Posted in Columns and Letters

Readers must be aware of the events taking place in Tunisia. As I write, the disgraced President Ben Ali has already fled the country in the face of massive protests by the people of Tunisia who took to the streets against the brutal and oppressive regime. Like all oppressive regimes in Muslim world, the Tunisian government has a track record of brutality that has destroyed the country’s people. One of the methods of oppression is by creating unemployment. This did not deter Muhammad, who used his own initiative and set up a fruit and vegetable stall in the city of Sidi Bouzid. On 17 December last Muhammad was severely beaten by Tunisian police and his stall was confiscated because he did not have the correct permit. This pushed the poor man over the edge. Muhammad doused himself in fuel and set himself on fire outside government offices. He eventually died on 5 January 2011. The event sparked protests across Tunisia.

Although Muhammad was just another name in the list of those who have lost their livelihoods, dignity and even lives to the brutality of the regime in Tunisia, the response of the people was overwhelming – and it shook the regime to its core. Nearly a hundred people have been killed by security forces since the demonstrations began. Schools have been shut indefinitely, and the president stepped down after his false promises to create 300,000 jobs did not stop the protests.

The dictator left no opposition during his rule, so it is likely that he will be replaced by one of his inner circle in government. It is actually history repeating itself as Ben Ali himself came to power being one of the inner circle of former president Habib Bourgiba ,who was removed after 30 years of unpopular government. But is that what the people want? Do they really want one French puppet to be replaced by another?

The slogans and chants that people have been using during these protests are telling: “No to democracy, no to capitalism, yes to the Islamic Caliphate”; “With our souls, with our blood, we shall sacrifice ourselves for you O Islam!”; “Caliphate! Caliphate! Caliphate!” There is a similar anger against regimes in many other Muslim countries. The tragedy of Tunisia is indeed the tragedy of all Muslim states. It is time that the people rise up across the Muslim world to bring a quick end to this ongoing suffering, and with support of the sincere among the influential people.

You can learn more about corruption in the Tunisian government from the Wikileaks cable at


One Comment

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    Interesting to note that every puppet ruler in the Muslim world runs to that hypocrite country called Saudi Arabia when they fear for their own lives and they get to live there in comfort. Be it Ben Ali, Edhi Amin or Nawaz Sharif. Guess where the Saudis will run off to when Muslims topple their corrupt regime?

    I know the answer. I just want you to make a guess. 🙂