Moscow, the dialogues were replete of delineation about monotheism and rejection of paganism that delegation expressed and faced with an encomium of those who came to the airport.
On January 7 ,1989 an Iranian delegation met with Mikhail Gorbachev in Kremlin Palace at 11 a.m , that took two and five minutes. When we arrived at Kremlin the Chairman of the board and were welcomed by the two prominent officials who had visited us before, showing great enthusiasm for hearing Imam Khomeini’s (RA) message.
Considering the issue of mutual respect that is one the international rules of Islam and does not belong to any specific group, the delegation was determined to transfer the message with the language of guidance and education.
The message was read with delineating some important points. Then the Kremlin’s special interpreters translate it for Mr. Gorbachev and two other people that attended the meeting. If a point was not lucid for the interpreter, he asked and after understanding the point translated it to Gorbachev. During reading the message and translating it that took ۶۵ minutes, translators wrote down some points and Gorbachev also took some notes himself.
The Soviet leader listened to the message politely because the content and its literature was at apex of guiding to monotheism and the style of it was deductive.
Issuing the letter was after the UN Security Council Resolution 598 and Iran entered to the stage of post-war reconstruction process. The content of the letter was completely secret and except Imam Khomeini (RA) none of the Iranian authorities knew about it, so the Russian officials did not even imagine that the content of the letter was invitation to monotheism and Islam.
Here’s is the gist of Imam Khomeini’s letter to Gorbachev:
“In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful
Your Excellency Mr. Gorbachev,(1) Chairman of the Presidium of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics
With due wishes for the happiness and prosperity of Your Excellency and the people of the Soviet Union.
Since you assumed office, there has been the impression that Your Excellency, in analyzing world political events, particularly those pertaining to the Soviet Union, have found yourself in a new era of reassessment, change and confrontation; and your boldness and initiative in dealing with the realities of the world is quite likely to bring about changes that would result in upsetting the equations of power dominating the world. I have therefore found it necessary to bring certain matters to your attention.
Even if your new approach and decisions are merely used as a means to overcome the party crisis, and to solve some of the problems confronting your people, your courage in reappraising a school of thought that has for decades enchained the revolutionary youth of the world behind its iron curtain is indeed worthy of praise. If, however, you are considering taking a further step forward, the first thing that will ensure your success is that you reevaluate your predecessors’ policy of obliterating God and religion from society (2), a policy that has no doubt incurred the heaviest blow to the Soviet people. Rest assured that this is the only way whereby world problems can be dealt with realistically.
Of course, it is possible that as a result of wrong economic policies of the former communist leaders, the Western world, an illusory heaven, will appear to be fascinating; but the truth lies elsewhere. If you hope, at this juncture, to cut the economic Gordian knots of socialism and communism by appealing to the center of Western capitalism, you will, far from remedying any ill of your society, commit a mistake which those to come will have to erase. For, if Marxism has come to a deadlock in its social and economic policies, capitalism has also bogged down, in this as well as in other respects though in a different form.”
After listening to the major points of the letter, all the bias anticipation about the content turned wrong and no one could give a suitable quick answer to this holy letter.
Listening carefully to the letter and understanding the intentions of Imam, the former Soviet leader started to answer the invitation that took him one hour.
A summary of Gorbachev’s answer after reading Imam’s letter was is as follows:
“I ‘m thankful of Ayatollah Khomeini’s letter, I’ll send an answer to this letter as soon as possible, we’ll announce it Soviet’s clergymen, we are on the way of approbating religion freedom in Soviet, I have claimed before that despite having different ideologies we can have peaceful relationship. A few months after sending this letter, the USSR collapsed and people were free to choose religion.”
“Imam Khomeini invited us to Islam; do we have to invite him to our school of thought? Gorbachev smiled and went on,” this is a jock. This invitation is an interference in the internal issue of a country. Cause every country is free for selecting its school of thought.”
Iran delegation studied the response of Gorbachev to the letter and got that the country react politically to the letter not culturally and educationally. Gorbachev considered the letter as interference to the national issues of the country. So the issue of sending the letter was under the question, so the delegation did not discuss the content of the letter. Head of the delegation said,” Thanks for listening the letter and we appreciate your readiness for answering the letter and announcing it Soviet’s clergymen.”
He underlined, “we appreciate the freedom of religion and hope an amicable condition for all people to live with each other as they have different schools of thought. But the issue of interfering should be clarified. You are free in Russia to do what you want and no one has right to interfere in this realm. The content of the letter did nothing with materialism and the territory of Russia; it was just related to your souls.