Agonies of an expatriateWe should be ashamed [Archives:2003/636/Opinion]

May 12 2003

Abdullah Alwazeer
[email protected]

Being far away from homeland Yemen, I look at my Arab world with great agony. I watch the Arab world in disbelief, and what is even worse, hearing what the Western world think of us Arabs is further disheartening.
How did we Arabs get to this dreaded stage? I doubt many can offer coherent explanation without blaming the world or subscribing to conspiracy theories and getting emotional. Hungry empires have played a terrible role, no denying there, but we provided these empires the greatest excuses to ravage us.
The Arab world never fails to point out to it's past as if it guarantees a solid lead in the world. We keep calling our long dead heroes to save us from the doomed future. Meanwhile, the world is taking giant leaps towards education, health, and progress. Here are few pit falls in dire need for answers.
I can see misguided intentions and unjustified superiority. For some reason, we Arabs have this baseless belief that we are better than many in the world such as China for example, neglecting the fact that China is posed to be the next superpower in the world stage. Yet, no ones seem to pay attention or learn how they managed to over come so many hurdles.
We view our leaders as if they have an inherent right to rule as they please, steal and point their sons and family to further steal what is ours. Where did that come from? Islam for sure has nothing to do with that. We have been trained to not question our shackles for that is a foolish quest. We have forgotten our rights guaranteed by basic human laws and above all, guaranteed by our religion.
We have neglected Islam's call for genuine education to a point that we only accept what we are told as being the truth. Isn't education based on one's need to find the truth? We have numbed our brains and accepted the least educated among us as the Devin source of wisdom. We have successfully killed our inquisitive minds and substituted it with great appetite to appease morons.
Lets at Iraq, the land of ancient civilizations where people now are killed either by their leaders or by foreign powers. But like many things around us Arabs, we will not learn lessons from this or any in our shameful recent history. We will go worshipping our incompetent leaders and complement their devastating leadership and call them national heroes. What is even worse is that Arabic leaders start to really believe that they are as bright as they come and why not? Look at the herd of Arabs behind their leaders praising every idiotic move by the “leader”.
There is no solution to the problem but one, education. We should focus on nothing else but to educate ourselves first. We need to learn from our past our truthful history, and not allow every leader to throw out the former leader's accomplishments and cast it as corrupt and devastating without learning from what was really useful. We need to know that we have rights, and leaders have our momentarily trust to lead. A Yemeni or an American in Saudi Arabia should be treated the same. If you're from Egypt or Dubai, it should not make a difference as well, it's what you actually do that matters not your country of origin. So as long as we're not ready to answer hard questions and face certain truths, we will be an easy target for the willing, or their coalition. Educate is my message, at least for now.