Abdolali Ali-Asgari, head of IRIB, Iran's Broadcasting Authority, talking about superiority and great nations, said that while in ancient times God had given the Jewish people superiority, the Iranian people - the countrymen of the Prophet Muhammad's companion Salman the Persian - were chosen to "shoulder the heavy burden of truth and progress in the world" after the Jews "pursued worldly ornaments and behaved unjustly." Ali-Asgari was speaking at an award-giving ceremony of the broadcasting authority in Tehran on March 12, 2019, and his address was broadcast on Iran's Channel 5.
Following are excerpts:
Abdolali Ali-Asgari: By the way, our discussion about superiority and about great nations reminded me of two things. We embarked on two great national projects in TV series and movies: One is the Salman [the Persian] project, and the other is the Moses project. These are the two key names that God uses to refer to the two nations. With regard to Moses – as you know, in ancient times, God gave superiority to the Jewish people. [The Quran says]: “I have preferred you over Mankind.” The Jewish people produced many prophets who served Mankind. But since they pursued the worldly ornaments of this world and behaved unjustly – you are familiar with the story – they declined and have become wandering [Jews]. However, they have kept the world’s financial power in their hands, of course. This is a superior nation that has declined. Another superior nation to which the Prophet of Islam referred… A [Quranic] verse was revealed… If I’m not mistaken, it goes like this: “Whoever of you should revert from his religion, Allah will bring forth a people whom He will love and who will love Him.” When the Prophet Muhammad was asked who these people were, he placed his hand on Salman’s shoulder and said: “The countrymen of Salman.” In other words, the nation that would come and shoulder the heavy burden of truth and progress in this world are the countrymen of Salman – the Iranians.