September 18, 2015

Yemen Blog: Another day of life

Written by Buthaina Haikal – Programme and Finance Assistant

Today I was awoken by the sound of airstrikes and rockets, sounds so powerful that they shake the bed. Such moments remind me of those first few days of the war, because these rockets are unexpected; the last time we heard such explosions, continuous and thunderous, was before Eid. Today is a terrible day for all the people of my beautiful and besieged city of Sana’a.

The same explosions awaken my terrified family, and we asked ourselves what could be happening to make today’s bombardment so brutal; who could the Saudis be targeting? The rockets are very loud, and very close. We can hear them falling into our street outside. My younger sister jumps into my arms to be hugged. She, like all the other children in my family, cries and shakes. All morning rockets rain down over Sana’a. In the afternoon they stop, but even so children are too afraid to go outside and play; instead they stay inside shying away from windows. Everyone is afraid to leave their homes.

At 4pm the rocket strikes begin again, and we hear a huge explosion at the Ministry of Defence on AlOrdhi Street. My cousins saw the rocket explode in front of their eyes, and felt the pressure of the blast on their bodies. In the midst of this situation after the rocket explode, they decide to go to the scene and look at the damage before security forces close the street. It is a dangerous but instinctive kind of curiosity which compels them to bear witness to their cities destruction.


But life goes on in Sana’a, however disrupted, however distorted. Despite this war men must still earn their living. Student still have to study for their exams. But how do we carry on as normal? How could anyone study in this environment? As the rockets fall do they just wonder if tomorrow will be quiet enough to take an exam, or if it will be as dangerous and unpredictable as today?

As the day draws to a close I can see that my entire family is exhausted with fear and worried about the future that we face. Even whilst they sleep my family cannot relax; stress has made people talk in their sleep, my little sister cries unconsciously. I see this and I ask myself what purpose this war serves? What have those who have been fighting gained from these five months of war? Are they satisfied with their actions? Most importantly I ask myself if I will live to see the end of this war.

*Image taken from*

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YEMEN BLOG is SPARK’s blog of stories, updates and opinions by SPARK staff, of their personal experiences of the Yemen conflict on the ground after Saudi led military intervention- Operation Decisive Storm- launched and first struck the capital, Sana’a.  If you would like to share your own experiences of the conflict, we welcome external contributions; to contribute please contact