Protesters on March 17th rallied around the image
of assassinated opposition leader, Shokri Belaid.
There were no violent reactions from the government. There was no crackdown on dissent. The people were allowed to voice their opinions and nothing bad happened to them as a consequence of doing so. Some might claim that protests as large as this one are a sign of government failure. However, with an Ennadha-led coalition government at the state's helm, the state appears to be respecting citizens' rights to assemble and protest. In the MENA region, respect for such rights is not entirely common- thus the Tunisian government's restraint in relation to the protest ought to be considered a sign of government success.
Furthermore, many of the secularists' fears about Islamic parties in Tunisia have (so far, although time could very well tell a different tale) been disproved. Ennadha, which holds the majority of the seats in the transitional Tunisian assembly, is, as mentioned before a moderate Islamic party. Much of early secularist discontent centered on the fear of an Islamic party gaining control and then establishing an oppressive and religously-driven regime. In a quick assessment of the current situation, this has simply not been the case. Ennadha has formed a coalition government with the moderate secularist party Congress for the Republic and they have not shown any signs of oppression towards secularist protesters or towards people of other faiths (or no faith at all).
Even with all of this in consideration, though, things could still go sour very quickly in Tunisia. If, for example, the transitional government does not step down, if Ennadha begins to enact oppressive legislation, or if the secular opposition is exposed to more political violence directed towards them, what now appears to be a slow but hopeful progress towards democracy could, unfortunately, become something much different.