The Saudis’ Real ‘Sin’ (lll)

Though the background information that dominated the previous parts of this piece might have amounted to an unnecessary digression, as some readers insinuated, I humbly insist, that it was indispensable anyway as it was intended to put the issue in its right context, which remains necessary in order to understand what Iran is actually hell-bent on achieving by politicizing the Hajj stampede tragedy.

In any case, obviously, Iran’s demand for a role in the management of Hajj affairs is simply hypocritical, to say the least, because according to Shia doctrine, which is its official religious ideology, Makkah is inferior to Karbala in terms of holiness, and that Hajj is equally inferior to paying homage to the supposed grave of Imam Hussein in Karbala, as I quoted from some of their major religious books, in part two of this piece. By the way, no wonder its apologists want Hajj to be organized and managed the same way FIFA organizes and manages the world cup event.

Incidentally, at this juncture, one may wonder why Iranians go to Hajj and in large numbers anyway. I will address this irony in due course, in this piece. Meanwhile, their notoriety in masterminding deadly unrest during Hajj over the years, which caused the death of hundreds of pilgrims, refutes their purported moral high ground to lament the occurrence of any unfortunate incident during Hajj. Iran’s insistence on fomenting trouble during Hajj is motivated by its relentless pursuit of its agenda to spread out its influence beyond its geographical borders following the Khomeini-led revolution in the country.

They insist on holding demonstrations and political gatherings during Hajj purportedly to condemn the United States and Israel. They march through the streets chanting political slogans, harassing the authorities, obstructing vehicular and pedestrian traffic flow, distressing and distracting the pilgrims, which put them at the loggerheads with the Saudi security personnel in charge of maintaining the security and safety of the pilgrims as well as the serenity and sanctity of the holy sites.

Ironically, however, though Iran participates in various international gathering events including sporting events in different countries around the world including the United States and its western allies, Iranian participants never hold demonstrations to condemn the US and Israel in such gatherings. In fact, they never do anything that may undermine the smooth running of the events.

Yet, in 1986, the Saudi Arabian authorities uncovered and confiscated explosives smuggled into the kingdom through Jeddah airport by some Iranian pilgrims, and the pilot of the Iranian plane that brought them, Al-Hikmadar Mohammad Hassan Dahnawi confessed that, he and his team were under instructions from Iranian authorities to use the explosives in Makkah and Madina Holy Mosques and other holy sites.

Also, the following year i.e. 1987, the thuggish activities of Iranian pilgrims escalated where the attempted to invade the Grand Mosque of Makkah, which resulted in a deadly stampede and violent clash with Saudi security personnel that led to the death of more than four hundred people among the pilgrims and the Saudi police, though most of the fatalities were among the Iranian rioters.

Moreover, in 1989 and apparently due to its inability to foment further unrest after the 1987 incident, probably due to better security precautions taken by the Saudi authorities towards Iranian pilgrim in particular, Iran resorted to using some Kuwaiti Shiites where its embassy in Kuwait city arranged explosives and sent it to Makkah with some twenty Kuwaiti Shiites who in turn detonated the explosives on a flyover near the Holy Mosque in Makkah during Hajj. Fortunately, though, many, if not all, of them were captured by the Saudi authorities and sixteen of them were sentenced to death hence publicly executed. Consequently, Iran boycotted Hajj starting from the subsequent year i.e. 1990, which lasted until 1998 when they resumed, though their attitudes at Hajj never changed.

It’s obvious in light of the foregoing that, Iran sends a large number of subversive elements within its Hajj mission masquerading as pilgrims to trigger chaos during Hajj with a view to destabilizing the political stability of the kingdom in order to control or have a say in the management of Makkah and Madina in particular, which, by the way, have never been under the Shiites.

Therefore, the Saudis’ real sin as far as Iran is concerned, is neither their alleged alliance with the west nor their purported inability to manage the Hajj, after all. Besides, after decades of pursuing deceptive politics of bogus enmity against the west and Israel through which it has managed to mislead many gullible Muslims into believing that it is a symbol of resistance against western domination, Iran’s hitherto secretive alliance with its purported enemies is being increasingly exposed.

Anyway, the Saudis have earned the resentment of Iranians simply because they don’t and indeed will never allow the Iranians to have a chance to desecrate the sanctity of the two holy mosques and other Islamic holy sites by committing Shirk and other forms of heretic worship rituals, as they do in their places of worship. They hate the Saudis because they will never be allowed to defile the holiness of Islamic holy sites by constructing and worshipping statues and giant portraits of some funny characters, which they claim to be representing the prophet and some of his pious descendants.

After all, during Hajj, and while all Muslim pilgrims chant, *Labbaikallahumma* *Labbaik, Labbaika La sharika laka Labbaik innal-Hamda wan ni’imata laka walmulk La sharika laka,* confirming their belief in Allah in accordance with the doctrine of *Tauheed*, the Shiites chant *Labbaika* *Ya Hussein* instead, which is the most blatant display of disrespect towards Allah the Almighty especially considering the status of the place as the holiest site is Islam, and the symbol of *Tauheed* that Hajj particularly represents.