The Birthplace of the Arab Spring
Northernmost Country in Africa (Shown in Green)
The Arab Spring also reminded us in the West to appreciate our rights and privileges. And, it gave hope to those who live under oppressive regimes, dreaming that someday they may also be privileged to emulate it in their own countries.
Today, I am deeply concerned that the powerful masses that led to the removal of the old regimes are now being distracted, crying for revenge and some others are stirring up sectarian conflicts. In Tunisia, some are shouting to punish Ben Ali and his collaborators. In Egypt, some are screaming to punish Hosni Mubarak and his associates.
Vengeance is a cancer in the soul that destroys all virtues. No family or organization can flourish through vengeance. No nation can survive long if her people are divided and revengeful. Much of Africa is doomed in misery for giving lip service to freedom but competing in retaliation.
My friends in Tunisia and Egypt, if you truly want a representative government that listens to your grievances with compassion, then you must give it first. You could forgive those who have done you wrong and put your focus on building a compassionate nation. I truly believe that you have a historical opportunity to build a nation that every other nation in the region will look up to with high esteem. You have the power to become the vehicle of change in the region.
As for the sectarian squabbling in Egypt, it is scandalous. How can a people whose salutation is peace get drawn into such disgraceful conduct! It takes all kinds of people to make a country work. How about putting aside your ethnic bickering and uniting to build a nation that you deserve to have!
Listen to how Ali, one of history’s most just and compassionate rulers, advised his Egyptian Governor Malik; he said: “You must know that the people over whom you rule are divided into classes and grades, and the prosperity or welfare of each class of the society individually or collectively is so interdependent upon the well-being of the other classes that the whole set up represents a closely woven net and a reciprocal aspect, one class cannot exist peacefully, cannot live happily and cannot work without the support and good wishes of the others.”