Habib Ben Ali Bourguiba
Political architect of modern Tunisia.
Ben Ali dedicated to ending French colonial rule. He brought social reforms on a secular western mould after Tunisia's national independence in 1956. His 31-year reign tended to be authoritarian: he was a man of fierce independence of character and deep national pride. Later his opponents denounced his iron rule and his failure to improve economic and social conditions. He made himself unpopular among his Arabs peers on Arab-Israeli dispute. The bread riots in 1984 and unrest in 1987 made him unfit to govern.
Bourguiba was deposed in 1987 after doctors declared him senile. Habib spent his last years in his native city, Monastir.
Compiled by:M. Nauman Khan