Friday, 28 January 2011

The Tunisian Wave

Well watching the News, it seems its true, the great trial and error process that is freedom and democracy is really under way in the Middle East.

I went to Egypt last year, to see an old friend from the gulf, and with hindsight I might have put two and two together. On previous visits the locals were very tight lipped and did not speak in any meaningful way about life and politics, but for the first time I actually had a meaningful conversation with some of them, without having to think twice or be guarded about what I said. Isreal, 911, Islamists, economics, nothing was off the agenda, The Al Jazeera effect I guessed.

Its easy to get swept up in the euphoria as the old is swept away, it would be possible for the Islamists to hijack the process like they did in Iran, a civil war is also slim possibility but Egypt is a lot smarter than you might think, its the intellectual hub of the whole middle east both in politics and religion. A lot of Middle eastern leaders will not be sleeping well tonight and thats a very good thing.The flux is upon us, history is being made.

The words of George echo through the years.

If the Middle East remains a place where freedom does not flourish, it will remain a place of stagnation and anger and violence for export. And as we saw in the ruins of two towers, no distance on the map will protect our lives and way of life. If the greater Middle East joins the democratic revolution that has reached much of the world, the lives of millions in that region will be bettered, and a trend of conflict and fear will be ended at its source.

George W. Bush, Nov. 19, 2003

Are the peoples of the Middle East somehow beyond the reach of liberty? Are millions of men and women and children condemned by history or culture to live in despotism? Are they alone never to know freedom, and never even to have a choice in the matter? I, for one, do not believe it. I believe every person has the ability and the right to be free.

George W. Bush, Nov. 6, 2003

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