Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei, the Leader of the Islamic Revolution, in a meeting on Wednesday with a group of exemplary students and scientific talents of the country, expressed important recommendations and warnings addressed to the elite and officials. Underscoring the necessity of taking the National Foundation of Elites seriously as a national and strategic foundation, Ayatollah Khamenei said knowledge-based companies constitute the main pillar of the Economy of Resistance, adding: “Thanks to the revolutionary objectives, slogans and drive of the society and the massive presence of young elites and the large-scale and accelerated scientific and technological move that has started, the future of the country will be a bright future together with progress and might and daily-growing spiritual influence in the region and the world and those seeking to disappoint the younger generation with regard to the present and the future are betraying the country and national honor.”
At the start of his remarks, the Leader of the Islamic Revolution described his meeting with the determined and joyful young elites as hope-inspiring and referring to the high IQ of Iranian youths compared with the global average, Ayatollah Khamenei said: “Since the Islamic Republic of Iran considers its power as endogenous, intelligent, committed and talented youths are viewed as the biggest opportunity and wealth for this country.”
After this prologue, Ayatollah Khamenei offered several pieces of fatherly advice to young elites. The first piece of advice by the Leader of the Islamic Revolution to the scientifically distinguished youths was to consider their talent as a divine benediction and to appreciate God for this blessing. To that effect, Ayatollah Khamenei said: “Consider this talented character as a blessing of the Islamic Revolution because the Revolution gave character and identity to Iranian youths and encouraged them to activate their internal force and talent.
Ayatollah Khamenei said the prominent scientific ranking among 200 countries in the world was a result of the Islamic Revolution, adding: “Iran has attained a high scientific ranking while for more than three decades it has been facing imposed war (Iraq-Iran war from 1980 to 1988), political pressures and economic sanctions.”
“This superior scientific standing which you have achieved has been due to the country’s security as well. Therefore, you must appreciate those like martyred Brigadier General [Hossein] Hamedani who have provided security [for the country],” Ayatollah Khamenei said, referring to the senior general of the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) who was killed last Thursday fighting Takfiri Daesh terrorists in the Syrian city of Aleppo.
The Leader of the Islamic Revolution said the glorious funeral procession held for martyr Hamedani, particularly in his hometown Hamedan in western Iran, was a sign of the Iranian nation’s appreciation of efforts by those providing security for the country. “Without security, there would be no research and university and scientific progress,” added Ayatollah Khamenei.
The second piece of fatherly advice by Ayatollah Khamenei was to “prefer a spirit of mobilization to a spirit of self-importance”
Ayatollah Khamenei said a calamity threatening prominent individuals is the feeling of self-importance, adding: “This is a disease of character which you should not let take root inside you and the only way to confront it would be to boost the spirit of mobilization and carry out duties wholeheartedly and for the sake of God.”
Noting that participation in national mobilization campaigns is a way of boosting “the spirit of mobilization,” Ayatollah Khamenei said: “Participation in national mobilization campaigns would help get familiar with the grassroots and the problems and challenges of the society.”
Referring to his long experience in the years following the 1979 Islamic Revolution, Ayatollah Khamenei said some officials’ unfamiliarity with the realities and challenges of the society, particularly in remote cities and villages and among impoverished families, was one of these problems. “National mobilization campaigns are the best opportunity for youths to get familiar with realities and directly serve the people,” he added.
Ayatollah Khamenei criticized students’ travels to some European countries despite his previous warnings against such visits, saying: “Such trips are among the most erroneous affairs and national mobilization campaigns are much better and more honorable than organizing such [student] trips.”
In his third piece of advice, the Leader of the Islamic Revolution recommended talented youths stay in the country instead of travelling abroad just based on their imaginations of welfare. “Instead of placing yourself in the cruel and greedy hands of foreign societies, develop the correct geometry of the country’s health and guarantee the [function of] your own society’s brain and nervous network and skeleton,” said Ayatollah Khamenei.
Touching on the country’s problems and weaknesses along with progress and capabilities, Ayatollah Khamenei said: “Staying in the country and making efforts to heal weaknesses and influence people will be a source of honor and pride.”
The fourth piece of advice by the Leader of the Islamic Revolution to talented youths was not to be intimidated in the face of the West. To that effect, Ayatollah Khamenei said: “Although Western countries have made significant scientific and technological progress, one should not feel overawed because the potentialities of Iranian youths are much higher and if any comparison is to be made, Iran’s recent three decades should be compared with the post-independence three-decade period of those [countries].”
“The current young generation can take pride in having achieved progress and gone through major scientific steps and honorably strengthen the pillars of the country’s scientific independence,” said Ayatollah Khamenei.
The Leader of the Islamic Revolution recommended the National Foundation of Elites make precise plans in order to pave the way for the practical emergence of the superior talents of youths, adding: “The young elites should feel useful and be encouraged to stay in the country.”
Ayatollah Khamenei said facilitating the condition of education for the elites, accelerating the trend of formation of knowledge-based companies and establishment of scientific centers of excellence at universities with focus on prominent, committed and revolutionary professors are among the necessary measures for the continuation of the scientific drive of the elites. He added: “Professors are instrumental in the scientific centers of excellence at universities and professors who believe in the development and future of Iran and are conscientious and committed to the values and the Revolution should be hired.”
The Leader of the Islamic Revolution recommended the National Foundation of Elites regularly monitor the output of activities and referring to the issue of the Economy of Resistance, he said: “One way of realization of policies of the Economy of Resistance, which was welcomed by pundits from the very beginning, was to support knowledge-based companies and make the necessary preparations to that effect.”
Ayatollah Khamenei briefly referred to the Economy of Resistance, saying: “We are not here to discuss the implementation and progress of the policies of the Economy of Resistance, but I am not happy with the pace of progress of these policies.”
Ayatollah Khamenei went on to highlight the necessity of a correct design for benefiting from the potential of knowledge-based companies for the realization of the policies of the Economy of Resistance, adding: “I recommend that one topic of forums by young elites would focus on the ‘contribution of young elites to the Economy of Resistance’ so that we would reach a model by benefiting from the thought and knowledge of youths.”
The Leader of the Islamic Revolution also described the issue of identifying and developing superior talents during primary and high schools as very important and referring to the “Shahab” plan in the education system, Ayatollah Khamenei said: “The minister of education should, in person, meticulously examine the process of implementation of this plan and not let this plan be ignored.”
The Leader of the Islamic Revolution went on to express several warnings. His first warning was about elements and individuals who are constantly disappointing people and youths and underestimate scientific progress and breakthroughs in the country through newspapers and magazines and forums.
Ayatollah Khamenei called on officials to show vigilance and awareness to that effect, saying: “The significant scientific progress in the country in nano, stem cells and nuclear energy are not imaginations, but they are realities which the entire world is aware of. Therefore, disheartening youths and denying the growing scientific and technological drive amounts to treason against the country and a betrayal of national honor.”
Ayatollah Khamenei referred to a current seeking to identify scientific elites in the country and persuade them to leave for abroad. The Leader of the Islamic Revolution recommended officials show vigilance on this issue, saying: “My other warning is about the treatment meted out by certain officials, directors and professors at universities to pious, revolutionary and committed elements. The ministers should be fully vigilant in this regard and not allow such things.”
Concluding his speech, the Leader of the Islamic Revolution said: “The conclusion of my remarks is ‘reasonable optimism vis-à-vis the future’.”
Ayatollah Khamenei referred to the sense of responsibility among the country’s youths whose majority is talented and highlighted the continuation of revolutionary objectives, slogans and drive in the society, saying: “The main reason for the enemies’ anger with the Iranian nation is this issue and to that effect they say countering Iran is difficult as long as the revolutionary slogans are lively.”
“Now, the revolutionary slogans and objectives in the society are so lively that even some people who do not believe in these slogans pretend to be in the company, and the Islamic Revolution is continuing its path and that is an exception in the big revolutions in the world,” said the Leader of the Islamic Revolution.
“As long as there is revolutionary drive and attitude in the country, Iran’s daily growing progress and influence and [its] spiritual clout with the region and outside the region will grow day by day,” said Ayatollah Khamenei.
Prior to Ayatollah Khamenei’s remarks, Vice President for Science and Technology Sourena Sattari, who also heads the National Foundation of Elites, said the top priority today is attention to science and technology.
“The country needs elites who, with self-confidence and efforts, will be able to repeat scientific bio and nano progress in other domains,” he said.
Noting that the elites owe to the country, Sattari said: “We should not merely become an importer from foreign plants and industries after sanctions are lifted, but we should develop our own technology and increase our national wealth by producing science.”
Underscoring the necessity for the private sector’s involvement in research and the need for investment in thoughts and ideas of elites, he said: “Increasing education awards, attention to basic research, implementation of Shahab Plan, supporting student research centers, development of the circle of elites and attention to technology diplomacy have been among the most important measures by the Office of Vice-President for Science and Technology and the National Foundation of Elites.”