- About Us
- Sign up
While tens of thousands of Yemeni men, women and children are dying from starvation and disease, the world is shamelessly watching with deafening silence
The bombing continues unabated.
The explosions are heard in the distance.
A family with seven children is cowering in fear in a corner of their shack,
Daring not to step out
Dreading instant death from shrapnel or a sniper’s bullet.
Occasionally looking up to the sky through a hole in the roof,
hoping still for some rain drops
collected in a bucket underneath.
Drinking water is nowhere to be found
and only the rain drops keep the family alive.
The mother is careworn;
She tries to breast-feed her baby boy, Mahmood
But her milk runs dry.
The baby’s eyes are open still, gazing at nothing
perhaps wondering what’s happening to him and why.
Slowly he tries to raise his weakened hand
to touch his mother’s breast
as if pleading for just one more drop of milk.
His arm falls back, hanging;
he can’t move, he can’t cry, his eyes run dry
He has no tears left to shed to ease his agonizing pain!
If you bent to ask him how he is feeling
and if he could only talk, he would say,
why, why was I ever born?
Weeks of starvation finally took their turn
his body surrenders
and he dies in his mother’s arms.
How correct was James Baldwin when he said
“A child cannot, thank Heaven,
know how vast and how merciless is the nature of power,
with what unbelievable cruelty people treat each other.”
Countless Yemeni children
are dying from starvation and disease
while the world shamelessly watches in silence
as if this was just a horror story
from a different time and a distant place,
seeing a country ravaged by a senseless, unwinnable war
while a whole generation perishes in front our eyes.
Those at the top who are fighting the war
are destroying the very people they want to govern;
They are the evil that flourishes on apathy
and cannot endure without it.
What’s there left for them to rule?
Twenty million Yemenis are famished
One million children are infected with cholera
Hundreds of thousands of little boys and girls are ravenous
Dying, leaving no trace and no mark behind
to tell the world they were ever here.
And the poorest country on this planet earth
lies yet in ruin and utter despair.
The civilian casualties became a weapon of choice
and the victor will be the one who inflicts the heaviest fatalities
and as the higher the death toll of civilians continues to rise,
climbing ever higher
the closer they believe they come to triumph.
“People speak sometimes about the “bestial” cruelty of man,” Dostoyevsky said,
“but that is terribly unjust and offensive to beasts,
no animal could ever be so cruel as a man,
so artfully, so artistically cruel.”
When will the international community wake up?
Evil humans can do much horrific harm
But those who watch them with deafening silence
cause a greater disaster for failing to act
When will they try to bring the Yemeni calamity to a close?
What will it take to bring the combatants to what’s left of their sanity?
There is nothing left to fight for
Though however hopeless the conditions are
We can still be determined to change course.
And if we succeed in saving even a single life,
as the Abrahamic religions teach us
it is as though we have saved the whole world.
President Biden cannot allow this human catastrophe
to take such a toll on the Yemeni people
and degrade our morals and numb our conscience.
It is time to warn Iran to end its support of the Houthis
as Tehran will never be permitted to establish
a permanent foothold in the Arabian Peninsula.
As an ally, Saudi Arabia should be encouraged to maintain the ceasefire
and sue for a peace agreement.
The Houthis must remember that there will be no victors
Only losers—losers, for they have already lost the country.
The country they are fighting for is no longer there
They must now start at the beginning
And only together with the beleaguered government
put an end to these unspeakable atrocities.
And maybe, just maybe
The community of nations will come together
to right the wrong
Not only for the sake of the Yemeni people
But for the sake of humanity.
We are facing the test of time
and will never be forgiven for failing to rise up
and answer the silent call of that little boy, Mahmood
who died so cruelly so much before his prime.
Note: This article was originally published in the web portal of Prof. Ben-Meir and has been reproduced under arrangement. Web Link: Web Link
As part of its editorial policy, the MEI@ND standardizes spelling and date formats to make the text uniformly accessible and stylistically consistent. The views expressed here are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views/positions of the MEI@ND. Editor, MEI@ND: P R Kumaraswamy
Tragically, the entire international community has failed miserably to muster the moral courage to e.....
The US and the EU will make a mockery out of the virtues of morality and human rights they preach un.....
The Palestinian conflict is dangerously eroding Israel’s moral standing as the public’s .....
The peace agreement between Israel and the UAE lays the foundation for a future Israeli-Arab allianc.....
It is said where are two Jews, there are three opinions. And in the state of Israel, there is yet an.....
Four ethical theories—Kantian, utilitarian, virtue-based, and religious—demonstrate the .....
I have long maintained that Israel’s occupation of the West Bank defies the moral principle be.....
Since the Second Intifada in 2000, the Israelis have been steadily moving to the right-of-centre. Su.....
Those who applaud the assassination of General Soleimani seem to simply equate him to a terrorist wh.....
The long-anticipated indictment of Prime Minister Netanyahu has finally come to pass. For three year.....
Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA, or Iran deal).....
Much has been said and written about Trump’s disgraceful pointed “advice” to Prime.....
Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s decision to call for an early election, scheduled to take p.....
Over the past three decades I wrote more than two hundred articles about Israel, envisioning it to b.....
Trump’s decision to withdraw US forces from Syria is extremely reckless and is bound to backfi.....
The cold-blooded killing of the journalist Khashoggi, however gruesome, pales compared to the brutal.....
With Syria’s civil war nearing an end with the takeover of the city of Idlib by Assad’s .....
I maintain that regardless of the political, strategic, demographic, and regional vicissitudes, the .....
Last week I conducted a panel discussion about Turkey under the leadership of Erdogan. The day befor.....
Much of what Israel and the Palestinians are experiencing today has befallen them under Netanyahu&rs.....
The nearly three months of demonstrations by Palestinians along the Is.....
The reelection of Turkey’s President Erdogan, falsely considered to be free, fair and represen.....
Any protracted conflict can come to an end under certain circumstances that either evolve over a per.....
Dear M. Haniyeh and Sinwar; I am writing this letter to you in the wake of the latest confrontati.....
The re-election of Egypt’s President Sisi came as no surprise. Despite irregularities at some .....
President Trump’s characterization of the US attack on specific Syrian chemical storage and re.....
The recent violation of Israel’s air space by an Iranian drone and Israel’s retaliation .....
The United States has been and remains the staunchest supporter of Israel, and its unqualified suppo.....
It is hard to fathom why Turkey’s President Erdogan, who embarked on the most impressive socia.....
The geopolitical developments in the Middle East over the past fifteen years have created .....
I was in Israel when Trump made his announcement recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s c.....
The egregious violation of freedom of the press in Turkey has reached a mammoth proportion that plac.....
The Iraqi Kurds’ referendum that was conducted several weeks ago won an overwhelming majority .....