Tuesday, December 6, 2011
A Note on Saleh's Supporters
I'm often told by some Arabs who I meet that they perceive that the majority in Yemen are supporting Saleh. My reaction consists of two feelings. One, I resist screaming at their faces to tell them, "That's absolutely ridiculous and NOT true." The second feeling I have is, "This is so sad to hear from Arabs who supposed to be well-informed about the situation in Yemen and have a pretty good idea of how Yemenies have been suffering from Saleh's aggressive bloddy oppression against the revolution." Yet, I stay calm and try as much as I can to explain the truth.
Realistically speaking, Saleh does have supporters but! they are minority. His biggest fans are in Sana'a only and the remaining provinces are, I'm %99 positive, totally pro-democracy. During Fridays, he gathers his supporters in Sabaen square in Sanaa as a show-off sign that he still has "legitimacy" & "supporters". The supporters gather only on Friday and most probably they are paid to do so. I vividly remember what a taxi driver told me when I was in Sanaa about the payment the supporters get. "I swear to you, they are paid with $200 per each Friday they attend. I saw them receiving the money while I was picking up customers. Believe me!," he told me.
On the other hand, there are thousands and thousands, if not millions, of people across the country, in 15 provinces out of 22, who have been protesting day and night for the past 10 months - "for free" - , in fact, paying a very high price for the change and democrcay they want to see in Yemen.
So, if Saleh had supporters, they are paid and temporary. While the ever-lasting Yemen, has supporters around the country who are willing to sacrifice all what they have for the sake of change and dignity to prevail for the whole nation.
PS. The photo above is some kind a tease-gesture; an email I received from a pro-Saleh individual. "Long Live Ali Abduallah Saleh", says the email.