The International Day of Al Quds takes place annually on the last Friday of Ramadan with marches and demonstrations held across the world. The objective of this day is to take a clear stance against worldwide oppression, specifically highlighting the Zionist settler colonial occupation of Palestine. Al Quds Day demonstrates the unity, will, and power of those seeking justice in the face of arrogant imperialist powers today.
Less than a year after the establishment of the Islamic Republic of Iran in 1979, Imam Khomeini, the leader of the Islamic revolution, made a historical announcement appointing the last Friday of the Holy Month of Ramadan as Al Quds Day. During this declaration, Imam Khomeini called on Muslims and justice seekers around the world to join forces to proclaim support for the Palestinian cause.
The spiritual dimension of Al Quds day is inseparable from its political objective. All Muslims, Sunni and Shia alike, hold the belief in the coming of the Savior of Mankind, Imam Mahdi (ajtfs). Imam Khomeini emphasized throughout his life that the concept of “Intizar” or “waiting for his blessed physical return” is characterized by activism. This combats the notion that Muslims should remain apolitical and wait silently for Imam Mahdi’s (ajtfs) return amidst corruption and injustice.
He states, “We have to facilitate the work. Facilitating the work makes it become nearer. We will perform the work such that the world will be fitted for the coming of His Holiness (Imam Mahdi).” Among the various steps Imam Khomeini implemented in paving the ground of the Reappearance was the imposition of International Quds Day.
Al Quds day is primarily a day of confrontations for nations that have been under the chokehold of imperialist entities. It is not only a day to announce who the oppressor and oppressed are but to importantly make the strength and resilience of the oppressed known. Imam Khomeini discusses that this day is known as “Al Quds Day” because the Palestinian cause is a paradigmatic example of a body resisting against an entity backed up by the tyrannical entities. The true orientation and essence of the Palestinian issue is at the very center of the Muslim world. The atrocities around the world are directly connected to this central struggle. Nations that stand up to the Zionist-Imperialist agenda in the region face brutality from the oppressive entities while those normalized with the Zionist entity face no persecution. This day highlights the united front of the resistance from Palestine to Lebanon, Syria, Yemen, Iraq and Iran against the same imperialist-colonial agenda. The Palestinian struggle is thus emblematic of the human struggle for resistance against oppression.
Al Quds day is powerful because it channels the strength of the Muslim ummah by encouraging reliance on God alone. Imam Khomeini states in his declaration, “The day of Quds is the day of Islam. All Muslims must be warned and must understand how strong their spiritual and economic powers are. Muslims are one billion people, supported by God, Islam, and the power of faith. Why should they be afraid?” This point is key in highlighting that the Muslims are not in need of “acceptance” by the oppressors but must instead work to strengthen their spirituality and economic capacity to stand as a threatening power against these oppressors.
Al Quds day also serves as a criterion between those who fulfill their duty in speaking out against oppression and those who are intimate with the agents of corruption. Imam Khomeini emphasizes that this is a day of realization where those bodies who are “cooperating with international conspirators and are opposing Islam” become revealed. Those who don’t participate in any capacity, whether through demonstrations or virtually, are amongst those “opposing Islam” while those who participate are “in stride with Islam and thus oppose Israel.” This is a day to truly determine which entities speak fearlessly in the name of truth versus those who stay silent out of comfort and “safety.”
As Al Quds Day 2023 arrives, the Zionist entity is weaker than ever before, with internal turmoil ravaging its “democracy” and daily blows from the united resistance front. The Zionist entity’s increasingly weakened stance in the region has become evident with progressions in the region attesting to a regional power shift away from the West. It has become more imperative than ever to support those who are resisting illegal settler colonial occupation. This also comes in light of the Zionist’s most recent attacks on Palestinians in Masjid ul Aqsa, one of Islam’s holiest sites, throughout the Holy month of Ramadan.
Resistance News Network announced the official logo of International Quds Day 2023 holds the slogan, “The West Bank is the shield of Al-Quds in a salute to the fierce and continuously growing resistance, and an affirmation of the unity of the fields.” With this united resistance front from Gaza to the West Bank to the broader region becoming clearer, the Israeli regime’s worst nightmare is coming to life.
The rising strength of the youth of the West Bank and the legacy of the martyrs like Ibrahim al Nablusi must be at the center of Al Quds day demonstrations this year. These freedom fighters and martyrs uphold a message of will, resilience and reliance on God alone, the very essence of what International Quds Day represents.
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