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Journal of No. 118


October 26th, 2011

Allowed @ 01:06 pm


A while ago, I bloviated about how forbidden is not the opposite of mandatory. The magic word of freedom is 'allowed'.

Hearing the news from Tunisia following their election, I'm cautiously hopeful that the winning party has the right idea. The party spokesman said:

“individual freedoms and human rights are enshrined principles” and that atheists and homosexuals are a reality in Tunisia and “have a right to exist.”
...
Chaibi also denied that his party intends to make the wearing of the veil for women compulsory. “The veil is part of belief, a religious symbol, and as such has no value if it is taken from freedom
...
“We will not force anyone to drink or not drink"

Tunisia’s neighbour, Libya, adopted Islamic Sharia law on Sunday as the basis of all the new regime’s laws.

Hmm... buzzkill.
 
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From:vulpine137
Date:October 26th, 2011 08:14 pm (UTC)
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Thanks for a rare positive political note.
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From:jimkeller
Date:October 26th, 2011 09:07 pm (UTC)
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Not a surprise on the Libyan side of things, but that's good news from Tunisia. A moderate Islamic government could do wonders for the entire region, and I hope it proves stable.
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From:essentialsaltes
Date:October 26th, 2011 09:18 pm (UTC)
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From my vast experience of a few hours spent in Tunis, I remember the town being very Mediterranean in feel. If you changed the signs from Arabic to Greek or Italian, you might not notice.

The article points out that tourism is 10% of their GDP, which may also play a part in fostering greater tolerance. I expect the tourism industry in Libya remains somewhat rudimentary.
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From:freudinshade
Date:October 26th, 2011 10:58 pm (UTC)
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Good news on Tunisia. As for Libya, the announcement is not surprising, but I will watch cautiously to see how it plays out. The islamists' support in the rebellion was essential and the new government probably committed to Sharia to keep them on board, but what degree of strictness and how it is implemented remains to be seen. There are certainly many aspects of Sharia which are distasteful even if mildly enforced, but it remains to be seen how the people of Libya will push the new government as it really takes shape.
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From:essentialsaltes
Date:October 26th, 2011 11:33 pm (UTC)
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Qaddafi actually remade the legal system to conform to sharia in 1973, though it doesn't seem to have been fully implemented at all, or in the kind of strict way that one fears. Hopefully that can continue, while still being considered in line with sharia.
Here's more news directly on Libya, with some moderate voices among them. Time will tell, as you say.

"'The rules and laws (in new Libya) should take Islam as a basic reference,' Islamist leader Sheikh Ali Sallabi, a supporter of Belhaj, told AFP.

He insisted that freedom, justice, equality and respect for human dignity should be enshrined in the new constitution, along with the peaceful rotation of power."

Journal of No. 118