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Was the absence of Islamists essential for democracy?

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posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 08:42 AM
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Love him or hate him, the now deposed president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia did manage to do one thing, rid the country of radical Islam.

Did the absence of this radical religious element allow the citizens to concentrate on "real-world" issues like the economy and political freedom and education while not being side-tracked by debate over Sharia law?

After all, this was the environment in which an historic populist uprising occurred in Tunisia.

Interesting debate in my opinion.

the Billmeister




posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 08:59 AM
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Originally posted by Billmeister
Love him or hate him, the now deposed president Zine El Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia did manage to do one thing, rid the country of radical Islam.

Interesting debate in my opinion.

the Billmeister



Well I don't quite agree with you there. The deposed President kept radical Islam in check but he never eradicated it. I have met several in Tunisia. These were young men who had university education but no jobs. Several came over to the UK.

Religion can make bright people quite ignorant.

Still it would be a great discussion



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 09:08 AM
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reply to post by Billmeister
 



Did the absence of this radical religious element allow the citizens to concentrate on "real-world" issues like the economy and political freedom and education while not being side-tracked by debate over Sharia law?


Yes, I think so!

This is one Arab (99% Muslim) country where the absence of Sharia law brought about many freedoms that at least women are able to enjoy. You don't find these situations for women in many radical Islamic countries...

So, I believe that you are on to something here...nice hypothesis,
what about other thoughts?



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 09:10 AM
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reply to post by tiger5
 


Well, he did make the Islamic political party illegal, which is very significant.

I agree that this does not eradicate an ideology from a country though.

I had the chance to visit Tunisia a few years ago, and I was struck by the fact that, among the younger people at least, "fashionistas" far outnumbered those dressed in the traditional Muslim garb.

You bring up a very interesting point. The student who was able to make it to the UK must, necessarily, come from a very well-off family by Tunisian standards, I fail to understand their attraction to radicalism.

the Billmeister



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 02:14 PM
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reply to post by tiger5
 



Well I don't quite agree with you there. The deposed President kept radical Islam in check but he never eradicated it. I have met several in Tunisia. These were young men who had university education but no jobs. Several came over to the UK.

Religion can make bright people quite ignorant.


Religion can make bright people quite ignorant?

Well, so can poverty!

Even Middle Easterners with meager means will send their children to university, as this has always been an important component of the culture (think ancient Egypt, Babylon, etc.)

I daresay that there are more ME lower-to-middle class types that are walking around with PhD's in comparison to the rest of the world.

When they can't find employment, and "embarass" their families, then of course they have to lean on something...and unfortunately that is often the case of religion in the case of extreme Islam.


Solve economic situations, and I'm sure you'll solve much of the extremism...

reply to post by Billmeister
_________________________________________________________

This is one of my favorite all-time music videos--check out the fashionitas,
, but more importantly, check out the creativity and passion of a Tunisian, who I was lucky enough to see live
: (Saber Al Rubai --Barsha)


edit on 20-1-2011 by sonjah1 because: bolding
edit on 20-1-2011 by sonjah1 because: encoding
extra DIV



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 02:54 PM
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reply to post by sonjah1
 


Thanks for that wonderful musical interlude!

I wholeheartedly agree with your accent on poverty. In fact, I truly believe that it is the root cause of most radicalism. Someone who has nothing to lose is dangerous, but someone who makes a decent wage, can have a comfortable dwelling and feed their family in peace is not. (there are, of course exceptions, but I truly believe they are few and far between.)

Cheers,

the Billmeister



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 05:25 PM
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reply to post by Billmeister
 


Well, Billmeister, it appears that in the weeks/months to come, we shall see how the former Tunisian's government stance on limitation of certain (political) parties unfolds.

It appears that : Tunisia cabinet to lift party bans: Interim government decides to recognise previously banned parties and adopts an amnesty for all political prisoners.

english.aljazeera.net...

Let us hope that the introduction of possibly more radical Islamic parties don't work against the people of Tunisia...

No one wants to live under the rule of an *iron-fist*, but sometimes, that horrible fist might have a velvet touch when compared to other possibilities?




posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 05:37 PM
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Originally posted by sonjah1
reply to post by Billmeister
 


Well, Billmeister, it appears that in the weeks/months to come, we shall see how the former Tunisian's government stance on limitation of certain (political) parties unfolds.

It appears that : Tunisia cabinet to lift party bans: Interim government decides to recognise previously banned parties and adopts an amnesty for all political prisoners.

english.aljazeera.net...

Let us hope that the introduction of possibly more radical Islamic parties don't work against the people of Tunisia...

No one wants to live under the rule of an *iron-fist*, but sometimes, that horrible fist might have a velvet touch when compared to other possibilities?



Yes indeed, I'm sure the people of Iraq have interesting viewpoints on the matter.

As soon as Ben Ali was deposed, Rached Ghannouchi, the exiled Islamist vowed he would return. Source

Hopefully they will not exchange one form of social shackles for another. Then again, if the process is truly democratic, who am I to judge what is best for them.

the Billmeister



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 05:53 PM
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reply to post by Billmeister
 



Hopefully they will not exchange one form of social shackles for another. Then again, if the process is truly democratic, who am I to judge what is best for them.


Exactly!

Unfortunately, my country (US) wanted Palestine to have "democratic" elections but then judged Hamas (supposedy, hopefully the people's will) by labeling them a terrorist organization...


Hyprocrisy doesn't help matters, that's for sure....



posted on Jan, 20 2011 @ 06:11 PM
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Originally posted by sonjah1
reply to post by Billmeister
 



Hopefully they will not exchange one form of social shackles for another. Then again, if the process is truly democratic, who am I to judge what is best for them.


Exactly!

Unfortunately, my country (US) wanted Palestine to have "democratic" elections but then judged Hamas (supposedy, hopefully the people's will) by labeling them a terrorist organization...


Hyprocrisy doesn't help matters, that's for sure....


It is not only the U.S.A. that acts like this.

Many nations purport to encourage democracy, but when the "proper" leader is not chosen by the citizens, a coup, or war or autocratic dictator is not too far behind.
It definitely is hypocrisy, but I imagine the notion of ones national interests is considered more important than another people's quest for democracy.

the Billmeister




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