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How to Fit in a Society That Doesn’t Perceive You a Full Member

By Erkia Jarif Amsterdam - Khadija Arib, a Dutch Moroccan politician, was elected chairman of the Dutch House of Parliament in January. It is extraordinary, because for the first time in Dutch history a person of non-Dutch descent has been elected to an important Dutch institution of political power. Unfortunately, her appointment was sensitive because both the far-right Freedom Party of Geert Wilders and t ...

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Enjoying Human Rights and Liberties to the Fullest in Islam

“Death raining down on tourists as they sunbathe on the beach or visit museums.” “People executed by burning, drowning, shooting or beheading.” “Faces obscured by long hair and beards.” Istanbul - These are the most likely answers we might receive if we asked a passer-by in New York or Paris what comes to mind when the word Islam is mentioned. Many people in the West and the Middle East genuinely believe an ...

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Reading the Koran: The Play of Cultural, Intellectual and Ideological Tradition

Text and the requirement of compliance Rabat - Text is an authoritarian phenomenon. It tends to impose a strict behavior towards it. Meaning, for instance, cannot be derived in the same way from two different genres. Likewise, what makes the aesthetic value in poetry is not what makes it in a short story, in a novel or a play. In same manner, a text authored in or for a community in a given language, will n ...

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Reflections on the Moroccan Educational System: (Part 2: Challenges Overcome)

Challenges and pitfalls overcome As a follow-up to the World Conference on Education for All (Jomtien, Thailand, 1990), the world community convened in Dakar, in 2000, in a world conference on the theme of “Education For All” (EFA), to review the achievements of Jomtien and launch an ambitious program for the period 2000-2015, centering on the following lofty goals: Goal 1: Expand early childhood care and e ...

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From Rant to Reason in What It Means and Does Not Mean to Be Arab and Muslim

Rabat - To begin, I must make a few warning remarks. I would like to invite anyone who is reading this text with the specific purpose of finding evidence that I reject Islam or that I hate Arabs or that I have been alienated by Western ideologies to stop the exercise here as, one, they will not, and two, I will not let them get away with it. Also, with no false humility, I would extend the same invitation t ...

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Morocco’s Inauguration of Noor Ouarzazate Solar Complex is a Great Model for Africa

New Delhi - A significant development took place this week in Morocco when King Mohammed VI inaugurated the first phase of the Noor Ouarzazate concentrated solar power complex – the largest in the world – and launched construction works for Noor II and Noor III. When completed the multi-technology Noor Ouarzazate complex spread over 3,000 hectares will have an overall installed capacity of 580 MW. This will ...

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What Lies Ahead for France?

Istanbul - In the aftermath of the September 11th, 2001 extreme nationalism in the form of terrorist attacks rose in France just like in the rest of Europe. Followed by the 2008 economic crisis that caused unemployment and a fall in the general level of prosperity, social fears triggered by refugees fleeing from the war zones also added to the increase in protectionist tendencies. Thus France became suitabl ...

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When Scientific Knowledge is not the Final Authority in Morocco

El Jadida - To respond to the strong comments made by the imam Yahya al-Mdaghri affiliated to Hamza mosque in Salé during a recent Friday sermon when he blamed the inhabitants of the Rif for the last earthquake that shook the region and scared the population, we would like to highlight the fact that what the sermonizer attested to his audience either regarding the earthquake or the drought as being divine f ...

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Moroccan Teachers: Where is Democracy?

By Abdelhak Belffkih Tangier - Nowadays, most of Moroccans assume that they live in a democracy only by having the right to vote in elections. By this, they feel that they can express themselves freely on the issues of the day, holding whatever opinions they wish on the political leadership of their country without fearing negative reprisals for disagreeing with or criticizing those in power. But in reality ...

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Reflections on the Moroccan Educational System: (Part 1: Pitfalls)

Rabat - Morocco is undoubtedly one of the few countries in the world that is spending over 25% of its yearly budget[1] on education and employing a true army of educators and functionaries in the sector but not reaching the expected results of equality, equity and quality. The political will is definitely there, but the way, for some unknown reason, is lacking even after the implementation of a ten-year ref ...

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Is Morocco a Model of Peaceful Coexistence Between Jews and Muslims?

New York - Morocco hosted an international conference this week on the “Rights of Religious Minorities in Muslim Countries.” Convened in Marrakech on January 25-27, the conference could not have come at a more opportune time against the backdrop of terrorist attacks perpetrated by the so-called Islamic State and its affiliate organizations. From Tunisia, Syria, Iraq, Turkey, and Egypt, to France and Burkina ...

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Today, I Was Called a “Nigger”

Casablanca - For six weeks, this was my reality living in Fez. Every day, insults and slurs in French, Arabic, and even English were hurled in my direction without any provocation. In general, I would consider myself a relatively confident person, but being a black woman in Fez and the daily experiences of abuse that came with it almost broke me. They broke me so much so that it has taken me months to feel ...

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