Novelist. Author of APSARAS and tales from the beautiful Saigh Valley. First person to quantify spiritual values.

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Sunday 28 June 2015

Tunisia in turmoil

I wonder if many Tunisians are having a crisis of faith this weekend. As a nation they have adopted a democratic, secular Government much to the annoyance of those who hanker after an Islamic Theocracy.
As we have seen this weekend, a rogue gunman with links to the Islamic State, can put in jeopardy the entire Tunisian tourist industry, responsible for 15% of the Country's GDP and employment for many, especially and most importantly, youngsters. It must be clear to many Tunisians that the cause of their problems is their faith and because of the apostasy rules, one they cannot easily get out of. David Cameron, in his speech yesterday, reinforced his view that Islam is a 'peaceful' religion but is he right?
From the start, Mohammed found opposition to his ideas and was forced to leave Mecca by the City leaders. How did he press his arguments? By raising armies to attack his former citizens. He was beaten at Uhud, claiming that Allah was testing him and went back to Medina to build a bigger army. This suggests to me that his God wasn't being overly helpful to his 'messenger's' pursuits, allowing non-peaceful measures to prosecute his claims. Hardly the 'peaceful' religion Cameron imagines. I'm bound to ask why, if Allah is omnipotent, he was unable to fill all the people of the world with his grace at the same time, thus avoiding any bloodshed.? But then who am I to ask such an obvious question?
The Tunisians are not stupid; they can see, by social media, the life in the heretic 'West' and by contrast that in the Islamic Middle-East. The apostasy rules effectively stop  people leaving the faith, marginalising those who attempt it from their families and communities. Many people must feel imprisoned. These people need help to throw off the shackles of their religion.
Whole families and then communities need to make the break and the 'West' needs to do more to change hearts and minds of those who adhere to this faith, starting with the leaders of countries such as Saudi Arabia and the Emirates.

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