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Ahmed Omar Ben Faird

Southern Elites and Regionalism of Yemen

Written by: Ahmed Ben Farid – Southern Politician.

All over the political map of the Arab Countries, the fifties and sixties witnessed the formation of “Modern National States” in more than 20 models including republics, kingdoms, sultanates and emirates.
Our country was no exception but in conflicting with regionalism of Yemen. Arab countries of Sham chose to nominate their states with names that have no relation to regionalism of Sham.
Defending our miserable status created by pragmatism of our fool politicians, one person once said: “Yemen was just a geographic region that is not even drawn with a ruler and a compass to say that all in it is Yemeni, geographically speaking, so what about political identity?!”.
Modern political thinking indicates that political identity is created due to the existence of a “national state” that makes its geographic borders, flag, anthem, political figures and personal affairs documents as pillars for establishing the state’s national identity. This is how “imaginary we” is created.
By that I mean “We” who imagine ourselves as southern, Saudis, Kuwaitis, Omanis … etc. concerning the Arab South, our national state was formed then entered into a state of union with another state, the Arab Republic of Yemen, but Sanaa tried to impose “geographic regionalism” as a ‘political identity”. This is their justification for 1994 war. Sanaa used the fragile and contradicted status of our national state and its previous political conflicts. Sanaa penetrated into the heart of the southern state with the help of southern elites in political, military and tribal sectors who abandoned national interest for their self-interests. Old conflicts if renewed, can only lead to more conflicts.
What is worse is that during the time of union with the north, Sanaa systematically created major deformities of the thinking of southern elites, concerning national sense of belonging. These deformities are still used to bleed the heart of this nation.
This black tragedy od some southern elites lead them to the trap of not to recognizing what can be a permanent national interest for our children and grandchildren and what can only be a temporary interest that will soon vanish. By this they become the bridge upon which Sanaa can pass towards full domination of the lands and identity of the south.

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