Tunisia: killing for political gain
Many criticisms can be levelled against Ennahda, which has run the country since the revolution. Political suicide is not one of them.
If the name can be applied to any murder, the assassination of Chokri Belaid was political. It was designed to cause social mayhem, split coalitions, stop elections, prevent the passing of the draft constitution. There are a number of groups – on either extreme of the Islamist secular divide – that would ostensibly profit from such an outcome in Tunisia. But Rached Ghannouchi’s Ennahda is not one of them.
Just as the burning of Sufi shrines was designed to expose the ruling party’s inability to deal with the Salafi radical fringe, so political assassination has only one target in its sights – the transition to a law-based democracy. Mourners at Belaid’s funeral called Ghannouchi the assassin. That it should be deemed to be in Ennahda’s interests to let this happen, that they should now be accused either of actively or tacitly encouraging such attacks to take place, is a measure of just how partisan this line of attack has become.
Many criticisms can be levelled against the Islamist-dominated coalition that has run the country since the revolution: winning elections is not the same thing as producing competent governments; they have concentrated on appeasing the World Bank; the pace of reform of the police, judiciary and justice ministry has been too slow; and there has been a failure to investigate and prosecute physical assaults and offensive speeches. But political suicide is not one of them – and there is little doubt it would be suicidal for a party on a mission to prove that Islamism can co-exist with multi-party democracy to be dabbling in the terror tactics of assassination.
The same logic does not apply to former members of RCD, the party that dominated the country under dictatorship and which was dismantled two years ago. On the day Belaid was assassinated, the assembly was due to debate a measure designed to bar former RCD members from office for five years. (…)
Publié par des larbins des services secrets de Sa Majesté (éditorial du Guardian, 8 février 2013)