Letters to the Editor [Archives:2002/12/Letters to the Editor]

March 18 2002

Not all Americans think that way
In the winter of 2000-2001, I was a student at CALES in Sana’a. I have never forgotten the kindness of the Yemeni people even when things were very unclear about relationships with the United States concerning the USS Cole explosion.
As an Arab-American, I wanted the good people of Yemen and Sana’a to know that I am advocating your true national identity as a people of benevolence, kindness and piety here in America.
People in America often do not have the good fortune to go to Yemen, and instead only have the unfortunate images of Yemen tied to bad times. I just want you to know that not all Americans think that you are a people who support terrorism, but instead a culture that cares for all people — even if sometimes governments don’t always agree.
I hope that American people will remember that we are all just people in this world and not necessarily tied to the mistakes and decisions our governments make. Yemeni people know this lesson very well and I thank them for it.
Maryam MirRiahi
University of Louisville
Louisville, Kentucky USA
[email protected]
Politicians are to blame
Your comments about Arab’s being cowards is totally uncalled for. Some of us do not have the freedom or luxury in our country to fight. That is why we are overseas. If our higher chain of command does not do a thing, all our efforts in trying to accomplish anything is worthless. You should change your title to “Coward Arab Politics” and aim it directly at the governments that rule our 22 Arab countries. They are the cowards, not the people. Attempting to go against Arabs in general gives us no respect for comments. You chose the easy way out. You should have gone after the root of the problem instead.
Ali Kadi
[email protected]
Coward Arabs Justified
I thought I would share this quote with you that would clearly justify the expression of agony that the Palestinian mother expressed when she said “Coward Arabs!” The quote by Abraham Lincoln goes as follow: “To sin by silence when we should protest makes cowards out of men “.
Ironically and some can argue pathetically, some Arabs had the nerve to say that she shouldn’t have generalized. When your son is insulted, stripped of his clothes, shot in the head, the last thing you think of is being too general.
It’s about time Arabs set clear goals, outcomes and objectives for their lives. The Palestinian mother is just one mother who cameramen were able to catch on camera. There are many other atrocities cameras don’t show.
Progress lies not in enhancing what is, but in advancing toward what will be.
Ahmed Al-Awah
[email protected]
Calgary, Canada
The Americans are coming
In the last three decades and before the the collapse of the Soviet Union, the American and the Western countries used to say The Russians are coming as they were afraid of communism which had been disagreeable and offensive to other nations.
Today and due to the action of what our Uncle Sam, the most powerful country in the world is doing the same under the excuse of the war against terror, America is forcing its policies on other nations forgetting democracy, human rights and the free world she called for and believes in. The US is asking other nations to implement these mottoes in their countries.
Today the Gestapo has been transferred from Moscow to Washington and the American cowboys face has been exposed.
Zuhiar Suliman
[email protected]
Taiz , Yemen
About the Human Rights Report
I am a former resident of Yemen and I continue to read the Yemen Times online and today I came this article and I have a prediction of where it may lead.
The article title is US Department of States 2001 Human Rights Report: Government continued to harass, intimidate, and detain journalist
I am not one for agreeing with many things the US government is doing or plans to do but there is nothing wrong with disagreement. I think there will be some exaggeration within the report or wording that will take the issue of news censorship in Yemen to vert controversial levels.
However, I hope that the Yemeni public or that Yemen’s journalists do not stop believing that they do high levels of censorship. Just because the “Americans” are saying this does not mean its not true. Journalist must still face the facts, and facts are that the Yemeni government does practices a high level of censorship on its newspapers.
Is Yemen not known to the rest of the world as a democracy? If so, then corruption must be stopped and freedom of speech is an important component in any democracy.
However, we all no that this is not the reality in Yemen.
Thank you and I hope you do take my comment into mind. I have observed over the last year that Yemen Time’s news content seems to be more controversial and well-reported. I hope that in future Yemeni journalists will be able to report with more freedom.
Jamila Borges
[email protected]
American opposes US presence in Yemen
I am an American who has read as much as I can about Yemen during the last three years. Yemenis seem to me to be a proud, noble people. I asked one Yemeni what people think about their country and he replied that every Yemeni loves his country.
I find that to be refreshing in a world – especially the West – where alienation is the rule rather than the exception. I feel that American troops should not be stationed in Yemen. If there would be a plebiscite, do you doubt what the result would be among the informed population? Secretary Rumsfeld, when asked about the unfortunate American attack upon friendly Afghani troops, replied that the Americans were justified in their attack since the Afghanis – to save their own lives – fired back. The many civilian deaths in Afghanistan point again to the American policy – first vocalized during the Albergensian campaign during the Inquisition – to “kill them all and let God sort them out.”
The death of one Yemeni child would be inexcusable; do you imagine such a tragedy would not happen?
To meet an enemy in battle face-face is honorable. To fly a plane into a building knowing there are children aboard is certainly not in the warrior’s credo. Similarly, to incorporate bombing during which “collateral damage” is expected because of expediency is also an inhumane act.
Richard Terrill
[email protected]
Why neglect Aden further?
I am an American Muslim who has been living in Aden for 7 months now.
I recently visited Sanaa during the Eid. I was very impressed with how nice and clean Sanaa is compared to Aden. I also noticed so many positive things from smoothly paved wide streets in excellent condition, police traffic enforcement, professional men in orange uniforms who take care of the garbage problem in and around the streets, the modern shops, restaurants and malls along with the beautiful old historic areas. I actually felt depressed to return to Aden. Why?
Aden is a “Pearl Buried in the Sand”. It has wonderful potential to be just as fabulous as Sanaa as it is bordered by beaches and The Red Sea.
The problem is that Aden has been seriously neglected and needs a major makeover.
For example: There is garbage everywhere in which hundreds of stray cats live in, abandoned vehicles and many of the roads are in very poor condition and need to be re-paved.
We live in Khormaksar Hai-October area which is suppose to be one of the best areas. However if you look out our front window all you see is years of accumulated trash between and behind the buildings. I see women sweeping the streets with straw brooms and a garbage truck that picks up trash only from inside and around the garbage dumpsters. No one seems to care about collecting all of this trash that is everywhere else in the town!
The “Sirah” area is another example of neglect. Aden is so lucky to have a place in which you can go to and buy fresh fish. The problem is that this area is so dirty and run down with garbage, abandoned boats & cars. It also smells so terrible from all of the leftover fish remains that one almost needs a mask in order to tolerate the horrible smell.
My biggest sadness is that Aden lacks parks for children. I have discovered one really nice and modern park in “Little Aden”, but that is very far from here. I have also found a few old parks in the Mansoura/Sheikh area, but once again they are far from here.
In Khormasker there is some ancient playground equipment located along the beach area, but it looks very run-down like something left over from my grandmother’s era. I also found an abandoned park in Aden that is so old, rusted and neglected to the point that it is totally unsafe and unusable.
My dream is to open a Play Center Park for children in the Aden area. It would be full of new, clean, fun and safe equipment. I would only charge a small entry fee to cover operational costs and any excess would be donated to local charities as there are so many needy people in the Aden area. Unfortunately I am not in the position that I could do this by myself.
I have seen some improvements in the Aden area since I arrived last August and I do appreciate and applaud these efforts. I just feel that these other areas need attention too.
Does anyone else feel the same way?
Mrs. Adel Sabri
[email protected]