"Let nothing human be alien to me"- Terence

Thursday, February 17, 2011


In an excellent post, Will at the Yemen Peace Project reminds us of the importance of Taizz.

It’s well worth focusing on one point in the above paragraph: Ta‘iz seems to be, at least in terms of popular support, the real center of this new movement for change. This is not surprising when considered in historical context. Ta‘iz has always been the intellectual center of Yemen (especially in the minds of Ta‘izis), and the heart of nearly every progressive or revolutionary movement in modern history. During the twin revolutions of the 1960s, when the South threw off the yoke of British imperialism and northern republicans overthrew a monarchy, Ta‘iz was a base for both movements and the conduit of fighters who flowed from one war to the other. In fact I would argue that if President Saleh were serious about Yemeni unity, he would move the capital to Ta‘iz, but that’s a topic for another post.

This is a great point.  In the west, we tend to focus on the capital (and I include myself firmly in that "we"), but that isn't always how it plays out.  This is something some, though not enough, people have been saying.  We're kind of viewing these things as if they are on screen, with a reverse teleology: of course they are going to work out!  This is happening; it will happen.   And we want to fit it into a neat storyline.  But it most likely isn't going to shake out that way.  Hopefully, the administration will have more patience than I suspect the media will.  The lamestream media!  

Oh, sorry: I forgot that I'm not aspiring to be a seven-year-old. 

Anyway, read Will's whole piece.  It makes a lot of interesting and crucial points. 

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