Monday, April 10, 2006

Muhammad VI is a King

Laila Lalami notes this Economist article on the current state of Moroccan politics, and particularly it's conclusion that King Muhammad VI still has all the power. This point can't be emphasized enough, for while you can have politically liberalizing monarchs, Muhammad has really not done much to indicate he is one of them. In fact, his social reforms could easily be interpreted cynically as driving a wedge between the social liberalizers and the political ones while improving the country's image abroad. The on major exception, and this is important in the Moroccan context, is the demystification of the royal family, allowing their lives to be portrayed in magazines and the like. Even there, however, one might wonder if the king simply thought that necessary in the modern media environment.


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