Tunisia is known for exporting olive oil and Deglet Noor dates. Now it is pleased to add revolution as one of its principal items of export. Revolution is becoming Tunisia’s only around-the-clock and never-out-of-stock, free-of-charge export item! Members of the European Parliament or MEPs have called for an international donors’ conference to be held for Tunisia, as it undergoes its democratic transition after the ouster of its former president Ben Ali.A delegation of European lawmakers, who travelled to the North African country between February 3 and 6 told foreign affairs and human rights committees at the European parliament earlier this week that a donors’ conference should be convened as soon as possible.
In a parliamentary statement, they highlighted youth unemployment estimated as high as 50 per cent and a 40 per cent tourism revenue slump. Some MEPs called for the drawing up of a broad new ‘Marshall Plan,’ and not just a financial envelope, “to help those that have taken the road of democracy.” That was a reference to the US-led international restructuring aid drawn up to rebuild Europe in response to the ruins of post-WWII. MEPs suggest that the European Union, the United Nations and other international actors should coordinate this aid under a new Marshall Plan. No such solution can really work without involving the Arab countries themselves, including the oil rich Gulf Co-operation Council countries.
European Parliament president Jerzy Buzek, a former Solidarity activist in Communist Poland, said North Africa faces “the same difficult and scarcely navigable path” to democracy as eastern and central Europe 20 years ago post 1989. The Arab world will recover from its current political and economic paralysis and attain some form of greater democracy in the near future. However, there is a need for a large-scale plan to regenerate countries in North Africa — like Tunisia and Egypt — along the lines of the United States’ multi-billlion dollar post-World War II Marshall Plan.
The oil rich Gulf states such as Saudi Arabia, Europe and the US may need to help Tunisia, Egypt and other Arab countries in similar turmoil. If as many believe, Tunisia and Egypt are going to have democratically elected governments, the rich and powerful countries in the Middle East and elsewhere, must launch a new ‘Marshall’ plan worth billions of dollars and create employment for young people.
The US sponsored original Marshall Plan gave demoralized European people jobs and hope. The Marshall Plan channelled 13 billion dollars of technical and financial aid to Europe’s war-ravaged economies between 1948 and 1952. The aid came on top of the 12 billion dollars the US handed to Europe from the end of the Second World War in 1944 until the start of the plan. That is a significant way in which humanity can ensure stability in the Arab world once again. The unrest in Egypt and other Arab countries has been stoked by oppression and by poverty. It follows the template of a classic class struggle against autocratic regimes, given the crippling combination of population growth and shrinking natural resources, in particular arable land and potable water.
The original Marshall Plan worked against the encroachment of communism after WWII because it lent economic stability to post war Europe. These political uprisings that we are seeing in the Middle East and Africa are for a very large part fuelled by the huge economic instability felt by the majority of the populace, not the top 10 to 15 per cent wealthy elite.
Political stability and economic stability go hand in hand and Western military may not be of any use in this new digitally-driven leaderless revolution theatre. Diplomacy and financial aid are the keys to stabilising the situation created by self-assembling dynamic networks of youth revolutionaries. Economic stability is seldom created by redistributing money to despots. The West may have given billions to Arab dictators and they are still despots presiding on countries that are on the verge of bankruptcy as confidence plunges yet again. Economic stability comes from free markets and free people.
America and Europe’s homeland security as well as the stability of the petro-regimes will be best assured through a strategy of generosity and caring, manifest via a new Marshall Plan for the needy Arab countries.
We welcome your thoughts, observations and views.
All the best
Chairman and Founder: mi2g.net, ATCA, The Philanthropia, HQR, @G140
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. mi2g: http://twitter.com/intunit
— ATCA, The Philanthropia, mi2g, HQR, @G140 —
This is an “ATCA Open, Philanthropia and HQR Socratic Dialogue.”
The “ATCA Open” network on LinkedIn and Facebook is for professionals interested in ATCA’s original global aims, working with ATCA step-by-step across the world, or developing tools supporting ATCA’s objectives to build a better world.
The original ATCA — Asymmetric Threats Contingency Alliance — is a philanthropic expert initiative founded in 2001 to resolve complex global challenges through collective Socratic dialogue and joint executive action to build a wisdom based global economy. Adhering to the doctrine of non-violence, ATCA addresses asymmetric threats and social opportunities arising from climate chaos and the environment; radical poverty and microfinance; geo-politics and energy; organised crime & extremism; advanced technologies — bio, info, nano, robo & AI; demographic skews and resource shortages; pandemics; financial systems and systemic risk; as well as transhumanism and ethics. Present membership of the original ATCA network is by invitation only and has over 5,000 distinguished members from over 120 countries: including 1,000 Parliamentarians; 1,500 Chairmen and CEOs of corporations; 1,000 Heads of NGOs; 750 Directors at Academic Centres of Excellence; 500 Inventors and Original thinkers; as well as 250 Editors-in-Chief of major media.
The Philanthropia, founded in 2005, brings together over 1,000 leading individual and private philanthropists, family offices, foundations, private banks, non-governmental organisations and specialist advisors to address complex global challenges such as countering climate chaos, reducing radical poverty and developing global leadership for the younger generation through the appliance of science and technology, leveraging acumen and finance, as well as encouraging collaboration with a strong commitment to ethics. Philanthropia emphasises multi-faith spiritual values: introspection, healthy living and ecology. Philanthropia Targets: Countering climate chaos and carbon neutrality; Eliminating radical poverty — through micro-credit schemes, empowerment of women and more responsible capitalism; Leadership for the Younger Generation; and Corporate and social responsibility.
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