Algerian journalist Ghani Mahdi slammed Algeria’s Echourouk for its satirical program, saying the Algerian regime seeks to cover up its internal crisis.
Rabat – Algerian public figures, including senior officials lashed out at Morocco’s deal with Israel by promoting anti-Semitism at a time when collective campaigns seek to push for more efforts to counter hatred and hostility toward Jews worldwide.
Having still not swallowed its make-believe bitterness of the Morocco-Israel diplomatic rapprochement, Algeria is no longer content to rely on its traditional attacks on Moroccan territorial integrity. The “Zionist entity” (Israel), Jews, and Judaism are apparently the new object of hatred for the nationalistic fanatsies of the Algerian regime.
After repeatedly attacking Morocco for “betraying” Palestinians, Algiers is now peddling the classic anti-Semitic argument of Jews colliding with their allies to attack and subjugate the world — especially Algeria.
For decades, Algeria has mobilized human rights claims in order to back the separatist Polisario Front in challenging Morocco’s territorial integrity.
Unprecedented campaign of anti-Semitism
However, with the Polisario Front facing isolation after the US recognition of Morocco’s sovereignty in Western Sahara, Algeria appears to have added anti-Zionism and anti-Semitism to its arsenal of hostility and bitterness to campaign against Moroccan interests.
Many Arab countries have expressed support for Morocco’s Western Sahara position. For observers, the recent waves of support for Morocco’s Western Sahara position may have led the Algerian regime to the conclusion that its traditional, increasingly disqualified “self-determination” and “human rights” rhetoric is no longer effective to counter Morocco’s diplomatic advances.
Earlier this month, an Algerian television show controversially depicted King Mohammed VI as a puppet to criticize the rapprochement between Rabat and Tel Aviv.
One of the show’s guests, Sadaoui Slimane, a member of Algeria’s National Liberation Front Party, described Jews as “a danger.” “Jews are a danger against Moroccan people and the royal palace.”
When he was told by the man depicting King Mohammed VI that the discussion is about Zionists not Jews, Saadaoui said “they are the same,” the politician said.
Other Algerian senior officials have also indulged in anti-Semitic remaks when attacking Israel and Morocco’s for their decision to establish diplomatic ties.
Algeria’s Minister of Communication and Spokesperson of the Government, Ammar Belhimer, publicly attacked Morocco and Israel by saying that the Rabat-Tel Aviv rapprochement decision is a threat for the region.
Commenting on the agreement between Morocco and Israel in December, Algeria’s Prime Minister Abdelaziz Djerad said, “the Zionist entity has arrived.”
Nasser Boukadoum, Algeria’s Foreign Affairs Minister was bolder. Algeria, he said , has never been “shaken by colonialism and will not be shaken by zionists and whoever allies with them.”
The remarks invoked some of the oldest anti-semitic slurs across the world, promoting hatered and hostility not only toward the Moroccan-Jewish commity but against Jews across the world.
Oxford Reference defines anti-Semitism as showing hostility toward the Jews, including the belief that they pose a threat against a specific society and urging about their elimination.
As Peter Beinart has argued, there is nothing remotely controversial or contemptible about opposing Zionism. The trouble starts, however, when Jewishness is uncritically and inconsiderately assumed to be synonymous with harboring a secret political agenda. And that has exactly been the issue with the Algerian regime: Presenting “Jews and their Moroccan ally” as “dangerous” for the world.
Algeria has an ill reputation due to the country’s well-documented lack of religious tolerance and coexistence.
Over the years, mass harassment against Jews in Algeria, forced most members of the the Algerian-Jewish community to immigrate to avoid oppression, according to the Jewish Virtual Library.
Approximately 140,000Jews lived in Algeria Jews in 1955. Following the country’s independence in 1962, however, argued the Jewish Virtual Library, “the Algerian government harnessed the Jewish community and deprived Jews of their economic rights.”
Around 130,000 Algerian Jews immigrated to France due to oppression, while 25, 681 Algerian Jews have immigrated to Israel since 1948.
But many reports have established that Jews were not the only minority group to suffer from oppression in Algeria.
In 2020, the European Parliament addressed a warning against the Algerian regime’s multiple violations against Christians living in the country.
European MP Maria Soraya Rodrigues Ramps denounced human rights violations against religious minorities in Algeria in a parliamentary question addressed to the European Commission on May 13.
Soraya asked the Commission to take action against the Algerian government after the regime prevented Christians living in Algeria from practicing their religion.
Morocco’s ‘unchanged’ commitment to Palestine
To give credence to its media campaign against Morocco and its “dangerous” alliance with the Jews, the Algerian regime has falsely accused Morocco of “betraying” the Palestinian cause.
In this, the anti-Morocco propaganda machine in Algiers seems to conveniently ignore or dismiss Morocco’s clear and repeated reassurances that it will never abandon Palestine and its position regarding the Palsetinian cause.
King Mohammed VI has notably reassured the Palestinian Authority of Morocco’s clear “unwavering” commitment to the Palestinian cause. The fight for Palestinians’ rights is a national cause for Moroccans and a priority for the Moroccan government, the King told the Palestinian leadership.
He has since called for negotiations between Israel and Palestinine for a mutually acceptable solution to end the conflict. In a telephone conversation with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, King Mohammed VI insisted that Morocco’s support for Palestinians remains “consistent, constant, and unchanged.”
Most recently, the King set the resumption of Israel-Palestine dialogue as his condition to accept Netanyahu’s invitation to visit Israel, according to Israeli sources.
Danny Danon, Israel’s former permanent ambassador at the UN, told Morocco World News that he hopes to see Morocco involved in negotiations with Palestine to find a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian crisis.
When asked about the relaunch of Israel-Palestine negotiations, Danon said he hopes Morocco can remain a “moderate country” that can help the two camps find a common ground. As Dann sees it, Morocco’s constructive approach to regional dynamics can lead to fruitful outcomes, mainly convening Palestine and Israel around the negotiating table.
Faking war to avoid internal crisis
All of this is public knowledge, readily available for those genuinely interested in knowing Morocco’s “real” stance on the Palestinian question. As such, Algiers’ constant mobilization of falsehoods and unfounded allegations to attack Morocco says more about the Algerian regime’s dubious agenda than it does about Morocco’s supposed “betrayal” of Palestinians.
Ignoring facts and twisting history, Algeria seeks to incite criticism and backlash not only among Algerians but also Moroccans.
Bilal Kebach , the host of Echourouk’s satirical program that recently debased the Moroccan King, claimed that anti-normalization Moroccans have been taking to the streets to demand the collapse of the monarchy.
It is true that, following Morocco’s decision to establish ties with Israel, some activists attempted to rally in Rabat to show solidarity with Palestine and defend Palestinian cause. But it was never reported that a group called for the collapse of Morocco’s regime, as the Algerian television show claimed.
Like other countries in the region, Morocco has its share of socio-economic crises, including social disparity, deteriorating educating and health systems, deep-seated corruption and cronyism, lack of accountability of public officials, as well as unemployment among the youth.
Algerian journalist and former presidential candidate Ghani Mahdi slammed his country’s hostile approach toward Morocco in a recent YouTube video in response to Echourouk’s controversial satirical television program. While Morocco surely suffers from some internal crises, Mahdi argued, it is more advanced than Algeria and has a much stronger economy.
“You depicted King Mohammed VI as a puppet in order to create an online war between Algerians and Moroccans to cover up internal crises, including Hirak,” he said.
Thousands of Algerians took to the street in the past few days to celebrate the second anniversary of the Hirak, the anti-establishment movement calling for a radical shift in Algerian politics.
They criticized the government’s inaction to meet their previous demands and vowed to continue protesting until President Tebboune addresses their concerns with radical reforms.
Scapegoating Morocco has long been one of the Algerian regime’s most effective diversion tactics. When failing to meet its domestic duties, the regime has traditionally sought to galvanize “Algerian patriots” with grand slogans and nationalistic vows.
But, as my MWN colleague Toms Dumpis has put it, the mounting waves of Hirak protests suggest that Algerians need more than their government’s “Morocco-bashing nationalistic grandstanding to effectively tackle the spate of crises on the horizon.”
Tamba Francois Koundouno contributed to this story