Tuesday, 17 July 2012

Why Yemen's economy needs more women on board

With over 45% of Yemen’s population below poverty line, one of the greatest challenges the country faces at the moment is a hardcore poverty that makes millions of people struggle for survival. Such a significant problem represents a huge obstacle that hinders any effort for development in the crisis hit nation.
Yemen remains one the poorest countries in the world, ranking 151 of 177 countries on the UNDP Human Development Report. Population growth is very high (3.02% annually), is doubling every 19 years and is expected to reach 38 million by 2026. There are also large gender disparities, with significant gaps in women’s access to economic, social and political opportunities; Yemen ranks 155 out of 156 countries in the UNDP Gender Development Index. 
Recent reports indicate that Yemen is at the verge of an economic collapse making economic problems as Yemen’s biggest challenge that needs to be addressed in order for Yemen to move forward. 
Economic challenges in Yemen are known facts that no one could argue about. However, solutions taken towards addressing such challenges are far from realizing what the real problems are.
Government and donors are proposing solutions and drafting plans to help Yemen overcome the current economic challenges. Such plans address numerous challenging areas such as unemployment, health, education, infrastructure, etc. 
While these are key challenges to Yemen’s development and deserve to be given priority, however, the methodology of permanently and effectively solving such problems is far from what the current initiatives and plans are.
Yemen’s population is estimated at 25 million, 49.2% of whom are females. In most of the areas where Yemen lacks behind, gender inequality is a common characteristic of the problem. Yemen ranks at 138 in gender inequality index as of 2011. Women are particularly disadvantaged. Despite their vital contribution to the economy, women have very limited access to economic, social and political opportunities. Many are illiterate and on average they earn 30 per cent less than men. The majority are not given opportunities at all and their role is limited to being a house wife making their actual contribution to the economy minimal or non-existent. Reports indicate that only 8% of women are in actual employment opportunities. Those who are employed are usually employed in lower level employment and always face several social, cultural, and political barriers to move forward in their careers.
With ignoring the capacity and capabilities of the majority of 49.2% females of the population, we can only imagine how impractical any solutions or initiatives that target only one half of the population while neglecting the equally capable and important other half.
In my current research on the role of microfinance on poverty alleviation, I’ve come across some intriguing findings about the role of women and their significance in making a positive contribution towards steering a positive change that will steer Yemen’s economy and development forward. Microfinance has proved vital to alleviating poverty in Yemen. Poverty starts at a household level and all microfinance initiatives are aimed at creating entrepreneurs within the household that will financially support every individual within the household leading the entire household to be pulled out of hardcore poverty that nearly half of Yemen’s population suffers from. Among the recipients of microfinance loans in Yemen, women have maintained outstanding payback records that exceed those of their male counterparts. Their actual contribution to alleviating poverty within the household is significantly higher than their male counterparts. Statistics show that entrepreneur women benefiting from microfinance contribute their total income to the household expenditure which is not the case with male recipients of microfinance as they tend to retain a portion of their income for themselves that is mainly spent on  the male-dominated Qat and cigarette consumption making their proportional economic contribution to poverty alleviation less than that of women entrepreneurs. 
Statistics from the current microfinance programs being run in Yemen show higher profitability of projects run by female entrepreneurs. This represents a major contribution to the economy in two main ways: The first is that such an income is mainly channeled at alleviating poverty within the household in a more effective way as women tend to channel their total income towards poverty-alleviating expenditures within the household.  The second can be seen on a macro level as profitable projects create employment opportunities, pay taxes, and contribute to the country’s economic development. Such findings indicate that empowering more women to become entrepreneurs will significantly contribute to the economy in both, micro and macro levels which will help the country’s economy far better than seeking donations that only work as misused temporary solutions.
Likewise, women in the workforce contribute significantly to the country’s economy. In a recent study that used 300 men and women in the workforce in Yemen, women have shown a higher punctuality, work loyalty, stricter adherence to work ethics, and a remarkable overall productivity. Such attributes contribute to organizational productivity and increased profitability which, in turn, contribute to the betterment of the country’s economy as a whole. 
Yet with such positive attributes, women’s capacity is underutilized and opportunities available to them are limited to a few sectors and limited posts for them to hold, which significantly deprives the economy of making use of such capabilities. The fact that only 8% of women are in employment shows that the country’s economy is significantly underutilized when a large portion of its human capital is idle. Even with such a small percentage of women in employment, the motive for work for most of them is poverty. While this still represents a positive contribution to the economy, however, what we need to see in Yemen is not women who try to work in order to break out of poverty, but rather women who work in order to contribute. In other words, let innovation, desire to succeed, and self-actualization be the drive for women’s work, not just poverty.
The current gender inequality in Yemen is significant and is considered as one of the underlying causes behind Yemen’s economic problems. It is only normal for an economy to malfunction when nearly half of its human capital is neglected and underutilized. The most recent UN’s Common Country Assessment (CCA) has identified four underlying reasons for the poor outcome of development in Yemen, one of which was disempowerment of women.
What is troubling is that the numerous efforts and initiatives being pursued by the government and international donors do not address such a problem and focus mainly on the economic challenges without accounting for the need to tackle the exiting gender disparity as one of the main underlying causes. 
Policy makers need to restrategize in order to include women in all sectors and all levels of the economy as their capabilities and capacities are equally important and their contribution to economic development is vital. Carrying on with the same strategies that ignore the equally capable female human capital is detrimental to the country’s economy and will hinder any effort to solve the ongoing economic crisis.
The gender disparity in Yemen is of social, economical, and political dimensions and is only increasing as policy makers are caught up in planning temporary solutions that will fail at their inception. It is a very saddening fact that out of the 301 members of Yemen’s parliament, there is only one female member. It is indeed a troubling fact when a country’s law makers think in one mindset which explains why many initiatives of social reforms such as setting the minimum age for marriage have failed at their initiation.
Unless policy makers recognize the problematic gender disparity and address it in their proposed solutions through actively and fully involving women in the political, social, and economical process at all levels, 20 years from now we will be talking about the exact same problems, only in a higher magnitude. Channeling solutions at one gender while ignoring the other equally important gender will be like paddling a boat from one side and expecting it to move forward.
What Yemen needs is permanent effective solutions that will lead the country out of its existing political, economical, and social turmoil. Such solutions will fail at their inception if they don’t ensure that women are an integral part of the community’s decision-making processes in order to build community institutions that are capable of sustaining development and maintaining momentum.

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

Why Yemenis revolted

In my current visit to Yemen, I got to meet some people who, despite what the country has gone through in the past 34 years, are still hardcore Saleh supporters. I believe in freedom of expression and very much respect the thoughts of everyone including those who do not agree with me. Everyone is entitled to his or her own opinion. After all, that was one of the principles Yemen's revolution called for.

As I was conversing with these guys, one of them said a line that puzzled me. He said "Yemenis had no reason to revolt and that they were enjoying a prosperous life before the revolution took place". I didn't know if he was too blind to see what the country has been going through or that he was living in his own  little world.

Isn't it enough that Yemen is the poorest country in the middle east? What's worse than having a 65% illiteracy rate in the 21st century? Yemen ranks at 146 of 178 in the global corruption index. It has one of the highest child marriage rates. Social and economical problems have always been a daily struggle for many Yemenis in a country that lacks basic infrastructure as people mostly rely on themselves for the provision of water, electricity, education, health, and even safety and security.

The list can go and on, however, instead of carrying on with the conversation, and given that a picture is worth a thousand words, I decided to comment on his statement with images from Saleh's era that would precisely address the question of why Yemenis revolted.

1. A homeless guy taking a shelter on the street

2.  A man and his child digging into a trash dumpster for food.

3.  A homeless woman walking on the street

 4. An unemployed man sitting on the street

5.  A labor drinking water while taking a break on the street

6.  A man digging for food into the trash dumpster

7.  A homeless guy lying down on the street

8.  A child begging for money on the street

9.  A poor woman leaning against the wall

10.  A child labor selling tissues while doing his homework on the street

11.  A child digging into the garbage looking for any re-sellable stuff

12.  An elderly man with his family lying down on the street begging for money

13.  A couple of poor men digging into the trash dumpster for food

14.  A disabled elderly selling Tomato on a small trolley

15.   A child labor

16.  Children looking into the garbage pile up for food and re-sellable stuff

17.  Two little girls filling up water to take home due to the absence of water supply

18.  An elderly woman eating the remains of customers' food

19.  A beggar on the street

20.  An elderly man taking a shelter on the street

21.  A child carrying a couple of AK-47 machine guns

22.  Beggars on the street

23.  A child labor selling tissues on the street

  24. A child labor selling water on the street

25.  A child labor selling chewing gum while sleeping on a commercial shop's staircase

26.  A couple of children eating from the garbage pile up

27.  A child labor selling tissues on the street

28.  A homeless guy on the street

29.  A group of Yemenis placed on on a truck as they are being deported from Saudi

30.  An elderly woman begging for money

31.  A child labor collecting recyclable cans to sell them

32.  A child labor selling sesame candies

33.  A man digging for food and re-sellable stuff in the trash dumpster

 34. A little girl on her way to get some water supplies for her house

35.  A child labor collecting recyclable items to sell them

36. Child brides with their husbands

* Photos used are courtesy of Rashad Alsame'ee, Zainab Yahya, Shohdi Al-Sofi, Ahmed Basha, Taiz City, Mohammed Al-Ariqi & Mohammed Al-Emad

Thursday, 15 December 2011

Yemeni women: An extraordinary role

As I watched Tawakkol Karman deliver her powerful speech during the 2011 Nobel Peace Prize award ceremony, I couldn’t help but feel proud of her accomplishment that has brought her, along with the courageous Yemeni women, to the spotlight of heroism. She has undoubtedly portrayed Yemeni women at the best possible image reversing the long-rooted misconception the world had on them. For years, stereotypical image of Yemeni women has been perceived as weak, docile, and subservient. The highly conservative Yemeni society and tribal customary traditions have played a significant role in promoting such a misconception.
For many years, Yemeni women have been sidelined in many aspects, particularly in the political arena. The role of Yemeni women has mostly been confined within the household, presuming that the most important contribution women can make is to family and society, as homemakers and mothers. There were numerous obstacles affecting Yemeni women’s status in society, such as high illiteracy, lower socioeconomic standing, and the strong grip of customary traditions and social norms which led to minimal – if not non-existent – participation of women in key decision-making spheres in Yemen.
However, as the Arab spring unfolded and change movements unraveled in Yemen, the brave Yemeni female activist Tawakkol Karman had the courage to be among the first few young Yemenis who took to the streets invoking what’s known as Yemen’s peaceful youth revolution to topple the regime’s 33-year-old dictatorship. Following her footsteps, thousands of Yemeni women of different ages, classes, regions, sects and professions have fearlessly and bravely taken to the streets to support the revolution in the process, invoking dignity, justice, freedom and democracy as their political aims. Women have taken part in change movements calling for freedom and seeking democratic change in a very creative and astonishing manner. They have broken many barriers in their aspiration for a change and building a new civilized and democratic Yemen. While it’s undeniably brave of men to have broken fear barrier and stood up against brutal dictatorship, however, Yemeni women have gone even farther by positively breaking fear, social, and traditions barriers, standing against oppression and playing a major role in bringing about democratic change. They have played a frontline role in bringing down entrenched dictatorship as they were dominantly present in change and freedom squares, marching in the streets, organizing and mobilizing change movements across Yemen, standing shoulder to shoulder with their men counterparts, struggling for a better future for their country.
Coming from different spheres of life as wives, mothers, and students, Yemeni women left their homes and took to the streets in an act of heroic and admirable protest. They took part in sit-ins, marched tirelessly, aided those injured in the demonstrations, and even ran fundraising campaigns in an effort to support the country’s ongoing revolution in every possible way. These brave and heroic women have undoubtedly broken stereotypes that dictate Yemeni women to be submissive. They have shown heroism; revealed the utmost  readiness to sacrifice; practiced their peace-loving desires by creative means; and excelled in using modern instruments to advance their aims.
The image of thousands of Yemeni women, gathering together, unanimously dressed up in black traditional dress, participating in protests and marches throughout Yemen, has astonished the whole world. These women do not all look like their western counterparts nor do they necessarily fall under the category of the emancipated woman constructed by the West, yet one thing is certain: far from the stereotypical misrepresentations of Yemeni women as submissive and confined to domestic space, they fought alongside their men counterparts, they invested the public space that was supposed to be forbidden for them and have done all of it independently and spontaneously. It is undeniably an epic accomplishment for Yemeni women to have come a long way and actively participate in such a male-dominated society.
Mobilizing unrelentingly, Yemeni women have been active – inside and outside Yemen – in steering the revolution, delivering a powerful revolutionary message and rejecting injustice in its various forms. They creatively used every available tool to make Yemenis’ voice heard. They have dominated the social media world actively using Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, and blogs. It is worth noting that the vast majority of Yemeni bloggers are women, whose words are louder than the dictator’s guns. It was those Yemeni women who forced Reuters to abide by professional and ethical unbiasedness in their coverage on Yemen’s revolution after a social media campaign known as "Shame On Reuters" was initiated by the courageous Yemeni female activist – Hind Al-Eryani and blogged about by another phenomenal Yemeni female activist - NajlaMo. They had the determination and power to reject any act of misinformation against their revolution.
Among the praiseworthy accomplishments Yemeni women have achieved, is the winning of the Nobel Peace Prize award by Tawakkol Karman and receiving the Italian Ana Maria Mamuliti 2011 international prize by photographer Arwa Othman this month. With such applaudable accomplishments, Yemeni women have indeed amazed the whole world and brought Yemen back into the spotlight of fame, reviving the positive attributes Yemen was historically known for.  One cannot feel but proud of those women and admire their extraordinary achievements.
Regardless whether Yemen’s revolution has succeeded or not yet, the success Yemeni women have achieved is irreversible. Admittedly, Yemeni women today have proven their existence regardless of any other obstacles. Undoubtedly, women will have a bigger role to play in the post revolution era and take a significant part in shaping Yemen’s future.

Tuesday, 6 December 2011


Taiz – the heart of Yemen’s revolution and its unrelenting inspiration – has been the centre of continuous shelling by Saleh’s forces in an attempt to crush the revolution at its heart.
Many times we hear news of shelling on civilian neighborhoods in Taiz or learn about people getting killed or injured, we feel the pain of the city that has given a lot in this revolution for what all Yemenis dream of – A modern civilized Yemen. Many of us get traumatized after seeing graphic scenes of victims that have sacrificed the most valuable thing they have for their country. However, as painful as that is, it is only the tip of the iceberg as the calamities faced by people in Taiz go beyond what we read or watch in news reports. Many tragedies & hardships are incurred by people in Taiz but go unnoticed. The tragedy is indeed indescribable.

Aside from being shelled and shot at, there are economical, psychological, and social impacts to the tragedy faced by people in Taiz. The random shelling on numerous civilian neighborhoods in the city has resulted in displacement of thousands of families creating thousands of internally displaced people (IDP) which has added a new economic burden on the already poor community in a complete absence of a civil state that is supposed to take responsibility and provide for those families. Each day more families find themselves forced to escape for their lives leaving behind property, relatives, friends, familiar surroundings and established social networks. Their anguish and tragedy is indeed overwhelming.  Abdulrahman – whose house was destroyed by shelling, had to flee his house in Al-Rawdha and rent another house in Al-Hawban – a relatively safer area – talks about his struggle:
We had to flee because I was afraid my family would get killed. I didn’t care much about myself but I feared my family would get killed. I spent 6 years building my house in Al-Rawdha, then in one moment it was destroyed”. 
Luckily, Abdulrahman and his family were slightly fortunate to have some savings that enabled them to deal with the calamity and manage renting a new house and move on with their lives. Many aren’t that fortunate and find themselves left with no choice but to stay face to face with the shelling. Fleeing itself is fraught with peril. Nasser, who fled his house in Al-Hasib, had to wait days before fleeing to ensure his family won’t be a target for regime’s snipers. Due to the unsafe and chaotic situation created by the regime in many areas in Taiz, many victims of shelling were unable to make it to hospitals and were left with no choice but to bleed to death as ambulances and aid were not able to make it while rushing them to hospitals would have been a faster road to death as snipers are just meters away.
The economic effect does not stop at creating thousands of IDP but extend to a profoundly increasing number of unemployment, bankruptcy, indebtedness, and so on. Many businesses have closed down as a result, creating an equally high rate of unemployment and bankruptcy. What used to be a small business and sole source of income for many families has now become a memory of the past if not an outstanding debt some are still required to settle. Many had to resort to borrowing from relatives, friends, or anyone that can lend them any amount of money to help them survive the unexpected hardship. This has created a deeply indebted community that only a miracle can help it recover.
Psychological effects are of no less impact as many have been living in fear for their lives, running away from bullets and hiding from shelling. Thugs employed by the regime are stationed in troubled areas such as Al-Hasib & Wadi Al-Qadhi to shoot at anything that moves. This has created a seemingly insurmountable obstacle for people in managing their daily lives as fear of getting randomly shot at restricts their movements. The random shelling on civilian neighborhoods has a similar, if not greater, effect. It is now quite common to see families in Taiz gather and spend the night in one single middle room that is considered the least dangerous if shells or bullets were to hit their homes. Waleed – a resident of Bir Basha talks about what he and his family go through every night: 
Every night there’s shelling. When it starts, we all (me, my wife, and our 6 children) move into the kitchen and stay there all night long. It is the least dangerous place in our house
Reports talk of many miscarriage incidents among pregnant women as a result of anxiety, fear and shocks. Many have been traumatized and it will take years for them to recover. Children suffer the most under such circumstances. Children’s trauma will not be easily erased and it will haunt them down for years. For nearly six months, they have been enduring a mounting barrage of shells by Saleh’s forces. If they survive the shells, the calamity of seeing nearby houses getting hit has a significant impact on them. They are terrified and cry every time there’s shelling. Waleed – a resident of Bir Basha also describes the terrifying moments his children go through:
When shelling starts, the most difficult part for me and my wife is comforting our children and trying to make them stop crying. This happens every night and if they sleep, many times they would wake up from horrible nightmares”. 
It is quite evident that there are far more traumatic symptoms children suffer in Taiz. They are more fearful and more anxious. They feel there’s no hope and their only hope for the time being is to stay alive. Schooling and education among children has taken a down turn too. Many children don’t go to school because either the school is closed down or their parents won’t let them leave home because it is not safe to do so. The negative impact of shelling on families is multi-dimensional and its effect will be felt more in the years to come.
Socially, many families have found themselves in the face of a tough life ahead of them. Many people have been killed leaving behind clueless widows and several orphans who do not possess any source of income. Many newly orphaned children had to quit school and start working to earn income for their families. Such a social tragedy will have a profound effect on Yemen and its impact will be felt for years.
Deprivation of basic services such as water, cooking gas, and electricity are the least of the city’s problems. Fuel shortage has hit the city more than any other place in Yemen. Garbage is left piling up in the streets of the city in an attempt to punish the city and its people for standing against Saleh. Kidnapping and illegal detention is undeniably existing. Many families claim one or more of their members have been kidnapped and illegally detained by regime forces. Many are not sure if the detainees are still alive but almost all confirm that they are subject to torture and mistreatment.  
The magnitude of the calamities endured by people in Taiz is far greater than what we see. What’s significant is that more than any other place in Yemen, Taiz is paying a very steep price for its revolutionary stance. It’s a matter of personal revenge Saleh is taking against the city that is the heart and unrelenting inspiration of Yemen’s revolution. More calamities and hardships are incurred by the people in Taiz but get overlooked by media which focuses solely on shelling and deaths while the tragedy and its consequences go far beyond that.

Sunday, 4 December 2011

A read into Saleh's big smile - A revenge taken on Taiz

Saleh smiling while signing the GCC initiative on 23 Nov 2011 in Riyadh
I’ve always wondered whether Saleh’s big smile when signing the GCC initiative was a smile of confidence that “it isn’t over yet” or it was just a smile of arrogance so that he doesn’t look defeated. Saleh’s smile was exactly the same as the one he had on his face 17 years ago when signing the Document of Pledge & Accord on February 1994 with his then-VP Ali Salem Al-Beedh – a deal that Saleh didn’t implement, neither did he have the intention to honor.  Knowing his history of deception and maneuver, I was convinced that my first guess was the right one. Saleh never ceases to amaze when it comes to deceiving and finding ways to back off of deals. Sooner than I thought, it was quite obvious that it isn’t over yet but rather a new beginning for a rather bumpier road ahead of Yemen’s revolution. Meetings, speeches and decrees issued by Saleh soon after his return from Saudi after signing the GCC deal were meant to send messages that it was not over yet. The amnesty decree he issued was not meant to pardon anyone but rather to send a clear message to his opponents that he is still in charge. This has become the common theme reflected by Saleh’s media by highlighting everything he does while overshadowing his VP, successor and ‘supposedly’ executive power holder – Abdu Rabu Hadi.

It was clear that Saleh has returned not to oversee the implementation of the GCC initiative as he stated but rather to block the initiative from finding its way to implementation as Saleh never meant to relinquish power according to the GCC initiative but has used it to buy more time and weaken his opponents’ position, a plan which has proved effective and gave Saleh more than eight months so far.
After his return from Saudi, Saleh has felt that he lost a battle but not the whole war so he wanted an action that would enable him to re-claim the next battle, as well as take revenge for all the losses he had incurred. Sadly, the only action that meets the criteria and could help Saleh kill two birds with one stone was a brutal attack on Taiz – the heart of the revolution and its unrelenting inspiration. Taiz has always been the source of opposition and Saleh has always struggled to make mentionable wins in all elections held in Taiz. It was not hidden that Taiz has always been anti-Saleh which in revolutionaries’ dictionary is synonymous to pro-democracy. The choice Saleh made found its way to action by having his tri-aide in Taiz:  Head of security – Abdullah Qairan, Republican Guards commander – Murad Al-Awbali, and Commander of brigade 33 - Abdullah Dhab’aan. The three, who still report directly to Saleh in spite of the GCC deal, have acted under direct orders from him and launched a comprehensive war on Taiz by shelling its various civilian neighborhoods. The attacks were indiscriminate and targeted men and women, children and elderly, and even those who belong to the silent or neutral group. Dozens have been killed and hundreds were injured since Saleh’s last return from Saudi as a result of the consistent and indiscriminate attacks on civilian neighborhoods in the city. Reports by several media and news outlets showed the attacks on civilians in Taiz as ‘clashes between forces loyal to Saleh and tribesmen’ which is rather misleading as the civilized city is not tribal and tribes do not exist, unlike many parts of Yemen where tribal existence is dominant. Armed revolution protectors are not tribesmen, nor are they militia as the regime’s media label them. They are simply civilized people who had enough of Saleh’s madness and decided to stand up for what they believe. The name ‘revolution protectors’ in Taiz reflects every patriotic and revolutionary person who felt the pain of the city resulting from the brutal merciless attacks of Saleh’s regime against civilians in Taiz and decided to fight for dignity and protect humanity in the city. The emergence of revolution protectors in Taiz coupled with the determination of the city’s revolutionary protestors have made Saleh’s desire to ‘bringing the city down to its knees’ a far-fetched dream. If anything else, the city that is day and night facing shelling ranging from light to heavy artillery has humiliated Saleh by showing unrelenting determination to oust him and every bit of his regime and make them stand trial for their crimes. It was quite clear that the attacks on Taiz were pure revenge taken by Saleh against the city and its people. Saleh’s spokesmen have in numerous occasions defended the regime’s brutal actions against the city by claiming that government is trying to reclaim control and bring order & stability to the city. While the contents of such statements are unfounded as the city has never gotten out of the regime’s control, however, the idea itself reveals the hatred and revenge desire Saleh has against Taiz. Saleh has lost complete control of several parts of Yemen such as Saadah, Mareb and Al-jawf, yet never fired a bullet against armed tribesmen who took over the control of those cities. In fact, many believe that such a takeover was facilitated by Saleh to create chaos that could help him remain in power. So it is rather a genuine question to ask why Saleh had no problem losing complete control in Saadah, Mareb & Al-Jawf but found it extremely unacceptable to lose even partial control of Taiz? The answer to such a question reveals that it is not a matter of control and order but rather taking revenge against the city that has shaken Saleh’s fragile empire of 33 years old. Day by day, Saleh’s berserk attacks on Taiz have only fueled the revolution and the city’s determination to go all the way till peaceful revolution meets its goals.
Such attacks on Taiz are a clear violation to the much debated and controversial GCC initiative signed by Saleh last month. The attack on Taiz signals the collapse of the GCC deal that Saleh didn’t want to sign in the first place but did it only because he had to after being on the edge of facing sanctions that could have included travel ban and asset freeze. Although reality indicates the deal has died already or might have been born dead to begin with. It is just not pronounced dead yet as political factions that signed the deal including Yemen’s opposition parties JMP are trying to revive it in spite of all the violations the deal has stumbled upon. It is inevitable that more violations and threats to the GCC initiative will be revealed bit by bit by Saleh who apparently is still in control of every aspect of Yemen’s regime and will try to halt the deal and those who caused it to be drafted.
One thing Saleh seems to have in common with Tunisia’s Bin Ali and Egypt’s Mubarak is the inability to understand the people before it is too late. Saleh still doesn’t understand that the will of the people cannot be defied and apparently hasn’t been able to take lessons from Bin Ali’s ‘I Understand you’ and Mubarak’s  ‘I realize’ which came too late and became nothing but words history will remember against those dictators. The humiliating end Libya’s Gaddafi faced didn’t seem to have taught Saleh a lesson either as he still thinks that military action can crush the most peaceful revolution. The GCC deal provides an honorable exit for Saleh, an end that doesn't rhyme with his crimes nor does it fall in line with justice and the inevitable laws of karma which indicate that Saleh will undoubtedly hinder the GCC deal - an action that will make him dig his own grave and exist as a dictator with humiliation. Saleh’s attacks on civilians and unreasonable grip on power will undoubtedly shape the inevitable humiliating end he will have as history shows that dictators end in humiliation regardless of any other factors.