The Arab spring uprising opened the way to public debates inconceivable in North African countries before 2011. Yet, the reaction of the Cairo authorities has been very hostile to “free thinkers”, including citizens who eschew religion.
- Anniversaries are always good occasions to critically evaluate the trajectory of extraordinary social and political happenings.
- Political repression in Egypt ravaged the Jama’at al Ikhwan al Muslimiin, the Muslim Brotherhood, formerly the strongest and most organized opposition group in the country.
- Four years after the “Jasmin Revolution” in Tunisia and in the wake of the Nobel Peace Prize 2015 awarded to the Tunisian civil society, there is still the need to understand the deep causes and challenges of this exceptional success story in the Arab world. Tunisian scholars and activists interviewed by Reset-Doc analyze the key events and features of their country democratic transition, trying to provide answers to the many questions and problems still open today with regards to economy, youth, social justice and inequalities.
- Time Warner Cable pulled the plug on Nobel Prize winner Al Gore’s Current TV just hours after news of the cable channel’s sale to Al-Jazeera became official. After the Arab, English and Balkan channels, Al-Jazeera, which is also preparing to launch a Turkish-language channel, took a major leap into the US cable market on 2 January 2012, acquiring Current TV and announcing plans for a US based news network to be called Al-Jazeera America. Terms were undisclosed, but analysts told the deal could be worth an estimated 500 million dollars. The new channel will be headquartered in New York, but in addition to this existing bureau, others will be opened in Los Angeles, Miami and Chicago.
- The revolutionary atmosphere is everywhere in Tunisia. According to some, the real revolution has only just begun, and in the widespread chaos, there are many who have clear ideas both about the future and about Tunisia’s identity. It is sufficient to glance at Facebook, where on many ‘walls’ one can read messages such as: “We are Muslims not Islamists.” “We are moderates and not extremists.” “We dream of democracy.”
- One television station has transformed the Middle East over the last decade. There has been nothing like this in history. What is remarkable is not just its causal role in laying the ground over many years of what we have seen is a prodigious mobilization but of doing this by creating what are perhaps best called the cognitive conditions that make possible such changes through mobilizations.
- Imposing the State to be neutral about religion doesn’t take a position on religion but at the same time it does not necessarily say religion has nothing to do in the public space: I believe religion has a public role, we cannot really exclude it from politics. I simply make a distinction between State and politics: religion and State are to be separate, but religion and politics can’t and shouldn’t be separated. Believers will act politically as believers, and we have to confront with the paradox to keep State and religion separated in a reality where religion and politics are interconnected.
- Almost nine months after the fall of Mohamed Hosni Mubarak’s regime, the Egyptian political situation is still hostage to the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF), and therefore to the military leaders who have been the real holders and guarantors of political power in Egypt since the 1952 coup d’état by the Free Officers Movement. Under pressure from protesters, the SCAF decided to depose President Mubarak, appoint a new government, and is preparing to call parliamentary and presidential elections on the basis of rules it is drafting, announcing that it will soon promulgate the criteria for drafting a new constitution.
- “Al-Shorouk newspaper was first issued in February 2009 as an independent newspaper aimed to promote the values of liberalism and modernism…During the paper’s preparation period, which lasted about a year, the idea that objectivity, accuracy and truth in everything would be published in the newspaper was the dominant idea of each meeting.” These are the words of Ashraf Al-Barbary, News Desk Chief of Al-Shorouk newspaper. In a conversation with Elisa Pierandrei Al-Barbary, he says he is convinced that the adherence to these principles makes everyone, whether at the local, regional or even international level, deal seriously with what is published in Al-Shorouk. This newspaper is part of a company linked to Dar Al Shorouk, the largest independent publishing house in Egypt, which was established in 1968 by Mohamed El Moallem, one of the founding fathers of modern publishing in Egypt and the Arab World, who started his publishing career in 1942.