OP-ED

SMS letter: To the confused president caught between Sanhan and Hashad

National Yemen

Picture from archive shows Former President and Ali Mohsein dancing on the Yemeni Folklore

Mohammed Abdo al-Absi

 To the struggling president Abd-Rabbuh Mansour Hadi. We want to inform you that, while you and the former president were playing billiards during your presidencies, and then you and  Shaikh al-Shayif and Mr. al-Basheeri ensured losing to avoid making Saleh sad, in that time I was one of many journalists who criticized the regime’s corruption by those who were winning the game. I was one of those who condemned the Sa’ada six wars. In that time while we were facing real risks, you were playing billiards.

When the drones started bombing villages, I was one of the many journalists who criticized Yemen’s “killing law,” which allowed the government to kill the innocent civilians. You can ask the National Council for Abyan’s Displaced People, and also some notables of your area, because they know very well. But maybe you were busy playing billiards at that time, too.

The commander of the armed forces, who never lost a Billiards game, issued a decision on 2 November, 2002, assigning your sons to new posts in the army: Jalal Abd Rabbuh as captain, and Yasser Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi as first lieutenant. At that time, I was studying in the morning at Gamal Abdul Nasser high school and then going to wash cars on Tahrir Street: an honorable profession for a student. Even today, all that I know about the Presidential Palace is the act of passing beside it. No more, no less.

Anyway, I won’t spoil your last bold speech by narrating dozens of examples of why it was devoid of candor. In fact, we like candor, and we wish it to continue provided that words be associated with acts. And then we can take our families in the next Eid al-Adha to play in 21 March “al-Fariqh” Park.

The most important thing, Mr. President, is to remember that as much as you imitate your personal hero, you arrived at the presidency. Fortunately, your qualifications include more than just your multilingual abilities. You also play billiards very well.