Tunisia has shown the world how freedom can be won. Since the day Mohamed Bouazizi, an unemployed Tunisian set himself on fire, the world has never been the same. When Tunisians rose up against their dictator Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, they inspired the movement known as the Arab Spring. They also made it look easy to the rest of us.
This newly liberated country is now at a dangerous stage. Tunisia above all others, need our help now more than ever. It is the world’s responsibility not to let them falter.
The people of Tunisia have gotten no respite and their generosity appears to be limitless. With their own revolution barely over, they must finish the revolution they started, form a new government, and at the same time deal with the refugee crisis from Libya. Any one of these crises would crumble a lesser people.
Rather than succumb to despair, Tunisians have opened their hearts and their homes, and offer what little they have to help those flooding across their border. They have made gargantuan efforts, giving aid and compassion, in any meager way they can. Their actions should instill awe and respect from the rest of the world, and we must continually acknowledge that they have gone well above the responsibility they owe their fellowman.
At least refugees, who arrive in Egypt, have an easier time of moving on. Egypt is surrounded by countries that are more able and more willing to help in the refugee’s plight; at least by outward appearances. The refugees lucky enough to make it to Tunisia had no other options. Stuck on the Tunisian border, they remain in limbo, with no other country willing or able to take them.
Bordering Tunisia are only two countries, Algeria to the South and Libya to the East. Both ruled by dictators who could care less about Tunisia’s plight.
We must not allow Tunisia to shoulder these sacrifices alone. The nations of the world must either open their hearts to Tunisia, or be condemned for not doing so. After so many years in the dark, Tunisia must have a bright future. Their actions deserve nothing less.
If Tunisia’s revolution fails due to lack of support, what does that say about the world’s priorities? What message does it send to the rest of those trying to throw off the shackles of their own dictators?
The world must not take its eyes off this prize.