THE foundation of countries is a long-term vision. Empowerment of future generations is required by the era, as well as the progress and development of knowledge tools which qualify them to participate in the renaissance decision.
Kuwait is not an exception; so initiatives come from the farsighted head of State who is keen on seeing the progress of the country after decades, thereby, contributing to the modern movement.
In all countries in the world, even in the most deep-rooted democracies, the last decision is in the hands of the ruler who either leads his country’s ship towards safety or leaves it to struggle in the middle of the turbulent sea; falling into the trap of problems, and then losing its prestige along with the death of its law and its people being lost among bargains.
His Highness the Amir is one of the men who make the future of their countries through wisdom of choice and guidance of directives. Even when authorities neglected their work, he pushed them by taking a firm decision with solutions coming from drawers to start the work.
Therefore, he issued directives to relieve Kuwait of a chronic headache that lasted for decades and tarnished its image, contrary to its humanitarian demeanor. I mean here the Bedoun issue which, in fact, is the ‘cause’ of the century for Kuwait. As per the directives of His Highness, the solutions should be humanitarian in order to give everyone their rights; provided such solutions do not violate the constitutional and legal texts, and most importantly, the traditions and human covenants. It is then imperative to close this file that contains a lot of tragedies.
This file has been a source of political and electoral investments and playing with the emotions and feelings of Kuwaitis and non-Kuwaitis for decades. In the National Assembly, it has been transformed into a subject of conflict between MPs and candidates. It has been a tool for bargaining in the face of the government, up to the extent that laws passed by the Assembly in connection with solutions to the issue have been hampered. Nevertheless, the political investment was useless, so the players left the issue in the shelf until it became a paper used by some international bodies against Kuwait. There have been negative consequences as the issue turned into a source of security, humanitarian, economic and political troubles.
Sabah Al-Ahmad, a man with sensitive national feelings, is the Amir who closely follows up every small and big issue. His wisdom overrides anything else. He knows where the supreme interest of the country is, so he works as head of all authorities to give motivation and outline solutions.
This was the case when infrastructure institutions failed to launch major projects such as Sabah Al-Salem University, Sheikh Jaber Bridge and hospitals in a number of areas; in addition to the failure to complete the infrastructure that makes Kuwait an outstanding Arab cultural figure.
Jaber Al-Ahmad Cultural Center and other cultural institutions which raised the name of Kuwait in the region, the Arab world and the international community are concrete pieces of evidence.
This was a natural prelude to the transformation of Kuwait into a global financial and trade center, and to serve as a point of contact between important countries. The North Economic Zone Project, including the Free Trade Zone along the border with Iraq, was initiated by His Highness the Amir during his recent visit to Baghdad. It is aimed at fortifying a major economic role for Kuwait and to serve as the foundation for the reconstruction of Iraq and Syria considering its distinctive geographical location, such as the Mubarak Al-Kabeer Port, Silk City and the development of islands. These projects necessitate the implementation of agreements and protocols signed during his recent visit to China in order for the construction wheels to move forward.
Before all this, there was a historic political station for the protection of Kuwait from the bloody chaos that it prepared for in case of involvement in the so-called ‘Arab Spring’. The country was on the verge of collapse, if not for the decisive step to amend the Election Law and lift injustices through the one-vote decree.
This was a major turning point in the parliamentary life and correction of the democratic process; otherwise, Kuwait would have witnessed a volcano spewing the lava of sectarian conflicts.
Thus, when we say that the State is progressing through the decision of its ruler, we are referring to local and regional experiences. Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and other Gulf countries would not have witnessed such development along with human development without the decisions of their rulers.
Today, the Bedoun issue has been put on the anvil of solution and the odd voices have begun to fade. The instruments playing on contradictions and details that leaked the demon of racism have negatively affected the nature of the open Kuwaiti society which recognizes the importance of individual initiative. This society paves way for everyone to play their role without the feeling of injustice. The outline of solutions came after the hard work of all those who contributed – from the National Assembly Speaker, Council of Ministers and Saleh Al-Fadalah to the smallest official. This will put an end to the file that is full of humanitarian problems. His Highness is recognized as international humanitarian leader.
This is Sabah Al-Ahmad. We call on everyone to pray to God Almighty to prolong his life so as to continue his humanitarian achievements and restore Kuwait’s effective role at all levels. This is a role we lost due to misinterpretation of the meaning of freedom of opinion and distorted democracy without a master.
By Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times