Morocco’s Political Leaders and Some Fiction Characters
Let us enjoy some jokes at the expenses of our politicians. It lightens the mood and reminds everyone of us that though we take issues seriously, it would be best never to forget not to take ourselves too seriously.
A villain in Bee Movie, Al. Layton (ALIBUY) is the attorney representing “The Honey Trust”. A colourful character with considerable girth, Al doesn’t shrink from using bare-knuckles tactics to discredit the bees during the court hearings. In Moroccan politics, Al would do just fine: the long way to the top requires to do whatever it takes to reach it; Not that anyone would suggest M. Lachgar would do such a thing, or that he is a practitioner of the dark political arts.
Incidentally, Driss Lachgar is also a lawyer.
PAM leader and Calimero do not share much in terms of charisma, but they are both quick at complaining repetitively: “This is not fair!”. A catchphrase the nominal head of the Tractor Party frequently uses the deflect criticism about the real motives behind the existence of PAM. Oh, and both have a rather large forehead; egg-shaped and all.
Governor Robert ‘Bob’ Ritchie (James Brolin) is a character from the West Wing, and President Bartlet‘s Republican opponent during his second election campaign. Any West Wing fan would tell you there is a troubling resemblance between both characters, physically and perhaps in personalities too: a declared hatred of liberals -either as soft on crime or outright prone to treason- a rejection of intellectualism as elitism and alien to folksy culture, etc. former Police Chief Mahmoud Archane -who has gone out of the Moroccan political radar for a while- is still MDS (Mouvement Démocratique et Social) figurehead.
Obi Wan Kenobi from Star Wars -as portrayed by the legendary Sir Alec Guiness– bears some resemblance to PJD leader Abdelilah Benkirane; and not just physical features. Both have dedicated their lives to fight the Dark Side of the Force – although it is not always clear who is Benkirane’s Sith Lord. But apart from that, they do not share much in terms of character: Benkirane can be petulant, aggressive and bullying at times. Obi Wan Kenobi would simply say, in Guiness’ lofty voice: “These aren’t the Islamists you’re looking for“
Somehow, I have always believed Abdelouhed Radi -USFP Premier- to be some well-fed cat (who got the cream) in another life. His mysterious smile, his jovial figure and that je-ne-sais-quoi air of gentleman farmer (which he is) that really do not embody the imagine of fire-and-brimstone socialist one might think of when referring to USFP. Just like the Cat in Lewis Carol’s novel, Abdelouahed Radi swoops in unexpectedly, with a broad smile he always leaves behind when he disappears. But beware! Just like the cat, he is always around (in fact, ever since the 1963 elections)
Both are handsome and have been working in the banking sector. But one (Christ Bale in American Psycho) is an inner psychopath the other… Well, one may never know. For a long time, Abdelkrim Benâtik -PT leader- has been the handsome playboy of Moroccan politics and a bit of a maverick when he was still USFP junior minister.
Our very own George Clooney looks a lot like Ulysses Everett McGill from O’Brother movie. Handsome indeed, but a bit crooked; McGill, who boasts about his superior intellectual over his two companions, turns out to be a fraud. Our Finance Minister and (next?) Head Of Government is so much better than that, and he still retains George Clooney’s masculine charm.
Hamid Chabat is no Tucco (Ellie Walash in “The Good The Bad and the Ugly“). Save perhaps for the moustache, he has risen through the ranks of UGTM union; while some might find similarities with a Highwayman’s curriculum, Fez mayor has acquired respectability. Tucco has not. But both seem to be lured by the prize: one is looking for power in one of the largest parties in Morocco, the other $ 200,000 in Confederate Gold.