Al Qaeda leader Ayman al-Zawahiri is inciting Tunisian Islamists to rise up against the government after the ruling party Ennahda abandoned its passive-aggressive push for Islamic law and threw its support behind a secular state.
"Have you ever seen a hospital that says it's not in the business of treating the sick, or a pharmacy that says it's got nothing to do with selling medicine, or an army that says it's got no business fighting?" he asked.
"They are inventing an Islam acceptable to the U.S. State Department, the European Union and the ... Gulf," he said. "An Islam ... that permits gambling parlours, nude beaches and usurious banks, secular laws and submission to international law."
"Come to the aid of your prophet's customs, and accept no substitute for sharia."
I'd be nervous about this if I lived there. There's no chance Tunisian Salafists can take control of the country. They don't have a critical mass. They can, however, cause an extraordinary amount of trouble if they set their minds to it, and potentially enough trouble to temporarily turn the country into a basket case. A few dozen car bombs can send just about any country in the world over the edge.
More than 100,000 people were killed in next-door Algeria when Islamists declared war on the government in the 1990s. That country still hasn't fully recovered.