Thoughts On The Arab SpringPosted: 2 January 2012
I feel I must get all my stuff in before January 2nd, the beginning of the 2012 election circus and I feel that not much more will be important than the unfolding of the GOP circus for a presidential candidate……
I have been listening to all the pundits speak about the Arab Spring and what it all means…….pundits point out that this is an amazing turn of events that has NO precedent….with the possible exception of the Eastern European countries in the late 80′s and early 90′s……I do not want to take anything away from the brave people that are out in the streets demanding a better life…..but this type of insurrection has its history further back than 1989….much further back…like 1848.
Having worked in the Middle East years ago, I was proud to see the people rise up against the authoritarian rule…….it all began with a person setting myself on fire to protest living conditions in Tunisia, then on to Algeria, Egypt, Yemen, Bahrain, Libya and finally on to Syria….there seems to be a common thread running through these protests……and no it is not necessarily the want of democracy…….first, there is the authoritarian leader, then it is low wages, high unemployment, food shortages…these were the major points that lead to the massive protests…….
I have mentioned 1848 and protests…how does this fit into the dialog?
In January of 1848 the people of Palermo, Sicily rose up against their leader, Ferdinand II…..this was the first step in an expanding age of protests…..and in the first four months of 1848 there were in the neighborhood of 50 separate uprisings…France, Austria, Prussia, most of the small states in Germany and Italy……like the Arab Spring there is NO single revolutionary movement or leader and they were basically a spontaneous occurrence…. and like the Arab Spring the causes were an authoritarian leader, high unemployment, low wages, food shortages and a desire for equality…..
Remember these people are fighting for their rights….they are not fighting for what the rest of the world perceives as their motives….their ideas of freedom may not be your definition of freedom….and it does not make them WRONG!