Arab unity is alive and well in the Arab world. Anyone who doubts the common aspirations of the Arab people need only look at the spirit of the Arab people in the wake of the Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia.
Arabs were glued to their screens watching a long hoped for Arab revolution erupt an authoritarian and corrupt government and send the dictator fleeing in devastating humiliation. Arabs were ecstatic. And the awe, love and support for the Tunisian people was heartfelt from Arab to Arab.
The region has been beset either by tragedy (Palestine, Iraq) or political stagnation which upheld stability and incremental economic growth but at the demoralizing cost of regime who inspire no popular support and stand for nothing else but their power grip.
Tunisian has shaken that. It was aroused the Arab world like nothing else. It has shown Arabs that a true revolution of the people is possible and can bring change. In short, there is a hopeful path away from the dreadful Arab status quo.
As the New York Times’ Anthony Shadid wrote,
Most recently and most spectacularly, Tunisia was swept up in protests over joblessness, corruption and too many years under one of the heaviest hands in the Arab world, forcing a dictator to flee and electrifying the Arab world.
“The people have woken up and revolted against you,” a polemic in Arabic on Facebook told President Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali. “We’ve said our opinion: We hate you. The Tunisian people will not be oppressed. Resign immediately!”
It’s still early, but 2011 may prove the year that the status quo in the Middle East proved untenable and began falling apart. […]
More tangibly, the many educated young remain frustrated. They might have the basics a state provides, but no future, that bygone notion that tomorrow will be better than yesterday. That is Tunisia, in a potential glimpse ahead.
That is the Arab hope. Arabs on Facebook and Twitter took to celebration of the Jasmine Revolution and many vicariously became Tunisians through Tunisians flags on the avatar. Arabs called for similar revolutions in front of Tunisian embassies where many also left flowers in thanks to the Tunisian people and in prayer for the Tunisian martyrs. A Lebanese journalist signed off with a Tunisian poem and the leading Arab daily, al Quds al Arabi, ran the headline “Thank you Tunisians”. This is the united Arab spirit that has been endeared by the Tunisian people’s courage and prays that one day, in time, that free spirit will land on them. That the bequest of the Tunisian revolution will be revolutions of freedom in other Arab nations as the Arab people yearn to be free and, in time, united as one people with one destiny. That is the Arab dream.
An Egyptian pop star has dedicated a song for the Tunisian people and at the end sends salutations to all Arabs reflecting that Jasmine is beyond Tunisia in its hope and future: