It’s now 2017. Eight years have passed since 2008, the time when mankind was threatened with extinction according to the prophecy of the famous Japanese anime which is known in the Arab world as Adnan and Lina.
Who doesn’t remember this famous cartoon that mesmerized children and even adults in the Arab world, particularly in the Gulf. During the 1980’s thanks to its interesting events, the supernatural abilities of Adnan, the mysteriousness of grandpa - Lina’s grandfather - the depiction of earth where there are no more humans and the sea which is full of the ruins of ships from the terrible and destructive war?
The cartoon’s original name was Future Boy Conan. It premiered in 1978 and was based on the story The Original Tide by Alexander Key.
Each episode of the cartoon began with the same introduction while playing music that had a great impact and showing scenes that had us all gaze in wonder. The introduction stated: “World War III erupted in 2008 after warring parties used ultra-magnetic weapons that are far more dangerous than traditional weapons and this brought about destruction in land and sea.”
I think that what happened in reality in 2008 was an event that was as catastrophic as the war that changed everything that the famous Japanese series talked aboutMshari Al Thaydi
It resumed with a glimpse of hope, showing the few survivors who included Adnan and Lina’s grandpa.
“It’s been 20 years since that catastrophe and no one is left on this island but me. The war destroyed most of earth, and now trees and grass have begun to grow again, and fish began to fill the sea. The earth has been revived and is full of life again."
However, this scenario did not happen in 2008 and the writers’ expectations were not true. But do we hold accountable a creative text that is this good or should we forgive a little and delve deeper into the meaning of the text?
Did fiction become fact?
I think that what happened in reality in 2008 was an event that was as catastrophic as the war that changed everything that the famous Japanese series talked about.
I believe the catastrophic event that happened in 2008 was the arrival of the strange Barack Obama to lead the US for eight difficult years full of danger, recklessness and - in my view - sick policies.
Later this month, Obama will hand over the presidency to President Elect Donald Trump who does not want an easy handover but wants to squeeze the orange of the American dream till the last drop and until the last second.
I believe it was due to Obama’s policies surrounding the Khomeini republic and Russia, and his support of the Muslim Brotherhood during the season of Arab chaos, i.e. the Arab Spring, that many Arab countries were destroyed, including Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Yemen, and other countries were gravely harmed such as Egypt.
So perhaps the expectations of the Japanese sci-fi series meant global political destruction and the destruction of international standards for humans’ security on earth.
In my view history will one day note that Obama was the one who facilitated this blind global destruction. He was not the only one who facilitated it but he inflicted the most harm.
This article was first published in Asharq al-Awsat on January 2, 2017.
Saudi journalist Mshari Al Thaydi presents Al Arabiya News Channel’s “views on the news” daily show “Maraya.” He has previously held the position of a managing senior editor for Saudi Arabia & Gulf region at pan-Arab newspaper Asharq al-Awsat. Al Thaydi has published several papers on political Islam and social history of Saudi Arabia. He appears as a guest on several radio and television programs to discuss the ideologies of extremist groups and terrorists.