Iranian women take part in an anti-US rally to protest the killing of Iranian military commander Qasem Soleimani in Tehran, January 4, 2020. (Atta Kenare/AFP)

Slain Iranian general Qassem Soleimani reportedly penned a note shortly before his death in which he asked God to accept him and stay by him.

Soleimani left the paper in his room in Damascus on Thursday before flying to Baghdad, the country’s semi-official Mehr news agency reported.
According to the Mehr translation, the handwritten script reads:

“O God!
Don’t leave me alone
O God! Accept me
O God! I love meeting You
The same meeting which made Moses unable to stand and breathe
O God! Accept me
All the praises and thanks be to God who is the Lord of the universe
O God! Accept me purified.”

Iranian state TV estimated Sunday that millions of mourners came out in the cities of Ahvaz and Mashhad to pay their respects as Soleimani’s remains were paraded through the streets after he was killed in a US strike.

Reports said they were the largest processions in the country since the 1989 funeral for Islamic Republic founder Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.

The processions marked the first time Iran honored a single man with a multi-city ceremony. Not even Khomeini received such a processional with his death in 1989.

Soleimani on Monday lay in state at Tehran’s famed Musalla mosque as the revolutionary leader did before him. He will be buried in his hometown of Kerman on Tuesday.

In a rare display of emotion from the typically reserved and measured supreme leader of Iran, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei cried openly Monday during funeral proceedings for Soleimani, his most important military commander with whom he shared a deep bond.

Khamenei has vowed “harsh retaliation” for Soleimani’s killing, and dubbed the deceased commander the “international face of resistance.”

The US killed Soleimani, other Revolutionary Guard members and a senior Iraqi militia leader in a stunning attack on their convoy, shortly after Soleimani had arrived at Baghdad’s international airport. The killing, ordered by US President Donald Trump, has dramatically heightened the risk of war as senior Iranian figures vow to strike US military targets in response.

Soleimani was the head of Iran’s elite Quds force, the foreign arm of the Revolutionary Guards Corps, and the mastermind of its regional military expansion strategy.

 

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