Friday, January 18, 2008

Is Yemen at War with Itself

Is Yemen at War with Itself?

Lately one hears or reads about incidents of death and injury that are occurring almost on a daily basis in Yemen. Of course death is imminent to all things living but one is flabbergasted by the relatively large numbers, many of which are in the teens that have become a per diem norm. Some of these deaths are due to outright warfare between the state and the citizenry, which have now become widespread from Aden to Sa'ada [with a few forays in between (Ta'ez, Shabwa and other governorates)], while others are due to drowning (also almost on a daily basis as half the population of Somalia become victims of conniving regional and international wheeling and dealing) and of course there are the automobiles crashing into each other or hitting defenseless pedestrians and the unfortunate accidents of misfired weapons that either kill their owners or some nearby spectator, not to mention those fired in jest on the pretext that the holder is unaware that the gun is loaded.
The accidents and the ill-fated early deaths are digestible to a certain extent, but when the killing is done by the armed forces or the security organs of the Government against mostly helpless civilians, who may have legitimate gripes against the incompetence of Government, which has driven a sizable segment of erstwhile well off people to the abyss of poverty and despair. When the country needs all the peace and stability it could muster up, to convince the world that Yemen is a safe haven for investment, one finds our eager trigger happy military brass looking for any incident so they can engage in target practice using peaceful demonstrators as live targets. This is repression and oppression in their most deprecate manifestations. What is the Government doing to handle the gripes that people in both the South and the North of the country are screaming about to ears that are blocked by the epitome of deaf Government, which has decided to declare all its citizenry (north and south of the Al-Rahida and Al-Habilayn crossing) persona non grata and enemies of a regime persistent on thriving on its own incompetence! This is absolutely unbearable to many a people, who have been grounded beyond what any normal human beings could bare, in terms of trying to subsist on their own earnings, which have come to approach worthlessness, no matter how hard they try to earn an honest living.
Those protests in Aden, Shabwa, Ta'ez, Sa'ada and in many of the places we do not even hear about, are not the workings of outside elements conspiring against the people of Yemen. The protests emanate from frustration, helplessness and contempt from the corruption that has become so widespread that Yemen may soon even surpass the corruption level of some of the long established states of fame in this genre of statecraft (like Nigeria or the Dominican Republic). The demonstrations that one hears or sees erupting here and there are really being carried out by normal citizens craving for an opportunity to prove their desires for obtaining an honest living and collect earnings that are derived from the sweat of their labors and not from the Treasury that is being bled by the wanton corruption of those responsible for channeling its proceeds to the development and welfare of the people it claims to serve. Who are these corrupt elements, who think that they have a Devine right to bleed the country of all its resources for themselves alone, while the overwhelming majority of the population is left to seek to fulfill their nutritional needs from the garbage bins, or eating the crumbs left from the over-extravagance and overindulgence of its mischievous officials and leaders? Isn't it enough that logic, age and good sense would have it that the latter should have been gone a long time ago, and even then they were already wealthy! So, the time has come to tell those troops out there to control their craving for flying bullets. Whether they are northerners or southerners, those people they are shooting at are their fellow citizens and not foreign agents of imaginary enemies concocted by the cheaply bought propaganda agents of the regime. The Government should be grateful that the citizens of Yemen have not turned to mob rule and chaos as they see the people who are supposedly overseeing the public state of affairs live high on the hog while many of them are left to squander homeless and without any fulfillment of the most basic of life's needs, until they are dead frozen in the streets (See this link: If the Government wants war, why doesn't it try fighting the causes of poverty, overpopulation, and unemployment and against all the corrupt officials who brought on all the maladies that are bringing the people out to the streets in desperate contempt of their rulers?

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Benazir Bhutto's Death: Great Loss for the Moslem Nation

The Loss of Benazir Bhutto
Of all the great leaders that this region occupied by this aptly called "Middle Nation of Islam" has known, none has so touched this observer in so many ways as the late Benazir Bhutto, the two-time (and sure to have been three times) former Prime Minister of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan. This observer could not hold back the tears in recalling the ugly fate that this remarkable woman of politics and public service was accorded by the hostile forces that have rendered everything beautiful and useful in this world ugly and horrendously cruel. What madness has this world come to, when this blossom of freedom and true defender of all the philanthropy and good governance that Islam truly stood, would be rewarded with vindictive slaughter – a glorious genuine martyrdom? Have people lost all sense of values to allow themselves to be used as pawns to eradicate all that the good of human conscience stood for?
Who was Benazir Bhutto? She was that formidable women who told the world that Islam was far more modern than these backward morons of extreme dogmatism wished to believe. She told the world (with credit equally shared by the truly faithful people of Pakistan) that in Islam there is no gender problem, because like all women of the world, Moslem women can indeed reach for the zenith of intellect and power and come out with a clean public office record of great distinction and achievement. Throughout the period that she managed to hold the reins of power in Pakistan her performance outmatched any of the masculine PMs that preceded her and followed her. Just to give one example of her genuine good intents for her people, she managed to have 7000 schools a year built for the children of Pakistan, just so the children of Pakistan will not have to turn to those educational bastions of extremism, the Wahhabi Madrasas, that eventually were introduced in Pakistan, out of which came the Taliban and all the other contractors of death , of which the Moslem World craves to be relieved, by the will of the Lord Al-Mighty and the efforts of all decent peace loving people of the Moslem World. May God bless her, for she will always be a beacon of light and inspiration for all people of moderation and good sense.