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What’s after condemnation?

Now after the Imam Al-Sadiq mosque crime, will we ever learn the lesson or will we do the same as we did after the Iraqi invasion and thus reproduce the speech of hatred? Current regional circumstances are more complicated and the infrastructure of hate is more deep-rooted. So, will we manage to free our abducted society this time? Will we ever manage to start building a balanced, open society upon principles of justice, tolerance, equality, liberty, law sovereignty and most of all upon human dignity?

The 25th anniversary of the Iraqi invasion is only one month away with very slight difference as this recent crime tastes, smells and looks like the invasion ordeal. I have experienced both and can tell how similar they are. At that time, we suffered from severe sectarian tension with absolute individual authority and a background of a terrible war during which Kuwait was subject to all kinds of terrorist acts such as the bombing of public cafes, blowing up of embassies, plane highjacking and then, an attempt to assassinate the late Amir Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah.

The solidarity, devotion, sacrifices and national unity shown during the invasion were amazing and made us so optimistic of the future. We dreamed of a new country having learned the lesson; yet, we ended up worse than we ever used to be. We only had doctrinal tension then but now, it is becoming sectarian, regional and racial amid the unrestrained corruption prevailing everywhere.

The speech of hatred is rapidly spreading and is used by government-supported figures, and things are the same with the opposition. Hate speech is becoming everyday common rule. It is not an exception anymore. People calling for balance like us are starting to seem so naive. Media and social media have turned into paid channels to promote such beliefs. It is as if the society is a chariot pulled by two horses going to opposite directions.

That is why succeeding governments after the invasion have failed in restoring social balance; they turned the whole society into a bloodless crime scene. The enemy was so clear during the invasion but now, we can no longer identify who the real enemy is.

Shapes and colors have changed the way a chameleon does - the shameless faces striving for power have been destroying the nation. With this in mind, the terrorist came from the south this time. He came from a similar environment where those who are supposed to be scholars have become leaders of hatred and the government is but one of the dancers in this hateful dance ritual.

This crime might have awakened us and made us remove some of the dust and blood covering our faces just the same way we did during the invasion. This experience might have pulled us by the ears to see ourselves in a mirror and realize how changed they have become. Nonetheless, we do still have hope to make a fresh new start. We have no other option. Either we live together in a state of law sovereignty, equality, justice, security, human dignity, liberty and happiness, or we all vanish. The choice is clear.

His Highness the Amir’s initiative in this regard might practically or symbolically be a turning point towards achieving this. I say ‘might’ because the gap is too wide and ‘demolition’ establishments are mightier than we have ever imagined. My worst fear is that by the time we finished repairing Al- Sadiq Mosque, we might go back to our sub-identities and affiliations that hate all others. People do not get so many chances to self-reconstruct; while we had the chance twice, we are wasting them as if we have a strong desire to slowly commit suicide.

— Translated by Kuwait Times

By Ghanim Al-Najjar

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This article was published on 06/07/2015