The Iranian Cultural Chancellor, Muhammad Reza Ghezelsofla, has advised Ugandans to be united and work tirelessly with all their hearts while serving their country in order to achieve collective development and reach the levels of the countries they currently admire.
Ghezelsofla made these remarks recently while officiating at celebrations to mark the Iran Sacred Defense Week at the Iranian Cultural Consulate in Kololo, Kampala last week.
“Being patriotic united and reducing on foreign aid reliance are some of the fundamental factors that have to be implemented in order to enable Uganda and all other developing countries grow,” he said.
He added: “Everyone should work targeting one goal ‘Uganda’ that you all want to see in future, a country full of developments. Because if somebody gives you a vehicle but when he has not given you the technology of manufacturing it, it means you will continue relying on him for all the years.”
The sacred defense week is commemorated annually between September 22 and 28 in remembrance for the ‘eight-year defense’ period when the Iraqi armed forces invaded western part of Iran. The war ended on August 16, 1988.
Ghezelsofla said that in spite of the fact that Iran had no organized army due to the internal revolution, they managed to win the war because of the unity and patriotism exhibited by everyone including women.
“By the time Sadam Hussein attacked us the country was not stable due to the revolution. At this period everyone voluntarily and tirelessly participated in the war which later sent the Iraq forces out of our country,” he said.
He added: “I was a young man by then. Although we had some internal divisions, the war united Muslims, Christians, other faiths, the poor and the rich, who all fought tirelessly and that is why Iran is on the world map today. When you are united, no one can attack you.”
Ghezelsofla said the war inspired Iranians to work tirelessly for their country since they had been put under sanctions.
“The sacrifice of the people created peace which we are enjoying. Today our economy is well developed, with good technology, education system, stable economy and unity,” he said.
According to the article titled Iran-Iraq war written by the Editors of Encyclopedia Britannica, the causes of the war were both due to territorial and political disputes between Iraq and Iran.
The article adds that, Iraq wanted to seize control of the rich oil-producing Iranian border region of Khuzestan, a territory inhabited largely by ethnic Arabs over which Iraq sought to extend some form of suzerainty.
Saddam Hussein also wanted to reassert his country’s sovereignty over both banks of the Shatt al-Arab, a river formed by the confluence of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers that was historically the border between the two countries.