[The North Africa Journal] While Italian politics has been rocked by the criminal investigation that Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi is now under for having inappropriate sexual relations with a 17 year old girl, and then giving the girl a get out of jail free card, Prime Minister Berlusconi’s foray into the Maghreb media market has been no less scandalous. He has poured money into a Tunisian media market that essentially acted as a propaganda machine on behalf of the Ben Ali regime, preventing the rise of democracy that would have created opportunities for Tunisians at home instead of forcing many to seek refuge in Italy. In some sense, the exodus of illegal immigrants from Tunisia and into Italy is indirectly the result of Berlusconi's own economic calculus. While that same media is now seeking to fix its image, questions will no doubt be raised in the mid-term when the Tunisian transition period ends and moves into a more stable phase.
[Security and Politics] North Africa Under Stress: Latest Developments[The North Africa Journa | By Arezki Daoud and Kouichi Shirayanagi]: Phase one of the North African revolution is now behind us. The fire has been ignited and regime change occurred in Tunisia and Egypt, both going through a tough transition period with a great deal of uncertainty. In other countries, we see rising stress, with governments there working to prevent popular uprisings that toppled Ben Ali and Mubarak. The following is a brief report of the latest developments in North Africa as of February 16, 2011....
Kouichi Shirayanagi Kouichi Shirayanagi is a former Legislative Fellow for the House Foreign Affairs Committee in Washington, D.C. He has traveled widely in the Middle East and North Africa. Kouichi holds a BA in Economics and Mathematics from UC Santa Cruz.