Tunisia: Revolution Now or Never

Sunday January 23rd 2011

 "Bliss was it in that dawn to be alive,
But to be young was very heaven!--

William Wordsworth wrote these words about the French Revolution more than 200 years ago. But he was a spectator, a friend of France, not a participant, and he never suffered through what became known as the Terror.

It’s easy from the comfort of my cosy living room to cheer the people of Tunisia on. You go, girls, I say. But I remind myself that this all started when a man reached such a pitch of despair that he burned himself in a public square. Already 100 civilians are dead. It’s people power all right, but not like the Velvet Revolution in Prague in 1990, to which every public uprising has been compared since.

Tunisia’s very own Imelda Marcos, Leila Trabelsi Ben Ali.
Doesn’t she look like Sarah Palin?

The creepy ex-President Ben Ali has gone with his bags of gold and his grasping Lady Macbeth but his legacy will take much longer to overturn.

The history of the Middle East since de-colonisation more than half a century ago is one of slow suffocation of the people by basilisk-eyed thugs – Mubarak in Egypt, Ben Ali in Tunisia, Qaddafi in Libya. None of these “strong men” has been overthrown without messy outside intervention.

Until now.

I can say unequivocally looking at Tunisia’s chart that this revolution is real, it’s effects will be long-lasting and that the people must keep the initiative because the thugs are still waiting in the wings.

The planet of expansion and hope, Jupiter, is transiting Tunisia’s Sun at 29° Pisces, right now. This happens once every 12 years, but this time it is far more significant because just a few degrees away at 27° is Uranus, the planet of revolution and change.

These two heavy hitters last met around here hundreds of years ago. Uranus has an 84 year cycle so it won’t be back until the end of this century. Go Tunisia. This is your moment to change everything.

Change is inevitable for the country – but will it be for the good?

I’ve got to say that Tunisia has a charming chart. If this were a person, I’d want her to be my friend. Appropriately for such a maritime nations, Tunisia has Sun, Moon and Ascendant in sensitive water signs.

The Moon – emotions, the people – is powerfully placed in her own sign Cancer and smack on the ascendant. So this friend would wear her heart on her sleeve. Her emotions would be there for all to see, but she’d also be rather oversensitive and sometimes inclined to a weepy sense that no one quite loved her enough. In a country chart it would suggest that the ordinary people are truly are the “face” of the country.

This incredible mosaic of Neptune is a reminder
of Tunisia’s ancient past and connection with Pisces.

The Sun – the core identity – is in fellow water sign Pisces at the fishiest final degree, perfect for a nation that still makes money from fishing and also from beach tourism.

It seems to me that Tunisia must have made a bucket load of cash in the past decade with the MC (government) progressed to Venus, the money planet, and the Sun progressed to Jupiter, the lucky planet. Sadly, that money went straight into the pockets of the Trabelsi clan. This just goes to show that you may have the luckiest country in the world but if you have a crummy government, the people won’t feel any benefit.

Venus is also in her own earthy sign, Taurus, blessing the country with good looks and natural wealth. This is a country that aspires to great riches – and because of that aspiration is potentially very wealthy indeed.

With a population of just 10 million there should have been plenty to go round. (The president’s wife  Laila Trabelsi apparently took £40million worth of gold bullion out of the country when she fled.) You do the math.

Venus is in perfect aspect to her mate Mars, “exalted” in Capricorn. So the two planets work well together, both in earthy money-oriented signs. There’s a lot of greed here. This position of Mars makes for a muscular, militant government which stands in direct opposition to the people, represented by the Moon. This set up can mean that the government is quite literally the enemy of the people, which has indeed been the case. The police especially would be represented by Mars.

The job now is to turn the government into the people’s partner, which is the other possible interpretation of this placement. Unfortunately, the government and the ruling elite are represented by the sign Pisces which at its worst can be shifty and mendacious, although at its best this is the most compassionate sign of all. Tunisians need – quickly – to find leaders who do not see them as lambs waiting to be fleeced but as a flock in need of a good shepherd.

There’s so much in this chart about money that I think the key to the country’s stability is quite simply a fairer distribution of wealth. But the easy money-making years have been wasted on the Ben Ali bunch.

The main square once upon a time, Tunis.
Things have changed a bit.

The country is experiencing this Uranus-Jupiter transit to the Sun and the MC right now, but in addition it is now and will be for several years, experiencing the Ascendant progressed to natal Pluto – total transformation of persona. This is a very, very major transit. It happens once every other century.

Pluto transits are rarely pretty and never easy. There’s still a long way to go with this, and things could still get quite nasty. Pluto asks us to look right down into our own personal sewer and clean it out. Very bad things are going to come to light which will make the world see Tunisia in a different and less flattering light.

Unless Tunisians find some seriously good leadership quickly, this uprising could simply take a manhole cover off the sewers so that everyone falls straight in.

What’s more Pluto will be transiting opposite the natal Moon in 2012, but the effects will start this year. That’s the god of the underworld confronting the people. It ain’t over – and I think Tunisia should be afraid of its neighbours and careful of its “friends” in the coming two years. Her enemies are strong inside the country and out.

Tunisia is also having a progressed lunar return. This happens every 27 years and usually signifies a fresh start, especially in this case, since it’s going over the ascendant too.

So what next? It could go either way. But if I were advising a kingmaker in Tunis right now, I’d tell him to look for a woman. The feminine is very powerful in the Tunisian chart and it can be harnessed for good or ill (Laila Trabelsi was arguably the strongest person in the country before the uprising.) Find a woman, who has suffered some kind of deep loss, to be the face of the country and things might just come together.

I’m keeping my fingers crossed. I’d love this charming friend to be free at last.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Jupiter is making a spectacular exit from Pisces. Things may happen even faster when he goes into Aries, the action sign.

  2. Christina says:

    I wonder if the Irish government’s meltdown is part of the same pattern.

  3. Christine says:

    Do you know what chart is generally used for Ireland? I’ve been looking and there seems to be a number of different options.

  4. Christina says:

    Yes, that’s an interesting question. And national charts are a tricky area. For example, for the UK I use two – the 1066 chart which seems to work with royal stuff especially and the 1801 one which works with politics and the economy. Both have a lot of important similarities though.

    I’ve never looked at the Irish National Chart. But here are two discussions about it.

    Also this Irish astrologer Bill Sheeran has a lot to say, which is relevant. http://www.radical-astrology.com/articles/articles/mundane/observer3-1.html

    However, I’ve looked at the history books (always good to double check astrological received ideas) and I would certainly start with December 6, 1922 and the 29 December 1937 and see if either seemed to fit better. Usually these things come into force at 12:01 so you can have a pretty accurate chart.

    In my opinion it’s best to keep it simple. Weigh up the two charts, see which one you like better, check the transits and then stick with that one.

    I think I may have a look myself. I’d expect the current economic crisis to be loud and clear.

  5. Christine says:

    Great, thanks very much! I’ll have a look at those.

  6. […] is the chart I used for my analysis of the Tunisian Uprising in the previous post. It’s dated for the founding of the Tunisian Republic and it includes progressions and […]

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