It’s amazing how quick we get used to things. This has been one of the quietest week for me and I feel a bit strange about not having to follow up on “breaking news” or trying to analyze a developing situation, etc. I recently read an article about stress and how it lowers one’s immunity which can lead to “many physical as well as emotional problems, including irritability and depression.” Needless to say I am glad that this has been (so far) a stress free week.
The security situation in Tunisia will continue to fluctuate and present expats with unexpected challenges. As such we need to have a good pulse on the flow of information so that we are not caught by surprise. Here are the issues which are worth monitoring:
1. Salafists Related Activities: The alcohol issue is gaining more and more attention. A few headlines prove the point:
- October 29, 2012: Tunisian officer wounded in clashes between Salafists, alcohol sellers.
- October 30, 2012: Tunisian Salafists cut off man’s fingers for selling alcohol.
- November 7, 2012: Mr Ghannouchi renews his call to boycott any establishment which serves/sells alcohol.
2. Constitutional Process: As time goes on critical reviews & opinions about the new constitution will start circulating among the general public. An example of this is Chokri Belaid, party secretary-general of the Movement of Patriotic Democrats, statements concerning the constitution: “It is a shame…not a constitution for national sovereignty and the rights and freedoms but rather a set of slogans dummies and bottles for the establishment of a new dictatorship in the country.”
3. Political tension: During the build up of October 23rd and a few weeks after that we saw a lot of negative rhetoric between several political parties. The media was painting a conservative vs. secular scenario sweeping through the Arab spring countries. Although things have toned down somewhat, political tension remains relevant and worth monitoring.
Nidaa Tounes (major opposition party), will host a conference on Sunday, November 11th under an increase security presence due to the many threat they’ve received from Committees to Defend the Revolution.
Although things have calmed down it’s important to stay aware, connected, and informed. As JFK once said: “The time to repair the roof is when the sun is shining.”
Let’s keep sharing information and working together…