Reviving our identity [Archives:2005/854/Viewpoint]

June 27 2005

The Editorial Board
Apparently, as a nation, Yemen among many other Arab countries used to know and maintain its national plan. The people of the nation knew and approved their national plan and expressed it inside and outside of their country. Today, both people and state are quite lost. What were fundamentals yesterday are compromised today and what was not even heard of in the past is today thrown on the table as a matter for discussion.

The national plan is a political program that gives a certain country its identity and place in the global scene. A national plan shows the political directions of a country, whom we consider friends, and who are our enemies. What are the red lines we should allow someone else to cross and what is a negotiable issue.

Yemen is one of the most important countries in the southern Arabia and African horn region. In fact, it plays a leadership role and could extend its role further because of its potentials not explored yet.

Yet globally, Yemen along with majority of the Arab world – if not all – have lost track of its own lines and has been following the international political trend – created by the global powers – without reflecting on its particularities that were so clear half a decade ago. If you question a few of the freedom fighters who survived until today about what their priorities were then? What their mission was? What was their national plan? They would easily narrate them to you. In fact, you don't need to go far it is written on the national newspaper every day the principles of the Yemeni revolutions. But what is the point in knowing them if we don't believe in them any more, and worse we don't even understand the implications of them in our national and international policies.

It is time to revive our identity, perhaps create and enforcement to those principles that relate to Yemen today and link them with the global changes. What do we want our position to be like in the region? Where do we want as a nation to stand in the international political issues. Are our leaders questionable to the people? Are they accountable? If they do this nation wrong, can they be judged and set straight? Are the people involved in creating the political image of Yemen in the world? Do the agreements signed by the leaders in all fields reflect the people's beliefs? To start with, do the people know what Yemen represents to the world and how it is perceived? Are the Yemeni people aware enough to make decisions and to share the responsibility of defining the identity of this lost nation? Are they willing to as people to be involved in their country's national and international politics and if they are do they have the space and capabilities to do so?

These are many questions that need urgent answers. We need to set the records straight for the sake of the current and coming generations who don't know what we are fighting for any more.