October 10, 2011

Hunger Strike Chain for Bahrain

Today I started a #HungerStrikeChain4Bahrain to focus international media's attention to the ongoing abuse of power in Bahrain. All you have to do is strike for a week and during that write to international organizations for human rights, news agencies, organizations and leaders to bring as much attention to your strike as possible. You'll have to strike for  only a week but you may repeat it later. If interested let me know!

Hunger Strike by Wikipedia: A hunger strike is a method of non-violent resistance or pressure in which participants fast as an act of political protest, or to provoke feelings of guilt in others, usually with the objective to achieve a specific goal, such as a policy change. Most hunger strikers will take liquids but not solid food. A hunger strike cannot be effective if the fact that it is being undertaken is not publicized so as to be known by the people who are to be impressed, concerned or embarrassed by it.[citation needed]
In cases where an entity (usually the state) has or is able to obtain custody of the hunger striker (such as a prisoner), the hunger strike is often terminated by the custodial entity through the use of force-feeding.
The main idea behind this is to involve as many elements of the international community as possible to focus attention to this tiny forgotten island of a long history of human rights violations int he Middle East.

The strike works in a chain effect from different parts of the world and by different people who want to defy international politics and prove that human rights should be above international treaties and alliances. In taking part in this chain you protest the injustice in Bahrain that is going by without being reprimanded by the international police and support the aspirations for justice, equality, freedom and safety in a country that claims to be democratic and still abuses its power whenever necessary.

All you have to do is take an oath of committment to this chian of hunger strike for a single week, which you 
can repeat later if you wish, call for attention either by sitting in in a public area calling out your demands peacefully or constantly contacting international organizations, news agencies, officials and policy makers in an attempt to put Bahrain and its international relations in the hot spot aiming to achieve justice for all Bahrainis.

This chain is here to defy injustices in Bahrain. If you have any ideas, concerns, questions or comments, feel free to contact me. The identity of those taking part does not have to be revealed. If you don't wish to disclose it, please sign all your statements, reports or any submittions to the different agencies with "Hunger Strike Chain for Bahrain" to avoid harrassment if you are in vulnerable situation.

Why only one week?

You can sign up later on and do it again but just one week at a time because it is not too long or too short and a reasonable time for you to attempt bringing attention to Bahrain and still avoid sever physical damage.
One thing though, refrain from violence, hateful speech, disrespect and responding to harassment. You are an ambassador of Bahrain on this hunger strike and by signing up, you agree to show full respect to all those that defy your principles. Giving in to weaknesses is just one challenge in your week.
To take part, send me a message and I will announce the list updates at the end of each week. In the meanwhile, we have 4 days to invite people, so let me know if you have any idea,s advice, suggestions or comments!

This is a small list I made up to start with, pick those you feel would be manageable and contact.

Brian Dooley form Human Rights First on Twitter http://twitter.com/#!/dooley_dooley
on LinkedIn http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=107792996&authType=name&authToken=3wQh&locale=en_US&pvs=pp&trk=ppro_viewmore

Human Rights Watch list of contacts http://www.hrw.org/contact-us
Amnesty International contact http://www.amnesty.org/en/contact
Frontline Defenders contact http://www.frontlinedefenders.org/contactus
US government and officials http://etan.org/action/contact.htm#CONGRESS
US State Department contact http://contact-us.state.gov/app/answers/list
The White House http://www.whitehouse.gov/CONTACT/
Pres. Obama's contact http://www.emailthepresident.com/about-president.html
The Guardian http://www.guardian.co.uk/help/contact-us
Some major news agencies

Also, this is the Facebook page for the event: https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=105526572890446

Do not give up and send at least two calls for justice a day during your strike. Do not forget to invite your friends to join or make a group to help you go through this one week strike!
All the best, spread the word and have faith in yourself no matter what happens!

God bless you and thank you,

September 28, 2011

BBC: Khalil Marzooq & Samira Rajab

Transcript translated by me into English: 
"Elections meant to reflect the power's efforts to carry on what it calls "the reform choice" , but it seems that it opened a door of complexity that adds to the current crisis. We will discuss this in detail  following this report.

Elections aimed to confirm that things have returned to normality in Bahrain but it has opened a wide door for controversy. The race was to fill 18 parliamentary seats abandoned by the resignation of Alwefaq society's representatives, the biggest anti-government movements, who resigned in protest against what they considered to be oppression of the protest movement tha thte country has been witnessing since the middle of March, 2011. The percentage of participation in these elections, as stated by the Minister of Justice, to have reached 51%, when the opposition who has boycutted the elections assumes fabrications of the percentage.

Abduljalil Khalil, president of the resigned Alwefaq parliamentary body: After the scandal that occured yesterday, the day of elections, there has been a correction and rectifying by the Radio and TV Broadcasting 
that the Minister of Justice did not mean that the 51 percentage is of the participation yesterday but that this percentage is meant to be of the current parliament with its 22 representatives with the 18 electoral constituency which means that the percentage of participation yesterday does not exceed 10%.

On another note, Rueters has reported from government resources that participation has reached 17% only. The dispute regarding the participation in these elections reflects the bitterness of the conflict between a government  that wants to promotes its reform project pertaining wide popularity and and opposition that wants to unveil a systems that, it views, has lost legitimacy. Regardless that Alwefaq claims that that it still seeks dialogue as a means, there are who seeks other more radical means.

Saeed Alshebi: We do not call for participation nor do we acknowledge these elections not this system. We call fall overthrowing the regime as is the people of Bahrain for years as this is not a new matter.

Bahrain has endured very hard month ever since protests broke out, demonstrations, protests, killed and murdered, emergencies and gulf militaries, confrontations, considerable civil silence, then elections. And breaths are held anticipating what the next station hides for this small kingdom." Asadallah Alsawi, BBC.

For more with us today in the studio the writer, journalist and Shura member Mrs. Sameera Rajab and Khalil Marzooq the former deputy chairman of Representative Council in Bahrain.

I will start with you Mrs. Rajab. Elections but with variation in the numbers or percentages of those who casted their votes today which range between 17% and 51% as stared by the government agencies. The 51% was measured according to 18 constituencies, the number of eligible votes in 18 constituencies. More impractically it is not 18 but 14 constituencies after 4 have won by acclamation. And what is said about the 17% , this is a discussion that takes place concerning the entire electoral bloc generally in the country which is 144,000 elector.

Interviewer: What is the size or representation that this 17.5 percentage reflects?

Mrs. Rajab: I do not know the measurement nor on what basis this number was established. They talk.. Interviewer:

Interviewer: This number is from Bahrain's website www.vote.bh.

Mrs. Rajab: It is Alwefaq society. There is no website. It comes with numbers and percentages as it wishes and publishes these news and the media like BBC and others take this figure and it is circulated.

Interviewer: This is why I am inquiring from you.

Mrs. Rajab: The correct and official figure that was mentioned by the official resources is that there is an election bloc for 14 constituencies of which participated 51.2% and not of the entire election bloc of the whole country of Bahrain. this is the figure.

Interviewer: Regardless these numbers Khalila Marzooq, if we directly address the core of the issue, some considers holdign these elections is extends the dialogue to return to the democratic parliamentary life through the parliament and that those elected will replace and fill he seats of those who resigned from the Representatives Council.

Mr. Marzooq: Pythagoras and tal-Khwarizm, I think, have established the basics of mathmatics and if we assume that 14 constituencies have 144,000  electors approximately, and those who voted cumalatively are 25,000 electors only then it is obvious that 25,000 over 144,000 does nto equal 51%. This is cumilitively. Those who won, with 11,000 in the first places, does not approch 17%. Unless that you and I and who si with is today in the studio need to go for a lesson in mathmatics again this is another topic.

Interviewer: What are the implications of that to those who entered the parliament?

Mr. Marzooq: These numbers is the legitimacy that this current representation in the parliament. What the minister of Justice has attempted to do by mentioning the 51% is to state that there is legitemacy with 51%. Normally, the election process is legitimate past 51%. When there is no legitimacy and statign the 71% then the legitimacy does not exist. We say since we resigned with the absence of 46% of the participating mass, it has lost its legitimacy. Today, it is confirmed, as you mentioned in the report, that there is a real crisis for the government. No legitimacy for this representation, no  legitimacy for these decisions. The steps that the regime will follow is the last political cards and there will fall one after the other and the regime will not remain without any real reform.

Interviewer: I will take a response from Mrs. Rajab. It seems that Bahrain is heading towards another crisis. A crisis has ended a lot of people or at least some hope were hoping to be resolved through the complementary elections. Now you are facing a new dilemma.

Mrs. Rajab: It is a real dilemma when a country is trying to follow the path of democracy and create a democratic opposition so that this opposition rises to become a violent constant rejection. Opposition in any democratic system, or democratic transition, requires that it is part of this transformation to move into working in a democratic manner. There aren't any demands that are accomplished by force. If we agree on reform then we are are approaching reform. But when a segment comes and emphasizes its demands forcefully then this is an absolute violation to the rights of a society. This is the essential dilemma that we are discussing. If the opposition wants to control this society within visions based on religious leadership within a liberal society that wants to be Islamic with this modern and civil culture, this will not be accomplished especially in Bahrain. Then, this is the dilemma that we suffer today. The opposition walks within its own vision outside the visions of the society generally. There is a rejection in the society for a huge attitude that the opposition entertains. Today, a huge mass of people went out today to attend the elections to express this rejection.

Interviewer: From some of what the opposition called for is the boycott of the elections which isolates it from the other segments of the society in Bahrain. The opposition must take part in this game one way or the other, why is the persistence of this boycott and the questioning in any reform step and these elections?

Mr. Marzooq: Well the opposition is violent because it enlisted the Peninsula Defense Forces, jailed women, 45 women were arrested today, held military trials, we jailed, tortured and arrested. This is all done by the opposition. But the calls in the streets and the peaceful protests this is all by the government and its followers. We state that there is a struggle between democratic concepts known by all the world; an elected government, a parliament with its complete power, just constituencies, independent judiciary, these are the demands of the opposition and the movement of the opposition is a voice not a tanker or bullets. The Tunisian people, the Egyptian people, the Yemeni people did not rise through the parliament and Iran did not intervene.

The Interviewer interrupts several times but this is the jest of his wordings: And Iran did not intervene in the progress of these revolutions? It is said that Iran intervened. This scares a segment of the people in Bahrain.

Mr. Marzooq: How did Iran intervene in Bahrain? What are the evidences? Who claims that Iran has intervened, I say bring me the evidence. There is no Irani presence in reality unless in the imagination of those who attempt to identify this movement to be secterian or supported by Iran. What has Iran to do with an elected government? Why does some insist that the Prime Minister remains for forty years? And what has Iran to do with supporting that the prime minister should be elected and not last forty years?

Interviewer: I will return to you in the last point concerning the solution out of this crisis. You wanted to comments Mrs. Sameera?

Mrs. Rajab: Yes, I will give you the latest proof which was released as a statement of those who work in the streets and practice violence in the streets. A long statement calling of following AlKhamenei revolution and what it has achieved.

Interviewer: Isn't this just a part of the opposition and not the whole opposition?

Mrs. Rajab: This is what happens in the streets. This is who holds the mark of violence and riot in the streets. And those who entered the malls yesterday and terrified the people and attempted to disrupt traffic in the business area. It was supposed that before showing the elections report that you show these acts of violence that occurred on 23 and 24 of September synchronized with the elections to terrify people.

Interviewer: We are noe facing a new reality in Bahrain that is there is this new group of representative that will join the parliament in Bahrain. Khalil Marzooq what is next?

Mr. Marzooq: These people do not represent the Bahraini people with the current constituencies and the government ten years ago had 98.4% of the people from these exact constituencies who voted for the National Action Charter. Today, 17% from the same constituencies.  Today you ask me what is the solution, the real solution, which she claims to be AlKhamenei revolutions, I tell you it is an elected government. Is she willing to say that we go as a Bahraini people to the solution of an elected government, a parliament with its complete power without having to share that power with the appointed council, and a just judiciary, these are the demands of Bahrain. When she critisizes that statement, let us agree on these principles. Who contends and states that there are demands, mandate of the Faqih, Iran and so on. There are international concepts for democracy, come and let's agree on them. You state that you are a majority of the people, then let us go to an establishing council that can form a constitution. Then you state otherwise and that you are a majority and fear us but then revoke that and state that the majority does not want these demands. How is it at the time of our demands you state that you fear you and you abduct the country when we tell you let's go to an establishment committee and a referendum, you refuse it.

Interviewer: You raised several point. Khalil Marzooq, you have a perspective. Mrs. Sameera Rajab, everyone acknowledges what Khalil Marzooq has states and maybe many find a good arguement.

Mrs. Rajab: Yes, there are those who call for democracy which is recognized as "real" democracy to them, Westminster democracy that is. They call for Westminster democracy or the French democracy or the Belgium democracy.

Interviewer: You mean it took centuries.

Mrs. Rajab: This is the word of the Secretary General of Alwefaq society only two days ago. He demands the democracy of Westminster when her resides as an opposition leader under the guardianship of religious leader. He is controlled by a religious leader and wants a Westminster democracy. This is dangerous. How do we give our society and country to this type of democracy. It is called Westminster democracy but practices the role of pre-democracy.

Mr. Marzooq interrupts: We want to know what democracy she wants.

Mrs. Rajab: The Belgium democracy that was mentioned in the Secretary General punishes those who boycott the elections within the law. There are sanctions for those who boycott the elections within the law. Bahrain is following the process of democracy.

Mr. Marzooq interrupts: Whose democracy?

Mrs. Rajab: The democracy of Bahrain with principles, separation of powers, freedom of speech with the highest levels, just judiciary, just constituencies which will be fixed and improved based on the demographic changes in Bahrain through honest elections. These are the democratic methods.

Interviewer: A very slow democratic method according to many.

Mrs. Rajab: Why is it slow? What is slow about it? With what criteria is it slow?

Interviewer: There is a changing situation Mrs. Sameera Rajab in the Arab world, upheavals as we saw in Egypt and what is happening in Syria and Yemen.

Mrs. Rajab: We are not Saudi Arabia nor Egypt. The Bahraini society is an open society since before the transformation of democracy. Democracy is progressing in good steps in Bahrain. We cannot skip these steps. There are demands called for by the opposition in the National Dialogue that will enter in constitutional amendments that will take place in the next parliament.

The interviewer: This is a picture of democracy that should be built on, isn't that right

Mr. Marzooq: A young open-minded and aware youth and doesn't deserve an elected government. An open-minded and aware people and doesn't deserve an appointed government for decades. This is the democracy that she talks about and this is the democracy of Bahrain. There is a clear concept of democracy, pluralism and peaceful transfer of power. If you don't achieve that then we do not have a democracy.

Thank you Khalil Marzooq the former deputy chairman of Representative Council in Bahrain and Mrs. Sameera Rajab writer, journalist and Shura member in Bahrain.

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A powerful interview, if you ask me, and definitely a must-watch one!

The arguments raised by Mrs. Rajab are inconsistent as it is the case for most pro-government debates over the legitemacy of the protests and the simmering uprising, especially when it comes to the general realities, not only the details.

I do not follow Alwefaq society as I personally and politically have reservations but throughout the time of the struggle they have had some reasonable and national demands that, to me, avoided the focus of the society which is recognized to be a Shiite religious institute. On the other hand, I even more strongly have reservations over a Shura Council member who claims that this Bahraini system is a good one seeking the good of the people when this council itself is the epidomy of Absolute Monarchy which if wasn't for the royal family would turn into a dictatorship some day.

The Bahraini system form of democracy is based on the form rather than the function. Yes, we have the obvious elements of democracy but that only because this guards the country against international organizations, the United Nations in specific, and keeps the system as it is. Mrs. Rajab has pointed out several realities which I highlited above "separation of powers, freedom of speech with the highest levels, just judiciary, just constituencies" are not of effect solely because they are not implemented. The powers are separated so we have the Executive, Legislative an Judiciary branches which all go back to the main branch of power, King Haman Alkhalifa; he has the ultimate power in the Executive branch, he appoints all judges in the Judiciary and he appoints half of the Legislative as Mrs. Rajab is a living example of people who owe allegiance and loyalty to the king as he blessed them with this source of income that tasks them to only implement the orders of the king rather than argue. And let's not get in the debate over the weak parliament as the representative simply meet to discuss rather than pass laws and approve legislation which can always be revoked with the Shura standing int he way, the restricting mechanisms and the appointed Head of both councils. Freedom of speech is not existent as of 2011, I need not prove this. The Judiciary system is not just at all and the trials that are ongoing prove that, as have the experiences of both myself and those I have known who have suffered the simplest deprivations of simple rights acknowledges by Sharia Law in Bahrain. Constituencies and tampered with rather than improved and the more political naturalization we have, the more flawed of a system it is as the government is manipulating the demographic composition of the country.
Mrs. Rajab goes on stating that these "will be fixed and improved based on the demographic changes in Bahrain through honest elections." No, they will not. Not with the current system of government, not with this regime and not under this constitution. This has been the case since 1975 when the firs parliament was dissolved by our current king's father because it jeopardized his interests and as the parliament has started to get great support. This has been the case since people were threatened, prosecuted and exiled in the 1970s  and the pardoned in 2001 and now again prosecuted in 2011. This will not change with Alkhalifa being in such constant refusal of real reform rather than cosmetic change.

There is so much to debate in this but I will be addressing more issues next week. But in this I wanted to reject the view that Mrs. Rajab attempted to sell her story. But please remember that the opposition is not ONLY Alwefaq society, it is no predominantly Shiite, I am an opposition member and I am by your standards Sunni, opposition is not created by the government as you stated above, and a liberal society cannot be Islamic if Bahrain really wants to embrace its diversity as we have minorities that will suffer tomorrow what the government has established as a system in the country. And please do not refer to the street so generally unless you have participated in calling for your demands on the streets as well.

Lesson of this piece: If you want to learn, abandon your beliefs and read all the news you can find everywhere and not only Bahrain TV as we know where its loyalties lie along with the local newspapers. My saying this is not based on the events this year, they go back to Albandar report in 2006 written by Dr. Salah Albandar, former adviser to the Cabinet Affairs ministry who was then exiled from the country as newspapers in Bahrain were prohibited from wiring about.

September 26, 2011

My Smile Echoes(1)

The sound of your smile will always echo. Your heartbeat growing stronger, the pace is crazily faster and your soul ever free. Sensational emotions rushing through veins as if it was not filtered exploding in your mind and overtaking your reality. When you have reached the top, smile wide and let the echo of that smile echo reflecting purity, genuinity and truth!

I dreamt of change ever since I was born; I dreamt of such a phenomena to change my reality to the better. Not to be pessimistic, but I grew up to realize it is purposeless to pertain certain morals over living life with its simplicity. I always think favoring people over yourself, respecting everyone despite your opinion of them with strong will and conviction, and aspiring to be what you are in parallel with the respect of those around you as very essential patterns that help you maintain relationships and fulfill your soul, is one way of morality.

However, this does not always work.

I have a smile that echoes beyond my control and reflects the contrary to how I feel. I love it only because it helps me hide my feeling which I seldom like to share with people. I am a hard person, very hard on myself and believe this is the way I can embetter my reality. However, extremism has caught up with me and I have failed myself.

I have not had the best of times in life but I always believed I was blessed with the best of people who help me get through. This is how I maintained myself, my morals and my focus on my goals in life. Lately, I have fallen in a deep, muddy hole and have managed to shatter myself into a million pieces in search of the core of my being. I am at a point where I feel crippled from attempting anything; my mind is alert of my duties, my heart is beating so fast I feel it will fail soon, my lungs have gotten adapted to its weird patterns and my body has surrendered.

I have set my mind to overcome that, to shift my focus on better things, to let go of my fears, worries and anger, and grow more focused. I attempted different means of self-medication, I have started asking for help, managed to get over my fears for a day but I am still stuck in this vortex. I just want to get out. I just want to be back at that place where my thoughts are mine alone, I am in control of my emotions, thoughts and expressions. I want to be able again to feel comfortable being a mess in my own skin.

But I cannot. I do not think I will be able to for a very long time. Nor do I think I will find comfort in recreating balance in my life once more. I have too much on my mind that I have no power to hold back my tears any more, I have so poor nutrition that I cannot carry out my daily chores as easily, and I have so little support that I fail to gain a moment of relief.

I am drowning like a leaf that is smothered in mud in the middle of the coldest lake, not able to swim or stay afloat with lungs shutting down and limbs frailly failing. I am drowning in the midst of my self-proclaimed chaos and I fail to establish a moment to get a grip and fight back.

The sound of my smile is silenced, my soul is crushed and I remain with no smile, and no echo. The only hope that kept me afloat for two decades, now. Whatever becomes of this is for days that will come to unveil.

September 1, 2011

"Abu Amal"

Today is a day my whole nation is mourning. I guess it you'd think in the midst of the chaos, it is normal. But it is!

Today a great icon, a father, a companion, a fighter, a leader and the most undying symbol of the love of Bahrain has passed away. Abdulrahman Alnoaimi is the great symbol of the public demands since his early life. He lived a life of dedication to justice and rights, devotion to see a better future for this country until he no longer could. I do not want to write a passage about him because no matter how much I write, how expressive words of any language can be or what aspects of his struggle I can bring to you, I will fail miserably to justly exemplify his spirit that even in his years of unconsciousness has been the heart and soul of our ongoing struggles and demands.

All I wish today is, I love you and I pray that God can give you what you have fought hard for in this life.

May you rest in peace Abu Amal.

August 29, 2011

Why? Because..

My government is covering up the silenced uprising and attempting to contain its effect to convince the world that everything is restored to its normal state when prosecution and oppression continue to exist in Bahrain.

I am a twenty-one Bahraini citizen who is terrified for my situation in the country as I have come to recognize that the patterns of my government are different this time; in order to have a life in Bahrain, you literally have to look the other way and ignore what you know. I have lived most of my life interacting with human, youth and child rights activists who have devoted their lives for these causes and have maintained a lifestyle of recurrent danger as threats by the government's forces continually obstructed their lives and posed all sorts of threats. This was the pattern for as far as I remember since I became a youth and rights activist in my country. However, since this year's uprising on February 2011, the government has attacked everyone including men, women and children whether they were involved or affiliated with political activism or civil society was no the matter. The mainstream media allover the world seems to be focusing on the sectarian targeting which the government also emphasized on and used to justify its means. Nonetheless, the reality is different, at least this year, the victims of the crackdowns included individuals from all sects of the society and with all sorts of backgrounds.

As the uprising took place and evolved, I nervously watched and attempted to do what I could to support the demands I believed in from here in the United States as I was taking part in a program by the Stat Department for the past year. I have written online, translated articles, supported the political society I am supporting, the National Democratic Action Society "WAAD" which was a stream following believes my grandfather died for in the 1970s, and educating people in my current community and in my reach here in the United States. This all seemed to me the right thing to do and the only way I could possibly help my country, until I realized that in this round of conflict my life could be at risk as I am a firm believer in the cause I stand for which is a better government system and the need for the supremacy of law with reforms.

Today, I am an asylum applicant who day-by-day loses hope in gaining asylum in the United States. I did not want to apply, hesitated, procrastinated and hoped that things would turn for the better knowing the risks I would be taking. But what has made me sure I needed asylum is when friends and family turned against me and considered me a traitor of the country as do many people simply because I am a Sunni girl who does not follow the traditions of mainstream Muslim Sunni females in Bahrain who are mostly in constant praise of the government for their own reasons. My grandfather, WAAD, my colleagues in activism and my Bahraini heritage has taught me one thing for sure, that change will survive arbitrary regimes only if you cna stand the cost.

I have no hope of getting asylum and at this point do not even hesitate to go back home and put my life at risk by continuing to stand up for what I believe in as an individual. But, I still hope that the political alliances of my government, the abuses of the royals in my country and the lost hope in the silent cries of my people won't go to waste as activists continue to fall liek domino pieces as some avert to siding with the government, simply because they can live this way, running away or applying for asylum around the world and continuing their work, which it seems I won't have the chance to do, or die either physically or mentally behind jail bars as torture methods are perfected upon their meager bodies every passing day.

I am writing to you because hopelessness seems to learn its way to my passion and dedication to spreading the truth and promoting for justice in a tiny country of th eworld, Bahrain, with a humble request that if people like me reach that point and are in a situation where they cannot offer others hope and solidarity that people like you with everlasting hunger for truth and aspiration for a better world would still fight for a cause like mine in a place as humble as Bahrain.

~ Fatima Bunafoor

August 21, 2011


When you're stripped from all the virtues and blessing of life, all that becomes of you remains the attic's storage material you've been hiding from people for years. All that is today is all that you have always strongly defied with no despair. All that is of you today is the images of the misdrawn portraits you have buried under dust-collecting sheets of hazy white. All that is today of the promise of you, is a screaming nothing.

Stripped to the bones from hope, dreams and aspiration to achieve what for so long you viciously fought to preserve  Left with an open door welcoming the ghosts of envy, hatred and despise to step allover what's left inside. Drowning in a pool of disappointments, surrounded by moving bridges, blinded in the midst of daylight, you see so clearly now how powerful nothingness is in the verge of your yesterday's dawn.

You clap your hands, stomp your feet hard to the ground, and fall with humility to pray to a God you have always tried to appeal praying for the best of this world, asking him today to cleanse your soul and lend you a hand when you are so desperately in need of. You covered with sorrowful tears of the sins you have kept, the trespasses of your past and the guilt that's slowly devouring your spirit for ever falling short to your own expectations. You praise the lord and seal your heart with a plea for some mercy and help that this world no longer looks so dark, hopeless and misused, and that you for one passing hour the same person you used to be.

But, there is no mercy in this world, no hope, humanity or happiness that can replace the harm that unfolded flooding our world from town to town invading the stillness of the dust in our secure and crowding attics and turning what once was simply sublime and beautiful to the mere echo of what once never was and again shall not be on the face of earth.

The spell has been cast upon our race and the last song was song when cease-fire is erased from our dictionary.

August 13, 2011

August 14th: Bahraini Independence Day

Calling for political and constitutional reform is as historic as can be in timeline of the establishment of the state of Bahrain. It was not birthed in this year's February 14th uprising in Bahrain as the world might view it.

Bahrain was a British colony before its independence in 1971 and in that era the current royal kingship has established its dominance, role and values of "accepted" citizenship. The country's freedom was not one that many worried about or understood at the time, all that mattered is seeing Ian Henderson leave the soils of Bahrain and torture and torturers punished for their crimes under that phase of "State of Emergency" laws.

Ian Henderson was the notorious British head of stat security in Bahrain who is also known as the "Butcher of Bahrain" for claims of torture and crimes in the prisons of Bahrain since the 1970s. Allegations of torture against the said "Butcher" have been denied by both Henderson himself and the Bahraini government who in its tun also denied any involvement in any torture, something that we see today.

The irony in this is not that the government denies and protects this notorious abuser of human rights, as seen during his experience in Kenya, but is that the Bahraini government has been accused of many human rights violations, power abuses and oppression almost since the dawn of the twentieth century, a time when all other nations enjoyed the evolvement of human rights and emancipation from all sorts that promoted such countries into leading pioneers in the respect of international as well as humanitarian laws.

The State of emergency of the 1960s and 1970s, that which came to terminated the 14th of February revolution this year and those to come in the future, stand as historic stains in the history of Bahrain where the youth were determined to secure change, the same patterns of government prevails, the same victims are arbitrarily silenced, and the same revolution to seemingly be put into sleep. Nonetheless, the significance of each resonates as the earlier one was victorious despite its failure to achieve the change set and the many who were lost, people were much more aware of the value of self-sacrifice and the power that one can bring into a society, and secterianism never devided us as it did today. When today's revolution will not last long if we continue to allow the government's sectarian brainwash to take over our lives, do not share a common reasonable respect for change, unite under the umbrella of peaceful protest and go the extra mile to guarante that the dawn of our tomorrow comes with a sun bright enough to awaken the souls of the past.

Many youth have a great respect to the heritage and history of beloved Bahrain, are hurt by the divisive society that the government is all so responsible for, and want to grab freedom by the horns until it is tamed to the love of Bahrain that it never leaves. However, the first step to see liberation for Bahrain is when we are able to throw the books out of the window, the Quraan, the Bible, the Torah, the failing Bahraini Constitution and use our minds. WE have read those books, lovingly ro not, we have made sure as intellectual youth to appreciate the values or the lack of there is to liberate our souls from social conformity and have then set our minds to mold our futures with our own hands. That major step is what we need in order to appreciate the ups and downs that this glorious country has undergone in 4 decades only, thus, reviving hope in the giving hearts that seem to be slipping away.

The ties that have been broken; kinship, friendships, or simple acquaintances. The bridges of great activism that seem to be attacked all the time and the lessons of our great teachers who sacrificed their lives for a promise of a better Bahrain, should not go in vain. What do we gain from trashign one another, from dismissing the great theologies one enemy might bring to us, the possibility of a decimle of truth in the heart of an idea pressented by the opposing part to ours, and the sheer genuinity that without our undying love for Bahrain, we would not have been able to maintian such tenssion for so long. Because those who don't care about what you think will not wast a single moment of their lives trying to convince you with what they think.

Today "civil" society in Bahrain is left in the ICU, the streets are far more different from one town to another, today, religious leaders seem to have the upper hand, political activist are mocked, trashed and targetted by everyone and no respect for civil honest dialogue is left. I used to think that dialogue is the best solution for the conflict between two opposing sides and even believed it would mend the situation somehow in my country, not that I believed the National Dialogue of 2011 was of that sort as I cleary stood against it from the very birth of its concept. I also used to think that the need for a guide to live a better life is an essential aspect for a productive life.

What I have always held up high is the reality that in Bahrain nobody needs a book to tell them how to live nor does anyone need a religious, political, ethical or even an intellectual supervisor to control them. We are perfectly capable of constructive destruction in order to see things progress. So, why listen to the government or opposition? Why debate over loyalties? Why not focus on the bigger issues?

The aim of the 14 February revolution is to protest the Bahraini Constitution, revoke the unjust system, call for justice for martyrs of the country's history, and prevent the continuance of human rights violations. It seems the biggest concern today in some of the posts allover social media, local Bahraini media and international media is the sectarian divisions, the social structure and the use of violence, only.

I blame Ian Henderson for all the destruction that has taken over my country's history for the past 40 or so years. Since his time in Bahrain and until today, he played a role in establishing the oppressive system that we live, denied by some citizens. And until he is trialed and punished, reform is initiated by a promising government, and the regime is modified, Bahrainis will remain to celebrate their National Day on December 16th instead of their Independence every August 14th.

Let's not let Ian Henderson and Al-Khalifa control our present and let us all rejoice our past for a future.

Happy Independence Day Bahrain ...<3

August 11, 2011

Bahrainis: Prisoners in their Homes

Those who claim we have no tankers, armed men, arbitrary policemen, use of violence and live ammunition in Bahrain, are simply blinded from the reality living in areas populated with pro-government or royals. Isolation from those in need and under attack have struck some people indifferent to the massacres that continue to exist in Bahrain.

Claims that this is a special uprising where many laws have been broken and the whole country's people have gotten involved making it a unique crisis, is absurd. This is no different from the events in the 1990s when people were constantly isolated, cornered, threaten, imprisoned, expelled, dismissed, trialed, convicted, attacked, and killed. We have had such death occur before in the 1970s and the 1960s as far as my mind and heart could stand. How can we still claim that no one died on the hands of the Bahraini government, no one was targeted unjustly or even treated as traitor in the past and until today? People have been lost, families are being destroyed, friendships have ended and conspiracy lives on.

I do not support violence, not any sort of violence nor by any party and condemn those who committed it and want them to be trialed. What I refuse and will do until the moment I die is to see my people be played by Bahrain's local media and projected as mere traitors supporting Iran's agenda in Bahrain, Saudi military's invasion of the streets of my country as the "State of Emergency" was declared in Bahrain, and I moslty refuse to give up my fight.

I am proud of those speaking so bravely to the international media, spreading the messages of the locals to the world as the Bahraini government's campaign to silence us from saying what we think to the world in order to show them that there are voices being silenced, victims being oppressed and confessions being forced under torture.

Bahrain is not KSA where people are successfully silenced, many a majority has better choices than activism, one man speaking out out of a million can disappear without being noticed, women are enslaved by men and a few brave ones, especially those courageous women who want to see the best of their country to reach the surface.

Bahrain is not the USA where justice is still a dream when the people believe it is achieved, equality is far more progressive, the death of a national is a state-level crisis that could reach the national attention, where you can be who you are and even work to make laws legal for your existance to be protected by state and national laws.

Bahrain is no longer "lemharraq", "elmanama", "aali", "elrifaa", "madinat hamad", "madinat isa" or "sitra.

Bahrain today is a wounded nation forgotten for its small size, for being part of the Gulf Corporation Council, for being a strategic economic and trade station where the United STates' fifth biggest fleets is stationed expressing where the world stands from the uprising in Bahrain.

Today, citizens are trapped in targeted areas inside of their homes, avoiding too much movement in order to avoid being shot through the windows by riot police bullets, others are on the edge of hysteria are bullets and gunshots have demolished what's left of hope in their hearts, others are begging you to hear their cries as they are beaten by police, shunned by the society and their families for simply debating what they believe in.

Now tell me, if you truly and righteously believe that the protesters just want Iran to form the new religious government, the fall of the regime, simply to purposely incite hatred and divisions, or to simply try to be one of the other Arabic nations that occupied the international community, then why isn't everyone being trialed as we all committed crimes according to the Bahraini government's pattern.

The government has held Investigation Committees in universities consisting mainly of BDF military staff have charged students for participating in unlicensed gatherings and marches, carrying offensive mottoes to the political leaders, urging for the downfall of the system and offending the political leaders of the Kingdom, thus, expelling students. It also charged employees in different jobs, imprisoned doctors, nurses, journalists, political leaders and protesters for speaking out what they blieve is right, marching to emphasize that, writing, posting and expressing their feelings on social media websites. My question here, if the government truely believe that these peoplehave either fabricated or spread unconfirmed news and lies, what about the pro-government protests? What about the pro-government swords and weapons that were raised next to Al-fateh mosque, is not that a bigger threat of national security, hatered towards another segment of the population that is? Is blocking roads more dangerous that hateful religious men calling for execution of who they believe to be traitors? How about the websites that they used to target individuals, companies and NGOs? Isn't that spreading unconfirmed news and lies, the same crimes the government accused opposition of? What about Bahrain TV's constant condeming, acclaimed and absolute knowledge of the truth, entitling those sought fit of the opposition as traitors, Iran-allies and causes of unrest in Bahrain? Is not that offensive mottos to the political leaders as they seem to "surprisingly" agree with the military and normal courts in terms of judgements? And let's not forget the newspapers that were shut for speaking against the governmetn's actions when those who continue to praise th egovernment and incite hatred and violence amongst the citizens still run without any disturbance?

If the government is truely trying to calm the situation by preventing hatred and divisions led by Iranina supported agendas, maintaining the flow of normal life in the capital, preventing violence, then why do the Investigation Committees refuse to hear the investigated individuals' own statements ans sayings, force them to sign a statement they cannot keep a copy of, riot police seem to be wandering untamed in the streets of Bahrain, hateful speech walks proudly and freely in all meduims of communication in the country and not a signal pro-government have been found at fault?

The answer is simple; if you need to fight so hard to prove your truth, you are either not the power in the country or you are and you're scared.

Under attack on daily basis, frightened to reveal the curtains of the windows to see what is going around them, cornered by tankers and bullets and beastly men, Bahraini do not give up your cause.

August 5, 2011

"Bahrain: Shouting in the Dark"

I believe that this Aljazeera film came as a heart-filled bow to the struggle in my country. It has been ages since I wrote last and it is not because I ran out of words, silenced or occupied by other ridicules of life. But, because I have been terrified in a way I have never been in my life.

My name is Fatima, I am 21 years old, I believe in one thing above all in my life, morality, and I have fought through my life standing on that sole principle. Those who know me know how committed to that I am, those who  view me as an acquaintance probably are not bothered by my tendencies, and those who have enlisted me amongst their enemies know exactly how determined I am to stand for my principle regardless. Remembering this bio of mine has reminded me of a principle in my life, fear nothing and nobody but God. Thus, I will no longer hide behind my hesitation nor allow those who have made me a target misuse my kindness and destroy me.

The Aljazeera documentary came at a perfect timing as the "National Dialogue", which I personally all along viewed as a simple charade by king Hamad's dynasty in order to distract international attention, which terrifies the Bahraini government, from the reality in the streets, prisons and movements of Bahrain. It echoed the pains and oppressed souls of the Bahraini people who for so long have dreamed of a place where government is not afraid of its people. Yes, a government of that sort.

The current Alkhalifa family along with its GCC allies and foreign strategic supporters have sought to silence any rebellion that would threaten their continuance. In the past decades and prior to this year, it has always been more contained, much fewer people suffered arbitrary treatment by the military and riot police, and with the same arrests, marches and protests, people still remained in better conditions than 2011 arbitrary attacked of the Alkhalifa dynasty.

Many people around the world tuned in as the events in Bahrain were the main focus of the international media, not because of the uprising in Bahrain or due to the unique demands of my people; they tuned it merely because it marked, to them, as it occupied the front pages of newspapers, the fall of another oppressive regime in a backward democracy in the Middle East. The reality is, Bahrain is the most democratic country in the Gulf region regardless of anyone's claims; we have been protesting, gathering and demanding for constitutional change since king Hamad's new constitution of 2001, even before that people have asked for a better regime and a just government. All of these are things that are rare in countries in the Gulf as powerful royalties work hard and simultaneously to sustain and prolong the lives of their era on terms of economic, political and constitutional oppression that has exploded in Bahrain and KSA this year due to the crimes of the Bahraini government.

I have failed to be part of this revolution in person, which is what I have struggled with the most being here in the United States. However, I tried my best to spread their calls, keep people I knew here interested and also help in whichever way I was able to to support the uprising.

This film full-heartedly describes the feelings of the free people of my country who stood for change throughout the arbitrary campaigns and still do, believed in one another, and defied the power of Alkhalifas. Unfortunately, many have been beaten to death, tortured to death, silenced, dismissed from jobs and school and trialed, and many more are still suffering that, all as a part of the Alkhalifa dynasty's systematic arbitrary oppression in order to silence the uprising, maintain their power, restore fear to the majority of people, further establish the long-lived claims of Iran's influence theory, and to continue stealing lands, money and resources from the people of Bahrain.

The only way out of such oppression in Bahrain, as proved by our king's appointees, supporters, ministers and Bahrain TV, death. What a democratic way to rule a country once a significant majority of the people had a unified dream that was beyond race, ethnicity, gender and sects. We all dream of a better regime where there is no fear to say what you think at any place and time based on our humanity and morality.

International interest is significantly lost int he past few months providing success to the master plan of our royals. I am trusting in the youth generation of my country to guarantee that does not go on any much longer and to project the world that a well-informed audience is one that questions everything especially that which suffers a great deal of opposition.

The strength behind every uprising is the belief in its cause and the acceptance of the consequences. My people have expressed such principles and they our ought to see it through sooner or later.

طريقنا انت تدري.. شوكٌ، وعرٌ، عسيرُ 
موتٌ على جانبي.. لكننا سنسيرُ
إلى الأمام، إلى الأمام، إلى الأمام سنسير

(أشد على أياديكم على طريق النضال والنصر". رفيقكم سعد (محمد بونفور"

July 7, 2011

Bahrain's Retribution

I have always thought of my work to be trivial. Whether I have put together something big or small, unique or absurd, genuine or purposeless, or even if it had all the elements together so it provided the best results ever. I always find what I do trivial. Only today I understood why I did and continue to find everything I do in life to be trivial. It is simply because I believe in a better purpose and result of everything I do. Whether it was a small walk to clear my mind, a small talk with a friend to try to help, or even letting go of my guards with friends to help myself feel better; I always want it to be for a good purpose in life that will benefit those who surround me.

This year has brought a lot of surprises to a lot of people around the world that many doubters started to identify with an "end" that is coming. I found it very ironic that the year when clocks started working in reverse and predictions of tribal heritage we have come upon tell us that our calenders will no longer be of use, is the year when all hell broke loose around the world, and I do not mean the metaphoric hell. Look at it from my point of you with one question in mind: Does the purpose justify the means?

A few months ago, people in Bahrain have taken upon themselves to grab the opportunity to focus international's media's attention to their constitutional demands and hold it by the horns. With that, they understood the hardship of the Bahraini regime in caparison to other Arab nations that had their own revolutions this year, some of which have paid off and other still pave the way to a brighter future. Many have died, protesters, policemen, young men, women, and passerbys. The two sides, the government and the opposition have stated their demands which have been affected by the constant reactions from one side to the other leading us to the current situation today.

What started as peaceful demonstrations in February, which due to the loss of young men, spread the flame of the fire of democracy that has been ignited decades ago due to the lack of freedoms, especially of expression, in Bahrain. What followed was an outrage of a lot of new factions of the Bahraini community that was horrified by what could this lead to, baring in mind the current revolutions in the region. The people declared civil disobedience and the war of principles was then unleashed. The GCC's Peninsula Shield Force entered the country following the declaration of the State of Emergency by king Hamad Alkhalifa. To not make my narration long, as the "stories" differ today, I will get to the current circumstances.

Nowadays, oppositions leaders, members, journalists, reporters, doctors, nurses, students, youth and individuals are locked up in Bahrain prisons and sentences range from jail sentences to execution. The king called for a national dialogue that will take place in a few days time, removed the Peninsula Shield Force troops from the country and ended the State of Emergency the beginning of June. Along with "promises" of reform and retribution, students were expelled from the University of Bahrain and the Bahrain Polytechnic before and after the king decided to lay the platform for dialogue. My own sister was a victim of that and the reasoning behind the decision to expel her was that she called for overthrowing the government and supported the anti-govertnment protests, this was the sentence by the military officials who interrogated most of the expelled students. I mention my sister's case not for sympathy or because of causes of anger, I simply do that to revoke the lies that have been spreading around.

During the time of the revolution, the government has constantly and still does claim that the reason behind the revolution is to overthrow the government anticipating and Iranian Islamic Republic and that protesters are Shiites which further supports this accusations. Many have been sentenced to life sentences, prison time and a few to be executed due such charges that have no bases. I say no bases because the reality of the matter is s follows: The majority of the people in Bahrain are Shiites, and no Sawsan Alshaer I do not have a statistic but I actually live among the people and all Bahrainis agree to this reality. The government is Sunni. Thus, the clash exists. However, the clash is not between a Sunni government and a Shiite opposition, the conflict is a matter of constitutional reform. Yes, people have called of overthrowing the government and carried religious symbols but that does not conclude the case to the demand of the Iranian state's rule over Bahrain and it will never do. All that it is, is the simple reflection of th ereligious identity of som eindividuals and their deseprate demand for a better constitution and a better government, demands called for throughout the globe.

Going back to my sister's case, the reason I used her example is because she is a Sunni, I am a Sunni and I have other Sunni friends who do not believe in the measures that the government with the Peninsula Shield Force troops in oppressing the struggle.

During the conflict, I have come to really realize the true relationships I have had amongst the thousands of people I know from Bahrain, some call themselves, family others friends  and the usual acquaintances. The reason why I invest this personal aspect of my life is because it is the reality of the situation now and the real problem facing my nations rather than simply the regime and its opposers. in the last few weeks, my doubts and fears have come to life. I no longer have as many friends, most of which kept the matter to themselves and resigned to calling me traitor and firing shots of resentment and hatred towards me. However, I have also gotten support messages respecting the risk I take, which is not much at all compared to what my friends and acquaintances who stand for a better constitution, human rights and freedoms have done. My only risk was to repost, retweet, trying to get students in America interested in what is going on in my country, sharing my ideas and ideals over the internet. Due to that, I have been threatened, blocked, removed, cursed, called a Shiite, which some thinks of as an insult, and is probably waiting the same fate as my sister and a lot of brave young individuals who actually believe in the metaphors they quote, the books they read and the philosophies they individually debate. I am no brave at all for the simple fact that I currently reside outside of my beloved country but those who truely know me understand the length I go for if there is an ideal I strongly believe in. This was not at all a problem for me, to be hated and attacked; what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger. What is the real dilemma, is what my family is putting me through. For some reason, I thought that the choice is between my education and career in Bahrain as well as elsewhere verses my political, social and moral ideals. Reality check, this is the easiest choice as I will always choose the latter. The troublesome choice is to choose between my family, friends along with my career and my ideals. Guess what, at this moment I have chosen the latter, easier and faster I have come to this conclusion. I do not give that credit to the ideals I believe in or to the friends who have shown grave bravery in standing up against all oppression, the credit goes to my family.

for the past two weeks, the number of times my family has called me is more than the total of the times they have called me throughout the past academic year at Juniata College. The conversations are repetative, bothersome, depressing and not at all filled with genuine concenr. Also, the progression of these conversation is nonexistance. My family considers both my sister and myself as traitor to the country because of what I echoed and expressed, and what my sister was concerned with. Their justification is their ignorance of what was it really that we have done to gain so much hatred from friends and strangers, being enlisted as traitors on teh internet and ofcourse the reasoning behind my sister's expelling.

Realizing that I lost the most valuable element that fueled me with energy in my life has woken me up from a very long siesta. I never cared what strangers thought of me, came to understand that some friends ought to step on you and backstab you at some point, and have already established a definition to the essance of my life. Nonetheless, my family was an integral part of my motivation. Now, as it is an obstacle, I came to peace at accepting the fact that the reality of the matter it is the relationships you have are those who you can count on and not the pre-established, socially defined ones.

So, having so many choices to make, so many paths of possibilities open in front of me, my conscience takes over to lead me to my life goal that I have repeated since I was thirteen years old. I want to change my country to a better place for my family and friends to build their lives at peace.

Bahrain stand today dealing with sectarianism that did not pre-exist in the measures and hatred it possesses today. Friends and families torn apart for the sole hate of one's religious, political, social and personal dreams. This wound will never heal no matter what people say and I honestly rather it does not because unless we can achieve a promising change in Bahrain, nothing else will matter.

Miles and miles away from my beloved country where I loved and grew up with the most amazing people, have seen promises by my government and my current king fall short as did such promises in teh past, and with the growing gaps drawn in relationships; I want to let the world know that people who will die for this country's future exist for a reason, to see a change happen not for their generation, or their childrens' generation but for your granchildrens' future.

Mohammed Bunafoor was my grandfather and it is because of him that I met people like Abdulrahman Alnoaimi and Ebrahim Sharif who have shown me love for Bahrain that exceeds description. The hero of my life today tells me "Why are you saying these things? Don't go near this person or that. Don't post anything that would jeopardize your academic future. You're grandmother is worried that you are brainwashed by people who support what is going on." What she does not know is that it is her who raised me with eternal love and respect for freedoms, difference in opinion, the possbility of change and the idea of exceeding my own expectations. I do not choose to follow anyone, I never did. Bunafoor, Alnoaimi and Sharif are people I highly respect along with many other but they never did, do not and will never define my choices or my life.

My message here is:
If you believe in something, a change in circumstances does not change the heart of your belief.

March 26, 2011

Bahraini Echoes

It is important that whenever you establish change as your motive in life, to recognize that the price is not one that you can afford on your on. The wisdom in that is that you ought to understand that with great measures comes obvious risk and that risk is mainly having to put your faith in people you are getting to know as each day passes.

Bahrain has been wounded by its own government long time ago. Many people have chosen to look the other way and enjoy the luxuries of their life when others suffered the greatest sacrifice. What has started as a hopeful move towards democracy and freedom in Bahrain has turned violent and stained with the blood of martyrs of the youth who want to see equality perceived and a constitution above all men in the Bahraini society.
It has been decades and the people of Bahrain were attempting to establish a system above the individual power of humans in a country that long suffered oppression. Alkhalifa family has ruled Bahrain since its establishment and there was no objections to a royal family ruling over the people Bahrain. Under the British government's control, the people saw the measures of abuse that people like Henderson has attempted to control the wills of the free and silence those who defy what they sought to be injustice. My grandfather was young and ambitious and wanted to test if these dreams can come true in a country that long claimed respect for the will of the people. Nonetheless, his friends' efforts to pursue the punishment of the abuser, rectify the wrongs in the systems and recognize the need for a better society did not continue for long. Ian Henderson's established means of torture have gotten the best of the league of change seekers in Bahrain in the 1960s and 1970 leading the majority of them to leave for exile elsewhere.

Ever since, Alkhalifa have accumulation wealth and fortunes, privatized public property and appointed the lands of the people to the members of the royal family. As years progressed and greed was evident, the people refused to continue to accept. Long before anyone knew it, we became an oppressed people limited by circumstances but still seeking change. Not many found this aspect of politics in Bahrain very necessary as they had what they wanted and avoided involvement in politics. Thus, the struggle was buried under everyday offenses that are misreported to the general public.
It seems that what started as a clear statement of rejection for further oppression in North Africa, has lit a fire of hope in the rest of the Middle East as nation after nation has exploded with demands and civil disobedience against regimes they believed were no longer to rule a people that rejects it. Bahrain might not achieve what Tunisia has accomplished in such a short time but I sure believe that my people are courageous and will stand against the tankers, guns and open ammunition of the government as long as the world watched the atrocities taking place.

This is where I found it to be important to be able to help being away as I wish so much to be on the streets amongst my people calling for a government by the people, for the people and from the people. However, as I am here miles and miles away, I found the opportunity to hold the door wide open and let Americans and the rest of the world see my people and learn about my country. Soon I will be doing a presentation about my country on campus where I will be evaluating the situation in Bahrain from my point of view and promoting for the support of my oppressed people.

 I pray that God will help us get through this, that people will stand united despite the government's means to demolish our unity, and that this is the year where thing will change for the good of Bahrain and its people and not for the benefit of Alkhalifa and their interest holders.

March 8, 2011

Florida Baby!

 In times of stress I write. I write because my heart is too tired to beat, my lungs and too exhausted to entertain air and my body is paralyzed. I write because my mind feels trapped as if I am in a comma and I cannot move but I feel everything around me.

March 4th, 2011 was the day I realized I am a mortal being. Don't get me wrong, I never though I was a superhero or acted as if I was invincible in any way or shape or form. I simply was too occupied with my morality to understand that at the end of the day, what we see in dreams, what aspire for through our ethics and what we feel deep inside is distinctively separate from our physiology.

I am merely a human, a lump of flesh and blood, a female with weaker physical power in battle verses a male, an overweight, scarred, self-conscious, detail-oriented twenty-one year old me. I have never in my life felt that I am better than anyone around me, even when I proved and was told I was. I always think and believe will continue to think that I lack something and need to acquire more of whatever it is I feel I am lacking at that moment in order to move a step ahead. Fairly ambitious you would say. Not at all!
I am aware of my lack of self-esteem which I have always referred to with excuses such as the need for more knowledge and empowerment, or even convening myself that it is best to assume you know less than to make a fool out of yourself. You know what, I have been a fool for too long thinking this way. I do not think it is a wrong strategy for self-improvement, I simply think it did me no good.

I have done a lot in my life, i have been an active member of the civil society in my country, have been interested and involved in politics from a very young age, i have taken steps that no many people in my age and under my circumstances have where i come from and I sure have consistently achieved miles ahead from what i aspired for in my life. Why do I still feel threatened and deny myself the right to feel superior sometimes. There is nothing wrong with claiming the ripe fruits of what we plant or even those we have not yet planted as long as we have had prominence in our approach in life and have come far from where we started.

I do not like looking back in time, I do not enjoy seeing the miles i have walked in lonesome denying myself from enjoying the simple things in life. I have been too hard on myself always and I have just realized that I need to change that. or maybe not, I probably have realized this before but failed to let go of myself and just enjoy life. As tedious as this sounds, i have always known that i wanted to break away from my own life, from the lack of love and family, the broken homes i lived in, the arrogance of men in my life, the abuses, the lack of belief in my dreams, the discouragements, the advice, the forced support and my parents. I never loved my life even though I loved my sisters and my aunt dearly, i never was able to be myself around anyone in my whole family but them, simply because they believed in me and they trusted me with their lives.

I have made one of the best transitions in my lifetime last year when I got accepted to a non-degree exchange scholarship of one academic year to study in a college in the United States. I came here hesitant as I was not going through the best things in my life at the time, and was keen on getting away on a similar program for only the summer of last year. however, things happen the way they are the best to teach us, and looking back now, I would not imagine me being home and struggling the same things for this whole year.

During my time on this scholarship I met wonderful people who inspire me day by day to be a better person and pursue my dreams no matter what. I became more expressive about my emotions, more touchy and hug-gy, more reflective and gained better understanding of how things work in different environments. I have changed, I do not know how, when or due to what, but I have changes hopefully to the best. I have not seen it in me even though I feel it, but my friends have and my close ones. I see the power that lies in that as much as I fear it but I cannot wait to experience more through this transformations.

March 4th, 2011 was an indescribable experience to my closest of friends who were involved and myself. We were victims to random armed robbery three hours after arriving in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Consequently, we ended up spending the night being interrogated by police officers, identifying the captured suspects and providing more testimonies at the police station until 6 int he morning of the following day.

I cannot seem to find the appropriate adjective to describe this misfortune but all I know it has made me aware of the reality of everyone around me. Losing official documents, identifications, a lot of money in cash, credit cards and precious items in our purses does not amount to the loss of relationships that came out of this.

After going through the first night in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, all we wanted to do is to get out of there and getting to a better place of comfort. I was glad no one was hurt, contemplated on the possibilities over and over again, blamed myself for the what-if due to my stupidity and tried to make sense of what happened. But what I came out with every time, it was beyond my ability to comprehend or event prevent.

At a time like this, where we were trapped in a place we did not want to spend another second at, with not even a single means of comfort, we all fell into despair. Luckily, we pulled ourselves together and we pulled through! We managed to get the police reports to travel, made ti through check points at the airport and finally landed in Washington D.C. This was freedom, I am not even exaggerating.

I am now back to Junaita College a couple of days after Spring Break had started, and I do not feel at all relieved. All I feel is loss, anger and despair but unsure for what or towards whom. All I know is that I have failed my friends and myself on this trip and I would never be able o change that.

Again, I am back at the point where I question myself and take away from my accomplishments in life. I have only myself to blame for this habit and I ought to set my mind to get over such weakness.

Florida has given me a new perspective and I still am unsure where to go from there.
Let's wait and see!