Born guilty! Lost under bombing Yemen’s children call for peace

SHAFAQNA – For almost two years now I have been Yemen’s scribe – together a pen and a witness to the profound injustice that is Saudi Arabia’s war.

For almost two years I have stood at my desk typing away Yemen’s suffering so that the world would learn of the many grave and abominable crimes Riyadh has unwarrantedly rained on communities … For almost two years the world has looked away, indifferent to the cries of millions of innocent civilians for standing up to injustice demanded more than idle chatter.

I absolutely refuse to watch a people burn in the fires of war, condemned to suffer the crippling pangs of famine and call it a political necessity. Yemen’s war is an injustice!

Yemen’s war is an abomination … a genocide packaged as a war for political restoration to defend Saudi Arabia’s monarchical ambitions. Yemen’s war remains our greatest shame since we have failed to speak against it, and act against it.

I must say that my heart has sunk in horror more times than I care to count … Before the devastation, misery and hopelessness I have personally witnessed there are simply no words, no turns of phrase that can encompass the pain, sorrow and bottomless anguish that has gripped this one nation of Southern Arabia.

And yet the world has chosen to ignore! But can we really afford to? Can we really call ourselves morally sound and ethical when we allow the intolerable and the abhorrent to be committed against a people whose only crime has been to be born on the wrong side of the religious Rubicon?

Let’s not be fooled into believing that Yemen’s faith and religious traditions have nothing to do with the disappearing and exploding of its people. Let’s not bury the truth under political niceties to avoid speaking such words as religious eugenics and genocide!

North Yemen has been earmarked for destruction on account its land speaks of an allegiance Riyadh’s clergy would like to claim for itself. North Yemen is Shia and that fact alone is an offense Saudi Arabia had to remedy … as they say the rest is history!

North Yemen follows THE one school of thought and THE one tradition the kingdom has long labelled an apostasy.

But even if you were to assume that Yemen’s war is not a religious war, and not a war of annihilation, it still remains the greatest of injustice.

Beyond all manners of politics, ethnicities and sectarianism Yemen’s war is an abomination. However one chooses to look at Yemen, whether observers seek to see in the Resistance Movement an oppression or a liberation matters little when 24 million people sit to be murdered on account their land, their future, and their rights to be sit a matter of contention.

In the middle of such storm Yemen’s children sit trapped – their life forfeited by violent intolerance …their pain ignored by an apathetic world community.

Yemen’s children are starving!

As we argue righteous politics and spoils of war Yemen’s innocence has been sold off to the wolves – famine, human trafficking, exploitation … the list goes and on, wrapped in infuriating silence … dehumanizing, morally corrupt.

Yemen is dying and little has been done by way of humanitarian aid.

It is actually worse than that since Yemen has been condemned to wither away under a brutal humanitarian blockade by those very powers and institutions that claim the moral high-ground.

Who now will speak for Yemen?

If not you, if not all of us, who still master more than a heartbeat than who?

When all fails, when darkness is pounding at all our doors will we relent in our stand?

Can you not hear in Yemen’s children the cries of your own kin? Do you not realise that by abandoning Yemen to its fate it is our very soul we are all forfeiting?

What crimes have Yemen’s children committed other than to have been born into a faith the kingdom has demonised to better rise its own?

What offense justifies famine?

Since powers have not yet had their fill of blood hope lies with you. Yemen’s lifeline, and its very future lie in your hands, your generosity, your ability to emphasise with a people drowned in war.

Yemen’s real battle exists far beyond its borders … Yemen’s real test will be in its ability to withstood its humanitarian crisis. The real tragedy would be for you to ignore such a cry for help.

Your generosity is needed today. There has never been a time when your generosity has been more needed.

Veritas-Consulting has run a fundraiser in partnership with the Mona Relief Organization for Yemen since the beginning of the war so that hope would be kept alive and civilian populations provided the help Riyadh has denied them on account of their faith.

More is needed of we are to make a real difference. More will be needed still if Yemen is to smile again.

Failure is not option if we consider what we are condemning Yemen’s children to …




By Catherine Shakdam – Director of Programs for the Shafaqna Institute of Middle Eastern Studies







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