Friday, October 28, 2011

PoliticsTunisia: Islamist Party is clear victor in Tunisia's historical postrevolutionary first national election

The Telegraph (London UK) Oct28,2k11

Friday 28 October 2011

Tunisia: protests erupt 

as Islamist party wins 

first democratic election

Protests have erupted in Tunisia after official 

election results showed that the country's 

Islamist party had won the majority of the vote

 in the first democratic elections 

since the Arab Spring uprisings.

— reposted here by Politicarp

refWrite:    This blog supported the Tunisia Revolution and the election that
followed upon it.  Too many in America and Canada, the distinction 
between a moderate Islamist party and an intolerant Islamist 
party (for instance, one that allies itself with Jihadist terror groups), that
distinction is not argued, insisted upon, and theorized to consolidate its
main themes into a reasonable general theory.  However, the
distinction can be finely-wrawt and rendered serviceable to the
newly-democratic Tunisian state's first government.

In history, given the particulars of its societal context, Tunisia has only 
30% electorate-support for its Secularist Partyin conflict with which 
the majority of the Muslim voting populace is almost 70% for Islamic 
primogenitor political relations.

(I toy with an analogy by which the 'first-born' majority, constituting [by 
far] the most dominant Religion permitted to flourish in Turkey, the 
Sunni version permitted by the Turkish state and its Army.  Thus,  
Turkey's Justice and Development Party (AKO) must as now a 
mature Islamic-democratic political formation to be understood 
overagainst enforcers of Secularist Ideology entrenched in the Army and 
the Courts' and generating thru the public school-system a mild Sunnist 
official Islamic doctrine and practice;  but all that to the exclusion of 
Shiites, Ahmaddi minority reformed Islam, Christians whose 
civilization predates the Muslim Conquest of their homeland).  
Jehovah's Witnesses excluded.  The ancient Christian Church of 
Byzantium is squeezed out of the freedom of the land of its birth.  
That is,  the narrowing of function of the ancient Church of Istanbul 
(formerly the throne-city of the Byzantine Christian Empire and its 
cathedral/basilica Hagia Sophia), a narrowing of function that 
squandered a golden opportunity for the benefit of the 70% Muslim 
majority of the city which shoud have seen its own self-interest — 
indeed!, to favour the full and free tourist value of a freed 
Ecumenical Patriarchate (Byzantine Greek-speaking), freed to 
attract the droves of Christian pilgrims that woud come out of 
curiosity from all over the world to Istanboul / Constantinople, each 
year, some to study at least a year; and re-open the Patriarch's 
monastry-seminary on Halki Island, that had been closed down by 
the Secularists (30%) in league with the Islamists (70%) of 
Turkey's two constitutional antagonists.  The Ecumenical 
Patriarchate  But the arrangement is one of the most fossilized 
civic orders in delapidation.

Faithful Christian tourists and blessings-seekers visting the 
churches and monasteries of old Constanople in Istamboul, 
coming to the Phaner in an old neibourhood as close by as 
possible woud spring up with cafés springing up around the 
streets of the picturesque Phaner (Fener, in Turkish),  the 
pilgrims woud bring  works of piety and culture and and 
their well-stuffed wallets to spend in the most comfortable 
café and have lunch and surely woud have need of a 
state-of-the-art hotel or two .... 

Now, Welcome Christian Pilgrims, to the cathedral church of 
Istamboul, St George basilica (cathedral) in the Fener 
neighbourhood of Istamboul/Constantinopole.  Once again, 
the worldview war between the 70% Muslim majority and the 
resistant 30%  Secularist voters, expressed in the vote for their 
own party — all to the hurt of Turkey's Greek Orthodox 
communities, the Armenian Churches, and other faith-communities 
of Turkey's small Christian population overall.

Is this really what pundits want to hail as a Secularist model for 
Tunisia?  Nonsense!, the task now is to convince Tunisia's new 
Islamic Party government to maintain a régime of tolerance for 
which the Jewish volunteer psychoanalyst (of an ancient 
Tunisian family) has called.  Tunisia's small Christian 
communities will also welcome such a turn of affairs.  
Wikipedia gives us more demographics of religion.

There are no statistics of people's religious beliefs nor is it asked in the census. According to the government, 99.8% of the Turkish population is Muslim, mostly Sunni, some 10 to 15 million are Alevis.[7] The remaining 0.2% is other - mostly Christians and Jews.[4] The Eurobarometer Poll 2005 reported that in a poll 96% of Turkish citizens answered that "they believe there is a God", while 1% responded that "they do not believe there is any sort of spirit, God, or life force".[8] In a Pew Research Center survey, 53% of Turkey's Muslims said that "religion is very important in their lives".[9] Based on the Gallup Poll 2006-08, Turkey was defined as More religious, in which over 63 percent of people believe religion is important.[10][11] According to the Turkish Economic and Social Studies Foundation, 62% of women wear the headscarf or hijab in Turkey.[12][13][14] 33% of male Muslim citizens regularly attend Friday prayers.
Religious groups according to estimates:[7][15]
The vast majority of the present-day Turkish people are Muslim and the most popular sect is the Hanafite school of Sunni Islam, which was officially espoused by the Ottoman Empire; according to the KONDA Research and Consultancy survey carried out throughout Turkey on 2007[16]:
  • 40.8% defined themselves as "a religious person who strives to fulfill religious obligations" (Religious)
  • 42.3 % defined themselves as ""a believer who does not fulfill religious obligations" (Not religious).
  • 2.5% defined themselves as "a fully devout person fulfilling all religious obligations" (Fully devout).
  • 10.3% defined themselves as "someone who does not believe in religious obligations" (Non-believer).
  • 4.1% defined themselves as "someone with no religious conviction" (Atheist).
There are only 5,000 Greeks permanently resident in Turkey, most being Turkish citizens.   The Alevis are a Turkish (Anatolia-centered) Muslim religion  of restoration of a pure Shi-ism that's cawt the bug of Sufism.  They are a Muslim religion opposed to the dominant Sunnism of Turkish Islam sponsored by the state. "The Alevi constitute the second largest religious community in Turkey (following the Sunnis), and number some 25% (15 million) of the total population (Alevis claim 30%-40%!). Most Alevis are ethnic and linguistic Turks, mainly of Turkmen descent from Central and Eastern Anatolia. Some 20% of Alevis are Kurds (though most Kurds are Sunnis), and some 25% of Kurds in Turkey are Alevi (Kurmanji and Zaza speakers).
Continuing the article "The Alevi of Anatolia" by David Zeidan, Dec 1995). Alevis consider themselves to be part of the wider Shi`a movement, who revere Ali (Muhammad's cousin and son-in-law) and the Twelve Imams of his house. Like all extreme Shia, their reverence for Ali verges on deification, for which reason classical Sunni ulama classified them as ghulat (exaggerators), outside the orthodox Islamic fold. Alevis are also called Kizilbash (the name of the Turkmen followers of the Safavid Sufi order of the 15th and 16th centuries), and Bektashi (followers of the Anatolian Bektashi Shia Sufi order founded in the 13th century). Further names used signify specific tribal and linguistic identities: Tahtaci; Abdal; Cepni; Zaza; or are names of great men revered by the Alevi: Caferi; Huseyni. 
Alevis are distinct from the Arabic speaking Alawis of Syria and Southwest Turkey (Nusayris). Both are extreme Shia (ghulat) communities with similarities in doctrine and practice, but separate historical developments.
Alevis traditionally inhabit rural Central and Eastern Anatolia, in particular the triangle Kayseri- Sivas-Divirgi. Kurdish Alevis are mainly found in Tunceli, Elazig and Mus provinces. On the Mediterranean coast there are some tribal Alevi settlements of Tahtaci and Cepni. Alevi areas are peripheral and underdeveloped, resulting in the migration of Alevis to the large industrialised cities of western Turkey (and to Western Europe, mainly Germany) in relatively larger proportion than rural Sunnis. Alevis in Europe (especially in Germany), experiencing the freedom of a pluralistic society, stimulated new interest in Alevi ethnicity and culture (Alevilik). 
Alevism originated out of a complex mix of mystical (Sufi) Islam, Shi`ism, and the rivalry between the Ottoman and Safavid Empires. Some Sufi orders like the Safavi and Bektashi accepted Shi`a reverence for Ali and the Twelve Imams, and their adherents and sympathisers became the Alevis. Alevi opposition to the Sunni Ottomans in the 16th century resulted in geographical and social marginalisation. In order to survive despite majority hostility and persecution the Alevi developed a tight social-religious network, and (like Druze, Shia, and Alawis), dissimulation and secrecy about their religion (taqiya). They form an endogamic (marrying only within their group) religious community that has definite ethnic markers. 
The Alevi liturgical language is Turkish, as opposed to Sunni and Twelver Shia use of Arabic. They thus see themselves as the "real Turks", maintainers of true Turkish culture, religion and folklore in face of the Arabizing Ottoman Sunnis.

All this scramble of factors in Turkey is being used as the antecedant analogue of the present day 'secularism of Tunisia,' which just won at the polls there.  Now forming an Alevic-like Islamic-secular government of tolerance.  Hopefully.  — Owlb

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