The Moroccan Legislative Circus (Part 3)

Rabat - Parliament mannerism and language use Customarily, parliamentarians address each other using expressions of respect such as: "right honorable member of parliament..."  "If you allow me dear sir, I disagree totally with what you said sir…," "with all due respect sir, I would like to point out the following, esteemed sir…," because they represent the essence of the nation, whereby constructive disagre ...

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Libya: Moroccan Mediation Could Bring Muslim Brotherhood and General Haftar Closer

Washington DC - Can Morocco sway Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to accept Libyan Brotherhood Movement (LMB) as a legitimate representative of the Tripoli based government? Are Turkey and Qatar willing to ensure that their financial backing of Libya Dawn doesn’t end up at the hands of the so-called Islamic State (IS) and pro-Al-Qaeda elements? These are two major obstacles facing the U.N. envoy to ...

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U.S. Foreign Policy and the Security Conundrum of Morocco

Zakaria Zakri Rabat - Morocco has been sending mixed signals regarding its current state of security affairs. Just at the time that the kingdom has stepped up its efforts to explore its own oil and gas boom, instances of violence and terrorism-connected disruptions have dragged the country out of the regional “exceptionalism” the country has been identified with. On November 24, 2014, NATO commended Morocco ...

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A Machiavellian Prince in the Making (Part 2 of 4)

The Princetonian Prince Niagara Falls - As I posited in my last piece, my critical views of Prince Hicham are not directed against the message he conveys.  In fact, up until I read his “Diaries of a Banished Prince,” I held a favorable opinion of the man and his views. Unlike the staunchest monarchists who shoot both message and messenger indiscriminately, I try to view the topic at hand from a democrat’s p ...

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Reflections on Spiritual Development: Is My Islam True?

New York - “God Does Not Change People’s Condition unless They Change Their Inner Selves.” (Quran 13:11) Recently, I have been doing a lot of self-evaluation. As part of this process, I decided to go through my old journals to gain clarity on certain issues and review my life goals. I wanted to check if I am on the right path and to verify if my intentions are sincere. I often think of Prophet Muhammad’s (P ...

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Western Sahara: Is Christopher Ross Wasting Everyone’s Time?

By Majid Morcili San Francisco - Christopher Ross just finished his tour to the region and one thing is sure; he will no longer be allowed to flirt with plans outside the scope for his mission for two important reasons. 1- The UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon gave the king of Morocco "firm assurances as to the neutrality, objectivity, and impartiality of UN officials" in the issue of what’s called the Weste ...

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Towards a New Paradigm of Educational Reform in Morocco

By Mohammed Maarouf The Moroccan education system has been the subject of debate ever since independence, and has witnessed several serious endeavors to reform the sector. Though there is much talk about the advancements accomplished up to the present, the system is evidently still lagging behind, and there seems to be no effective, sustainable reform. Similar to sea tides, Ministers of Education and their ...

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How Long is History According to Islam?

Kenitra - My previous article ‘The First People’ hints at the idea that history of mankind is longer than what people generally assume. Some readers and friends have pointed out that history cannot be more than 6,000 years old. This view is inconsistent with the NASA estimation for the astronomical cycle of the vernal equinox precession that lasts 25,800 years and which had been observed in the remote past. ...

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A Machiavellian Prince in the Making (Part 1 of 4)

Toronto- I will start with a confession! I am not a monarchist at heart, but I can appreciate the appeal the monarchy offers to some. After all, Canada, which I chose as my adopted country, is a constitutional monarchy. Morocco, my native country, has a similar form of government, at least in its written constitution.Arguably, some constitutional law experts may find this analogy outlandish, but that is ano ...

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Morocco Celebrates Longest Relationship with America

By Ray Hanania Chicago - One of my first journalism reports was written in 1976 when I was asked by the City of Chicago to cover a meeting between Morocco’s Washington D.C. Ambassador and Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley. The meeting was at City Hall and was intended to commemorate the longstanding friendship between the Arab country of Morocco and the United States of America. Morocco was the first country t ...

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The Moroccan Legislative Circus (Part 2)

Rabat - Are political parties, political parties? During Hassan II’s long reign, the period extending from 1970 to 1996 was known as sanawat rasas "the Lead Years" because of the fierce repression exerted on the left and far left opposition, starting with the physical liquidation of the Union Nationale des Forces Populaires (UNFP) leader Ben Barka and moving on to the incarceration of all political opponent ...

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AU President Mugabe ‘Fishing’ for Boko Haram in the Western Sahara

Washington DC - The 24th Session of the Summit of the African Union (AU), which  concluded in Addis Ababa in late January, was supposed to deliberate on ways to tackle the Boko Haram threat. Instead, President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, the new AU chief, devoted a good chunk of the meeting to address the Morocco-Algeria dispute over the Western  Sahara. As Mugabe was assailing Morocco’s “annexation” of the ...

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