Saturday, January 15, 2011

Where is Tunisia located?

Question 1 for you:
a. How does the western main stream media decide on exposing international issues? 

b. What are the factors that determine if something is newsworthy, hot or interesting?

For a long time I've been trying really hard to figure out the answer to this question especially that the reactions of the westerners themselves are pretty surprising to me most of the time.

So far, it seems to me that the majority of people are so very misinformed about all Middle Eastern issues.  
This is sad but I'm telling you, educated people of the west, I honestly want to change this and I want your help! 

I remember the way the news about Haiti earthquake, Darfur, and always the Iranian internal issues were focused on in western mainstream media. 

When they pick up and choose I think I should begin to doubt!

Of course I never go to western sources to get information about anything related to The Egyptian or middle eastern related affairs. However, I still need to complain about the extremely dumb stuff I see written about them on popular newspapers or shown on mainstream TV channels. And then also complain about the comments, opinions, and reactions people have in real world.

That was a kind of long introduction, right? I'm sorry but I really had to say this.

Ok then let's see what we have today from my interesting part of the world.

It's Tunisia!

Yes, this little less heard of seemingly peaceful and trouble-free North African country for the majority of us although the truth was far beyond this. 

Even here in Egypt we don't hear much about this country, until only a few weeks ago.

The whole thing started approximately around the 17th of December 2010. In Sidi Bo Zeid city people started to protest and then it spread all over the country only after this university graduate Tunisian guy tried to burn himself alive. 

He failed to get a job with his university degree (That sounds pretty familiar, like my future for example). Anyway, he ended up selling fruits in the street and the government chased him because it is illegal. 

So, the protests got bigger and it turned to be a people revolution on unemployment, high prices, oppression and all, and both the Tunisian police and army clashed with the protesters. It was a big mess some people were killed, some were injured and all schools and universities got closed. These are some of the pictures from there:

Pretty scary, isn't it?!

Up to this point, the western media coverage along with Middle Eastern "allies" were all terribly dumb. 

 Nothing but just a few lines with many "riots" and "riotous" words inserted within the articles "reporting" what happened to the majority of misinformed people over here and there who may still need to know where is Tunisia located! 

Some smart people have noticed the intended weak coverage on the Tunisian Revolution like this one here:

And this one here:

Activist crackdown: Tunisia vs Iran

By: Jillian York who is a writer, blogger, and activist based in Boston. She works at Harvard Law School's Berkman Centre for Internet & Society and is involved with Global Voices Online.

"The mainstream media denounces crackdowns on Iranian bloggers, yet ignores attacks on activists in Tunisia. Now, as Tunisians take to the streets (and to the Internet) to protest unemployment and the oppressive and longstanding Ben Ali regime, the world's attention seems to be elsewhere. More specifically (and perhaps more importantly), the US government--which intervened heavily in Iran, approving circumvention technology for export and famously asking Twitter to halt updates during a critical time period—has not made any public overtures toward Tunisia at this time."

But things changed a little for the western media by the time it turned to be a real revolution.

Of course you can't simply ignore it when the dictator president flee away and escaped with his family! Till the present moment I'm writing this post, he is flying from an airport to another trying to get a place to hide.

For me, the funnies part about all of this is how westerners themselves comment and react online.

Ignorant people who refuse to get educated about what they don't know and don't admit it becoming political and social experts especially on Middle eastern related issues are funny.

One funny thing I keep reading is how many people think that it was the invention of Wikileaks and the Internet that helped the Tunisians.

 You know, these things they are not familiar with in 3rd world countries especially in Africa where they still live either on trees or inside tents.

But forget about this, for a little while I couldn't believe what I was hearing, seeing and reading online or on TV about Tunisia! 

A Revolution_for real_ on an autocratic regime for the very first time in a really long while in the region.

These are Arab people who are doing this.
You hear me, people? Arabs!

They live not too far from here almost up to same pressure, same corruption, and same everything bad  we have and they did it.

Thanks to the Tunisian people I feel so proud today, I feel it's a personal victory and I do wish to live till the time my own people learn that it costs a lot to see a change, to ask for your rights, and get them. 


- Ah! by the way, could anyone please tell me where exactly is this country they keep talking about now?
Is it in Africa or somewhere Asia, maybe?

- Seriously man, why should I give a damn about it?
 I know they did pretty well in Star Wars, anyways. And that was awesome!