SHAFAQNA – I have written at length about Yemen, the war and the conflicting agendas which have fed its fire. Today, I would like to take a minute or two to remember those men, women, and children who were lost to us – those smiles, and those memories which were robbed from under us by a greed and an arrogance which seems to know no bound.
How much mourning will a nation be made to bear before shame consumes us all? How many more cries, calls for justice and anguish will Yemen go through before we acknowledge the horrors which have befallen a people.
I say this knowing exactly how deeply devastating it is to lose loved ones to war.
I write this having experienced helplessness, anger, and all-consuming desire for retribution against those who have rained death on a nation who aspired for life.
Yemen only ever ambitioned for its land and its people to stand free, and sovereign. Yemen is being burnt to the ground so all its people be made to bow and submit.
I have seen despair too many times in Yemen’s eyes to dare now turn away. I’m asking you today to not turn away. I’m asking you today to look at Yemen.
To look at its people, to look at its scarred land, and its children. I’m asking to see, and feel with them the brutality of a war which ambitions to claim Yemen’s very soul. I will ask you to look, and to remember so that never again … so that never again such a war could be waged.
How many times have we failed to stand in our collective history with those most worthy of our allegiance and obedience?
How many more times will we ignore the word given, and the oath spoken? My father in law once said to me that Yemen was special for the way it was brought to Islam. I remember him telling me about how the prophet Muhammad sent Imam Ali to Yemen so that the sons of Hamdam would answer the call. In three days our Imam tamed Yemen’s proudest warriors. From his lips only words of peace, justice and redemption. From his lips, and through his prayers a nation was led to the light … Yemen has since stood in that light. Yemen never once faltered in its allegiance.
I remember kinder times when sects did no matter, when Islam was neither Shia nor Sunni … I remember when Yemen was whole and true – following in the footsteps of the First Imam, true to the oath of Ghadeer and resolute in its love for God.
I don’t want to remember anymore … I just want it to be so again.
We need Yemen to be given back to the Yemenis. We need Yemen to be released from the clutches of tyranny.
We can no longer offered to stay on the side line while Yemen mourns still and its children cry still.
Yemen has seen too many tragedies already. Too many families have been torn apart, their lives stolen, and shattered by al-Saud’s lead, by its bombs and its brutal blockade.
But as we mourn our dead and remember their names … there is comfort in knowing that they are now free; that they are now finally free for truly our martyrs are alive.
It is us who are made to live with the burden of their departure. It is us who have been left behind where we cannot follow.
To all those who left too early … for all those we will no longer hold in our arms I pray that you are found, by the best of Finders – I pray that you are safe in His safety … I pray that you hear us still.
By Catherine Shakdam for Shafaqna