MIDDLE EAST: The evil the Saudi-led Qarta blockade represents; experienced in real time – Tola Adenle

November 18, 2017

The Middle East



The iconic image of the futuristic architectural designs with the Gulf in front, at Doha’s city center. It is interesting that several of these gems are government offices. [SOURCE:  Global Data Base of the CTBUH] 



BELOW, (First) a closer view of some of the dazzlers, including what I find the most interesting piece of architecture on the Doha Waterfront;  SECOND, Blogger takes in the view.











[Credit for above two photographs: Dr. Depo Adenle, Doha, November 2017]


The first (and only) time I had flown from Nigeria to the Middle East was seven years ago when my spouse and I traveled to Dubai. The Emirate’s buzz in Nigeria was so much that we planned a trip with a layover of a few days during a Ramadan season when hotel prices were so reduced that we were able to afford a very good room with a Gulf view.

For someone with a preference for non-stop routes across the Atlantic the 6-hour-plus flight to Dubai was a near hop from Lagos. Sights? Okay, I may be biased.  Having lived in Vegas, the city-state was – shall I say – underwhelming, a mini Vega, without the soul, pardon me.

Almost two weeks ago, we left Lagos by Qarta Airways with a stop-over at Doha, the best experience of an economy seat I’ve flown in over forty-seven years of air travel but that is not the purpose of this short essay.

It was not long after the flight took off from Lagos that I noticed the tracking map was showing names of Nigerian towns that I noticed when I flew Ethiopian Airlines to Addis on the first leg of a flight almost two years ago. The earlier trip on Emirates to Dubai, a city in the [sort of] same neighborhood with Doha took about 6 ½ hours but not this time to Doha. With Saudi leading the Emirati States and Egypt – by the nose, if I may say so – “brotherly love” that Middle East Muslims like to proclaim, was absent in the air and sea blockade that would have paralyzed many countries. And it’s not just the money from gas and oil but through the focused planning of the country’s leadership.

While the Dubai trip took an almost-straight trajectory up the Nigerian landmass, the Qarta Airways flight kept moving away eastwards, a route that took the flight path close so eastward that cities like Juba, South Sudan capital and Addis showed up as being close.

By the time the flight got out of the African continent, it had been over a bit of Northwest Somalia into the Gulf of Aden, miles up the coast of Yemen in yet more eastward swing. I became riveted to the flight map as it made a westward (inland) swing but only for a short while before flying out  another eastward swing took it back on to the Arabian Sea!

The evil in man!

Qarta Flight 1408 then flew on the Gulf Sea for, perhaps, another thirty minutes after the flood-lit panorama of Emirates cities and towns to the left first appeared in the early hours of the day.

Then, the huge bird banked left towards its home port, a peninsular on the Gulf Sea with its lone land border to the left with humongous Saudi that wants Qarta as a nation to, perhaps, disappear. Qatari “Rural areas”, towns and cities glistened under the usual Gulf States’ zillions of lights, and on the left lies one of its new and avowed enemies, “we-are-brothers but we’ll kill you unless you kill Al Jazeera”& throw away your dignity/sovereignty – Bahrain – separated by a narrow strip of the Gulf Sea.



Image result for images of Doha's new library

Inside the Qarta National Library at Doha; has a volume in excess of a million titles, not counting its rare maps and documents collections. Opened November 2017.

We had been in the air for closer to 10 hours than the 6 hours 50 minutes scheduled for the flight when we had made our reservations back in August, long before a kid – pardon me –  Saudi-throne bound prince with hegemonic dreams, principal among which is ruling over the whole of the Arabian peninsula, with Egypt as a go-fer in the evil plan. It’s a grand ambition that has seen thousands dead and dying in Yemen, and would have seen Qartar become – at best – a tiny country that can, but reduced to a has-been, and worse, a chattel in the hands of a mad scientist-type royalty gone wild.

The traveled route resembled a question mark turned on its long side: plant the tail of a question mark at Lagos and draw its long stem through the African continent with the wide top starting after – [below] the latitude of Addis below Djibouti – in a nearly-parallel line to the Yemeni Coast;  curve it slightly in the Gulf Sea but ignore the inland-and-back- to-sea mentioned above and curve it leftward around the coast of Muscat through the Gulf of Aden. What is normally the top of the question mark would have seen the flight through the strait of [Iran] Hormuz, ensuring it avoided being close to blood-y “brother”, Oman, towards the end of the inverted-type letter C at the top, down straight to Doha for a near-perfect “?” mark as figured by Dr. Adenle.





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