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The Farmer, The Warrior, The Merchant, The Lazy, & The Whore

August 23, 2011

In another life when I was studying at Al Akhawayn University I had an international relations professor called Dr. Kalpakian who told us once this: ‘’there was once a father who had 4 sons, the elder became a farmer and moved to Morocco, the second became a warrior and settled in Algeria, the third became a merchant and went to Tunisia, and the last one was so lazy that he remained at his father’s house in Libya’’. I remembered this tale now that we are living the time of harvests of the Arab Spring and would like to revisit each brother to see how they’ve been doing!

The Farmer: The farmer spent 12 centuries building his feudal kingdom, alternating periods of oppression and prosperity. Yet, despite the strange rituals he has been imposing on his people like kissing his hand, declaring himself holy by the constitution, or his mania of collecting human snakes, the farmer did a great job in the poor kingdom of Morocco. He inaugurated infrastructures, readjusted the structure of the economy and made the country a small paradise visited by 10 million tourists per year. In addition the Farmer built strong ties with the kingdom of Europa and is trying to reconcile between modernity and tradition which makes the citizens of Morocco looks schizophrenics most of the time!

The Warrior: The Warrior brother was so strong and brave in his youth that he liberated Marseille during WWII and sacrificed 1million martyr during the independence of Algeria from France. But once all great wars ended he found himself with a huge army without a job to do, so he started unnecessary civil war, a war with his brother the farmer and ever a war with Egypt about football! The people of the warrior brother will rise one day against social injustice and will condemn the generals who are stealing the country’s wealth; it’s just not their time yet!

The Merchant: He is the most charismatic of the four brothers. He can sell anything to anyone at any price! He lives in a country which is very open to foreigners and new tendencies and where women enjoy a great deal of freedom. One day a big dragon came to their land and cut the heads of women wearing Hijab and the tongues of men expression their anger, but the Merchant didn’t react because he was wise enough to wait until his offspring are well educated and until the house he was building is strong enough to resist the dragon. One day the brother realised that the dragon was allergic to Jasmines, so he planted so many that the dragon who hated religion escaped to the most religious country in the world!

The Lazy: The lazy brother was feeling misunderstood. It’s not that he is idle; it’s just that he enjoys more the simplicity of Bedouin life under a million stars in the big Sahara desert. One day a Jewish clown came to Libya and convinced its inhabitants to wear green sunglasses to the point that they started seeing everything around them green whereas in reality it was deserted and arid. Inspired by his merchant brother, the lazy decided to fight the evil clown and to die for the land of his ancestors and to clean Libya Zanga Zanga from the green glasses effect. Now on the Lazy deserves to have another name: The Brave!

The Whore: In fact the four brothers had a sister too which they chose to forget about because she was so rebellious. The sister was so charming and beautiful, with her pyramidal humps and her longue generous hair flowing like the Nile River. The sister was so adventurous during her youth that she decided to escape to Egypt and get enrolled in the Army. However, the poor girl didn’t seem to understand what happens to innocent girls in the army! She was raped and imprisoned for 58 years, and worse of all she was prostituted to her Eastern neighbour by the ruling generals to the extent that everyone forgot her real name ‘’Oum Eduniya’’ and started calling her The Whore. Despite her harsh condition the whore managed to fall in love with a Tunisian man who covered her naked body with Jasmine flowers, and so she gave birth secretly to a blessed baby: The Revolution. Unfortunately, we heard that the army generals are looking for the whore’s baby to slaughter him at birth and kill any hope of change!

I think it’s high time for a family reunion for the four brothers and their sister to support each other and learn from their experiences and why not live together in the same big house again!

One comment

  1. Sarah, this story was relayed to you: it is a story that came to me from a teacher who had studied at Al Azhar — it was sadly used to put down Libyan students there:

    I like the reunion idea though, especially if a good free trade agreement in thrown in along with a door open to Mauritania and North Sudan.



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