Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Seeds of Conflict

Although the treaty of Versailles had tremendous potential, its effort to build a long lasting peace failed; the peace was built on quicksand.  The ideas proposed in the treaty such as Wilson’s 14 points were good in theory, but not effective in practice, because the only point that was implemented was the formation of the League of Nations.  Every participant country in the war had a different definition of justice in his mind, because different countries underwent different struggles.  What could be viewed as just from the American viewpoint could’ve been viewed as the complete opposite from the French viewpoint.  France suffered greatly because of the war since most of the war had been fought on their soil, so they felt that Germany needed to be punished more severely.  The United States entered the war relatively late, and did not undergo what France did, as a result they didn’t feel as strongly as France did regarding the punishment of Germany.  As countries’ opinions differed, they had to come to a compromise.  Compromises do not always provide satisfaction, and this particular compromise left the victorious as well as the vanquished countries bitter; the countries were not satisfied and wanted more than what the treaty offered.

            The seeds of conflict began to be sown even before the actual treaty as Russia and Germany were deliberately alienated from the treaty.  Germany and Russia were purposefully excluded from the treaty leading to the growth of the strong feeling of bitterness within these two countries.  Germany was excluded because it was seen as the country ‘responsible’ for the war, while Russia was excluded for its early withdrawal from the war and its current civil war.  Decisions were made concerning the fate of these two countries while both of them were not present.  Obviously the peace would be temporary if not all of the participating countries were present to decide on matters and come to compromises, especially on matters concerning their own country.  Russia alienated by the allies lost territory, while Finland, Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania (formerly part of Russia) became independent nations.  Russia suffered land loss and wasn’t even present when these decisions were made.  As for Germany, it suffered much more than land losses.  If these two countries were present in the treaty, it would have definitely been more effective.  All participating countries should’ve taken part in this treaty, not just the ‘winners’.  Russia and Germany did not have a say whatsoever in what was happening to them, and as a result were left embittered and unsatisfied with what they viewed as unjust decisions concerning them.

            As for Germany, it was held completely responsible for the war, by having to sign the War Guilt Clause.  Germany undoubtedly played a big role in the war, but should have the sole responsibility of the war been put on its shoulders?  Germany not only had to claim sole responsibility for the war, but it had to pay for it as well both in the literal and metaphorical meanings.  Germany suffered a great deal of territorial losses, for example Alsace Lorraine was given back to France.  All of Germany’s colonies were stripped away from them becoming mandates.  This was a significant loss to the Germans, because a large fraction of their economy depended on resources gained from its colonies.  The creation of Poland and the Polish Corridor- an area that separated Germany from Russia aggravated many Germans, because their land was being reduced and new states were being formed.  Rhineland, an area between France and Germany, was occupied by the allies planting a seed of future conflict as well. The actual financial costs that were supposed to be paid by Germany were about 33 billion dollars over the course of thirty years.  Germany also suffered militarily, for its land force was reduced to 100,000 men, and it was not allowed to produce or import weapons, nor was it allowed to have U-boats or aircrafts.  Germany paid for the war through territorial losses, economic losses, military losses, and most importantly through the humiliation of signing the War Guilt Clause; the Germans were embittered.  Aware that they were going to pay for the war for the rest of their lives, the Germans grew hateful and bitter.

            The territorial changed also contributed to the presence of future conflict.  Not only were Germany and Russia affected by the treaty, everyone was.  Austria-Hungary, a central power, suffered land losses, for several new counties were created from its empire such as Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia.  Czechoslovakia was composed of three types of peoples, the Germans, the Czechs, and the Slavs. This mixture of peoples obviously was going to lead to nationalistic movement, leading to future conflict.  As for the Ottoman Empire, it lost a lot of its empire, for its lands in South West Asia were carved into a mandate.  Palestine, Iraq, and Trans Jordan were under British control, while Lebanon and Syria were under French control.  This also led to nationalistic fervor and hatred in the hearts of the conquered peoples.  Britain’s control of Palestine eventually led to the development of the State of Israel, thus releasing a conflict still evident today.  As for Italy and Japan, they entered the war on the Allies’ side hoping to gain land, but they were left unsatisfied when they gained less than what they wanted.  Finally, the people in the mandates (formerly German colonies) were furious at the way in which the allies disregarded their desire for independence, thus also leading to nationalism and bitterness.

            People were left embittered after the Treaty of Versailles; everyone felt cheated and betrayed.  This feeling of betrayal undoubtedly would lead to emerging conflicts between nations.  No country was satisfied, some countries were alienated, they suffered from territorial, economic, and military losses, they were mistreated, etc.  The decisions made in the Treaty of Versailles did not please the majority of people, leading to the growth of bitterness within countries.  Instead of building a long lasting peace, the Treaty of Versailles did the opposite by failing to satisfy the needs of the people.

Samar Al Ansari
Grade 11.5
Dec 14,2004

Saturday, September 17, 2011

What Tenderness Can Do

Introduction: Does an act of kindness ever go unrewarded? No it doesn’t. To hear the phrase “Thank you” is enough for some people. Tenderness can really change a person. Roger was a confused boy, who didn’t know right from wrong until he met Mrs. Jones. She gave him tenderness, love, and care; things he wasn’t used to. At first he wanted to leave Mrs. Jones, then he was reluctant about leaving, and finally he didn’t want to leave. Roger was a changed young man and he didn’t even know it.

At the beginning, all Roger wanted to do was take the easy way out.”No’m”, said the being dragged boy. ‘I just want you to turn me loose.Pg1”. This quote represents how all Roger wants to do is leave. He doesn’t want to face the consequences of his actions. Instead of Roger working for a pair of blue suede shoes, he tries to steal money to buy them from Mrs. Jones. That night, Roger chose to take the easy way out. He doesn’t want to go anywhere with Mrs. Jones. All Roger has in his life is trouble, and why should he add to that. He has no family, no love in his life, and he doesn’t want to add to all that misery. Going to jail will be the absolute worst for him, no one understands him. The mere thought of adding more emptiness to his life was frightening, and all he wanted to do was take off. At least his old life would be a better life than the one in jail. He thought stealing a purse would be the easiest thing in the world, easier than working, but to his surprise he could no longer run away from his actions. He was stuck with Mrs. Jones.

A change in Roger’s character develops; he starts liking to stay with Mrs. Jones. “Roger looked at the door-looked at the woman –looked at the door-and went to the sink. Pg 2. ” As you can tell by reading the excerpt, Roger starts to develop a change; he is starting to like it there. Sure, he is still scared of her, he doesn’t know her that well and is scared of what a strong woman like Mrs. Jones could do to him. He doesn’t know that he wants to stay consciously but deep down in his heart he likes the fact that someone is caring for him. He comes from a broken home, and when he tries to steal a woman’s purse, she takes him in. She doesn’t take him into punish him, or even to report him to the police, but to feed and wash him. That is the average response from a woman who has just been robbed. He is wondering,”Why is she so nice to me; I tried to steal her purse.” He probably didn’t eat a home cooked meal in a long time, and probably had no one to talk to. Out of the blue comes this truly unique individual who starts to talk about herself and her past life. No one is ever nice to him, and Roger won’t admit it, but he actually starts to like it there.

A final change in Roger’s character develops; he doesn’t want to leave such a warm and loving home.”The boy wanted to say something else other than ‘Thank you ma’aam’ to Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones, but he couldn’t do so as he turned at the barren stoop and looked at the large woman in the door.pg 3”.Roger doesn’t want to leave the only good thing that has happened to him in a long time. The environment in which Mrs. Jones lived in was such a warm environment, and he would be a fool to leave all that. But he didn’t, Mrs. Jones was the one eager for him to leave at the end. Isn’t it ironic, how at the beginning all Roger wants to do is leave, but Mrs. Jones is so eager to take him home with her? And at the end, when Roger wants to stay, she is eager for him to leave? He wanted to say something more to her, like: “How can I ever repay you?”,”Why are you doing all this?, and “Can I visit you again?”But she doesn’t want to start a relationship with him; she has taught him right from wrong and wanted him to succeed on his own. She shut the door just like that, and he had to face his empty life again. The life where he had no family, food Roger, etc. He had found something so good in that home, and that was Mrs. Luella Bates Washington Jones, the woman who touched him deeply; the woman he would never forget it.

Conclusion: Roger left Mrs. Jones’s porch leaving something behind. He left behind his past life.; a life with stealing, no love and no work. Mrs. Jones’s tenderness really did change Roger’s life. Maybe Roger doesn’t know that yet, but he will start acting differently in his life because of Mrs. Jones’s influence on him. No one what will happen to our dear friend Roger, but he will never go back to his past life, that is guaranteed.


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

مؤلفات أم سمر

:متوفرة حاليا في

 المكتبة الوطنية، شارع المعارض، المنامة
مكتبة الأيام -الكشكول، شارع المعارض،المنامة
ذا بوك كيس، شارع البديع
 مكتبة واي إين، الحمراء، بيروت
للعلم ستذهب عائدات هذه الكتب للأعمال الخيرية باسم الحبيبة سمر

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

"كتاب "سمر معنا

:متوفرحاليا في
البحرين: لدى المكتبة الوطنية، شارع المعارض، المنامة

 لبنان: لدى مكتبة واي إين، الحمراء، بيروت

للعلم ستذهب عائدات هذا الكتاب و الكتب السابقة للأعمال الخيرية باسم الحبيبة سمر 

Sunday, September 04, 2011

Death Anniversary Day

I want to celebrate your life today,
Your death anniversary day,

With white lilies, and roses everywhere
And incense scent filling the air.

I will spend some time in your bedroom
And spray it with your favorite perfume,

Remembering the chats and laughs we had
Reliving memories; the happy and sad

I will view your things and recall
The stories behind them all

And listen to your music collection as well
Recalling the comments you used to tell.

I will gaze at your picture frame
Hear your beautiful voice calling my name

Telling me, “Five years have passed, Mother
Since fate separated us from each other

Your feelings are still very raw
You didn’t forget for a moment, I know.

You remember this day with great pain
Reminiscing the events again and again.

Recalling the worst day in your life
Is like stabbing your heart with a knife

The unexpected phone call and what followed
And the hard facts that you after swallowed,

The flashback of this traumatic event,
Your helplessness and inability to prevent,

Will haunt you as long as you live
As moments of that day you always relive.

Yet, despite your pain, you kept my legacy going
Honoring my name and keeping it glowing

Thank you Beloved Mother, for keeping me alive
God bless you, and help you continue to survive.”

Randah R. Hamadeh, Copyright©2011
Written in loving memory of my daughter
Samar Ahmed Al Ansari (4/4/1988-4/9/2006)

تعليق على سمر معنا

Dear Randah-Um Samar

Read it from cover to cover all in one go.

It is true what you said. I felt one with YOU. Tears streamed down my cheeks, cried, smiled, bit my lip and clenched my guts. True much of what you said is what I feel and like to say and shout aloud. Your voice of sorrow is my voice as well.

You said it very well without fear or a mask.

With Love

Najwa Mounla- Um Haas

سمر معنا

ISBN 978-99901-15-74-1 رقم الناشر الدولي    
 الناشر: المؤلفة
مملكة البحرين  في 4/9/2011

Thursday, September 01, 2011