Monday, June 30, 2014

Take another look at the "Arab Spring"

This article from the Arab News (Saudi Arabia), Tuesday 9 July 2013, by ABDULATEEF AL-MUHLIM, is even more relevant now:

...According to news media, the Arab Spring caught the world by surprise on Dec. 18, 2010. I will, however, add that the Arab Spring didn’t come out of the blue. It is an accumulation of years of political corruption, human rights violations, sectarianism, poor education systems and unemployment. 
...During the Arab Spring, I read a lot of analyses about the root of the Arab Spring — it is decades of hiding from reality, chasing a mirage of enemies, conspiracies and blaming the outside world. We never blamed our systems for the many failures to develop the Arab mind. We talk about Sykes-Picot, imperialism and Zionism, but we never look at the mirrors on the wall. Some people, however, did.
On June 15, 2013 a Saudi columnist who I have never met wrote an article in the Saudi newspaper Al-Sharq titled “Israel, the everlasting Arab treasure.” The columnist, Abdusalam Alwael, is a very highly educated Saudi who gained a bachelor’s degree from a Saudi university, his master’s degree from a university in California and his doctorate degree from a university in Virginia. He basically said that 
Israel [is] a bounty for Arab dictators who use the Palestinian-Israeli conflict to rule their countries and make a lot of money by just issuing hollow threats to Israel. Israel is a moneymaking machine for Arab dictators and many Palestinian corrupt officials. In other words, the Arab dictators have forgotten to develop their countries and innocent people have paid for it with their own lives. This is the reality of the Arab Spring.
...This is the real Arab Spring. Syrians are hurting Syrians and the Israelis are the ones who treat the Syrian wounds. Yes, the Arab Spring is a joke and I mean a very bad joke. The Arab Spring is not about seeking democracy, it is about Arabs killing Arabs. And this is why Israeli soldiers are busy on the Golan Heights. They are not busy with loading ammunition; they are busy picking cherries and other fruits. What is more, they are also busy giving guided tours to show the world Syrian planes targeting civilians, Scud missiles destroying villages and tanks attacking schools and mosques. What goes inside Syria is more horrific. Syrian men humiliate Syrian women in front of their relatives, rape and kill them. It is not only the killing that is ugly. We saw a Syrian kill another Syrian and then open his chest with a knife and take a bite of his heart. It can’t get any uglier.
Now, mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the ugliest of them all? Well, they are all ugly. 
It has turned out that the Arab Spring is not about a search for democracy, social justice and better standards of living. The Arab Spring is all about hate and sectarian violence. The world didn’t hear anything about rebuilding the countries or eradicating poverty. The talk is all about fighting among the same people from the same country.
Just look at the land of one of the oldest civilizations, Egypt. A country that failed to bring one, just one iconic figure like Nelson Mandela or Martin Luther King — individuals who talk about peace and harmony and are respected the world over. Not someone who enjoys destroying his own country and killing his own people.
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