Progress Report on Tunisia

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      What’s happening lately in Tunisia?  How is the formation of the new government proceeding?  Is the economy picking up?  Where did all of those secret police go?  Are we affected by the situation in Libya?  These are questions we also wonder about.  We pass close to the presidential palace every morning on our way to work and many days we have to wait for the passing of an official government motorcade.  Someone important is going to work, but we don’t know who it is or what’s on the agenda.  Some skirmishes are still erupting.  Last week, we cancelled a trip to take our fifth graders on a three-day trip to nearby Hammamet because of some low scale, but seriously violent protests there.  When we ask what they are protesting, our friends are a little unsure and worry that at least some of these issues might be related to Islamic fundamentalists.  Spring just suddenly burst upon us this week.  The weather is glorious, the sites are magnificent, but where are the tourists?  We are encountering refugees from Libya in our work now- students, their parents, and exiled teachers from the American School of Tripoli, who are looking for new jobs since the school has already declared it will be closed next year.  We just see indicators, but don’t know much about the big picture. 
     Robert Siegel, of National Public Radio, was in Tunis this week and produced four segments attempting to give a progress report of Tunisia at this moment.  He also only scratched the surface of a complicated topic, but I think he went to some of the right places and delved into some good questions.  These are the things our Tunisian friends talk with us about.  So listen through these four episodes.  They are short and afterward, you will have about the same picture as we have.
Tunisia: Origin Of Middle East, African Uprisings

‘We Cut The Head,’ But ‘The Animal Is Still Alive,’ Tunisian Activist Says

In Tunisia: ‘We Have No Idea’ If Secular Or Islamist Views Will Prevail

Post-Revolution Tunisia Faces Economic Woes

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