The present’s declaration and the price hikesBittersweet misery [Archives:2005/863/Opinion]

July 28 2005

From Al Nas newspaper
By Ali Al-Jaradi

The president's deceleration of not running for the coming presidential elections was overshadowed throughout the country by the angry protests against the price increased. After twenty seven years of ruling the president's announced was consequently intertwined with matters of life and destiny triggered by the endless fear of a dark future where even fulfilment of the basic human needs are a matter of doubt. Moreover, it was noticeable the variations between the hunger revolution on the 20th of May in 1998 and the recent one on the 20th July 2005. The first was characterised with its tribal influence as it was mainly made of tribal people while the later was mostly lead by a young generation of confused youth angry at everything and looking for an outlet for their fear triggered rage. Probably this explains their outrage at the glass banners on the streets and the cars of wealthy people expressing their deprivation that had been caused regularly by disastrous political, social and economic reform programs.

This generation does not belong to either the state or the opposition and does not believe in the traditional social or political redlines. It is a generation of globalisation, unemployment, and satellite channels. A generation surrounded by popular movements taking the pavements of the luxurious buildings around them as their homes, and walking bear feet on the streets where posh cars are driven. A generation that starves while a minority enjoys the country's resources.

It is a generation of threat against the government, its political parties and social security, driven by blind hunger. These rebels are hungry before they are problem makers, they are unemployed before they are spies and they are lost before they are resentful.

The other face of state

The common assembly parties have signified the other face of the state if not the main one. They have transformed into social containers and a thrush hole for their trusting followers, a position that could be considered acceptable and responsible in the current situation. I would like to believe that the minds behind the ruling party are pleased at their creation of the multiple parties especially after eliminating religious preachers and school principals. For the deceiving, betraying, unpatriotic opposition hanging on the embassies doors was the very one who calmed the masses and preached patience or at least did not aggravate the situation and remained neutral. Simulations while the discarding intentions of the other – regardless of whom this other is – are elaborating unconscious that they are planning for unstudied irresponsible social revolutions, had they succeeded.

Economic patching:

Official economic experts commented that being satisfied with price reforms is more like giving an aspirin to a cancer patient. Unless these reforms are accompanied with wider economic reform that encourage an investment environment then the disasters are bound to come. On top of the reform list must be political reform without which the economy will remain slave to the various forms of corruption thriving on the flesh and blood of the poor and unemployed. For example, the Yemeni government has 35 ministers of whom five are out of work, while the Japanese government has only 18 ministers and so are the government agents, offices and tribal affairs authorities who are concerned with paying the salaries for the tribal leaders in return for their loyalty.

How much does the Yemeni economy pay for buying and sustaining the legitimacy of the current regime? How much is the price it pays for winning the elections, the price of winning the loyalty of the tribes, the politicians and the journalists? Only the poor pay the price for the silence of all those, and their threat is not a sudden angry revolution, what's worse are the coming manifestations of anger and hatred that will be the real threat to national stability. And though the canons and bullet sounds have silenced their sudden rage it can't keep them silent for long.

Great men in history

If president Saleh leads a historical turn through enforcing peaceful passing of power he would ensure his place in the list of great men in history such as George Washington, Churchill, Nelson Mandela and Mahateer Mohammed etc.

As for those who said “NO” to you, Mr. President for the first time in their lives when you declared your decision, they did so only to preserve their benefits and interests putting you and only you at the end responsible for what is happening.

Fake courage, they are only questioning your seriousness while acting in a comic play that does not have any audience except for their own crowd.

If you, Mr. President, went all the way with your decision your image would be transformed to an immortal hero talked about from generation to another. The people would study your history and love you truly for what you have done in a time when Arab rulers passed power over their dead bodies literally! And while you in your position would be the only one who sees the dangers mounting, the dark future and the deceit of those who present themselves to you as friends and well-wishers and run tomorrow.

If you are serious you can resign from the political party and lead a national transformation government made of all the political parties and then lead the elections process towards ensuring accurate and honest elections and peaceful passing of power. Then and only then will you find home in all your people's hearts who will chant “long live Ali”.

And only then will you truly feel the greatness of your decision and feel proud when the Yemeni ambassador to Egypt sends you flowers presented from the Egyptian people who stand by you and respect your decision while the chain of hypocrisy exhaust millions in order to arrange for demonstrations demanding that you change your mind and decide not to reserve your place in the book of great men in history.