Tunisia heading towards a constitution based on Sharia

February 21, 2012

(EOZ) From Egypt Independent:

The third-largest party in Tunisia’s constituent assembly, charged with writing a new constitution, proposed on Monday a draft document based on Islamic law which will likely alarm the country’s secularists.
The moderate Islamist Ennahda party won a 40 percent share in the assembly, or 89 seats, in Tunisia’s first election since the ouster of Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali a year ago sparked the Arab Spring uprisings across the region.
The non-religious Conference for the Republic won 29 seats in the 217-seat assembly and Aridha Chaabia, or Popular List, came in third. Should the proposal win the support of more than 60 percent of parliamentarians, it would pass without a referendum.
Popular List said in a statement that its draft document “stipulates in its first article that Tunisia is a free, independent and sovereign country, Islam is its religion and the principal source of its legislation, Arabic is its language and its system is a republic.”
Using Islamic Sharia as a principal source of legislation will guarantee freedom, justice, social equality, consultation, human rights and the dignity of all its people, men and women.”
The proposal is certain to inflame political tensions in Tunisia, where secularists already fear that the Ennahda-led government will slowly Islamize Tunisian law and society.
Ennahda has sought to assure secularists that it has no intention of enforcing Islamic rules, but it has struggled to control more conservative Islamists who have been outspoken in their demands that religion play a greater role in public life.
The Arab Spring is catapulting the Arab world into the seventh century.

(cia.gov) The country’s first president, Habib BOURGUIBA, established a strict one-party state. He dominated the country for 31 years, repressing Islamic fundamentalism and establishing rights for women unmatched by any other Arab nation. In November 1987, BOURGUIBA was removed from office and replaced by Zine el Abidine BEN ALI in a bloodless coup. Street protests that began in Tunis in December 2010 over high unemployment, corruption, widespread poverty, and high food prices escalated in January 2011, culminating in rioting that led to hundreds of deaths. On 14 January 2011, the same day BEN ALI dismissed the government, he fled the country, and by late January 2011, a “national unity government” was formed. In late October 2011, elections for a Constituent Assembly were held. The Constituent Assembly is charged with appointing a new interim government, drafting a new constitution, and preparing for legislative and presidential elections.

I’m getting a bit tired of pointing out how Obama’s foregin policy is crap. It isn’t fun always being right.


David Galula’s Counterinsurgency Ideas Used in Iraq and Afghanistan

January 25, 2012
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(TabletMag) Every Berber I have met has told me that Amazigh were the original inhabitants of North Africa and that all of that land was once theirs. As one Libyan Amazigh told me, “I’m tired of hearing about the Palestinians and how the Jews took their land. What about how the Arabs took our land?”
There is also the fact that the official language of all the North African countries is Arabic—yet in Morocco 60 percent of the population are Tamazight or Berber-speaking, in Algeria 30 percent, and in Libya perhaps 10 percent. In most of North Africa, the Arabophone majority has suppressed or (in the case of Qaddafi’s Libya) outright prohibited the use of Tamazight, a language that is estimated to be anywhere from 2,200 to 3,000 years old; its tiffinagh script has more than 30 letters, differing somewhat from region to region, and some of them look like ancient Greek.(MORE @ Tablet)

Ann Marlowe uses conjecture to assume that the supposed father of workable counterinsurgency warfare through propaganda was less successful because he did not talk about his own North African Jewish background. I’m not so sure Ann is right about this (She seems to believe in the fiction of “Moderate Islam”), but the history here is interesting.


Tunisia’s President Calls Jews to Return

December 20, 2011
Moncef Marzouki
(israelnationalnews.com)  ( h/t @TheJewess ) Tunisia’s newly elected president on Monday called the country’s Jewish population to return, The Associated Press reported.
During a meeting with the country’s Grand Rabbi Haim Bittan, President Moncef Marzouki said that Tunisia’s Jews are full citizens and those who had left the country were welcome to return.
Today, Tunisia has a Jewish population of 1,500 but in the 1960s there were 100,000 Jews in the country. Most left following the 1967 Six Day War.
Most Tunisian Jews now live on the resort island of Djerba, near the country’s border with Libya.
Marzouki’s remarks come in response to a call by Cabinet Minster and Vice Prime Minister Silvan Shalom for Tunisian Jews to move to Israel.
Shalom, who is of Tunisian origin and who made an official visit to the country in 2005, recently said that Jews in Tunisia should “settle in Israel as soon as possible.”
Shalom’s call was rejected by Muslim leaders in Tunisia. The Islamist Ennahda party, which recently won the country’s first post-Arab Spring election, said that “Tunisia remains, today and tomorrow, a democratic state that respects its citizens and looks after them regardless of their religion…. Members of the Jewish community in Tunisia are citizens enjoying all their rights and duties.”
The Islamic party said Shalom’s remarks were “irresponsible” and “irrational,” and it criticized the timing of his comments.
The Arab Spring just doesn’t sound like a nice invite for those outside of the Islamic faith. Maybe in ten years or maybe never.

Tunisia lifts warrant summoning Arafat’s widow // hmmm why?

December 16, 2011
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(h/t ChallahHuAkbar / ynetnews.com) The Justice Ministry says Tunisia has lifted a warrant summoning the widow of late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat over a corruption scandal. Ministry spokesman Kadhem Zine El Abidine said Friday that the investigating judge who had issued the warrant against Suha Arafat in October has since reversed that order. The case centered on alleged embezzlement linked to the creation of The International School of Carthage outside Tunis, which she founded in 2006 with Leila Trabelsi, the wife of former longtime Tunisia President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali. (AP)

The government was overthrown… remember? who controls North Africa now? you can expect all judicial process to end.


A French minister of Arab origin says ‘there is no such thing as moderate Islam’

December 5, 2011
Jeannette Bougrab, who is originally from Algeria, is a French junior minister with responsibility for youth. She said that any legislation based on Islamic sharia law “inevitably” imposed restrictions on rights and freedoms. (Reuters)Jeannette Bougrab, who is originally from Algeria, is a French junior minister with responsibility for youth. She said that any legislation based on Islamic sharia law “inevitably” imposed restrictions on rights and freedoms. (Reuters)(Al Arabiya/ AFP) A French minister said there was no such thing as moderate Islam, calling recent election successes by Islamic parties in Egypt, Morocco and Tunisia “worrying” in an interview published Saturday.
Jeannette Bougrab, a junior minister with responsibility for youth, told Le Parisien newspaper that legislation based on Islamic sharia law “inevitably” imposed restrictions on rights and freedoms.
Bougrab is of Algerian origin, whose father fought on the French colonial side during Algeria’s war of independence, and said she was speaking as “a French woman of Arab origin.”
“It’s very worrying,” she was quoted as saying. “I don’t know of any moderate Islam.”
“There are no half measures with sharia,” she added. “I am a lawyer and you can make all the theological, literal or fundamental interpretations of it that you like but law based on sharia is inevitably a restriction on freedom, especially freedom of conscience.”
She was reacting to electoral successes scored by the Ennahda party in Tunisia, the Justice and Development Party in Morocco and the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt.
French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe has called for dialogue with such parties as long as they respect certain criteria, including the rule of law and women’s rights.
Bougrab conceded that ousted Tunisian and Egyptian rulers Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and Hosni Mubarak had used the Islamist “threat” to win backing from Western countries, but she added, “We shouldn’t go to the other extreme.”
And she hit out at the 30 percent of Tunisians living in France who had voted for Ennahda in last month’s polls. “I am shocked that those who have rights and freedoms here gave their votes to a religious party,” she said.

US would be ‘satisfied’ with Brotherhood win in Egypt

November 6, 2011
The United States will judge elected parties in the MidEast based “on what they do and not what they’re called,” AFP reports.

The United States would be “satisfied” should free elections in Egypt produce a victory for the Muslim Brotherhood, AFP reported Friday according to the US’s special coordinator for transitions in the Middle East, William Taylor. Taylor said the US would judge elected parties in the Middle East based “on what they do, and not what they’re called,” AFP quoted him as saying. He added that he did not meet with Brotherhood officials in his latest visit to Cairo, but would have had he been given the chance. The point man on Middle East transitions said that so-called Arab Spring revolutions and a desire for democratic elections create an environment in which groups like the Muslim Brotherhood are able to shed associations with terror. Taylor’s comments came the week after Tunisia – widely seen as the birthplace of Arab Spring revolutions – elected its own Islamist Ennahda party to form a governing coalition.

Ennahda emerged the victor in the nation’s first ever free elections. The party, banned before the revolution that ousted President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali, won 90 of the 217 seats in the new assembly. It was not, however, an outright win. The party is expected to form a coalition with two of the secularist runners-up. Ennahda’s leader is pledging a new dawn for Tunisians. Rachid Ghannouchi, leader of the Ennahda party, said, “We give our promise to them to continue to realize the aims of the revolution in a Tunisia that is free, independent, developing and prosperous, and where the rights of God, the Prophet, women, men, the religious and non-religious, are assured because Tunisia is for everybody.”

…and of course the liberal media will believe this.


From an Arab Spring to an Islamist Winter: Demonstrators Dispatched by Mosques

October 30, 2011
Arab Spring
Arab Spring

(Hudson) The “revolutionaries” who sodomized and lynched Libyan dictator Moammar Gaddafi chanted the famous Islamic battle cry “Allahu Akbar!” [Allah is Greater].
When the leaders of the revolution announced Gaddafi’s death at a press conference, even secular Muslim journalists started chanting “Allahu Akbar!”
A few days later, the leader of Libya’s National Transitional Council, Mustafa Abdul Jalil, declared at a rally in Benghazi that his country would now become an Islamic state.
“As a Muslim country, we have adopted the Islamic Sharia as the main source of law. Accordingly, any law that contradicts Islamic principles with the Islamic Sharia is ineffective legally.”
At this stage, it is still not clear what version of Islamic law the new rulers of Libya are planning to enforce.
Will Libya take example from Iran, Sudan and Saudi Arabia where adulterers are stoned to death and convicted thieves have their hands cut off and beheaded in public squares?
Or will Libya endorse a more “moderate” version of Islam, as is the case in many Arab and Islamic countries?
Either way, what is clear by now is that the post-Gaddafi Libya will be anything but a secular and democratic country, but one where there is no room for liberals and moderates.
Those who thought the Arab Spring would bring moderation and secularism to the Arab world are in for a big disappointment.
The results of the first free elections held under the umbrella of the Arab Spring have now brought the Islamists to power in Tunisia.
But the Islamists who won the election in Tunisia are already being accused by their rivals of being too “moderate” because they do not endorse jihad and terrorism against the “infidels.”
What happened to all those young and charismatic Facebook representatives who told everyone that the uprisings would bring the Western values and democracy to the Arab countries? Some of the secular parties that ran in the Tunisian elections did not even win one seat in parliament.
What many Western observers have failed to notice is that most of the antigovernment demonstrations that have been sweeping the Arab world over the past ten months were often launched from mosques following Friday prayers.
This is especially true regarding Egypt, Yemen, Syria and Jordan.
Thanks to the Arab Spring, the Islamists in these countries are beginning to emerge from their hiding places to become legitimate players in the political scene.
The writing on the wall is very big and clear. In a free and democratic election, those who carry the banner of “Islam is the Solution” will score major victories in most, if not all, the Arab countries.
The Palestinians were the first to experience this new trend back in 2006, when Hamas defeated the secular Fatah faction in a free and fair parliamentary election held at the request of the US and the EU.
The leaders of the Arab Spring have failed to offer themselves to their people as a better alternative to the Islamists. As far as many Arabs are concerned, this is a faceless Facebook revolution that has failed to produce new leaders. The Arab Spring is becoming the Islamist winter.