The Iranian community living in Uganda, together with their Ugandan friends on Wednesday this week converged at the Cultural Consulate of the Embassy of the Islamic Republic of Iran in Kampala, to commemorate the country’s revered former commander of the Iranian Revolutionary Force Corps, Quds Brigade, Qasem Soleimani, who was killed by US at Bagdad International Airport on January 3, 2019 on orders of the out-going US president Donald Trump.
Soleimani died alongside Iraqi top paramilitary commander Abu Mahdi al-Mohandes
By the time of his death, Qasem was believed to be the second most powerful person in Iran following the leader of the Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Seyyed-Ali-Khameni, who heads the whole country.
Speaking at the function in Kampala, Al-haji Muhammad Reza Ghezelsofla the Iranian Cultural Counsellor said remembering Qasem is the only way that can help them (Iranians) appreciate his work and his efforts which he dedicated towards fighting for their freedom and all nations and religions.
“He did not differentiate between the Lebanese, Syrian, an Iranian, Palestinian or Yemeni people. Any aggression against people, their money and their honor was a red line for him,” he said.
Ghezelsofla said the USA feared Gen. Suleimani because he was waking up nations about oppression and suppression engineered by the Western powers.
“This has been the case since the beginning of mankind including the prophets who faced hard times with rulers and kings by them but there are always two sides of the story; the truth and lies,” he said.
“Qassem Soleimani wasn’t for only Iranians but a global peace ambassador who fought terrorism and injustices across borders.”
Ghezelsofla noted that the fallen General was militarily a commander of hearts, who had numerous talents and capabilities which he used positively and selflessly,
“He was among the best followers of the holy prophet and he defended freedom and Unity, he was a complete school of thought, a full University and away for many though enemies miscalculated by assassinating him,” he noted.
Dr. Tajudeen Sanni from Kampala International University hailed the fallen general for his exemplary fighting tactics, which he used in restoring harmony in some of the Islamic states, “Militarily, Hajj Qassem was the frontline man not the man in the operation room; he was the many of strategy and tactics. Politically and culturally, he was well-educated in various fields and it made him so a great and inspiring personality’’ he added
He urged African leaders to always know their true friends and enemies then condemn all acts of animosity.
“Hajj Qassem had a relation with all the Palestinian factions, and his concern was that these factions get the support they need to resist the occupation. He had no red lines on the logistic support to them” he said
The function was organized in preparation for his commemoration, which shall take place on Sunday January 3, across the globe.
William Odinga Balikuddembe, the president of the Uganda Science Journalists who travelled to Iran under a science journalism competition organized by the Al-Mustafa foundation, a few months before Gen. Qasem’s assassination noted that the true Iran that he saw was far different from what CNN and BBC plus other western media were feeding their audience.
“America’s leaders are not necessarily hurting Iran out of correct information, misinformation, but out of a deep-rooted hatred for the regime in Tehran. America lost her influence over Iran forty years ago and she is looking for a way of getting it back,” he said adding,
“Iranians are very nice people. The ordinary American does not know that. He or she is being fed on propaganda by her government. Given the opportunity to learn more about Iranians, an ordinary American would love to have an Iranian for a neighbor than a fellow American,”
He is reported to have grown up in a poor family in the mountainous areas of Eastern Iran in a small town of Kerbala, where he was buried.
He rose from a construction worker to high ranks in Iran military as a young man in 1979 due to his overwhelming ambitions.
The 2011 American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy (AEIPP) Report revealed that Soleimani became a war hero in 1980, when he risked his life to minimize causalities among his men during the Iraq-Iran war.
He supported the Lebanese militant group, Hezbollah and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
He died at 62 years commanding the Qurds Elite Force, which reports directly to Iran’s Supreme Leader, Ali-Khamenei.