Fifty Shades of Black: ‘The Black Book’ of Corruption

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Following the book release of “The Black Book” by the Tunisian presidency, Kamel Ben Younes, one of the journalists accused of having a hand in promoting for the corrupt regime of ousted president Ben Ali, addressed a number of news agencies, media outlets and journalists in an email that contains clarifications in an attempt to refute the accusations illustrated in the formerly mentioned book.

Kamel Ben Younes proclaimed that he will sue everyone who was involved in defaming his reputation and promoting rumors and inaccurate information about him and his “candid” colleagues, intellectuals and scholars. He stated that no one is above the law whatever their partisan, political and media responsibilities, addressing his threats to the interim president in an implicit manner. He used to hold his peace when being subject to previous campaigns of denigration, which will no longer be the case after what has been published in “The Black Book”, so he stated.

Kamel Ben Younes stated that not only did the administrative, governmental, diplomatic and media institutions serve Tunisia and prevent the penetration of foreign spies into the country, but also the institutions which were involved in regulating the media. “Repairing the mistakes undertaken by these institutions and hold those who were behind those mistakes accountable cannot be accomplished by dragging the country into chaos, handing it to politically illiterate teenagers, intelligence agents of Arab, Israeli and international agencies, and advocates of the abolition of the Visa for the Iraqi brothers in Iraq where the latter has become a den of terrorism.”

Kamel Ben Younes considered the book nothing but a new blow to the path of national reconciliation and political consensus, the primary beneficiaries being the advocates of exclusion and counter-exclusion as well as those dragging Tunisia towards more and more violence and counter-violence. He targeted some of the leaders of the Congress party, the Troika and the supervisors of the media institutions with spiteful commentaries, describing them as politically immature adventurers who lack the character of true statesmen and human rights activists.

Kamel Ben Younes indirectly accused interim president Moncef Marzouki of being blinded by the deceiving illusion of power and turning a blind eye on doing the proper investigations before pointing fingers. He claimed that the book is nothing but an attempt to ignite internal crises by spreading rumors and distracting the opposing pole from “sacking the three presidents, move on to organizing transparent elections, begin the process of holding accountable those who did not disclose the snipers and the smuggling and drugs gangs, as well as those who manipulated transactions.”

The authors of the book claim to have no intention to “describe and analyze the media system and propaganda utilized during the Era of Dictatorship.” Adding that “this study was not conducted out of revenge motives, but to learn a lesson from the previous ousted regime so as not to repeat the same mistakes or reproduce the same propaganda system as it represents a threat to the nascent democracy.”

It is worth mentioning that Kamel Ben Younes happens to be one of the sixty-five Tunisian personalities who appealed to former president Ben Ali urging him to stand for a new presidential term 2014-2019, along with Oussama Mellouli (Olympic champion), Amina Fakhet (singer), Hamdi Meddeb (businessman), Semi Fehri, (TV producer), Mohamed Laouçat Ayari (researcher), Lotfi Bouchnaq (singer), Hend Sabri (actress), and the list goings on.

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