Archive | March 6, 2017

Gluten is not The Real Reason Wheat is Toxic*

Gluten is not The Real Reason Wheat is Toxic*

By Sarah, The Healthy Home Economist

The stories became far too frequent to ignore.

Emails from folks with allergic or digestive issues to wheat in the United States experienced no symptoms whatsoever when they tried eating pasta on vacation in Italy.

Confused parents wondering why wheat consumption sometimes triggered autoimmune reactions in their children but not at other times.

In my own home, I’ve long pondered why my husband can eat the wheat I prepare at home, but he experiences negative digestive effects eating even a single roll in a restaurant.

There is clearly something going on with wheat that is not well known by the general public. It goes far and beyond organic versus nonorganic, gluten or hybridization because even conventional wheat triggers no symptoms for some who eat wheat in other parts of the world.

What indeed is going on with wheat?

For quite some time, I secretly harbored the notion that wheat in the United States must, in fact, be genetically modified.  GMO wheat secretly invading the North American food supply seemed the only thing that made sense and could account for the varied experiences I was hearing about.

I reasoned that it couldn’t be the gluten or wheat hybridization. Gluten and wheat hybrids have been consumed for thousands of years. It just didn’t make sense that this could be the reason for so many people suddenly having problems with wheat and gluten in general in the past 5-10 years.

Finally, the answer came over dinner a couple of months ago with a friend who was well versed in the wheat production process. I started researching the issue for myself, and was, quite frankly, horrified at what I discovered.

The good news is that the reason wheat has become so toxic in the United States is not because it is secretly GMO as I had feared (thank goodness!).

The bad news is that the problem lies with the manner in which wheat is harvested by conventional wheat farmers.

You’re going to want to sit down for this one.  I’ve had some folks burst into tears in horror when I passed along this information before.

Wheat harvest protocol in the United States is to drench the wheat fields with Roundup several days before the combine harvesters work through the fields as withered, dead wheat plants are less taxing on the farm equipment and allows for an earlier, easier and bigger harvest 

Pre-harvest application of the herbicide Roundup or other herbicides containing the deadly active ingredient glyphosate to wheat and barley as a desiccant was suggested as early as 1980.  It has since become routine over the past 15 years and is used as a drying agent 7-10 days before harvest within the conventional farming community.

According to Dr. Stephanie Seneff of MIT who has studied the issue in depth and who I recently saw present on the subject at a nutritional Conference in Indianapolis, desiccating non-organic wheat crops with glyphosate just before harvest came into vogue late in the 1990′s with the result that most of the non-organic wheat in the United States is now contaminated with it.  Seneff explains that when you expose wheat to a toxic chemical like glyphosate, it actually releases more seeds resulting in a slightly greater yield:   “It ‘goes to seed’ as it dies. At its last gasp, it releases the seed” says Dr. Seneff.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, as of 2012, 99% of durum wheat, 97% of spring wheat, and 61% of winter wheat has been treated with herbicides. This is an increase from 88% for durum wheat, 91% for spring wheat and 47% for winter wheat since 1998.

Here’s what wheat farmer Keith Lewis has to say about the practice:

I have been a wheat farmer for 50 yrs and one wheat production practice that is very common is applying the herbicide Roundup (glyphosate) just prior to harvest. Roundup is licensed for pre-harvest weed control. Monsanto, the manufacturer of Roundup claims that application to plants at over 30% kernel moisture result in roundup uptake by the plant into the kernels. Farmers like this practice because Roundup kills the wheat plant allowing an earlier harvest.

A wheat field often ripens unevenly, thus applying Roundup preharvest evens up the greener parts of the field with the more mature. The result is on the less mature areas Roundup is translocated into the kernels and eventually harvested as such.

This practice is not licensed. Farmers mistakenly call it “dessication.” Consumers eating products made from wheat flour are undoubtedly consuming minute amounts of Roundup. An interesting aside, malt barley which is made into beer is not acceptable in the marketplace if it has been sprayed with pre-harvest Roundup. Lentils and peas are not accepted in the market place if it was sprayed with preharvest roundup….. but wheat is ok.. This farming practice greatly concerns me and it should further concern consumers of wheat products.

This practice is not just widespread in the United States either. The Food Standards Agency in the United Kingdom reports that use of Roundup as a wheat desiccant results in glyphosate residues regularly showing up in bread samples. Other European countries are waking up to to the danger, however. In the Netherlands, use of Roundup is completely banned with France likely soon to follow.

Using Roundup as a dessicant on the wheat fields prior to harvest may save the farmer money and increase profits, but it is devastating to the health of the consumer who ultimately consumes those ground up wheat kernels which have absorbed a significant amount of Roundup!

While the herbicide industry maintains that glyphosate is minimally toxic to humans, research published in the Journal Entropy strongly argues otherwise by shedding light on exactly how glyphosate disrupts mammalian physiology.

Authored by Anthony Samsel and Stephanie Seneff of MIT, the paper investigates glyphosate’s inhibition of cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes, an overlooked component of lethal toxicity to mammals.

The currently accepted view is that ghyphosate is not harmful to humans or any mammals.  This flawed view is so pervasive in the conventional farming community that Roundup salesmen have been known to foolishly drink it during presentations!

However, just because Roundup doesn’t kill you immediately doesn’t make it nontoxic.  In fact, the active ingredient in Roundup lethally disrupts the all-important shikimate pathway found in beneficial gut microbes which is responsible for synthesis of critical amino acids.

Friendly gut bacteria, also called probiotics, play a critical role in human health. Gut bacteria aid digestion, prevent permeability of the gastointestinal tract (which discourages the development of autoimmune disease), synthesize vitamins and provide the foundation for robust immunity.  In essence:

Roundup significantly disrupts the functioning of beneficial bacteria in the gut and contributes to permeability of the intestinal wall and consequent expression of autoimmune disease symptoms

In synergy with disruption of the biosynthesis of important amino acids via the shikimate pathway, glyphosate inhibits the cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes produced by the gut microbiome.  CYP enzymes are critical to human biology because they detoxify the multitude of foreign chemical compounds, xenobiotics, that we are exposed to in our modern environment today.

As a result, humans exposed to glyphosate through use of Roundup in their community or through ingestion of its residues on industrialized food products become even more vulnerable to the damaging effects of other chemicals and environmental toxins they encounter!

What’s worse is that the negative impact of glyphosate exposure is slow and insidious over months and years as inflammation gradually gains a foothold in the cellular systems of the body.

The consequences of this systemic inflammation are most of the diseases and conditions associated with the Western lifestyle:

-Gastrointestinal disorders



-Heart Disease





-Multiple Sclerosis

-Alzheimer’s disease

-And the list goes on and on and on …

In a nutshell, Dr. Seneff’s study of Roundup’s ghastly glyphosate which the wheat crop in the United States is doused with just days before harvest uncovers the manner in which this lethal toxin harms the human body by decimating beneficial gut microbes with the tragic end result of disease, degeneration, and widespread suffering

Got the picture yet?

Even if you think you have no trouble digesting wheat, it is still very wise to avoid conventional wheat as much as possible in your diet!

You Must Avoid Toxic Wheat No Matter What

The bottom line is that avoidance of conventional wheat in the United States is absolutely imperative even if you don’t currently have a gluten allergy or wheat sensitivity. The increase in the amount of glyphosate applied to wheat closely correlates with the rise of celiac disease and gluten intolerance. Dr. Seneff points out that the increases in these diseases are not just genetic in nature, but also have an environmental cause as not all patient symptoms are alleviated by eliminating gluten from the diet.

The effects of deadly glyphosate on your biology are so insidious that lack of symptoms today means literally nothing.

If you don’t have problems with wheat now, you will in the future if you keep eating conventionally produced, toxic wheat!

How to Eat Wheat Safely

Obviously, if you’ve already developed a sensitivity or allergy to wheat, you must avoid it.  Period.

But, if you aren’t celiac or gluten sensitive and would like to consume this ancestral food safely, you can do what we do in our home. We only source organic, preferably low gluten, unhybridized Einkorn wheat for bread-making, pancakes, cookies etc.  But, when we eat out or are purchasing food from the store, conventional wheat products are rejected without exception.  This despite the fact that we have no gluten allergies whatsoever in our home – yet.

I am firmly convinced that if we did nothing, our entire family at some point would develop sensitivity to wheat or autoimmune disease in some form due to the toxic manner in which it is processed and the glyphosate residues that are contained in conventional wheat products.

What Are You Going to Do About Toxic Wheat?

How did you react to the news that U.S. wheat farmers are using Roundup, not just to kill weeds, but to dry out the wheat plants to allow for an earlier, easier and bigger harvest and that such a practice causes absorption of toxic glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup and other herbicides, right into the wheat kernels themselves?

Did you feel outraged and violated like I did? How will you implement a conventional wheat-avoidance strategy going forward even if you haven’t yet developed a problem with gluten or wheat sensitivity?

What about other crops where Roundup is used as a pre-harvest dessicant such as barley, sugar cane, rice, seeds, dried beans and peas, sugar cane, sweet potatoes, and sugar beets?  Will you only be buying these crops in organic form from now on to avoid this modern, man-made scourge?


Related Topics:

GMO Wheat Trials to Begin in Europe*

GM Wheat Trial in U.K. Proves a Failure*

South Korea & Japan Shuts Down U.S. Monsanto Toxic Wheat Imports!

GM Wheat Shutting Us Down!?*

Alarming Amount of Glyphosates in the Foods you Eat*

Glyphosate has been a Known Carcinogen Since the 1970s*

Trump Signs New Travel Ban Executive Order*

Trump Signs New Travel Ban Executive Order*

By Ronn Blitzer

After losing numerous court decisions over his travel ban, President Donald Trump vowed to keep the legal battle going. However, in addition to this, the administration had indicated that Trump would also sign a new order to supplement the old one so that it would have a better chance of passing legal muster. Finally, after weeks of rumoured drafts and delays, Trump signed a new order on Monday.

The original order put a temporary stop to all refugees coming into the country, with an indefinite block on refugees from Syria. It also halted all incoming travel from seven countries with Muslim majorities. The new order clarifies that the ban only applies to people who do not currently have valid visas and did not have visas when the original order was signed on January 27. It specifies that it does not apply to legal permanent residents of the United States, or people who were admitted after the order was signed, or those who were already granted refugee or asylum status before the order.

Furthermore, Iraq is no longer on the list of countries specified in a general travel ban. The Pentagon and State Department had pushed to remove Iraq from that list, since the country has been a valuable ally in the fight against ISIS.

The new order also does not call for an indefinite hold on Syrian refugees, who will face the same treatment as refugees from other countries. When the temporary ban on refugees is lifted, the number of those ultimately admitted into the U.S. will have a maximum of 50,000 for the 2017 fiscal year.

While the order is in effect, the administration will work to put in place new standards for screening individuals entering the U.S.

The new order is meant to work alongside the original one instead of repeal it, as repealing the initial order would end the legal battles surrounding it. The administration still believes they can win those fights instead of having decisions against them remain on the books. RNC member and Trump campaign surrogate Randy Evans said in February that the administration is expected to try to drag out the legal fight until a new Supreme Court justice, preferably Neil Gorsuch, is confirmed.

Trump had insisted that his original order was indeed legal, but even if he ultimately could have won the battle in federal court, he would have had to wait for the case to be resolved for it to take effect again. By ditching that order and drafting a new one that is geared to be more favorable in the eyes of the judiciary, it allows the President to immediately move forward with his security measures.


Related Topics:

Trump Will Sign Order to Build Wall, Ban Refugees, Muslims*

LA Judge Issues Most Sweeping Order Yet against Trump Immigration Ban

Decades of Evidence Finds No link Between Immigration and Increased Crime*

Court Of Appeals Unanimously Rejects Trump’s Travel Ban: Full Ruling*

European Parliament Votes to End Visa-Free Travel for Americans*

Iran Finally Ditched the Dollar: Here’s Why It Matters*

If the Noose is Still Tightening and, you Still Think It’s Austerity, the Former Governor of the Bank of England Will Tell You*

Argentina Trumps U.S. on New Immigration Laws*

Los Alamos Study Finds Airport Scanners Alter DNA*

U.S. Marshals Biometric Scan Passenger Retinas to Board Flight: “Like Everyone Else, I Complied”*

Canada’s Telecom made $37mn Last Year Charging to Unlock Cellphones*

Canada’s Telecom made $37mn Last Year Charging to Unlock Cellphones*

By Sophia Harris

Canadian telecoms made a total of $37.7 million last year by charging customers to unlock their cellphones. That’s a whopping 75% jump in this source of revenue compared to 2014.

Telecoms often order locked phones from manufacturers that are programmed to work only with their service. Then they charge a fee — typically $50 — to unlock the phone if a customer wants to switch providers.

The charge is unpopular with consumers. It has even been referred to it as a ‘ransom fee.’

The unlocking revenue total was provided by the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission. The CRTC said it could not confirm the exact number of providers in the tally, other than to say, it was “up to seven.”

It also wouldn’t provide company names or the breakdown from each one. That’s because the wireless carriers argued that releasing their unlocking revenues publicly would put them at a competitive disadvantage.

CBC News did confirm that the $37.7 million total included Bell, Rogers and Telus, which own a lion’s share of the Canadian wireless market.

Unlocking charge described as ‘hostage fee’

The CRTC is looking into the issue of unlocking fees following much criticism about the fairness of the charge.

The controversial fee was a hot topic at a CRTC hearing last month. Consumer groups argued customers shouldn’t be dinged for the service — especially if they’ve paid off their phone.

“You should be able to unlock it [for free] at the very least once you’ve paid off the device. You own it,” says John Lawford, executive director with the Public Interest Advocacy Centre in Ottawa.

He also points out that it’s the provider who supplies the locked phone in the first place, and then charges the consumer to undo the process.

“Who’s the author of whose misfortune here?” says Lawford.

The CRTC also invited the public to comment online during the hearing. Many took the opportunity to gripe about the charge.

“Now after paying for the phones we are held ransom to unlock them to go to another provider. Totally ridiculous,” stated one person.

“Excuse me, but I own the phone.”

“That’s called a ‘Ransom Fee’ or ‘Hostage Fee’ in any other business,” wrote another individual.

“It is unbelievable how the government allows these companies to extort money like this!”

Keep them from straying

“I think the CRTC wanted to see if it was a money grab,” Toronto consumer advocate Dennis Hogarth says of why the commission compiled the revenue data.

But Hogarth believes the fee is less about a cash grab and more about providers trying to prevent customers from straying.

“It’s a major demotivating factor in having people move their plans from one provider to another,” says Hogarth, vice president of the Consumers Council of Canada.

But many providers, including Bell, Rogers and Telus, stand by their unlocking fees.

The big three each charge $50 for the service. During the CRTC hearing, Telus and Bell argued that phones need to be locked in the first place to stop third party dealers from reselling coveted models, like the latest iPhone, overseas.

“We want them to stay in the country which they were intended for, ” said Claire Gillies, Bell Mobility’s vice president of marketing.

Bell and Rogers also said that locked phones help protect them against consumers walking away from their contracts. That’s because customers must wait 90 days for a provider to unlock their phone — time that a provider can use to establish that a customer is legitimate and paying the bills.

Bell, Rogers, and Telus also warned that if they didn’t charge an unlocking fee for the few customers who want it done, the cost would have to be passed on to everyone.

“We think it’s a lot more appropriate that people who actually have their device unlocked bear the cost of the unlocking,” said Howard Slawner, vice president of regulatory telecom at Rogers.

‘Toxic revenue’

However, upstart Freedom Mobile — formerly Wind — isn’t onside. It wants the CRTC to get rid of unlocking fees.

During the hearing, Freedom’s vice president of regulatory relations Ed Antecol called unlocking charges “toxic revenue” because “it’s revenue that we earn that basically angers and displeases customers.”

Banning the charge could benefit a smaller provider like Freedom by making it easier for customers to switch from more established players.

Freedom charges customers $30 for unlocking and says it can’t afford to drop the fee unless its competitors do so as well.

Freedom Mobile wants the CRTC to eliminate unblocking fees. (Nathan Denette/Canadian Press)


The provider also argued a locked phone doesn’t deter hucksters or fraudsters. That’s because people can bypass the provider and get their phone unlocked by numerous cellular-related businesses that also offer the service.

“A customer can go to … your local computer shop or whatever and get that phone unlocked anyway and perhaps in a dangerous way,” said Antecol.

Stop locking phones?

As for concerns about paying for other customers’ unlocking services, Freedom argues the solution is simple — don’t lock phones.

In its final submission to the CRTC, the company said that device locking is an optional feature offered by cellphone manufacturers. So Freedom recommended that the commission mandate that telecoms only provide unlocked phones to customers.

“If all phones are sold unlocked, all costs incurred by carriers that are currently associated with unlocking fees will disappear,” stated Freedom.

The CRTC is currently reviewing Canada’s Wireless Code, which also covers unlocking rules.

It will have to weigh not only the contradictory arguments from providers, but also arguments from consumers.

Consumers appear united on their stance on unlocking fees.

“This is gouging at its worst,” said one cellphone customer in response to CRTC’s invitation to comment.


Related Topics:

Is Your Cellphone Tapped!

How Wi-Fi Will Be Used to Erase Civil Liberties*

Canada Parliament Committee Calls for “Protection of Vulnerable Groups” from Wi-fi*

The Cell Phone is in Its 40th Year. Meet the Black Man Dr. Henry Sampson Who Played a Key Role in Its Invention*

Conscientious Scientists Make an Int’l Appeal on the Wide-scale Problem of Wi-fi*

Pennsylvania Bill SB 217 Takes Away Parents’ Right to Object to Child Vaccinations*

Pennsylvania Bill SB 217 Takes Away Parents’ Right to Object to Child Vaccinations*

By Catherine J. Frompovich

Pennsylvanians are facing a horrendous loss of freedom of healthcare choices together with interference in their constitutional rights relative to valid informed consent and the right to self-determination regarding vaccines/vaccinations, plus the deliberate and mandatory imposition of fraudulent vaccine information regarding pseudoscience in vaccinology from the unfortunate introduction of SB 217 in the current legislative session [2017-18] by four Pennsylvania Senators.

Pennsylvania State Senators Daylin Leach (D-17), Lawrence D Farnese (D-1), Sharif Street (D-3) and Bob Mensch (R-24) introduced into the Harrisburg bill hopper, a draconian bill similar to California’s SB 277, which would deny an individual child and parents their rights to refuse neurotoxic vaccines/vaccinations.  SB 217 amends P.L.30, No.14 known as the Public School Code of 1949 as follows:

Section 1303. Immunization Required; Penalty.–*

(e) Notwithstanding any rule or regulation to the contrary,

a strong moral or ethical conviction similar to a religious

belief may not qualify as an exemption from the immunization

requirements of this section.  [CJF emphasis added]

Once passed, the law would go into effect in 60 days!

Although the four Senators, who introduced SB 217, probably are totally ignorant about vaccine ingredients and adverse reactions or the over $3.6 Billion paid by the Vaccine Court for vaccine damages, they seem totally in the dark about how toxic vaccines ingredients are—see the CDC’s list of ingredients here which documents varied ingredients as: several diploid cell lines (human fetus cell lines); aluminum in any of four formulations; formaldehyde; polysorbate 80, which interferes with fertility; various antibiotics; monkey kidney cell lines; hydrocortisone; thimerosal (49.6% ethylmercury); monosodium glutamate; porcine (pig) gelatin; E.coli; chick embryo and chicken fibroblasts; [DNA from porcine circoviruses (PCV) 1 and 2 has been detected in RotaTeq. PCV-1 and PCV-2 are not known to cause disease in humans]; bovine calf serum; artificial colours – just to mention a few of the far-reaching chemicals and foreign DNA injected into infants, toddlers, teens and adults.

Do those four Senators think they are doing the correct thing in mandating every child must take every vaccination on the current vaccine schedule in order to attend school?  According to FOIA information and whistleblowers from within the CDC, who claim fraud occurs in vaccine ‘science’, it would behoove those Senators to do their due diligence in researching vaccines, the CDC’s VAERS reports and HHS/HRSA vaccine damage payouts, instead of probably kowtowing to vaccine manufacturers’ pseudoscience to get more vaccines mandated for Pennsylvania school children.

Glyphosate—think Monsanto’s Roundup®, has been confirmed in most children’s vaccines!  Merck’s MMR II vaccine registered 2.90 ppb!

Would any parent knowingly and willingly give glyphosate/Roundup® to his/her child?  However, vaccines do!

After reading some of the above vaccine ingredients, how do you think parents would be treated by the law and Child Protective Services if they gave the above chemicals and toxins to their children either to eat or to drink?  So now, how come those very same toxic chemicals should be mandated by law to be injected into children in order to attend day care, grade-middle-high school or college?  That should be illegal!  Isn’t that chemical child abuse?

This 9-page U.S. HHS website documents the Vaccine Injury Compensation Data program payouts for vaccine damages, including deaths (see page 5) and the total monetary outlays of $3,619,323,678.06. Are vaccines really safe?  What happens when it’s your child who is vaccine damaged, since vaccines are not proven safe!

In the U.S. Supreme Court decision Bruesewitz v. Wyeth LLC (2/22/11) the court said,

“Most importantly, the Act [1986 NCVIA] eliminates manufacturer liability for a vaccine’s unavoidable, adverse side effects.”   Also, SCOTUS said vaccines are “unavoidably unsafe products”!

Do you know about the U.S. Vaccine Court and how difficult it is to get an award when vaccine damage occurs?

Consider reading every vaccine package insert for all childhood vaccines, specifically noting contraindications, adverse reactions, and other problems that can occur or go wrong from vaccines pediatricians, family doctors, school nurses or whoever administers vaccines will not tell you can happen—seizures and epilepsy are common effects—but should be mandatory to tell everyone by law, especially to parents. 

You can’t handle the truth about vaccines (Ad)

That’s the type of bill those four Senators should be introducing, not one taking away individuals’ rights to be safe and secure from toxic pharmaceutical vaccines and fraudulent CDC vaccine science.

Here is the current roster of PA Senators to contact in Harrisburg if you don’t agree this bill should be passed into Pennsylvania law.

Resources to Access:

VAXXED, From Catastrophe to Cover-up (the factual documentary of fraudulent research from a CDC whistleblower, who was part of the cover up, in his own words)


Related Topics:

New Federal Bill Lowers Standards on Poor Standards for Experimental Vaccine Licensing*

30 States Move to Enact Vaccine Bills Including Tracking and Mandatory Vaccines*

FDA Approves Lyme Disease Vaccine Testing on Humans*

CDC Commits New Vaccine-Autism Crime*

13 Year-Old Boy Permanently Disabled from Chicken Pox Vaccine Wins his Case in Vaccine Court*

400% Spike in Vaccine Injuries, Flu Shot Wins Top Honors for Biggest Payout*

Congress Fast Track Bill on Experimental Vaccines to the Public*


The Shaharah Bridge in Yemen, a Bridge of Sighs*

The Shaharah Bridge in Yemen, a Bridge of Sighs*

Shaharah Bridge built to collapse in case of invasion

Shaharah Bridge built to collapse in case of invasion

By Kerry Sullivan

The Shaharah Bridge was built in the 17th century in Yemen and though it may just look like a regular bridge at first, it has interesting stories connected to it. The structure was designed to fall apart in minutes in the event that Turks tried to invade and it was also a logical solution to another age-old problem.

The Bridge’s Features

Stretching across a 300-foot (91-metre) deep gorge between two mountains, the bridge is still commonly used by citizens in the neighbouring villages. The bridge can be found in the Ahnum Mountain Range in northwestern Yemen in the ‘Amran governorate, approximately 87 miles (140 kilometres) away from the country’s capital city, Sana’a. It connects two mountains, Jabal al Emir and Jabal al Faish, by stretching across a canyon formed where the two come close together. The bridge is 65 feet (20 meters) long and 9 feet (3 meters) wide. It is primarily made of limestone, which is an abundant material in the mountains. The Shaharah Bridge leads to the town of Shaharah.

Village of Shaharah

Village of Shaharah


Bridging Communities

It is not known for how many centuries people have been living in the Ahnum Mountains. Yemen itself is one of the oldest centres of civilization in the world. The country is located at the bottom of the Arabian Peninsula. While most of the peninsula is arid, Yemen is fertile and experiences regular rainfall. From very early on, the country served as a natural conduit for trade between the East African and Middle Eastern kingdoms. Archaeological evidence shows that large settlements existed in northern Yemen’s mountains at least as far back as 5000 BC.

For all the millennia that people lived in those mountains, they were faced with the difficulty of getting supplies. This was both a hassle and a danger. Although Jabal al Emir and Jabal al Faish are within shouting distance of each other, in order for villagers to trade goods or meet with neighbors, they would have to climb all the way down to the bottom of the canyon and then back up the other side.

Certain segments of the journey were especially perilous. And even if one were a daring and nimble enough climber to make the trek, it would be next to impossible to bring back many goods.

A Haraaz-landscape

A Haraaz-landscape


Connecting and Protecting Shaharah

In the 1500s, the Ottoman Turks invaded Yemen and overran Shaharah. Once their freedom was regained sometime in the 1600s, the local Shaharah leader, Al-Usta Saleh, ordered a bridge to be constructed that could be destroyed in the event of another invasion. He hired an architect named Salah al-Yaman. That bridge took three years to build and cost roughly 100,000 French Riyals (an extraordinary amount of money in the 17th century). It was constructed using traditional building tools and local supplies, however,

“no one really knows exactly how the bridge was built especially at that time, but a few legends try to offer some explanations. One story goes that several bridges were built below the major bridge to help with the transfer of supplies up the rugged terrain. Remnants of the minor bridges are still present today. Another legend explains that al-Yaman is credited with building only ten meters [32.5 feet] of the bridge and the remaining ten meters [32.5 feet] were believed to have been completed by an unknown person from the adjacent mountain.” (Khalife, 2015)

Footbridge in Shaharah, Yemen (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Footbridge in Shaharah, Yemen (CC BY-SA 3.0)

Footbridge in Shaharah, Yemen (CC BY-SA 3.0)

The bridge is the only entry point for the town of Shaharah, which also has fortified walls surrounding it. It remained defended and inaccessible until aerial assaults became the norm in the 1960s-civil strife in Yemen. Still, the town (and the world) greatly benefited from Shaharah’s 300+ years of peace.

Life and Tourism in Shaharah

The town is no mere village dwelling looking to be left in peace. Shaharah is the citadel for the Imans of the Zaidi interpretation of a Shi’a Islam (not to be confused with the Kurdish Yazidis). In the 10th century, the Islamic scholar and second leader of the Zaidis, Abul Qasim Muhammad bin Yahya bin Al-Husayn, chose the northern highlands for the center of Zaidi religious thought and scholarship. Zaidi mosques and schools can now be found throughout northern Yemen. Today, Zaidis are more commonly known by their political/rebel wing, the Houthis.

Before Yemen was engulfed in civil war, the Shaharah Bridge was one of the most popular tourist attractions for those adventurous enough to make the trek out to see it. With time, it earned the moniker ‘Bridge of Sighs’ because the spectacular sight of a rudimentary stone bridge spanning two mountains left onlookers speechless.


Related Topics:

The Oldest Qur’ans are Actually in Yemen, in Danger of Being Bombed*

The Anguish, Bloodshed and Forgotten Heroes in the Ignored War on Yemen*

Nine Young Children Killed: The Full Details of the Botched U.S. Raid in Yemen*

Britain Confirms U.K-Made Cluster Bombs Used by Saudi-led Forces in Yemen*

Plane from Turkey Transfers Daesh terrorists from Aleppo to Yemen*

WikiLeaks Releases 500 Documents Showing U.S. ‘arming and funding’ Yemeni Forces*

U.S. Occupies a Yemeni Island*

Muslim Cordoba Going for a Song