SILVER LININGThe Yemeni Jews plight [Archives:2008/1218/Opinion]

December 22 2008

Dr. Mohammed Al-Qadhi
Throughout history, Muslims and Jews in Yemen have lived in harmony. Jews for the most part have found Muslim Yemenis tolerant and lived in harmony with their neighbors. They have preserved their tradition as well as religious conventions with freedom.

Now, the situation has begun to change. The recent attacks against the Jews in Raidah and Kharef in Ammran province and the murder of Moshe al-Nahari some days ago at the hands of a former military and previously the forcing of the Jews in Sa'ada last year to leave their houses demonstrate this ordeal of these people.

Last week, I went to Raidah and Kharef to report on the murder of al-Nahari and by accident, I found that the house of Masha Yahia and others were attacked by a hand grenade by unidentified people while the Jews were sleeping. I could see the moments of fear and awe in the faces of these people who could not explain their plight to journalists in the presence of security men. The father of Moshe said Jews used to live in peace with their Muslim neighbors, but since the murder of his son, they no longer feel secure in Rydah. He said they did not know the killer before. The murderer was said to have some psychological problems. But, his Moshe's father argument is that “Why is he allowed to carry a gun if he is crazy?”” He is completely right. It is only in Yemen where crazy people can carry guns.

Police officers at the site of the bomb explosion that left no casualties said they were looking into the incident and would act on the Jewish community's suggestion and arrest any people the Jews suspect might be behind the attack. That is fine but it is not enough to protect these people from attacks and other forms of harassments.

Following these attacks