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Showing posts from January 16, 2011

 Ben Ali  :      Information Clearing House: ICH

 Ben Ali  :      Information Clearing House: ICH: "January 16, 2010 'Information Clearing House' -- He might still be living in the lap of luxury, but make no mistake Tunisia's former President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali and his family are prisoners.

Like birds in a guilded cage, they are languishing in a palace in one of the most exclusive districts of Jeddah but the truth is Ben Ali and his equally odious and corrupt family have nowhere else to hide.

It should signal a warning to all the other despots and dictators in the region – Egypt in particular – that no matter how close you think you are to the West, in times of trouble they will drop you faster than a burning coal.

As one of the cruelest oppressors on the planet scrambled to board a plane to escape what some may consider a well deserved lynching, the truth is he had no idea where he was going.

So fast was his demise.


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Informed Comment: Thoughts on the Middle East, History and Religion

Informed Comment: Thoughts on the Middle East, History and Religion: "The US embassy in Tunis noted the contradictions of what was once called ‘the Tunisian miracle’– relative stability and security and 5% growth a year, but with Mafia style corruption on the part of ruling cliques that was discouraging foreign investment and contributing to failing banks and high unemployment.

Most debilitating, and destabilizing, has been high levels of unemployment, especially for college graduates:

‘ Unemployment, however, is a growing concern and is one on which every GOT official is focused. Official unemployment figures leveled off at 14 percent in 2005, after a steady declines dating from 1999s 15.8 percent. Even at 14 percent, however, this figure is consistently challenged as too optimistic by first hand accounts of university graduates unable to find jobs and reports of increasing numbers of ever-more qualified applicants seeking Embassy jobs.’

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