from David Rohde:

The Islamist Spring

By David Rohde
April 5, 2012

TUNIS – Like it or not, this is the year of the Islamist.

Fourteen months after popular uprisings toppled dictators in Tunisia and Egypt, Islamist political parties – religiously conservative groups that oppose the use of violence – have swept interim elections, started rewriting constitutions and become the odds-on favorites to win general elections.

Tunisian secularists nervous over slow change, concerned about Islamists

July 13, 2011

(Protests in Tunis July 7, 2011 after Islamists attacked a cinema to protest a controversial film called "Neither God nor master"/Zoubeir Souissi)

“Neither God, nor Master” film angers Tunisian Islamists

July 6, 2011

(A Tunisian flag at a peaceful demonstration in Tunis January 15, 2011/Zohra Bensemra)

Mideast Christians struggle to hope in Arab Spring, some see no spring at all

June 23, 2011

(A Muslim holding the Koran (top L) and a Coptic Christian holding a cross in Cairo's Tahrir Square during the period of interfaith unity on February 6, 2011/Dylan Martinez)

Will the Arab Spring bring U.S.-style “culture wars” to the Middle East?

June 21, 2011

(From left: Olivier Roy, Cardinal Angelo Scola and Martino Diez of the Oasis Foundation at the conference on San Servolo island, Venice, June 20, 2011/Giorgia Dalle Ore/Oasis)

Jewish Lag BaOmer pilgrimage in Tunisia goes ahead, but muted

By Reuters Staff
May 22, 2011

(People attend a Lag Ba-Omer celebration at El Ghiba synagogue in Djerba island May 21, 2011S/Anis Mili)

Tunisian unrest may dampen annual Jewish celebration on Djerba island

By Reuters Staff
May 14, 2011
(The Great Room of El Ghriba synagogue, April 12, 2002/Mohammad Hammi)

Jewish pilgrims may not be able to hold their usual celebrations at one of Africa’s oldest synagogues this year because of renewed security concerns in Tunisia where the site is based.

Arab revolts set to transform Middle East

April 4, 2011
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(Bahraini anti-government protesters in central Manama, February 16, 2011/Hamad I Mohammed)

Algerian imams use regional unrest to press pay demands

March 14, 2011
algerian protester

(A protester at a Socialist Forces Front party (FFS) rally in Algiers March 4, 2011/Louafi Larbi )

Respected head of Tunisian Islamist group to step down

February 25, 2011
Rachid Ghannouchi

(Sheikh Rachid Ghannouchi in Tunis February 4, 2011/Louafi Larbi )

The head of Tunisia’s Ennahda Islamist movement, Rachid Ghannouchi, will step down and be replaced this year, he told Turkey’s state-run news agency in an interview published on Friday. Ghannouchi, a respected Muslim scholar who has spoken in favour of women’s rights and democracy, returned to Tunisia from two decades in exile following last month’s overthrow of President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali.