POINT OF NO RETURN: PIERRE ALLALI WRITTEN IN MAY 2008
“Bourguiba pursued a strategy of deception”
” The powers-that-be artfully got rid of their Jews while trying to make people believe that they were doing everything possible to keep them. Officially, they said they wanted to keep us while they ushered us towards the exit. In fact everything conspired to make us leave.”
Dr Andre Nahum, Sarcelles
These pithy words, encapsulating the plight of Tunisia’s 100,000 Jews – now reduced to barely 1,000 in 40 years – are quoted in Les refugies echanges by the author, journalist and academic Jean-Pierre Allali. While the main argument of Allali’s book centres on the de facto exchange of populations between the Jews of Arab countries and the Palestinians, Tunis-born Allali has some particularly interesting things to say about how the community closest to his own heart was driven out in the years immediately following Tunisian independence.