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Old 21.01.2011, 16:49
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accounts of Mr Ben Ali frozen in Switzerland

By a decision of the Federal Council, Switzerland now has blocked all bank accounts of the clans of Mr Ben Ali and his wife. The development behind the matter is amazing for two reasons.

Mr Ben Ali during his reign actually DID a lot in favour of the economic development and social progress in his country and in fact was really successful. Joblessness ? This already has been so under Habib Bourguiba and is not sensational if we see that the population of the country has doubled during the period in which he ruled the country.

What did he wrong ?

He, as being by nature and education (as a secret service man) was a born autocrat, and was not ready to accept even the restricted democracy you find in Egypt, or the democracy Morocco/Jordan style, where a lot of things really ARE with the democratically elected parliament, while the King still holds a lot of the power. In contrast to Jordan and to the Morocco under his father Hassan II, where the Prime Minister, whatever the facts in the parliament, is a crony of the monarch, MVI (Mohammed VI) in Morocco after the last elections gave the order to establish the government to the leader of the largest party in parliament. Abidine Ben Ali, an intelligent and gifted man failed in this totally. His rule was accepted as long as in neighbouring Algeria, General Liamine Zeroual ruled by iron hand. But when Abdelaziz Bouteflika got elected and RE-elected in "kosher" presidential elections, arranged decent parliamentary elections and introduced local democracy on the level of villages and towns and Wilayets, the Tunisians increasingly saw their country as the final light in the Maghreb in regard to democracy and self determination.

The second aspect, and in fact a really unique thing, is that this Yasmine Revolution, did NOT come from the poor and disadvantaged but clearly from the Middle Class (even UPPER middle class) who united with students, medical doctors, barkeepers, restaurant waiters and hotel receptionists.

So that when I heard that Abidine Ben Ali had left Tunisia, I was laughing and amused on one side, and a bit sad about the way in which a generally highly successful state leader had to drop out

Now, let's turn to the third aspect. That the private airline-companies in Tunisia, with a few exceptions were owned by member of the family of the wife of the president, was symptomatic and a rather depressing thing. That some of the best Tunisian businessmen including the owner of a "French" and a "Tunisian" airline chose to maintain their head-offices in France while building up business in the "homeland" was not a real surprise.

And finally let's come to the strangest and fourth aspect. That is that exactly the progress he had brought about is the major reason why the country had enough resources and reserves to push him out of business !
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Old 21.01.2011, 17:00
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Re: accounts of Mr Ben Ali frozen in Switzerland

I thought I was going to read stories about someone falling asleep on a park in Zurich or something and ending up like the meat in a deep freeze.
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Old 21.01.2011, 17:06
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Re: accounts of Mr Ben Ali frozen in Switzerland

This post should be in the Tunisia riots thread .

I guess that as far as Arab countries go , Mr. Ben Ali can be considered successful.
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Old 21.01.2011, 17:27
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Re: accounts of Mr Ben Ali frozen in Switzerland

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This post should be in the Tunisia riots thread .

I guess that as far as Arab countries go , Mr. Ben Ali can be considered successful.
A) Many of the Arab state-leaders ARE successful in regard to economy, social and educational affairs, and infrastructure, but
B) Mr Ben Ali is not the only one whose records in regard to democracy and human rights are a bit cloudy ! to put it mildly. Many of those authoritarians would in the frame of democracy win really decent democratic elections, but just like Mr Ben Ali, they wait until it is too late.
C) the title "riots in" is no longer correct, as the riots have come to an end. I do not regard peaceful demonstrations as "riots" !

Off-topic, I maintain that also Mr Berlusconi and Mr Erdogan, two other Mediterranean leaders, ARE successful in their way
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Old 21.01.2011, 21:28
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Re: accounts of Mr Ben Ali frozen in Switzerland

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A) Many of the Arab state-leaders ARE successful in regard to economy, social and educational affairs, and infrastructure
They are very succesful making themselves, their friends & relatives economically successful (see the private 747 of the Saudi prince parked in ZRH), different story for the other 99%.

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C) the title "riots in" is no longer correct, as the riots have come to an end. I do not regard peaceful demonstrations as "riots" !
Yes, it's very peaceful.
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Old 22.01.2011, 00:34
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Re: accounts of Mr Ben Ali frozen in Switzerland

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They are very succesful making themselves, their friends & relatives economically successful (see the private 747 of the Saudi prince parked in ZRH), different story for the other 99%.



Yes, it's very peaceful.
A) Saudi Arabia is rich, but I would not call the Saudi leadership "successful"

B) Demonstrations ARE peaceful if compared with riots.

-- If I mention Mr Ben Ali to have been successful, I do not mean his corrupt ways and how the "presidential clan" profited, but I mean his success in modernising the country, extending its industry (for example now producing spare parts for Airbus airplanes), and improving its infrastructure. That the average Tunisian now is better off than 23 years ago, in spite of the populating having almost doubled in this time is a truly positive thing.
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Old 23.01.2011, 23:01
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Re: accounts of Mr Ben Ali frozen in Switzerland

Just as an update, people in Tunisia now are increasing pressure onto the Prime Minister to resign, and that together with the Ministers of Defence, Interior, Exterior and Finance, fearing that he otherwise would try to continue the Bourguiba-BenAli rule under a new guise
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