Their new leader after the "revolution" has openly said that ultimately, Tunisia will be an Islamist state. I know, I know .... that's not news to us, but most of the so called "secular" folks there don't seem to think that their cult is highly contagious and lethal. The few thousand protesting now will soon become a few hundred and pretty soon Tunisian women will be shopping for black sacks. Wait and see.
Susan Schmidt writing at NationalInterest:
In Tunisia, Rachid al-Ghannouchi, leader of the ruling Islamist en-Nahda party, caused a furor in October when he was caught on hidden videotape advising radical Salafis to build support for their views through religious schools and radio broadcasts. Ghannouchi has said he was trying to tamp down their rush to gain power.
It is a puritanical religious fervor that has its roots in Saudi Arabia and shows every indication of continuing to spread. In recent weeks, scholars at Tunisia’s Zaytunah University raised concerns about the import of Wahhabism as a result of new ties between their university and the Wahhabi-influenced Jeddah University in Saudi Arabia.
Ahmed Charal and Joseph Braude writng at NationalInterest:
This month’s assassination in the Tunisian capital of a senior opposition leader, Chokri Belaid, was regarded by some outside observers as a departure, of sorts, from the country’s recent political trajectory. .....
.....Belaid’s killing was not the first assassination in Tunisia in recent memory. Rather, it was indicative of a broader and trend that began to manifest last year and continues to grow: ........
....Of the latter campaign, the first lethal instance was last year’s assassination of Sheikh Lutfi ‘l-Qallal, a beloved mosque preacher from a quietist movement known as Jama’at al-Tabligh wa ‘l-Da’wah that evinces no political aspirations whatsoever. Though Salafis are suspected of the crime, to date the Islamist Ennahda-led government has made no arrests. Islamist militants are widely suspected.....
In Tunis, the crowd set fire to the headquarters of Ennahda, the moderate Islamist party which won the most seats in an legislative election 16 months ago......
.... The Tunisian government on Friday condemned a wave of “outrageous” attacks on Sufi shrines by suspected hardline Islamists and vowed to identify the culprits.
“Outrageous attacks on mausoleums in several regions and cities of Tunisia have increased recently,” the Islamist government, dominated by the Ennahda party, said in a statement.
Prime Minister Hamadi Jebali vowed to work to “find out who committed or ordered these acts.”
Two Sufi mausoleums were torched on Thursday, police and media reported, in the latest violence which the mystical Muslim sect claims is being carried out by ultra-conservative Salafist Muslims.