French ‘sedition’ and Western democracy

Mashari Althaydi
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What is happening in the French capital Paris has shaken the country and put it on alert in such an unprecedented manner, according to the estimates of the French government itself.

The commander of the French Gendarmerie has highlighted the police’s readiness to address the developments and the interior minister warned of “infiltrating radical members.” Meanwhile chants in Paris’ streets and squares said: “Let Macron, the dictator, fall!”

Of course, President Emmanuel Macron is not a dictator as he was elected to the presidency based on the republic’s old democratic system. France is the base of the liberal “revolution” in the modern world. However, raising such slogans as the French people burst out their rage due to the government’s tax policies reflects the extent of the current French anger.

The French executive authorities said they were in a state of high alert and called on the French people to have “a republican spirit!”

The western experience in the pattern of governance is actually a pioneering, rich and inspiring experience but it’s neither the last of solutions nor the magical wand to all problems

Mashari Althaydi

Interior Minister Christophe Castaner said in an interesting comment that the past three weeks of protests have “created a monster that escaped from its creators,” in reference to the yellow vest movement which French people from the middle-class launched to condemn the government’s social and tax policies, but later began to raise different demands. High school students were the ones who most recently joined the protests.

Understanding liberalism

Things always start with certain demands, most often economic ones. However as other social tributaries flow in, the situation transforms from a limited stream of water into a sweeping river where political anger is above economic frustration. It’s something that resembles a popular revolution. This is how things sometimes happen. Or as the French minister noted, a yellow monster out of control was created.

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Some Arab activists who “preach” liberalism are confused and trying to explain what’s happening in France. When it comes to democracy and liberalism according to these Arab liberal preachers, they say: “There is no solution to any problem, any regime, any people or any state in the world except through the western liberal model.”

The western experience in the pattern of governance is actually a pioneering, rich and inspiring experience but it’s neither the last of solutions nor the magical wand to all problems.

What’s important is to provide justice, a decent living, economic success and of course security via any method and way. Excuse us, Arab liberal preachers, but what happened and what is currently happening in France and what may happen in Belgium later tell us that there isn’t one single and unified recipe to solve all the world’s problems.

This article is also available in Arabic.

Saudi journalist Mashari Althaydi presents Al Arabiya News Channel’s “views on the news” daily show “Maraya.” He has previously held the position of a managing senior editor for Saudi Arabia & Gulf region at pan-Arab newspaper Asharq al-Awsat. Althaydi has published several papers on political Islam and social history of Saudi Arabia. He appears as a guest on several radio and television programs to discuss the ideologies of extremist groups and terrorists. He tweets under @MAlthaydy.

Disclaimer: Views expressed by writers in this section are their own and do not reflect Al Arabiya English's point-of-view.
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