You can now pre-order an autographed copy of my book The Road to Fatima Gate: The Beirut Spring, the Rise of Hezbollah, and the Iranian War Against Israel. It is by far the best thing I have ever written, so if you enjoy my articles and my blog, you want to have this. I’ll make five times as much money per copy if you buy it directly from me and cut the bookstores and distributers out of the loop.
“We are now,” Rick Richman writes in Commentary, “in the 92nd year of a peace process in which the Palestinians are the first people in history to be offered a state seven times, reject it seven times, and set preconditions for discussing an eighth offer.”
There aren’t many well-written and interesting books about Tunisia in English, but Mediterranean Winter: The Pleasures of History and Landscape in Tunisia, Sicily, Dalmatia, and the Peloponnese by Robert Kaplan, who is always worth reading, is excellent. I gave my copy to a man named Mohammad in Douz who teaches English literature to the children of the Sahara and should probably pick up another one.
The Sunday edition of the New York Post published my piece today about Tunisia’s chance at democracy. Unlike in so many other Arab countries, in Tunisia it just might actually work.
Be sure to read Barry Rubin’s analysis of Tunisia’s revolution, or whatever we ought to be calling it now. Rubin is brilliant and almost always right, so I’m glad to see he and I are on the same page.
“Tunisia,” he wrote, “is a very distinctive country. It has been the most Europeanized state in the Arab world, due in part to the secular-oriented policies of the regimes. There has been an Islamist movement but the regime has kept it weak, perhaps making Tunisia the Arabic-speaking state with the lowest proportional support for Islamism among its population.”
My wife Shelly and I swooned when we visited Tunisia some years ago before it exploded. Here are two short pieces of travel writing I published while we were still there.
Somebody uploaded a chilling video to Facebook from Tunisia a few days ago filmed inside a hospital in Kasserine where nurses, doctors, and other terrified citizens desperately struggle to save people the dictator shot. If you’re made squeamish by graphic images of terror and violence, do not follow that link.
Tunisia’s dictator Ben Ali was just overthrown. My wife and I visited Tunisia many years ago and fell in love with the place instantly. It truly is one of the most pleasant Arab countries, one I’ve recommended that everyone visit sometime. Here are some photos I took.
God only know what comes next for these people. I’m crossing my fingers for them.
Take a look at my new piece in City Journal about what the heck just happened in Lebanon.
Don’t miss Lee Smith’s new piece in Tablet where he argues that Western journalists should stop helping the Arab world kill itself by uncritically repeating destructive conspiracy theories.
Will my colleagues in the media please stop praising pro-terrorist newspapers?