Mohammad Ali Foroughi
Radio broadcast (October 1941)
Radio broadcast by Mohammad Ali Foroughi, Prime Minister of Iran, October 1941, translated by Homa Katouzian. Persian original in Makki, Tarikh-e Bistsaleh-ye Iran vol. 8, pp. 179-185. Quoted in Katouzian (2009). The Persians: Ancient, Mediaeval, and Modern Iran, Yale University Press, London
- I hope that you will have learned from the pain and suffering which you have endured in the past few decades, and have realized how to cherish the blessings of liberty. You will therefore know that freedom does not mean that the people should be licentious and behave in an arbitrary fashion, but that it also involves certain limits, since if there are no constraints no one will be free, and the strong will enslave the weak.
- The limits set to arbitrary behavior are none other than those defined by law, so everyone will know his own rights and will not go beyond them. It follows that in a country where there is no law, or the law is not observed, the people will not be free and will not enjoy security ... Therefore, the first thing … which I would suggest to you is to note that a free people is one whose affairs are based in law, so that whoever ignores or violates the law is an enemy of freedom ...
- I suspect that some of you would say ‘A civilized nation is one that has railways, modern industry, organized army, tank, aircraft, etc., and an uncivilized nation is one that does not possess such things.’ Or you would say that a civilized nation is one whose cities ... have wide and paved streets, with multi-storey buildings, and so on.’ Civilized nations, of course, do have such things, but I submit that these are products of civilization, not its essence. The essence of civilization is that people are mature, and the clearest sign of their maturity is that they observe the law.