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Tunisia, riots and fleeing Presidents

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Posts

  • Cedar BrownCedar Brown Registered User
    edited January 2011
    I think Tunisia is the kind of Muslim country where Islamic fundamentalism is suppressed by an authoritarian government. Like Iraq was.

    Cedar Brown on
  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Elki wrote: »
    Islam is the official state religion in Egypt. In Tunisia as well.

    Well there ya go.

    Though a lot of that is pandering to the political masses. Does Mubarak make a show of being a good muslim? I remember when Saddam started doing that. He was Mr Secular Strongman for so long. Then when the US abandoned and bombed him, he became mr pious.

    Its interesting though that they do have Islam as their state religions. I guess I over-estimate how secular these regimes try to be.

    [Tycho?] on
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  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    adytum wrote: »
    But women can walk around with their heads uncovered, and Christians (ostensibly) have equal rights. Alcohol is even widely available! Under a fundamental Islamic regime, it's likely that none of that would be true.

    This is talking about Egypt, I'm completely unfamiliar with Tunisia.

    edit- actually, I have no idea if a fundamental Islamic regime would treat Christians worse than the Egyptian government does now. Thoughts?

    Iran treats its religious minority populations fairly well. Iran has the largest jewish population of any muslim nation. There are christians and zororororostarians- sorry, Zoroastrians after I look it up. There is some strange version of Islam that the Iranians view as heresy so they get oppressed pretty thoroughly. Religious minorities are guaranteed a certain number of seats in Iran's majlis (parliament). This is not just a rubber-stamp parliament either, Iran's majlis is quite a lively place, staging protests and being responsible for large power shifts in the 20th century.

    That said, I don't know how religious minorities are treated in Egypt. The spate of recent killings have made the news, but I don't recall anything before that.

    [Tycho?] on
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  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Alexandrian church bombings aside, they apparently get along pretty okay, Coptics are about 13% of the population.

    Fencingsax on
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  • adytumadytum Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    adytum wrote: »
    But women can walk around with their heads uncovered, and Christians (ostensibly) have equal rights. Alcohol is even widely available! Under a fundamental Islamic regime, it's likely that none of that would be true.

    This is talking about Egypt, I'm completely unfamiliar with Tunisia.

    edit- actually, I have no idea if a fundamental Islamic regime would treat Christians worse than the Egyptian government does now. Thoughts?

    Iran treats its religious minority populations fairly well. Iran has the largest jewish population of any muslim nation. There are christians and zororororostarians- sorry, Zoroastrians after I look it up. There is some strange version of Islam that the Iranians view as heresy so they get oppressed pretty thoroughly. Religious minorities are guaranteed a certain number of seats in Iran's majlis (parliament). This is not just a rubber-stamp parliament either, Iran's majlis is quite a lively place, staging protests and being responsible for large power shifts in the 20th century.

    That said, I don't know how religious minorities are treated in Egypt. The spate of recent killings have made the news, but I don't recall anything before that.

    There are an infinitesimally small number of jews (for obvious reasons) and they're treated badly. Coptic Christians are the largest minority, and are treated absolutely horribly both by the government and socially.

    Remember swine flu? Egypt took the precaution of slaughtering every pig in the country, something that no other country in the world took, and every health organization said was an extreme overreaction and unnecessary. The government offered no compensation for the slaughtered animals. In the Arab Republic of Egypt, who do you think owned and relied on those pigs for their livelihood?

    That's one of the larger examples.

    It's.. not good.
    Fencingsax wrote: »
    Alexandrian church bombings aside, they apparently get along pretty okay, Coptics are about 13% of the population.

    Ahaha.

    adytum on
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  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Huh, my reading was obviously horribly inaccurate.

    Fencingsax on
    torchlight-sig-80.jpg
  • BastableBastable Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Bastable wrote: »
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    adytum wrote: »
    I worry about what an open democracy in Egypt (or Morocco, etc.) would turn into, or how long it would last.

    In Egypt? Muslim Brotherhood would gain power, most likely. Kind of like Hezbollah in Lebanon, I'd say, without the whole forty thousand rockets aimed at Haifa thing. Wouldn't really matter though, because Gaza border would be wide open. I don't think Egypt led by Muslim Brotherhood would necessarily be a bad thing, especially compared to the current situation. They seem to understand the concept of democracy pretty well, have good track record with nonviolence (on Middle East level at the least) and aside say, from Israel I would describe most of their positions as fairly moderate...again when compared to other similar movements in the region. I mean they are still fundamentalist religious Muslims.

    I wonder if the Brotherhood really would take power. It does seem the most likely option. But they've tried and failed so many times. I can't recal anything specifically, but I think I've read several things in the past few years about members of the Brotherhood becoming a bit disillusioned with the whole thing, and how support is waning a bit due to an apparent lack of direction. If Egypt also experiences these Tunisian sort of riots, I don't think its out of the question for some other group to get big if they're able to mobalize a lot of people and get the word out on the streets. The Brotherhood strikes me as being the haven of the old guard, and all the young people may be inclined to flock to something more exciting, radical and new. This would probably be a more militant sort of group though, along with being super religious. Hopefully not. I agree that the Brotherhood gaining power wouldn't be the worst for Egpyt. It would be a hell of a lot better than things are now, except the US and Israel would suddenly become their sworn enemies.

    Wait is the brotherhood a liberal or fundamentalist organization, in so much are they like the taliban where until recently: Girls don't need education as they are chattel. Or are they Women can choose to divorce for any reason flavor of Islam?

    ok after checking the wiki page on the brotherhood it seems they're a bit of both and argue about what the correct interpretations are. Indicating it's like the Iranian Shia where you have a majority of fundamentalist thinking chaps and a smaller sect of "liberals."

    I think asking if they're fundamentalists or not is a bit of a loaded question. They're a muslim political entity, I don't know but I'd bet they want to implement sharia law, make Islam the official state religion, etc. Instituting religious law is pretty much a definition of fundamentalism in the West, but almost every muslim political party advocates this. This is particularly tricky since most of the legal systems in place are extremely corrupt and built totally to service the elites of those countries. Building a legal system can look like liberalization if it is compared to the previous authoritarian/corrupt one, or fundamentalist when you remember the religious aspect.

    That's the thing for me because early on Islam does thing like like enshrine women's property right's allow a women to divorce even if the reason is that her husband does not satisfiy her in bed. You have Victorian era Cairo where women are allowed to smoke in public and the bay's mamaluks have to arrest fundamentalist Sudanese who are tipping over people's shisa's and beating up people not dressed 'correctly'.

    You have Saudi medieval quari's declaring coffee haram, and then mamaluks pet quari's declaring coffee halal, and pointing out it is the mamluk's armies that control the gulf. Really I was trying to figure out if the brotherhood was liberal fundamentalism as the ottoman's and Egypt practiced or if it was the right wing fundmentlisms so enamored by saudi's religious judges/qari's.

    Ironically the reason for sharia law was in direct opposition to the perceived excesses and corruption of the ummayd caliphate ie the government was seen as corrupt and interested in holding massive parties and orgies as opposed to actully looking after people and running the state.

    Bastable on
    Philippe about the tactical deployment of german Kradschützen during the battle of Kursk:
    "I think I can comment on this because I used to live above the Baby Doll Lounge, a topless bar that was once frequented by bikers in lower Manhattan."

  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    adytum wrote: »
    But women can walk around with their heads uncovered, and Christians (ostensibly) have equal rights. Alcohol is even widely available! Under a fundamental Islamic regime, it's likely that none of that would be true.

    This is talking about Egypt, I'm completely unfamiliar with Tunisia.

    edit- actually, I have no idea if a fundamental Islamic regime would treat Christians worse than the Egyptian government does now. Thoughts?

    I think it's kind of hard for religious minorities to be treated worse in Egypt without going into outright pogroms. And I'm not fully sure about this but I think the Brotherhood and Coptic Christians have found some common ground with both being persecuted by the government.

    Big Picture has a lot of good pictures from Tunisia:
    http://www.boston.com/bigpicture/2011/01/an_uprising_in_tunisia.html

    DarkCrawler on
  • [Tycho?][Tycho?] Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Bastable wrote: »
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    Bastable wrote: »
    [Tycho?] wrote: »
    adytum wrote: »
    I worry about what an open democracy in Egypt (or Morocco, etc.) would turn into, or how long it would last.

    In Egypt? Muslim Brotherhood would gain power, most likely. Kind of like Hezbollah in Lebanon, I'd say, without the whole forty thousand rockets aimed at Haifa thing. Wouldn't really matter though, because Gaza border would be wide open. I don't think Egypt led by Muslim Brotherhood would necessarily be a bad thing, especially compared to the current situation. They seem to understand the concept of democracy pretty well, have good track record with nonviolence (on Middle East level at the least) and aside say, from Israel I would describe most of their positions as fairly moderate...again when compared to other similar movements in the region. I mean they are still fundamentalist religious Muslims.

    I wonder if the Brotherhood really would take power. It does seem the most likely option. But they've tried and failed so many times. I can't recal anything specifically, but I think I've read several things in the past few years about members of the Brotherhood becoming a bit disillusioned with the whole thing, and how support is waning a bit due to an apparent lack of direction. If Egypt also experiences these Tunisian sort of riots, I don't think its out of the question for some other group to get big if they're able to mobalize a lot of people and get the word out on the streets. The Brotherhood strikes me as being the haven of the old guard, and all the young people may be inclined to flock to something more exciting, radical and new. This would probably be a more militant sort of group though, along with being super religious. Hopefully not. I agree that the Brotherhood gaining power wouldn't be the worst for Egpyt. It would be a hell of a lot better than things are now, except the US and Israel would suddenly become their sworn enemies.

    Wait is the brotherhood a liberal or fundamentalist organization, in so much are they like the taliban where until recently: Girls don't need education as they are chattel. Or are they Women can choose to divorce for any reason flavor of Islam?

    ok after checking the wiki page on the brotherhood it seems they're a bit of both and argue about what the correct interpretations are. Indicating it's like the Iranian Shia where you have a majority of fundamentalist thinking chaps and a smaller sect of "liberals."

    I think asking if they're fundamentalists or not is a bit of a loaded question. They're a muslim political entity, I don't know but I'd bet they want to implement sharia law, make Islam the official state religion, etc. Instituting religious law is pretty much a definition of fundamentalism in the West, but almost every muslim political party advocates this. This is particularly tricky since most of the legal systems in place are extremely corrupt and built totally to service the elites of those countries. Building a legal system can look like liberalization if it is compared to the previous authoritarian/corrupt one, or fundamentalist when you remember the religious aspect.

    That's the thing for me because early on Islam does thing like like enshrine women's property right's allow a women to divorce even if the reason is that her husband does not satisfiy her in bed. You have Victorian era Cairo where women are allowed to smoke in public and the bay's mamaluks have to arrest fundamentalist Sudanese who are tipping over people's shisa's and beating up people not dressed 'correctly'.

    You have Saudi medieval quari's declaring coffee haram, and then mamaluks pet quari's declaring coffee halal, and pointing out it is the mamluk's armies that control the gulf. Really I was trying to figure out if the brotherhood was liberal fundamentalism as the ottoman's and Egypt practiced or if it was the right wing fundmentlisms so enamored by saudi's religious judges/qari's.

    Ironically the reason for sharia law was in direct opposition to the perceived excesses and corruption of the ummayd caliphate ie the government was seen as corrupt and interested in holding massive parties and orgies as opposed to actully looking after people and running the state.

    That last paragraph is a good one. Sharia law tends to be advocated in areas where the existing government is either totally corrupt or non-existant. The two really extreme examples, the Taliban and al Shabab in Somalia gained popularity because they were bringing law and order to areas run by crazy warlords. The Taliban in particular turned extra nasty once they got into government, but both these movements get popular support because people in those areas have absolutely zero security. Super harsh sharia law may be brutal, but its the ultimate "law and order" platform that can be so popular.

    [Tycho?] on
    mvaYcgc.jpg
  • KalkinoKalkino Buttons Londres Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Elki wrote: »
    Kalkino wrote: »
    Elki wrote: »
    Kalkino wrote: »
    Elki wrote: »
    Kalkino wrote: »
    Sure, but I suspect the US would be willing to stand behind the Egyptian leadership for quite some time, considering their view on likely replacement regimes.

    I don't think anyone who grew up in my generation, or... really anyone, is waiting for US support, expecting US support, or even wants US support. The US relationship with Arab dictators has been, for a while, just another talking point (damning to the governments) to mention, not really something actively lamented.

    I guess I probably should have picked up on this already, but does the above mean you are / were North African Arab?

    Born in Sudan, then moved around between Sudan, Libya, and Egypt.

    Ahh, well you certainly must have a much better understanding than the rest of us of the situation and how it is unfolding. Have you been reading the Tunisian social media updates or the Arab language media?

    What are your thoughts on the ability of the PM/someone else from the old regime patching together some sort of stable Tunisian government?

    Haven't really looked around much beyond what I what I see on Al Jazeera and conversations with people. I have smatterings of random thoughts.

    I don't know anyone, in real life, who's unhappy about this. I am, to say the least, pleased. It has been completely ignored outside the middle east. It is (and I don't mean to appropriate it from Tunisians) thoroughly Arabic; the fact that the first government to fall was a US/UE friendly dictatorship makes that much sweeter for us who gave up on those two, and put all hope on something domestic. And sometimes, even I forget how well economic socialism plays in the middle east, probably because I've been here too long; almost very opposition person that's been interviewed on TV repeated the same thing: "[X]% of the wealth is owned by [Y]% of the population." The numbers change slightly, but you get the idea. And it goes unchallenged by every commentator, because it's not really the sort of statement people would have objections to.

    Al Jazeera is enjoying a bit of harmless nationalist fun by constantly reporting that Qatar was the first Arab country to congratulate the Tunisian people on their revolution, and that Bin Ali is currently in Saudi Arabia.

    It's too early for me, or anyone, to say how this shakes out in Tunisia, let alone the rest of the region, but I've always felt it's something that just had to happen. Which is weird, considering that nothing like this happened during my life time, but it feels something like an inevitability; a long one, but I'm a patient man. What's sort of catching on, in what I hope is a brief jump of isolated, is suicide by self-immolation. It happened in Egypt, it happened in Algeria (in 4 different incidents), and I hope doesn't happen anywhere else.

    Oppositions figures are being arrested in neighboring countries for talking about doing things 'Tunisian style'.

    And I seem to have timed my trip to Egypt pretty well. A few months for this to simmer, and I'll be in for much coffee shop chatter. And more? Who knows.

    Al-Arabiya continues to be run by a bunch of Saudi royal dicks; playing up the looting as if it's the only thing that happened there this month.

    Priceless: Qadafi goes to air to express his disappointment in Tunisians. You don't have to understand Arabic to appreciate his body language and speaking mannerisms. You'll probably pick up on this, but the speech is completely unrehearsed

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1xsdBoEIyZk

    That video was priceless, although his mouth is pretty insane - whether it be the result of old age, plastic surgery or some condition though, that is the question

    Kalkino on
    Freedom for the Northern Isles!
  • BastableBastable Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    The interim government is having issues as former opposition minsters have walked out of the government citing various arguments centered the fact that many of Ben Ali's old guard are still in the new cabinet and therefore make real reform unlikely.

    Bastable on
    Philippe about the tactical deployment of german Kradschützen during the battle of Kursk:
    "I think I can comment on this because I used to live above the Baby Doll Lounge, a topless bar that was once frequented by bikers in lower Manhattan."

  • MalkorMalkor Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Bastable wrote: »
    The interim government is having issues as former opposition minsters have walked out of the government citing various arguments centered the fact that many of Ben Ali's old guard are still in the new cabinet and therefore make real reform unlikely.

    Didn't that happen in Iraq?

    But we went all hardline to the point that even teachers who weren't allowed to teach without being Batthists(sp) were shut out.

    I hope that doesn't happen.

    Also this;

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wqkSJ9MUwXs&feature=player_embedded

    Malkor on
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  • DarkCrawlerDarkCrawler Registered User regular
    edited January 2011
    Bringing this back because there are now HUGE protests in Egypt.
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-12272836

    Thousands on the streets of Cairo, police using tear cas and water cannons as well. Protests in Alexandria and Ismailiya too.

    DarkCrawler on
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