more than 30 years, the Shi'a in Iraq were always oppressed by the
Ba'athi regime. They were denied their natural rights, oppressed
tremendously and robbed of their dignity. They were denied their
religious rights, which included commemorating Ashura and other Islamic
events. Iraq suffered like no other country at any point in time.
In addition to all that,
most of the Iraqi people were also denied the privilege of performing
the Hajj. Not only did the government make it difficult for the Iraqi
people to perform the Hajj, but the financial status of most Iraqi
people didn't allow them to perform the Hajj. As the corrupt oppressive
Ba'athi regime was eradicated and removed, the difficulties eased and
more and more Iraqi's could perform the Hajj. This Hajj season witnesses
many Iraqi people performing the Hajj, a will held for many Iraqi people
for many years.
The Iraqi people this year came in groups, all together performing
the Hajj. Ayatollah Al-Qazwini visited one of the Iraqi groups on
January 26 as he met with many Iraqi people. Ayatollah Al-Qazwini then
delivered a spiritual and motivational speech addressed to the Iraqi
Hojjaj. Ayatollah Al-Qazwini began his speech by praising Allah for the
safe arrival of the Hojjaj in Makka, a holy city, from Iraq. He also
praised Allah for the fall of the dictator Saddam and for the freedom of
the Iraqi people from his oppression.
Ayatollah Al-Qazwini then spoke about Prophet Ibarahim's arrival to the
land of Makka with his family and recited the following verse "O
our Lord! surely I have settled a part of my offspring in a valley
unproductive of fruit near Thy Sacred House, our Lord! that they may
keep up prayer; therefore make the hearts of some people yearn towards
them and provide them with fruits; haply they may be grateful" (14:37),
and how Prophet Ibrahim asked Allah [s] to protect the valley before
it transforms into a city, "And
when Ibrahim said: My Lord, make it a secure town and provide its people
with fruits, such of them as believe in Allah and the last day".
Ayatollah Al-Qazwini also said that it is important to ask Allah to
accept our Hajj, and to ask Allah that we embark yet on another Hajj
journey in the subsequent years. Ayatollah Al-Qazwini then mentioned a few
important supplications and deeds that a Hajj can do, like praying in Masjid Al-Haram and praying in Hijr Isma'il. Finally he stressed
the impotance of the day of Arafat, and mentioned that if a person was
not forgiven in the month of Ramadan, he can only be forgiven in
Arafat on the day of Arafat. Ayatollah Al-Qazwini ended his speech with
a prayer for all the Hojjaj in that they all perform their Hajj safely
and return to their homes safely.