About the smile of Al-Shawahi and the ugliness of war – Yemenat news site

About the smile of Al-Shawahi and the ugliness of war – Yemenat news site


Anas Al-Qubati

Abdullah Al-Shawahi was the most prominent feature of our neighborhood in the city of Taiz, from which the war forcibly displaced us 8 years ago.

I did not know about the death of Al-Shawahi until two days before his son, my friend Abdrabbuh Al-Shawahi, when I saw a post on his Facebook page in which there was a prayer for his deceased father..

Al-Shawahi passed away in August 2022, dreaming of returning to his home in Al-Zahraa neighborhood in the Kalaba neighborhood, that neighborhood that has turned into ruins, and it seems that the curse of the site has taken hold of it, just as the state has taken hold of Yemen, so our neighborhood is located to the west of the Central Security Camp, and to the north of the palace Al-Jumhuriyyah, on the line of contact between the belligerents, and all of this made it receive the largest amount of shells, bullets and shrapnel, and before that dozens of air raids..

During the ten years that I lived in Al-Zahraa neighborhood, Abdullah Al-Shawahi was not only a neighbor, but a father, brother and friend. His smile associated with junipers whenever he met you or called him was part of our daily routine. Therefore, when we missed him, we would go to a place on the sidewalk where the window of his house was in front of us to call him. He sticks his head out of the window smiling and shivering, and if we don’t find him during the day, we will certainly find him in the evening on the stairs where we used to spend hours before going to sleep, and the most prominent thing in them is Abdullah’s laughter and his great arrogance..

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We were the few who decided to stay in the neighborhood for a month after the outbreak of the war, and Al-Shawahi was the most prominent of us, as he could not bear to leave the neighborhood as a displaced person, and like us, he hoped that the war would soon stop.

When the air strikes during the last days increased our stay in the neighborhood, Al-Shawahi used to call me reassuringly after each raid, and in the last night we spent in the neighborhood, and it was the longest and worst night, the raids on the Central Security and the Republican Palace exceeded ten raids, and there was no one left on the windows of our houses Glass only and the pressure caused by the raids scatter into small grains, just as the last steadfast in the neighborhood swells at dawn. That night, Al-Shawahi told me on the phone: survival is no longer possible, we have to save ourselves and our families, and he ended the call with a loud shriek for war and its princes..

In the early hours of the morning, we all left on foot towards the palace tour. We saw the doors of the shops open and marginalized, and many of their contents were left in the street as a result of the violence of the night raids. We passed with difficulty on the wreckage of glass and the goods of the economic institution. We left, taking only some clothes and belongings with us. We hope that the bombing will stop soon, especially after announcing the end of the Decisive Storm and the beginning of the Storm of Hope, but hope has faded and the war has dragged on, and here is the ninth year around the corner.

I was displaced to my village in al-Qubeitah, and al-Shawahi to Aden, and we remained in the hope that we would meet again in our neighborhood, but the prolonged war and its repercussions occupied everyone and made everyone concerned with the daily problems they face, and kept them from asking about their loved ones and their former neighbours.

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My last contact with Abdullah al-Shawahi was in September 2021, and his tone of voice indicated that the war had weighed heavily on him, but I sensed a longing within him to return to his home in Taiz.

Al-Shawahi was an employee of Taiz Electricity, and everyone, management, employees, and contractors, knew him well, with his constant smile, coupled with his famous junipers, which made everyone equal, just as we, his neighbors and residents of his neighborhood, knew him.

Al-Shawahi came to the city of Taiz in the year 1986 among the displaced people who were forced to flee by the events of January 13, and after the unit he did not return to his hometown of Lawdar in Abyan, preferring to stay in Taiz, which he loved to live in, but he was not even thinking of leaving it..

With the death of Abdullah Al-Shawahi, I feel that the glimmer of hope to return to my neighborhood in Taiz has dissipated. There is no longer any temptation to return after being without Abdullah Al-Shawahi.

Eternity, mercy and tranquility for the soul of Abdullah Al-Shawahi.



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