Tehran, June 7, The Iran Project – Coinciding with the 27th anniversary of the passing of Imam Khomeini, the late founder of the Islamic Republic, BBC Persian TV released a report claiming to have documents showing secret contact between Imam Khomeini and U.S. presidents before the Islamic revolution.
Addressing more than one million mourners on Friday (June 3) to mark the 27th anniversary of Imam Khomeini’s departure, Supreme Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei said in reaction to the BBC report:
“This very evil Britain has always been hostile to us, both in the past, from the early days of Shah’s regime to the revolution period, and after the start of the revolution and its victory until today; now on the occasion of Imam Khomeini’s anniversary, British government’s propaganda system released the so-called document against Imam, honorable, holy Imam! Where did they get the document? From American documents! Well, does the US that downed an Iranian passenger plane with almost three hundred people refuse to forge documents? This is how Britain has enmity with us.”
How reliable are BBC Persian’s recent documents?
BBC Persian claimed on June 1, 2016 (Khordad, 12, 1395) to have documents indicating that “Ayatollah Khomeini exchanged secret letters with John F. Kennedy and Jimmy Carter,” the claim that was in clear conflict with the broadcasted program is one of the cheapest political propaganda ever.
The forged documents have two parts: One is related to the alleged message that Ayatollah Khomeini sent to US embassy on Nov. 7, 1963, and the other one related to the revolutionary period.
Imam Khomeini: We have no enmity with the American nation
Dr. Ebrahim Yazdi, foreign minister of the provisional government of the Islamic Republic of Iran in 1979 explained long ago about the revolutionary period and the correspondences of Jimmy Carter, then US president with Imam Khomeini in Paris. The same night BBC Persian claimed secret contacts between Imam Khomeini and two US presidents, Dr. Yazdi released an explanation about the program, stressing: “This is an incorrect statement. Mr. Khomeini didn’t send a private message to President Carter but it was Carter who sent a message and َAytollah Khomeini replied him and what was shown in the BBC’s report was an incomplete summary of the fifth and last exchanged message.” Mr. Khomeini’s quoted in the news: “we are not in any particular animosity with the Americans” while the original text is: “we have no enmity with the American nation.”
The document claiming that on Nov. 7 (Aban 15), i.e. ten days before the Soviet head of state, Leonid Brezhnev traveled to Iran on Nov. 17, 1963 (Aban 25, 1342), Imam Khomeini sent an oral message to the United States embassy in Tehran through a person named Hajj Mirza Khalil Kamarei: “Khomeini explained that he was not opposed to American interests in Iran. On the contrary, he thought that American presence was necessary as a counterbalance to Soviet and possibly British influence.” And “he also explained his belief in close cooperation between Islam and other world religions, particularly Christendom.”
BBC document is not authentic
What has BBC Persian written as the document for Mirza Khalil Kamarei’s remarks is not the CIA’s declassified document in 2005; it does not have the number and stamp of the “classified” and “declassified” official documents. BBC Persian cited another version of the same document at the Jimmy Carter Library, which was published in December 2008 in digital form. This document is not also the CIA’s report about the meeting with Mirza Khalil Kamarei but it is a paragraph taken from the CIA’s 81-page analytical bulletin, dated March 1980 in which there is no specification of the original report of US embassy in Tehran but the same as BBC Persian’s June 3 report, it is an analysis about the history of clerics’ conflict with the Shah’s regime and the causes of Iran’s revolution outbreak.
Meanwhile, on June 4, former US National Security Council adviser, Gary Sick said in his blog post that recent report by the BBC that Imam Khomeini wrote a letter to US President Jimmy Carter before the victory of the Islamic Revolution in 1979 is “selective” and contains several “factual errors”.
Mirza Khalil Kamarei’s didn’t have close relation with Imam Khomeini (RA)
It is clear that BBC Persian must have found the CIA’s original report and released it by referring to its number and specifications, and it is also obvious that there is no letter of Imam Khomeini addressed to Kennedy and BBC Persian’s controversial claim is just based on the same bulletin and not even on the CIA’s original report about Kamaraei’s meeting with the US embassy officials.
But supposedly we accept the claim, i.e. we admit that Mirza Khalil Kamarei went to US embassy on Nov. 7, 1963 and said something on the behalf of Imam Khomeini, another important question is raised: Was the Mirza Khalil Kamarei’s relation with Imam Khomeini so close that he could deliver his “secret” message to the American President? The answer is negative.