Please do not ask me to be silent. Allow me to breathe (2)

The pain is so great that I forgot to mention that my mother, who was liberated from her husband, was seven months pregnant. She gave birth to a baby boy after less than two months in the camp. He was named with the blessing of the Polisario front, after a member of the executive committee (the nine great leaders of the front) to whom we owed our liberation. 

 

Let’s not go through how she managed her situation with childbirth and breastfeeding, and raising children who then became five, the oldest of whom was 12 years old. They were brought to the camp by the front in haste, barefoot and still in their sleepwear. I am not exaggerating, this is what happened. We did not imagine that our house, whose walls were our shelter, would let us down and collapse in a moment on our remains and our things, including our sandals. I will not go into detail about everything that happened, for it is all so painful and we all have a story.

 

I ask these priests and monks of the twenty-first century Inquisition.

 

You kidnapped me ... you liberated me... you took me to you, call it as you may. I was barely ten years old. And you .. you are the one who came to me and uprooted me like a plant on October 6, 1979 from my city Smara.. you took me with your "mercy" to replant me in your “Rabouni” garden, on the pretext that I was going to grow in salty soil and you feared that I would die.

 

I accepted that you liberated me, and that you only had compassion for me, and I testify that in order to set me free you paid a dear price, you lost 60 martyrs. And that killing my sisters and tearing my family apart was by "mistake", even if you didn't say so.

 

I accepted to live under the canvas of a tent instead of our concrete house, which you destroyed by "mistake", and I accepted to forget my parents and my friends, God will compensate for it.

 

I grew up as you wanted me. I studied in the schools you wanted according to the programs you chose. Until I became fluent in your pronunciation of words instead of my  native, the one you liberated me from. You even showered your love on me and made me become your hand that strikes and your ear that hears. You made me a policeman, and what policeman? The best.

 

Now you come asking me to be silent. Did you forget? Shall we retell the story, and how you liberated me, raised me, taught me and trained me under the banner of liberation? Aren't we liberated?

 

I will forget you said that and I will finish the story.. The story continues.

 

Mustapha Salma Ould Sidi Mouloud is a former police chief of the Polisario Front, and political dissident.

 

 

 

24/12/2020