August 02, 2013

Morocco: The Anti-Everywhere Else in the Middle East

As I read this essay by Michael Totten on why Morocco is a much better place then practically everywhere else in the Muslim world, I couldn't help but think of Burke's Reflections on the French Revolution.

Key to understanding Morocco's success is that the King is the leading reformer in the country. In other words, when revolution came to Morocco the nation was able to maintain key social institutions. Something students of Burke will recognize as a key point on why the French Revolution failed but the American Revolution was so successful.

Also of note is that the Islam practiced in Morocco is a far cry from the Salaafism that radiates outward from the Saudi peninsula. And that about half of Moroccons aren't Arabs, but Berbers who were never too keen on being ruled by some far off Caliph -- whether of the Arab or Turkish variety.

It also didn't hurt that when the King decided to limit his own power through Constitutional reform, he excluded both the Communists and the Islamists. Smart man.

Go read it all. A lot of fascinating stuff there. I'd say there was some hope in it, but as someone trained in statistics I'm not sure the outlier is the best predictor.

By Rusty Shackleford, Ph.D. at 01:40 PM | Comments |