The Dark Prophecy of “The Last Arab”!

By: Mohammad Aburumman

تم نشره في Fri 11 March / Mar 2016. 05:17 PM - آخر تعديل في Sat 12 March / Mar 2016. 06:42 PM
  • محمد أبو رمان

The renowned Algerian novelist, Wasini Al Araj, in his new novel published this year —by “Dar Al Adab” and titled “2084, the Story of the Last Arab”, he, and from the events of the present of what has become of the Arab peoples and societies, with all of the terrifying and worrying givens of the current reality, leaps almost seven decades forward into the future of the Arab region, in light of the undergoing scenarios of political, societal, and moral collapse.

The events of the novel take place in the “Ameropa Caste” in the “Rub' al Khali” area between the Red Sea and the Strait of Hormuz. And the main character —a physicist from Arab descent, is called Adam (indications he is of Moroccan origins), and is working on a small tactical nuclear bomb, with a controlled geographic and scientific effect, in the labs of the University of Pennsylvania, designed to face up to the intensified, great threats of terrorism that have outgrown traditional warfare and firearm.

The story revolves around an attempted assassination of Adam, who was saved during the final moments in a France airport, by American federal police from the clutches of those who wanted to abduct and kill him; their identities are not clearly stated as they are either terrorists or are members of an Israeli clandestine agency (without explicit clarification) that is specialised in the assassination of Arab physicists.

Adam finds himself, after being saved, in the Ameropa castle —of the European American coalition, not knowing, though, whether he was a prisoner, or a guest of the castles protectors. Nonetheless, he continues to build his nuclear bomb with the help of a military team of nuclear scientists, some of whom are friends of his at the Pennsylvania University.

The novel is haunted with symbolism and subtle indicators, amply knitted around a tight construct of plot and information strongly tied to the complex concept of an approximation to George Orwell’s “1984”, which prophesised events in the Soviet Union, only more related to the Arab region; dark and pessimist, and —unfortunately, not fantastical, but very probable and realistic. Although visualised differently, they are nonetheless not so far from the essence of a “Dark Prophecy”!

The novel derives its events and developments from current discourses in the Arab World; the collapse of the nation state, and Arab societies turning towards sectarian, ethnic, and religious confliction, leading into internal and civil wars, and taking the region back to primitive, tribal competition over primary resources. The rise of the Iranian-Russian-Chinese axis in face of the American-European alliance; the persistence of Israel as a dominant power in the region; added the rise of the Organisation representing the new form of terrorists post-ISIS —a more intelligent, complex, effective, global organisation with a higher level of planning; coinciding the depletion of oil and the death of millions of Arabs due to internal warfare, poverty, and rivalry; and the rise of fascism in Europe as a result of the west’s struggle with the Organisation, represented by the “Little Brothers”, as opposed to the Big Brother from Orwell’s novel, wearing the slogan: “A Good Arab, is A Dead Arab”, on the Castle’s walls.

But in the novel, however, deep and precise discussions take place through its characters, in an attempt to expose the reasons behind terrorism, and the role of international powers in the shaping of Arab societies, as well as the discriminative view on Arabs and Muslims, and the dangers of the nuclear weapon and global moral hypocrisy.

Arabs, in the novel, become the “near extinct societies”, hence, Adam’s description as “The Last Arab”, along the context of the jostle that gradually led to the Arabs’ extinction, after their disappearance politically, civilly, and culturally.

More so, there dominates an overly mystique, confusing setting that immerses the novel’s characters, and some of its events and happenings. But these contradictions give beauty to the literature. For whoever said that contradictions and variations don’t exist in reality? We may also find this particular characteristic in that of Adam’s own, the novel’s main Arab character, reflects the huge culmination of contradictions in our realities and societies today!