Political Maturity and National Dialogue
At a time when the demonstrations and protests continue unabated,
sometimes accompanied by rioting, gas bombs and smoke from burnt
tyres, all political parties are still holding onto to their previous
positions, while the community and civil institutions witness a
high level of polarisation, continued social strife and high doses
of sectarian incitement fuelled by the religious, media and political
At the human rights level, and despite the efforts which have
been made to rectify what has been destroyed by political conflicts,
this conflict alone keeps the tension on the streets alive and breeds
actions and reactions that leave the Human Rights as the main casualty
in most cases.
Nevertheless there are some indications of maturity in some political
practices and positions. However, the true test of this maturity
is whether dialogue can be achieved between political opponents.
The more successful the dialogue, the closer the country will be
to ending the political stagnation and solving the social and human
There is a regional and international consensus on the importance
of a national dialogue which could result in a political consensus
that would safeguard the country on the long term. Short term solutions
have been proven to be outdated. Such dialogue needs a long time
in order to produce the necessary changes desired. It also requires
mutual compromises and a strategic vision away from short-term interests.
Although the calls for dialogue are encouraging, there are doubts
concerning the ripeness of the re?ional and local circumstances.
Unfortunately, until now, local political parties have failed to
prepare themselves enough for national dialogue.
It is a pity to see the inability of the political parties to
present initiatives in order to find a way out of a problem that
could easily be overcome if the concerned parties would place the
interest of the country above their own, the bond of citizenship
above narrow factionalism, and stay away from the stubbornness and
narrow mindedness. It is saddening to see Bahrain, which used to
be ahead in political reform and democratic development and is known
historically for its tolerance, is still suffering f?om a futile
schism that threatens to break up the country.
National responsibility obliges all parties to behave selflessly,
rise above the pettiness, and work effortlessly through constructive
dialogue with no confrontation and recrimination in order to find
a way out of the crisis to save the country and enable it to resume
the march along the road to reforms and progress. This responsibility
also requires that intellectuals, writers, scholars and peace and
stability advocates, play a role in guiding the society and restoring
harmony and tolerance.