According to a really interesting post from Democracy Digest,
In exile, and now in death, former Tunisian dictator Zine el-Abidine Ben Ali continues to cast a shadow over this North African nation, the only nation in the region to emerge as a functioning democracy afterward, the Washington Post reports. In some corners, Tunisians yearn for Ben Ali’s rule — not out of any fondness for authoritarianism, but because it was the last time many felt a sense of stability, even though it was imposed by repression and surveillance, writes Sudarsan Raghavan.
But among many Tunisians, the nostalgia for Ben Ali’s regime “is counterbalanced by a greater sense that Ben Ali was a corrupt leader who oversaw the torture and imprisonment of his people and got away easy by living out his life in exile in Saudi Arabia,” said Sarah Yerkes, a Middle East expert at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.
As Tunisia heads toward the final round of its presidential election on October 14, no one knows whether constitutional lawyer Qaïs Sa‘id or media mogul Nabil Qaraoui (released from jail with corruption charges still pending) will win—an amazing thing in an Arab country, notes Carnegie analyst Michele Dunne. Sa‘id has no party, but has been endorsed by the Ennahda Party, which won 52 out of 217 seats in parliamentary elections on October 6. Qaraoui’s Qalb Tunis party won 38 seats, suggesting that the government formation process might be challenging, she writes for Diwan…
Read more here.