National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Iran
An Untitled Response to the Dolgorukov Memoirs
National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Iran. An Untitled Response to the Dolgorukov Memoirs.Tehran: Mahfil-i Rowhani-ye Melli-ye Baha'ian-e Iran (National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Iran): January-February, 1946. Unpublished manuscript.[19 MB PDF] Documents on the Shaykhi, Babi and Baha'i Movements, Vol. 16, no. 1, (March, 2012)
This booklet is the earliest known response to the Dolgorukov memoirs, which is the forged account of a Russian diplomat to Iran, Dmitri Ivanovich Dolgorukov. Regarding the authorship of the memoirs themselves, Mina Yazdani has suggested the possible involvement of Shaykh Ibrahim Zanjani, a reformist whose beliefs included elements of Salafi thought, in the creation of the memoirs (Source: Yazdani, Mina . "The Confessions of Dolgoruki: Fiction and Master narrative in Twentieth-Century Iran." Iranian Studies 44.1, pp. 42-45). Additionally, Sayyid Muhammad Baqir Hijazi also admitted to playing a role in the redaction of the memoirs (Ibid., pp. 45-46).
This booklet contains a summary of the historical and factual errors put forth in the memoirs and explains why each of them could not possibly have taken place. For an English summary of these factual errors in a readily available source, refer to Masumian, Adib (2009). Debunking the Myths: Conspiracy Theories on the Genesis and Mission of the Baha'i Faith, pp. 26-33.
In the introduction of this booklet (p. 1), Shoghi Effendi praised the book with the following description:
"He [the Guardian] said to write that this servant [again, the Guardian] carefully studied this treatise. It is correct, solid, and comprehensive. The individuals who collaborated in the preparation, gathering, and arranging of the materials for this work have indeed performed a great service, which is praiseworthy. Distribution among the friends is beneficial, and should indeed be carried out." (Source: From a letter written on behalf of the Guardian to the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Iran, dated 6 Asma' 102 BE [August 25, 1945], Published in Tawqi'at-i Mubarakih , vol. 3 [1922-1948], p. 276 [see paragraph 5]: Provisional translation by Dr. Bijan Masumian and Adib Masumian)
Following the initial edition of the booklet, it was republished as a second edition in 126 BE (1970). This second edition was reprinted in 129 BE (1973). The second edition contains an introduction incorporating the words of 'Abbas Iqbal-Ashtiyani, Ahmad Kasravi, and Mujtaba Minuvi, all preeminent Iranian scholars and historians, refuting the authenticity of the Dolgorukov memoirs. It should be noted their remarks were written before the publication of this tract by the National Spiritual Assembly of the Baha'is of Iran. None of the scholars in question wrote the remarks specifically for the book. The introduction is merely a compilation of those existing statements.