Yesterday … the late Amir Ahmed Al-Jaber, and today … HH the Amir Mishal Al-Ahmad

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IT is no secret how much today resembles yesterday. This is in reference to what events that transpired in the past few months that prompted His Highness the Amir Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah to take necessary measures to safeguard Kuwait. It is part of a long historical process during which the country went through many periods of growth, renaissance, setbacks, and threats to the national destiny. On this basis, it is not possible to separate what happened at the beginning of the 20th century from today’s events. Perhaps we, as Kuwaitis, should have learned from the events of the past and developed the experience for the better, instead of retreating and going backwards.

Ahmed Al-Jarallah

The inspiration behind this introduction stems from the image of His Highness the Amir turning the wheel to start operations at Al-Zour Refinery, which is reminiscent of a historic moment during the reign of the late Amir Sheikh Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah on June 30, 1946, when he turned the wheel of the oil pipeline in Ahmadi, signifying Kuwait’s first overseas oil shipment. Prior to this historical moment, a series of events had transpired in the country. It began in the year 1938 with the election of the second Shura Council, coinciding with various internal and regional events as a result of reckless adventures, the exploitation of British colonialism, and the emergence of the new monarchy in Iraq.

Local events strike the chord of exploiting influence in order to impose their conditions on Kuwait, especially in oil export operations. Also, on that day, the global political landscape was characterized by different currents. These included the aftermath of the Bolshevik Revolution and its global impact, as well as the emergence of various regional parties such as populist, nationalist, and Islamic parties, alongside calls for the restoration of the Ottoman Caliphate. Like all societies, the Kuwaiti society was impacted by these ideas, to such an extent that a limited demonstration by Kuwaitis took place in 1939 in demand for the annexation of Kuwait to Iraq, as a result of the incitement of “Qasr Al- Zuhur Radio” in Iraq, which was run by King Ghazi.

Prior to this, the second Shura Council elected in late 1938 went against what the Kuwaitis wanted and was therefore dissolved by order of the Amir of the country Sheikh Ahmad Al-Jaber. This is because some of its members exceeded their agreed-upon limits when approved by the council, to such an extent that they tried to impose something that conflicted with Kuwait’s social traditions. This was rejected by the people of the country, who supported the dissolution of the Shura Council. After that, a lot of water flowed under the bridges.

However, in 1962, the Constitution that is currently in effect was drawn up but it was also greatly abused and violated several times. The situation had deteriorated to such an extent that demands deviated from the national social contract. Nation representatives and executives encroached upon the powers of the executive authority, and the judiciary was undermined. Various types of practices of prioritizing personal interests over national interests became prevalent the national interest became prevalent. If the events of 1938 and 1939 left some scars on the second democratic experience after the Shura Council in 1921, then the circumstances that occurred during that period may be very similar to the circumstances of today.

Was it due to the beating of the drums of war from 1936 until it ignited in 1939? Or was it because some of the Kuwaiti executives did not realize the criticality of the situation at that time? What happened in recent years and the current regional events are no different from before, but today they are more sensitive.

For this reason, it was necessary to exercise caution in making decisions, and to be wise and prudent in handling matters with great care. This is why the warnings were announced more than once by His Highness the Amir, and coincidence would have it fall on the shoulders of the son of Sheikh Ahmad Al-Jaber, as if history was repeating itself. Today, His Highness the Amir Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad is working to stop political violence and thwart the attempts of corrupt people to steal national wealth. He has also started managing the wheel of development, which had stopped since 1992, by managing the launch of the Zour Refinery.

He also took upon himself the responsibility of maintaining the country’s national security by imposing its stability locally. We have said in the past and we repeat today – We are before a ruler who has his country’s renaissance in mind, and is working to restore Kuwaiti pioneership, as his father did 86 years ago. That is why I affirmed His Highness the Amir Sheikh Mishal Al-Ahmad’s statement – Within 80 to 100 years, the nation – any nation – can produce a leader capable of awakening it from its slumber, eliminating its obstacles, and revitalizing it.

By Ahmed Al-Jarallah
Editor-in-Chief, the Arab Times
[email protected]

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