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foreign policy and global economy

Archive for the tag “Tunisia”

Five Years On, Have Things Changed In Tunisia?

It’s been five years since Mohamed Bouazizi set himself on fire outside the municipal building in Sidi Bouzid, a small town in the heart of Tunisia. While his act had profound international repercussions at the time, some residents say little has changed in their town.

Read Here – Al Monitor

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From Arab Spring To Arab Cataclysm

Five years ago, Mohamed Bouazizi, a Tunisian street vender with black curls, deep brown eyes, and chin fuzz, refused to pay a seven-dollar bribe, yet again, to a government inspector. For a man who supported his mother, five younger siblings, and an ailing uncle, seven dollars was a full day’s income—on a good day. This was the start of the epic convulsion known as the Arab Spring.

Read Here – The New Yorker

The Middle East Meltdown And Global Risk

Among today’s geopolitical risks, none is greater than the long arc of instability stretching from the Maghreb to the Afghanistan-Pakistan border. With the Arab Spring an increasingly distant memory, the instability along this arc is deepening. Indeed, of the three initial Arab Spring countries, Libya has become a failed state, Egypt has returned to authoritarian rule, and Tunisia is being economically and politically destabilized by terrorist attacks.

Read Here – Nikkei Asian Review

The Cost Of Stopping Another Arab Spring

The Arab Spring has been, in turns, exhilarating and excruciating. It has also been expensive—even for relatively peaceful Middle Eastern countries. Three Gulf countries sent a $12 billion aid package to Egypt in July, the latest in a regional spending spree that has also benefited the troubled countries of Yemen and Tunisia.

Read Here – The New Republic

Are We Witnessing The Birth Of New Liberal Capitalist Islamists?

The end of political Islam has been predicted time and time again for more than 20 years. The trajectory followed by the regime in Iran, the crises in Algeria, Egypt and elsewhere pointed to the conclusion drawn by Olivier Roy (followed by Gilles Kepel): “The failure of political Islam” and its inevitable end, which had already begun. Scholars and analysts are, however, sometimes unclear about how exactly to define and outline the notions of ‘Islamism’ and ‘political Islam’.”

Read Here – Gulf News

Arab Troubled Transitions Are Normal

Agreeing on the combination of these issues – statehood, nationhood, sovereignty and governance – comprises the classic definition of national self-determination. Arab citizens have never had the opportunity to undergo the thrills of national self-determination. This is because Arab countries and governing systems have always been defined either by foreign powers or by very small groups of family members or military officers who controlled the institutions of government. Ordinary men and women have never played any consequential role in defining and managing their statehood and nationhood. That is starting to change now in some Arab countries.

Read Here – The Daily Star

The Battle Over Democracy

When Arab societies rose up and toppled four dictators during 2011—in Tunisia, Egypt, Yemen, and Libya—people around the world joined in the celebration. Yet soon after the autocrats’ fall, a wave of apprehension washed over many in the policy and intellectual elite in the United States, Europe, and the Middle East itself. The warnings and reservations were variations on a theme: Arabs are not ready for democracy. They have no experience with it and don’t know how to make it work.

Read Here – Wilson Quarterly

Tunisia and the Clash Within Civilizations

Earlier this month, Tunisian opposition leader Chokri Belaid was shot dead outside his home. Belaid’s death has shaken Tunisia, but it also illuminates larger trends in the post-revolution Arab world.

Belaid was an intrepid critic of the authoritarian ancien regime of Zine Abidine Ben Ali, which ruled Tunisia for nearly a quarter century until it was felled by a revolution in January 2011.

Read Here – The National Interest

Aftermath of Revolution

The recent assassination of a leading secular opposition figure in Tunisia has cast a dark cloud on what many had hoped would serve as a model for democratic transition in countries swept by the Arab Spring. The sad fact is that many revolutions lead to renewed dictatorships. But the good news is that even a rocky and prolonged transition can produce stable democracy.

Read Here – New York Times

Assassination is an attack on all of Tunisia

Chokri Belaid knew that his life was at risk. The secretary general of Tunisia‘s Unified Democratic Nationalist Party, and a key member of the secular opposition front, had been receiving death threats for months. When he was killed yesterday outside his home in Tunis, however, the fear was that it was the country that was now in danger.

Read Here – The National

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