Tunisian people power - is regional change afoot?

Discussion in 'Politics, Religion, Social Issues' started by Queso, Jan 17, 2011.

  1. Queso macrumors G4

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    #1
    Following the overthrow of Tunisia's President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali over the weekend it looks as if the protesters are now setting their sights on taking down the entire party apparatus that had kept him in power for two and a half decades. Meanwhile this morning in Cairo a man set himself alight in a replica of the same event that kicked off the Tunisian protests. Are we witnessing the start of something big about to occur across the southern Mediterranean shores, as frustration towards increasing levels of poverty, widening gulfs between rich and poor and government corruption reach boiling point? Could Mubarak, Gadaffi, et. al all find themselves heading to exile in Saudi Arabia any time soon?
     
  2. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #2
    I think the Saudis should just bite the bullet and build a large gated community ("Autocratopolis"?) for all these bozos. Hopefully they can accommodate the rest of the African despots in due course, since they seem to have such an affinity with tyrants.
     
  3. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #3
    Let's hope so. It would be nice to see this in Iran too.
     
  4. iJohnHenry macrumors P6

    iJohnHenry

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    The tyrants love money. The Saudis love money. A match made in Hell.
     
  5. leekohler macrumors G5

    leekohler

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    #5
    Let's be clear- Saudi Arabia is not exactly the nicest place on Earth either.
     
  6. Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

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    #6
    I truly hope this achieves some sort of freedom for Tunisians but I have my doubts.On the optimistic side it appears Pirate party member Slim Amamou is
    State Secretary for Youth and Sports in the interim government.
     
  7. Macky-Mac macrumors 68030

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    seems to have inspired some response in Egypt which has worried the government there and led to a crack down by police

    BBC

     
  8. Queso thread starter macrumors G4

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    I can't see the crackdown working now TBH. The population of Egypt is 80 million or so and to a man they're totally fed up with Mubarak taking them all for mugs. He'll be heading for Saudi within a couple of months I reckon.
     
  9. Lord Blackadder macrumors G5

    Lord Blackadder

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    #9
    I'm more concerned about the nature of the governments that may be born out of this activity...
     
  10. Queso thread starter macrumors G4

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    #10
    I'm less worried because it's happening along the Mediterranean shore. If it were the Persian Gulf it would only end badly, but Egypt and Tunisia are real countries with real cultures, much older than Islam and with a national belief than springs from something other than religion. The historic rivalry between Egypt and Iran also indicates to me that we're not going to see another "Islamic Revolution".
     
  11. ct2k7 macrumors 603

    ct2k7

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    #11
    A lot of the population seem to be happy with its leader.
     
  12. Peterkro, Jan 26, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2011

    Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

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    #12
    In spite of my pessimism things are looking better for Tunisia as time passes, Egypt however is a different kettle of fish,it's dictatorial regime for instance has extremely strong U.S. (and therefore Israeli) backing it will take huge efforts to change anything there although if people are as angry as this guy anything is possible(plus a pic of downtown Suez today)(P.S. street lighting out in the Kasbah Tunis armed militia attacking demonstrators calls going out for help on Twitter 21.30 GMT)(by the way the building in the Suez photo is the police headquarters)
     

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  13. Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

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    #13
    Jesus Christ, slaughter happening on the streets of Cairo and Suez,I can only hope the flow of arms is going through the tunnels to Cairo.People are dying now folks.
     
  14. Burnsey macrumors 6502a

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    #14
    This is what happens when a foreign country donates billions in aid every year to keep a dictatorial regime in power. What happened to spreading democracy?
     
  15. takao macrumors 68040

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    #15
    the egyptian opposition/protest movement just got a lot more serious with ElBaradei entering the country and putting his support behind them.. gonna be interesting how this turns out
     
  16. Peterkro, Jan 27, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2011

    Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

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    #16
    He's a pro western pro world bank pro IMF chancer who's the U.S's plan B.Of more importance is that the Muslim Brotherhood are to take part in post prayer protests on Friday,whilst they are a bunch of counter revolutionary bastards it does raise the stakes considerably.(in another interesting move members of the Coptic church are to go to Mosques on friday to try and protect them from attack
     
  17. NT1440 macrumors G4

    NT1440

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    #17
    We only spread democracy when the outcomes are beneficial to us, otherwise we're more than willing to support brutal dictators or regimes. It's amazing how little our rhetoric holds up to our actions, and its been that way for decades.
     
  18. Queso thread starter macrumors G4

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    #18
    Some might wonder whether the sudden appearance of ElBaradei is more of the usual divide-and-rule tactic the Egyptian government have used so many times already. Some may even wonder what favours Mubarak has promised in order for some foreign power to encourage said appearance to occur.
     
  19. Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

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    #19
    Wikileaks has today published cables from the Cairo embassy:

    http://wikileaks.ch/reldate/2011-01-28_0.html

    "Torture and police brutality in Egypt are endemic and widespread. The police use brutal methods mostly against common criminals to extract confessions, but also against demonstrators, certain political prisoners and unfortunate bystanders. One human rights lawyer told us there is evidence of torture in Egypt dating back to the times of the Pharaohs".
     
  20. takao macrumors 68040

    takao

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    #20
    looks like this is spinning out of control:

    1.ElBaradei is in police custody

    2.egypt mobile phone services and internet connection have been shut down to prevent communication between protesters and the outside of egypt

    3. protests in Yemen already boiling up
     
  21. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #21
    According to the Beeb, El Baradei is taking refuge in a mosque and giving interviews.
     
  22. Desertrat macrumors newbie

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    #22
    Other than oil, the gross domestic product of the Arab world of the mideast is about equal to that of Denmark. IOW, little "real" economy, which has led to the type of governments in power of which we complain. When the majority of the population is very poor and food prices rise as they have, it looks to me like a "last straw" situation--even without Jihadist extremists. Can't blame them. And food prices and shortages will worsen.

    From what I'm reading, Iran isn't much better off, given their own problems with inflation.

    In the FWIW department, the guy from Tunisia had 1.5 tonnes of gold flown to Switzerland (allegedly). At some 32,000 ounces per tonne, that's a bit over $67 million, which can make for a comfortable retirement.
     
  23. Peterkro, Jan 28, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2011

    Peterkro macrumors 68020

    Peterkro

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    #23
    Amongst other things Eygpt produces battletanks on U.S. licence for sale to Iraq nice deal slave wages and the profits go to the U.S. If not for the bastard few percent at the top Egypt would be a relatively rich country.The 1.5 tons of gold was purloined by the wife(of Tunisian president) and went to Saudi not Switzerland.
    (by the way the position of the Army is pivotal and no sign of them yet)(Army on streets now being welcomed by protesters,big moment)
     
  24. Queso thread starter macrumors G4

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    One thing I think shows how desperate the Egyptian government are is their cutting off of the Internet and mobile networks to prevent communication and stop people gathering into large groups.

    Duh! It's Friday! Most of the population are already gathered into large groups anyway. All it needs is one group to head off to the next door mosque and before you know it half a city has taken to the streets.

    It's reaching a tipping point now.
     
  25. skunk macrumors G4

    skunk

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    #25
    Also in the FWIW department, the following are from the CIA Factbook, regarding Egypt:


    egypt 1.jpg

    egypt 2.jpg

    90% of Egyptian oil is for domestic consumption.
     

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