Tunisia 2016

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Curious Wednesday
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Jan 22 2016 06:20
Tunisia 2016

A massive movement is erupting in Tunisia at this very moment and at the moment I can only find this radical site that 's reporting it

21/1/16

Tunisia: protesters try to storm government buildings in several towns on 3rd day of widespread rioting against unemployment
“…youths chanted “Jobs or Another Revolution,” according to state media and local residents. President Beji Caid Essebsi’s government announced on Wednesday it would seek to hire more than 6,000 young unemployed people from Kasserine, and start construction projects….Unemployment rose to 15.3 percent in 2015 compared with 12 percent in 2010″

More here: “It’s as if we were back in 2010-2011,” Al Shuruk newspaper wrote …Tensions remain high in Kasserine, where security forces have used tear gas and water cannon against crowds of hundreds of demonstrators, and the protests have since Tuesday spread to nearby towns. As on the previous days, protesters on Thursday set up roadblocks with burning tyres and pelted security forces with stones,…In Feriana, 30km away, a policeman was killed on Wednesday during an operation to disperse demonstrators…he died when his vehicle was overturned….As the protests spread, protesters on Thursday cut off roads in Sidi Bouzid and clashed with police, while similar demonstrations were reported in the central towns of Jendouba, Gafsa and Kebili”

and here: “Tunisian police firing tear gas clashed on Thursday with hundreds of protesters who set fire to police posts and tried to storm local government buildings in towns across the country in the largest protests since the 2011 “Arab Spring” uprising….Protesters set fire to a police station in the town of Guebeli in southern Tunisia and officers abandoned another post in Kef in the northwest…Later on Thursday night, the protests spread to the capital where rioters burned a small police post in the poor Tunis district of Cite El Intilaka and residents set alight tyres in the streets of Cite Ettadhamen district”

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Entdinglichung
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Jan 22 2016 07:34

https://communismeouvrier.wordpress.com/2016/01/22/le-gouvernement-envoie-larmee-a-kebili/

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Entdinglichung
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Jan 22 2016 07:35

generally a dense coverage (in French): https://communismeouvrier.wordpress.com/category/zone-geographique/tunisie/

C.Hélène
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Jan 22 2016 09:04

and in english

https://twitter.com/kommunisierung

Mark.
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Jan 22 2016 09:26

Tunisia Live on twitter: https://mobile.twitter.com/Tunisia_Live

Brian Whitaker on twitter: https://mobile.twitter.com/Brian_Whit

Mark.
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Jan 22 2016 12:23

Protests spread to capital

Nationwide curfew announced

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hamid.moradei
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Jan 23 2016 01:25

Tunisia has carried out substantial democratic reforms since the “Arab Spring” took off in the country five years ago - and unlike many other Arab countries( Libyan, Syria, Egypt ...) managed to remain peaceful - but poverty, unemployment not only remained constant, but it has increased drastically; the OFFICIAL unemployment rate is 15 percent and youth unemployment rate is 30%.

“- I thought the revolution would give us the hope of finding a job with dignity. I never thought I'd be standing here with the same requirements now as five years ago, says unemployed Haamza Hizi, 28, in the town of Kasserine, where the weekly protests began after a suicide.”

The proletarian masses are experiencing through the hard facts of capitalist world reality that a political dichotomy between ballot-box, in Tunisia, and bullet box as in the case of Syria, will never bring bread and water to them: A world system in aggravating generalized crisis leaves hardly any space for better living conditions in severely socio-economic crisis ridden capitalist periphery. Capitalism in Tunisia, as every where else, is not able to approach to phenomenology of the main antagonism within the system, i.e. capital-labor relation. Of course, the system prolongs this negative and destructive antagonism by moving deeper towards its own open negation/barbarism as it is the common state of affairs in the Middle East; Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan ...
It seems, for us as world proletariat, there are only two options left; revolution or capitalist destruction!

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Jan 23 2016 01:45

Hamid, I understand the gist of what you are saying, but I would like to see an analysis showing exactly why capitalism cannot work in Tunisia taking into account its position in the global economy

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Dennis Robert Pike
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Jan 23 2016 11:56

I doubt an analysis specifically geared toward Tunisia exists. You can try the paper 'Dependency Theory' by Hamza Ateş et. al. for a perspective on the Middle East in general. It only mentions North Africa and Tunisia once, but perhaps it will give a general impression of the entire region. It is available for free, here:

http://e-dergi.atauni.edu.tr/atauniiibd/article/view/1025003654

(click 'Başliksiz')

Mark.
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Jan 23 2016 12:35

Tunisia protests: timeline

Mark.
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Jan 23 2016 13:18

Nawaat on twitter: https://mobile.twitter.com/nawaat

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hamid.moradei
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Jan 23 2016 15:55

Soapy, this complex operational mechanism of crisis within the core-periphery system of capital accumulation, needs to be addressed. I tried in my previous work in a sense, http://libcom.org/library/capitals-utopia-dystopia-refugeemigration-crisis, to touch the issue. I'll try perhaps in coming works to elaborate my view on the problem in a more systematic way, if limitation in my English allows it.

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Jan 23 2016 17:36

Yeah, this is amazing. It's be great if this signals a shift in the what remains of the Arab Spring movement into economic/class demands.

Does anyone know how spontaneous all this is? Had there previously been small group agitation in the run-up, organizations focused around unemployment, etc?

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Jan 23 2016 18:49

There are a large number of Marxist-Leninist patriotic factions operating in Tunisia that are small but strong and very active on issues such as unemployment. More people seem to have sympathy for them than they have political or ideological agreement with them, also because two of their leading members were assassinated by Islamists, which brought public sympathy.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Popular_Front_(Tunisia)

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Jan 24 2016 11:42

If you want some basic economic/social background you can start with the Mouvement Communiste text about Tunisia 2011:
https://libcom.org/library/tunisia-emergency-state-restructuring-democratic-insurrection
without even having to leave the confines of libcom.

On a more academic level, there's the latest issue (num. 7) of Workers of the World ("International Journal on Strikes and Social Conflict"), which has an article on the history of the UGTT (national union confederation in Tunisia) which claims that the "revolution" in Tunisia had a much better outcome than most of the "Arab Spring" because civil society was more highly developed there.
http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/wotw/6/

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Jan 24 2016 20:24

The capitalist unresolvable socio-economic problem of mass youth unemployment in capitalist world in general and in the periphery, in a logarithmic scale, in particular sets in motion radical clashes between sections of proletarian masses against the ideological and material power structure in the state-capital dominated society; the young and inexperienced sections of proletarian class in periphery has not gain any revolutionary perspective against the ruling classes and their dominant capital-labor relations: A delusional perspective about the state capitalist solution to the crisis in the society, including joblessness, functions as common unwritten platform in the periphery of capital that has been hit through continuous economic decline since the late 1970s.

The mass young unemployed protests in Iran, Afghanistan, Tunisia ... does not come "out of the blue." What is behind them is the same as everywhere else, they relate to the contradictions of capitalism in general, unable to integrate the mass young proletariat into the cycle of production; the periphery of capital is characterized by the labor intensive industry sector/labor, this leads to an extreme surplus-labor-power availability in theses regions.
It's just a fact that from the point of view of mathematics, capitalist production system, can never integrate the mass surplus labor-power/population into the circuit of production. This problem of unemployment/reserve army facing existing production capacity takes a logarithmic function for the young proletariat in the capitalist periphery, where there is no any perspective of finding working on the horizon.

In the “Islamic” periphery ( Afghanistan, Iran Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Syria, Tunisia, Pakistan ...), the basic algorithm for power triangle in the form of state-capital-Islamism has to manage this explosive issue in a formal set:

open violence against any class action
war and principle of commodity-labor destruction
“labor export” in the form of refugee/immigrant crisis that we are experiencing in the geography for the center of capitalist world; US, EU ...core

In this context crisis, war or nothing, because of lack of a real proletarian perspective that can cut through any false alternative/s presented by traditional (Stalinist/Trotskyist/Maoist ...) or new ( Anti-globalism, NGO & Co, Anti-capitalism, Syriza/Greece ...) state capitalism/”socialism” aspirants ,the young section of proletarian masses in the periphery inadequately manage its course of struggles by submitting to the dead-end perspectives mounted on their mind and action by capitalist left; state-capitalist militants(including all defender of national question). However, they learn through their own militant effort to create a true perspective with a proletarian communist platform for total negation of capitalist system. Of course, the support and whole hearty engagement from proletariat and its political milieu internationally is a necessary step in this effort.

jojo
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Jan 25 2016 03:52

Talking about the mass of young unemployed in the "Islamic" periphery and their protests, hamid moradei says:

Quote:
... they learn through their own militant effort to create a true perspective with a proletarian communist platform for total negation of capitalist system. Of course, the support and whole hearty engagement from proletariat and its political milieu internationally is a necessary step in this effort.

Would that this was true. But take the Palestinian youth for example, is there any evidence that they have ever developed anything or progressed beyond a strong nationalist outlook in their long struggle against Israel? Against Israel, not capitalism! Not much sign of proletarian communist platforms emerging there.

And look at Tunisia, where struggle has emerged again. A second revolution trumpet some, as if there had ever been a first! Oh yes! The Arab Spring! Though I don't remember many calls during that for the total negation of the capitalist system, which might have signalled some proletarian revolutionary intent.

Tunisian youth is capable of powerful and violent protests nation wide. But capitalism is only really threatened when workers and their unemployed comrades begin to develop political understanding of what they're trying to do, plus a growing class consciousness. The same is true of course for the whole proletariat, and it's political milieu.

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Jan 25 2016 10:20

jojo asks:

Quote:
... take the Palestinian youth for example, is there any evidence that they have ever developed anything or progressed beyond a strong nationalist outlook...?

Some evidence can be gleaned from here:

Quote:
Just as the intifada threw up workers' committees to organise the struggle, the [Palestinian] bourgeoisie in response created their own committees: merchant's committees, shopkeepers, etc...

'Intifada: Uprising for Nation or Class?' Taken from, Worldwide Intifada #1, Summer 1992.

Or from an IDF report on the findings of interrogations of the first one hundred rioters it arrested:

Quote:
...hardly any of the detainees were familiar with the clauses of the PNC (Palestinian National Council) or knew of its existence. They were unable to repeat the most common slogans used in the PLO's routine propaganda, and even the central concept of the Palestinian struggle – the right to self-determination – was completely alien to them. None of them listened to the evening broadcasts of the PLO Radio from Baghdad... For the most part they were labourers, employed to do the dirty work in Israel. Throughout Gaza the detention centres were filling with sullen young men who saw themselves as victims of governments and politicians of all persuasions. They did not see themselves as foot soldiers of the Palestinian national struggle and it was not from this class of instinctive rebels that the PLO drew support.
iexist
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Jan 25 2016 17:43

Could you please throw me a link?

wojtek
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Jan 25 2016 20:14

Also this
http://www.hamptoninstitution.org/palestinian-anarchism.html#.VqaBCMvmhAg

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Jan 26 2016 09:55
Dan Radnika wrote:
On a more academic level, there's the latest issue (num. 7) of Workers of the World ("International Journal on Strikes and Social Conflict"), which has an article on the history of the UGTT (national union confederation in Tunisia) which claims that the "revolution" in Tunisia had a much better outcome than most of the "Arab Spring" because civil society was more highly developed there.
http://digitalcommons.ilr.cornell.edu/wotw/6/

if you or someone could post that to our library that would be great.

On this thread, haven't had a chance to read into it myself but on twitter libcom has been denounced because of it as "supporting Islamists" (and "again", no less), by someone claiming that these protests are entirely the work of the Muslim Brotherhood.

As I said personally I haven't been able to look into this, but thought it was worth mentioning.

Mark.
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Jan 26 2016 12:36

The social basis of the protests looks much like it was in 2011. I haven't seen other suggestions of Islamists being behind them. Whether unrest could work to the advantage of Islamists is another question.

Maybe 'supporting Islamists again' is a reference to people on here who seemed to be suggesting that the YPG weren't really any better than IS - which might also be seen as a qualified defence of IS.

Guerre de Classe
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Jan 27 2016 19:58

Appeal for boycotting World Social Forum 2013 in Tunis published by “Disobedience Movement“
https://libcom.org/news/appeal-boycotting-world-social-forum-2013-tunis-published-%E2%80%9Cdisobedience-movement%E2%80%9C-23032013

Curious Wednesday
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Jan 29 2016 14:27

My OP has been subtly censored by libcom admin.

Originally it read "A massive movement is erupting in Tunisia at this very moment and at the moment I can only find this radical site that 's reporting it" - ie with a link to this: http://dialectical-delinquents.com/news-of-opposition-5/january-2016/ - the January 2016 page of Dialectical Delinquents' "News of Opposition" page (I sent the same report anonymously to Anarchist News: http://anarchistnews.org/content/tunisia-2016 ). Over the last few days this link has been withdrawn so that it now reads as if the only "radical site that 's reporting it" is libcom blog. If I'd wanted to refer to libcom I'd have put ""A massive movement is erupting in Tunisia at this very moment and at the moment [url=https://libcom.org/ ]this bunch of petty political manipulators [/url] aren't bothering to report it" .

For those still interested in what's been going on in Tunisia, I again refer you to this: http://dialectical-delinquents.com/news-of-opposition-5/january-2016/

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Jan 29 2016 16:09

That's a curious edit from the admins. I wonder why?

Nymphalis Antiopa
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Jan 29 2016 16:19

I'd hazard a guess: sectarianism because of this bit of history - http://dialectical-delinquents.com/articles/uncategorised/cop-out-the-significance-of-aufhebengate/

iexist
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Jan 29 2016 16:25
Curious Wednesday wrote:
My OP has been subtly censored by libcom admin.

Originally it read "A massive movement is erupting in Tunisia at this very moment and at the moment I can only find this radical site that 's reporting it" - ie with a link to this: http://dialectical-delinquents.com/news-of-opposition-5/january-2016/ - the January 2016 page of Dialectical Delinquents' "News of Opposition" page (I sent the same report anonymously to Anarchist News: http://anarchistnews.org/content/tunisia-2016 ). Over the last few days this link has been withdrawn so that it now reads as if the only "radical site that 's reporting it" is libcom blog. If I'd wanted to refer to libcom I'd have put ""A massive movement is erupting in Tunisia at this very moment and at the moment [url=https://libcom.org/ ]this bunch of petty political manipulators [/url] aren't bothering to report it" .

For those still interested in what's been going on in Tunisia, I again refer you to this: http://dialectical-delinquents.com/news-of-opposition-5/january-2016/

Shut the fuck up you asshole

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Jan 30 2016 05:19

So, while I won't get into - and don't really know much - about the history of libcom and DD, libcom as a site or as an entity doesn't "report on" things as such. The vast majority of things are user-generated. So even when admins upload stuff, it's done in personal capacity. The point being: if there's something we want libcom to cover, it's on us to post up a news article or a blog about it.

That said, I could see how that'd be annoying to have a post of yours edited, especially without explanation.

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Jan 30 2016 05:28

The post wasn't actually edited. See the Censorship thread.

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Jan 30 2016 08:42

You haven't been 'censored'; as Khawaga says see the 'censorship' thread, and feel free to edit the link into the OP. (Edits will go into an approval queue but if you mention you've done it someone can scroll up and hit approve).

Generally speaking libcom doesn't have any staff or writers and relies on user submissions, so if we're not covering something it's because nobody has posted it. Journalistic-style write ups can go in News and link dumps/rougher comments can be posted in the news forum (where this is now). This thread has been 'featured' which means it shows up in the featured block on the right hand side (3 most recently commented/updated posts appear, so updates in the comments bump it, this works well for me developing news).

As an admin note we'll probably tidy up/remove the off-topic/flaming posts later at some point.

Curious Wednesday
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Jan 30 2016 10:10

I'm 99.9% sure there was a link to the DD site after I'd originally posted it. I seem to remember checking it because I thought I'd put it in bold; the link worked but it wasn't in bold. Of course, as with some other kinds of cases of abuse, this might be "false memory syndrome", but I checked this morning with someone else, and he also seems to remember the link being there. See also my response here.