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CORRUPTION is almost devouring the state. The only solution is to get out of its stomach, which keeps asking for more. Given that the state is a human being, if bestowed with a brain, he works on building with vigor and zeal, and sticks to the right path in everything. However, if he falls into the clutches of whims, tribalism and sectarianism and puts selfishness above everything else, he will destroy himself and his country.
After six decades of the presence of the state of institutions, and many slogans and aspirations, has the Kuwaiti person changed? Or are we living today in a response that was imposed on us, because there are those who have abandoned reason and left the field for greediness on everything that is unreasonable?
It is through education that change of nations begins. If a person excels in it, he builds a strong and capable state, and protects himself, his future, and the future of his children. But if he fails, he will inflict calamities upon himself!
For a few number of years, Kuwait has been experiencing a kind of free fall. Corruption has pervaded all of its institutions. The rational executive decision authority that is able to ward off risks has been absent. This led to the infiltration of a group of MPs to usurp the powers of the government, which, if caught, would resign by virtue of fear in order to avoid making a bold decision. Hence, the ailment of the executive head sickened the entire country.
Perhaps the story “The Father and the Newspaper” by the Brazilian novelist Paulo Coelho in his collection of stories “Like A Flowing River”, which was published in 2006, will lead us on the right path of re-correction.
In this story, Coelho wrote – A father was trying to read the newspaper, but his little son kept pestering him.
Finally, the father grew tired of this. He tore a page from the newspaper – one that bore a map of the world – and cut it into several pieces before handing them to his son.
He said, “Right now you’ve got something to do. I’ve given you a map of the world and I want to see if you can put it back together correctly”.
He resumed his reading, knowing that the task would keep the child occupied for the rest of the day.
However, 15 minutes later, the boy returned with the map.
“Has your mother been teaching you geography?”, asked his father with astonishment.
The boy replied, “I don’t even know what that is. But there was a photo of a man on the other side of the page, so I put the man back together and realized that I had put the world map back together as well”.
It was a spontaneous statement but one that was beautiful and with a deep meaning – “When I rebuilt the human being, I rebuilt the world”.
Sometimes coincidences lead us to creative solutions that end many problems. This child by chance rebuilt the world. On the other hand, in Kuwait, despite six decades of being a state of institutions, we have returned to square one. The state is going adrift, eroded by various aging diseases, such that the ambition for reform has become like a feverish patient.
Therefore, we have no escape from returning to building the human being, for he is the foundation. If he is strong, the state will recover, but if he is sick, all values will fall, and with them, the society and the state will fall.
Is it possible for us to get someone like this child who took advantage of the opportunity and reconstructed the world from the image of man? Or will stubbornness and the principle of “What you see is what you get” destroy Kuwait like the way the people of Pharaoh were destroyed?
By Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times