To my Iranian friends in your time of struggle, As-Salāmu `Alaykum.
It is vitally important that you know you are not alone in your struggle for freedom from tyranny. It is a journey fraught with danger, loss, setbacks, and incredible victories. This is a journey that is more tolerable when taken together as a group, knowing you have the support of yet others around the world who have made the journey successfully.
You have heard from the leaders of France, Germany, Canada and other countries who have announced they stand with you in your quest. I wish to apologize for the slow response of our President, Barack Obama, who is probably the leader you thought would be the first to stand with you. Although he has failed in this opportunity to be a world leader for freedom, please know that there are millions of us in America who do not hesitate to stand unequivocally by your side to let the world know in no uncertain terms that THIS is what we stand for in America: Free, honest elections, and above all, the right to voice our discontent with our leaders without fear of reprisal. The beauty of our democracy is clearly illustrated in the fact that although our leader may have faltered, we, the people do not. For the power of our democracy originates within its people and its Constitution, not its leaders. There are times like this when we take great comfort in that.
The road to freedom for all countries is long and hard fought. Each country must chart its own course, as you now do. While the journey has its dangers and difficulties, it is also rich in reward. And although we cannot be there in person to march with you, we will share your struggle through technology, letters, emails, tweets, blogs, phone calls, faxes. As you continue the journey, know this: The world will bear witness to your struggle, so it need not be done in darkness.
A truly inspiring American President, John F. Kennedy once said:
“We shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, to assure the survival and the success of liberty.“
It is in that spirit that I, on behalf of myself and all who live the dream of democracy, encourage you on your quest and remind you that you are in the hearts and prayers of freedom lovers everywhere. We stand before you as living examples that your goal of liberty is achievable.
May God be with you and protect you on your journey.