Arab revolutions

Seven reasons to be hopeful

Published on 17 February 2011 at 12:34


“Arab revolutions: a chance for us.” With a slight air of revenge after seven months of debate on the place of Islam in Germany, Die Zeit headlines the prejudices and other scapegoats that will disappear from the European imagination along with the Middle Eastern despots. No doubt, says the magazine, “the uprisings in Tunis, Cairo and Tehran will modify the Western view of Islam.” In a lengthy report whose tone seems inspired by the “Be not afraid!” message that John Paul II sent out to the peoples of eastern Europe, Die Zeit sketches out consequences from these popular revolts that will make the world, from Berlin to Beijing, and passing through Ramallah, a better place. Here at home, firstly, an end to demonising Muslims cannot but help community life. Going further, relations between the EU and Turkey, which will no longer be “the hinge between democratic Europe and Arab despotism”, will appear in a new light. And finally, the regimes in Iran, in China and Belarus may not emerge unscathed from the shock wave thrown up by the “Arab revolutions”.

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