First the government of Pakistan breaks down, then the Lebanese government, and today, Tunisia’s government. See a pattern here? These are all Muslim countries and the toppled governments were all friendly to the United States.
Protesters enraged over soaring unemployment and corruption drove Tunisian President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali from power Friday after 23 years of iron-fisted rule, an unprecedented popular uprising in a region dominated by strongmen who do not answer to their people.
Tunisians buoyant over Ben Ali’s ouster immediately worried, however, about what’s next: the caretaker leadership of the prime minister who took control, and the role of the army in the transition.
The upheaval took place after weeks of escalating unrest fueled partly by social media and cell phones, as thousands of demonstrators from all walks of life rejected Ben Ali’s promises of change and mobbed the capital of Tunis to demand his ouster in the country’s largest demonstrations in generations.
At least 23 people have been killed in the riots, according to the government, but opposition members put the death toll at more than three times that.
Tunisia: PM Takes Power Amid Deadly Riots
Exit Ben Ali – but can Tunisia change?
Tension Grips Tunisia’s Capital After Leader Flees
Tunisia in turmoil as President flees from the anger of the dispossessed
Tunisia: President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali forced out
Constitutional debate after Ben Ali
Arab activists hope Tunisia uprising brings change
Tunisia: a ‘wake-up call’ for Arab leaders
Patrick Cockburn: Troubles like these are brewing all over the Middle East
Al-Qaeda supports the events in Tunisia and Algeria
France did not prepare to welcome Tunisia’s Ben Ali: Foreign Ministry
Montreal eyes possible arrival of ex-Tunisian leader
Obama calls for free and fair Tunisia elections
That’s three governments in three Muslim countries in about as many weeks. How far will this trend spread and what government will be next to fall? It looks like we have a fast paced game of geopolitical dominoes going on here and it’s being played for keeps. And it could end up with Islamic interests being the eventual winners.
/it almost goes without saying that, chances are, the successor governments will be more hostile to the United States and Western interests
Filed under: Blog Entry | Tagged: Army, Caretaker Leadership, Cell Phones, Corruption, Death Toll, Demand, Demonstrators, Enraged, Escalating Unrest, Government, Iron-Fisted Rule, Islam, Killed, Military, Muslims, Opposition Members, Ouster, Popular Uprising, President, Prime Minister, Protesters, Riots, Soaring Unemployment, Social Media, Strongmen, Tunis, Tunisia, Tunisian, Tunisian President, Tunisian Prime Minister, Unemployment, Unprecedented, Unrest, Upheaval, Worried, Zine El Abidine Ben Ali |