Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei seems to believe the Islamic Republic of Iran is more isolated in the world than ever.
The evidence of Khamenei’s belief can be found in his public speech in Qom on January 9, “The current conditions in Iran are the same as Badr and Kheybar, and not Shaab-e-Abu Talib,” Khamenei said.
According to Islamic history Shaab-e-Abu Talib is a region in Saudi Arabia, where during the early days of Islam, the Prophet Mohammad and his followers were forced to live under an economic and social blockade for three years. According to Islamic literature, the situation was so bad that “they had to tie rocks to their stomachs” in order to alleviate the pain resulting from prolonged hunger.
Similar language emerged in an unprecedented statement by Mahmoud Bahmani, head of Iran’s Central Bank, announced on December 21, 2011, “We have to manage the society in a way to survive for two years. Just like if were trapped in Shaab-e-Abu Talib.”
Khamenei dismissed the head of the Central Bank’s statements, but by recognizing the situation similar to Badr and Kheybar, he has indirectly confessed that the Islamic Republic is isolated domestically, regionally, and internationally.