The dream of a country untainted by corruption has remained a powerful vision ever since. It is hard to imagine a more demoralizing step for Tunisians than suddenly telling them that they need to make their peace with a kleptocracy.
It has been nearly half a decade since Mohamed Bouazizi set himself on fire in protest of the humiliation he suffered by the Ben Ali regime. This protest ignited a set of global protests known as 'the Arab Spring', calling for the overthrow of autocratic regimes, and for greater civilian control of society.
To date attacks against tourists have occurred along the North African side of the Mediterranean. The fear is that such attacks may spillover to the European side of the Mediterranean as well. Tunisia's response notwithstanding, most Mediterranean tourist venues have minimal security.
The people of Libya and Tunisia both overthrew long-standing dictatorships in popular uprisings in 2011. Four years later, however, the current political situation in these two neighboring North African states could not be more different. The reason has much to do with how their authoritarian regimes were overthrown.
The narrative that Islam, Islamic people and lands are under attack by the West has long been a narrative with al Qaeda and is now being furthered by ISIS. And it's a narrative that finds footholds with many who radicalize by interacting with slick ISIS marketing materials.
Tunisia is viewed as the lone democratic success story in the Arab Spring. But the North African nation has many issues, including an uneven economy and the distinction of having more citizens thought to have gone to Iraq and Syria to fight as jihadists than any other country.
Fakhri el Ghezal tracks through photography the repeated absences and missing continuities of political leaders ripped away posters and billboards during the last half century since Tunisia freed itself from the French heel.
There remains in many administrations a gap between those government agencies charged with security, and those with responsibility for overseas development. Countering violent extremism depends on bridging this gap.
Arab media face major hardships with journalists on the receiving end of gross violations at the hands of authorities, armed groups, militias and others.
Many Muslims have taken to social media to express their horror that ISIS is trying to portray Ramadan as a month for jihadist attacks, when it is traditionally a month of celebrating peace.
Early twentieth century Tunisian poet Abu al-Qasem al-Shabbi's magnum opus poem "the Will of Life" is a passionate call to his countrymen to embrace life in their fight against French colonialism and oppression.
European officials, describing recruitment efforts by the Islamic State in Bosnia Herzegovina, mired in a toxic mix of economic malaise and ethnic tension, reportedly fear they may regret having failed to tackle the country's structural problems in the two decades since the end of the Yugoslav wars.
How much terrorism can the world take in 24 hours? June 26, 2015 will certainly go down in history as a day that pushed the limit. Perhaps one positive thought remains. It is said that the night is darkest just before the dawn -- I don't think our night can get any darker.
The majority of Muslims see no real contradiction between Islam and democracy. Today, the most profound struggles in the Middle East are between democratic visions, whether secularist or religious, and authoritarianism, whether secularist or religious.
As a startup that is launching its flagship product soon, our management has spent a lot of time on execution, rather than on strategy and organization. This might sound familiar to a lot of entrepreneurs: we spend most of our time putting out fires.
The United States and the GCC states are mutually dependent, making any sudden rupture in relations unlikely and probably even unthinkable. However, even though the United States is stuck with allies that stand for virtually everything it claims to be against, the U.S. government should not downplay or omit key foreign policy priorities that are matters of vital national interest.