"All humans are members of the same body Created from one essence"

"Human beings are members of a whole in creation of one essence and soul. If one member is afflicted with pain, other members uneasy will remain."

Friday, 11 March 2011

Morocco: from Feudal to Modern

When France granted independence to its protectorate in 1956, Morocco was a largely feudal kingdom of 12 million inhabitants. King Hassan II, who succeeded to the throne on the death of his father, Mohammed V, in 1961, ruled the country with a firm and arbitrary hand for 38 years. In Morocco, France did not adopt any steps to promote social welfare in the country. France wanted to maintain Moroccan society in a state of underdevelopment: illiteracy, poor health conditions, poverty and an abscence of industry.

King Mohammed VI has set himself the challenge of creating a modern state while maintaining the feudal veneer: 20-minute daily diet of state functionaries kissing the royal hand. Well, it is easier to be a dictator than a democrat ;) Is the King Mohammed VI ready to hand the power to the people?

I am not sure! Neither the Moroccan Monarchy, nor the Tunisian secular modernizing regime, nor the Algerian revolutionary junta, are showing interest in creating democratic systems of government.

Is Morocco ready for Democracy? Democracy requires adherence to some values, such as belief in the virtues of dialogue, tolerance of different opinions, acceptance of criticism and abiding by majority decisions. The longer the period of dictatorship, the greater the likelihood of a disorderly transition to democracy. Authoritarianism prevents the development of a tradition of dialogue and compromise. 

Mohammed VI: " I do not know. I have a lot of respect for His Majesty Juan Carlos. I call him Uncle Juan because he is an extraordinary person whom I have known for a long time. He is a relative almost. We often speak on the phone and I ask him for his guidance. But Moroccans are not Spaniards and they will never be.Democracy in Spain was very good for Spain. There should be a Moroccan model specific to Morocco."
Well, let us see if the King, who personifies the new Eurocentric Moroccan, will install democracy in Morocco. He seems to have some leanings towards democracy.

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