Tuesday, 19 July 2011

"The people want to bring down the regime"

Mohammed Tonsi, a participant in the Tunisian Revolution addressed a meeting at the Marxism Festival in London recently. Here is a summary of what he said.

"The people want to bring down the regime". This slogan began in Sidi Bouzid in Tunisia but it has been taken up by people fighting their governments across the region: in Egypt, Syria, Yemen and elsewhere.

There was a general strike in Tunisia on 14 January. It was this that finally brought down Ben Ali. He was tricked by the army into going to Saudi Arabia by plane. The ruling class then tried to keep the ruling party in place.

So the new slogan was "Down with the torture of the people, down with the ruling party". Eight hours later another President was gone. The ruling party then formed 75% of the government. The protests continued until this government also fell. The next government had just 25% members of the ruling party. The protests still continued until this government fell. The next government had no-one from the old ruling party in it at all.

When Mubarak in Egypt fell, the people of Tunisia chanted, "The people want the liberation of Palestine".

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