A resource for journalists
Following a discussion with friends in the media industry, they expressed that there is a lack of articles in English about Morocco and specifically about Morocco-US relations. So, here I am with this modest work that I hope will be used by journalists for covering the two countries relations.
It’s a selection of op-ed’s, articles and think tank reports.
I am sure that these resources will be helpful for all the journalists, bloggers and analysts who will be covering the upcoming visit of King Mohammed VI to the President Obama on Friday, November 22.
I am also going to collect quotes from leaders from both countries in order to use them in the articles. Thus, let me know if you are interested in expressing your point of view about the upcoming visit and US-Morocco relations in general? Or, if you are interested to get quotes from leaders of one of the two countries for an article? Send me an email to : firstname.lastname@example.org
COLUMNISTS – OPINIONS :
Morocco, the King and Reforms
Its been 38 years since King Hassan II of Morocco ordered the Green March, when 350,000 Moroccans escorted by some 20,000 Moroccan troops marched into the territory that was then the Spanish Sahara. When the former colonial power vacated the territory, it left behind a whole lot of trouble, a war that lasted more than a decade and a half, and political tension that would persist to this day.
Read all the article : http://www.huffingtonpost.com/claude-salhani/morocco-the-king-and-refo_b_4245320.html
By Claude Salhani is a political analyst specializing in the Middle East and North Africa.
King Mohammed VI Of Morocco Builds New Financial City For The World
Ever since he ascended the throne in 1999, his Majesty Mohammed VI, King of Morocco, has nursed one persistent ambition: to transform Casablanca, the Kingdom’s largest city and economic center, into Africa’s leading financial hub.
To achieve this, in 2010 the King announced the creation of one of his most ambitious projects, the Casablanca Finance City (CFC), a regional financial center and a privileged entry point for Northern, Western, and Central Africa.
By Mfonobong Nsehe, Contributor
I chronicle Africa’s success stories and track its richest people
Sahara conflict: Open Letter to President Barack Obama
Monday 18 November 2013
Today the Moroccan people celebrate the 58th anniversary of the their country’s independence. But this independence is still not complete yet, as an the undisputable sovereignty of Morocco over an integral part of its territory is still subject to unfounded claims.
Thirty-eight years ago millions of Moroccans marched with their hearts and 350,000 Moroccans marched physically into Morocco’s southern provinces in the Sahara to reclaim Morocco’s sovereignty over the territory which remains contested to this day.
By Samir Bennis, a member of the United Nations community, Samir Bennis is a political analyst. He received a Ph.D. in international relations from the University of Provence in France.
A Monarch Visits Mali
A new president takes the helm in Mali today, and Moroccan king Muhammad VI is in the Malian capital Bamako as an honored guest, to congratulate him personally as well as lay out plans to build on a relationship the king has been nurturing. Ahead of his visit, civilian doctors and medical units of Morocco’s Royal Armed Forces have been dispatched to Bamako to set up a field hospital to boost the impoverished city’s limited medical capacity — and in the Moroccan capital Rabat, a new public discussion has been focused on how Moroccans can help Malians boost civil society, political participation, and sustainable economic development. (Here’s a video of the king’s arrival and reception.)
Read all the article : http://www.huffingtonpost.com/ahmed-charai/a-monarch-visits-mali_b_3953990.html
By Ahmed Charai is the publisher of L’Observateur du Maroc and other newspapers and the owner of Morocco’s largest private radio network Med radio. As an expert on Morocco and North Africa, he sits on the Board of Directors of The Atlantic Council of United States and the Board of Trustees of the Foreign Policy Research Institute and the Center for Strategic and International Studies in Washington. He is also member of The National Interest’s Advisory Council.
King Mohammed VI sparks national conversation on education
Posted on August 27, 2013
“Why is it that so many of our young people cannot fulfill their legitimate professional, material, and social aspirations?”
This is the question that King Mohammed VI himself put forth to the nation in August 20 speech to the Moroccan people. The speech was given on the 60th anniversary of Morocco’s “Revolution of the King and the People,” in which the French Protectorate authorities deposed then-Sultan Mohamed V, an act that is viewed today as ultimately strengthening the nationalist independence movement.
By Elizabeth Buckner, PhD Candidate in International and Comparative Education at Stanford School of Education.
The King’s Speech
Like so many people, The King’s Speech, the movie, moved me on many levels. It brought to reality the humanity of a distant figure, a man’s simple struggle to rise to the occasion, to stretch himself for his people. To do the right thing. Earlier this week, like so many others, I continued my search on Facebook and Twitter to stay abreast of all the momentous change raging across the Arab world, I stumbled across another King’s Speech that also moved me to tears.
Read all the article : http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kathryn-cameron-porter/the-kings-speech_1_b_835354.html
By Kathryn Cameron PorterFounder & President, Leadership Council for Human Rights
The Moroccan-Jewish experience and why I have hope for peace in the Middle East
Washington, June 25, 2013
Secretary of State John Kerry has made it his personal mission to revive peace negotiations between Israel and Palestine. Yet many wonder: after so much loss and pain, can there ever be peace? Can Jews and Muslims ever coexist?
While no one knows for sure how the peace process will unfold, I have found hope in my heritage and the history of the country in which I was born, Morocco.
By Sir Charles Dahan is vice president of the World Federation of Moroccan Jewry.
Morocco enacts migration reform
By Siham Ali in Rabat for Magharebia – 14/11/2013
Morocco on Monday (November 11th) announced plans to regularise the status of up to 40,000 illegal immigrants.
The scheme is part of a new Moroccan migration policy introduced in September to comply with international agreements.
Priority will be given to 850 immigrants considered asylum-seekers by the UNHCR who will benefit from legal residency rights automatically.
Six additional categories of foreign nationals are covered by the regularisation operation, which Morocco intends to run from January 1st to December 31st, 2014.
Read all the article : http://magharebia.com/en_GB/articles/awi/features/2013/11/14/feature-02
Reiterates Commitment to Africa, Immigrants, Political Solution for Western Sahara
WASHINGTON, Nov. 7, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ (MACP) — In a speech on the 38th anniversary of Morocco’s Green March, King Mohammed VI stressed Morocco’s commitments and achievements on human rights, noting the openness and freedom enjoyed by Moroccans in the Southern Provinces as well as in the north.
“Our aim is to see the Moroccan citizen properly honored, endowed with the attributes of full-fledged citizenship,” he said. “It is in this spirit that we have undertaken a series of profound reforms and major projects,” including the establishment of national institutions and regional bodies for the protection and promotion of human rights that are “known for their independence and credibility.” He also said that no country accepts being “subjected to behavior that is harmful to their security and stability, especially as violence, subversion and intimidation of citizens are incompatible with human rights, and the exercise of freedom can only be done in compliance with the law.”
The Moroccan American Center for Policy (MACP) is a non-profit organization whose principal mission is to inform opinion makers, government officials, and interested publics in the United States about political and social developments in Morocco and the role being played by the Kingdom of Morocco in broader strategic developments in North Africa, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East. For more, please visit http://www.moroccoonthemove.com
Obama team: 24 nations back U.S. on Syria
David Jackson, September 9, 2013
The Obama administration says two dozen nations back its call for a “strong international response” to chemical weapons in Syria.
The White House reissued a joint statement Monday that nine other countries — plus the United States — had signed on to last week; the new list has an additional 15 nations and ranges from Albania to the United Kingdom. It also includes Germany, Qatar, Turkey and the United Arab Emirates.
“We condemn in the strongest terms the horrific chemical weapons attack in the suburbs of Damascus on August 21st that claimed the lives of so many men, women and children,” the statement says. “The evidence clearly points to the Syrian government being responsible for the attack, which is part of a pattern of chemical weapons use by the regime.”
Read all the article : http://www.usatoday.com/story/theoval/2013/09/09/obama-syria-24-countries-statement/2787217/
Golden Age of Morocco’s Jewish Community will never Die
Posted by Sabah Lebbar on February 26, 2013
A synagogue has been refurbished and inaugurated by a Head of a government. This is no news, if the event is taking place somewhere in Europe, the Americas or inside Israel. But when the synagogue is located inside the walls of the spiritual capital of an Islamic State, when it is dedicated, after having been rehabilitated, by the head of an Islamist party, and when the dedication ceremony is placed under the aegis of this country’s leader, the news is actually breaking, shattering, unprecedented.
This unprecedented event actually took place earlier this week in Morocco, precisely in Fes, when Abdelilah Benkirane, the head of the government and the head of the Party for Justice and Development (PJD) which is leading a governmental coalition in the North African country, made the trip to Fes to preside over the dedication ceremony of the “Slat Alfassiyine” synagogue, placed under the patronage of King Mohammed VI.
Read all the article : http://northafricapost.com/2787-golden-age-of-moroccos-jewish-community-will-never-die.html
U.S.-Morocco launch strategic dialog amid regional instability
Posted by Sabah Lebbar on September 14, 2012
The United States and Morocco have launched on Thursday in Washington the first round of a strategic dialog meant to boost longstanding relations between the two countries, at a time the region is at grips with insecurity.
This strategic dialog that is triggering a new phase in a centuries-old partnership covers political, economic and cultural cooperation as well as cooperation in security related matters.
The security dimension of the US-Moroccan strategic pact is all the more important as the dialog is taking place on the morrow of the attack on the US consulate in the Libyan eastern city of Benghazi in which four Americans including the ambassador were killed.
THINK TANK REPORTS :
Morocco’s Vital Role in Northwest Africa’s Security and Development
BY J. PETER PHAM, THE ATLANTIC COUNCIL
NOVEMBER 12, 2013
In the Africa Center’s most recent issue brief, “Morocco’s Vital Role in Northwest Africa’s Security and Development,” Director J. Peter Pham outlines the country’s increasing reengagement with Africa and its emergence as a key political, security, and economic actor integral to the continent’s future. He argues that Morocco’s willingness to shoulder the challenges in the Maghreb and the Sahel makes it an important strategic partner for the United States.
The publication comes as the White House announced last week that President Barack Obama will host King Mohammed VI on November 22. According to the statement from the White House: “This visit will highlight the long-standing friendship between the United States and Morocco and strengthen our strategic partnership… This visit is also an opportunity to increase our cooperation on addressing regional challenges, including countering violent extremism, supporting democratic transitions, and promoting economic development in the Middle East and Africa.”
Moroccan African Future
By Haim Malka, CENTER FOR STRATEGIC & INTERNATIONAL STUDIES
OCT 30, 2013
Sub-Saharan Africa is increasingly vital to Morocco’s future economic growth and security. Morocco has pursued a soft power strategy in Africa for over a decade, but regional and global dynamics create a new urgency for Morocco to diversify its economic ties, boost multilateral security cooperation, and play a more active diplomatic role. While Morocco enjoys some competitive advantage in sub-Saharan Africa, it faces several challenges to transforming its presence there. Diplomatically, it must diversify its ties with larger African economies and overcome constraints posed by the Western Sahara conflict. Economically, the challenge will be to restructure its nascent manufacturing base and diversify its products in order to meet growing African consumer demand. The United States can play a role in supporting Morocco’s engagement in Africa, which complements U.S. policy objectives in both Morocco and sub-Saharan Africa.
Read all the article : http://csis.org/publication/moroccos-african-future
Morocco After the Arab Uprisings: Evolution Rather than Revolution
Published October 22, 2013
By Krista Hendry and Dr. Ricardo René Larémont*
On September 27, 2013, The Fund for Peace hosted a Roundtable meeting in Washington, D.C. on the future of Morocco in the context of the Arab Spring. The Roundtable discussion, which sought to elicit policy recommendations, was led by Dr. Ricardo René Larémont of SUNY Binghampton. In leading the discussion, Dr. Larémont drew heavily upon his new book, Revolution, Revolt and Reform in North Africa: The Arab Spring and Beyond, that lends significant attention to Morocco. Participants were also provided Dr. Larémont’s discussion paper, Morocco After the Uprisings, which is included at the end of this report. Participants included a range of stakeholders with interest in Morocco including academics, think tank representatives, human rights and democracy NGOs, government representatives, companies, and consultants. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the recent history of Morocco, findings from research done by Dr. Larémont, and consider how the U.S. could best support the evolution taking place in Morocco.
Read all the article : http://library.fundforpeace.org/shrtr1320
MY LAST OP-ED :
Morocco – strategic partner in new era of U.S. foreign policy?
“Morocco can boast several trump cards during this visit”
Banner Icon US & MIDDLE EAST If Obama wishes to mark a decisive turning point in a new foreign policy, he will have to choose his preferred strategic partners in the Arab world. The choice of King Mohammed VI of Morocco appears an obvious one, writes Nabil Ouchagour.
Is John Kerry incompetent? To glance upon the number of articles that criticize him, one may justifiably pose the question. Yet, upon analysis perhaps Kerry is an innocent in the unfortunate position of assuming Secretary of State at the dawn of a new political era.
“The Post-American World”, as the journalist Fareed Zakaria puts it, pushes Washington to launch a real transformation of its “global strategy”. According to the CNN and Time journalist, the United States must learn to share power, create coalitions and build legitimacy. The question arises: Can “The Post-American World” survive a new era in which the United States no longer dominates the global economy, orchestrates geopolitics and influences global culture?
FRENCH VERSION :
As a Moroccan who has recently moved to USA, I feel a natural interest in the US-Moroccan relations in particular and US-MENA region in general. I will do my best to participate in the strengthening of these relations. It’s an engagement !