The Moorish Wanderer

PJD, Morocco’s GOP

Posted in Flash News, Moroccan Politics & Economics, Morocco, Read & Heard by Zouhair ABH on April 7, 2012

the latest issue of TIME Magazine published an interesting article on Morocco’s conservative, Islamist-led government; quite an insight on how PJD spinners want to project their image overseas. (cc @PJDofficiel)

The Elephant in the room; the Grand Old Parti de Justice et Développement

Mustapha El Khalfi, Communications Minister and Government spokesman has spent some time in Washington DC as a legislative aide on Capitol Hill. In that respect, he does have a good knowledge of DC politics; TIME correspondent was a bit surprised when El Khalfi compared his party to the Grand Old Party, the Republican Party; Perhaps Mr El Khalfi meant PJD was attached to family values and inclined to support socially conservative policies.

Converted, indeed.

I am indeed amazed to that analogy, especially when TIME correspondent Bobby Ghosh also interviewed Karim Tazi, who was dismissive of any particular danger as to PJD’s conservative stance, making a very apropos analogy that we in Morocco have no Rick Santorum:

“The PJD may not move us forward on social issues, but at least none of the leaders wants to take us backward. There’s no Santorum here”

The irony of it, PJD is gradually nailing its colours to the mast; every time their economic team encounters economic hardships, the farther they tank to the right, in the hope they can make up their moderate electorate dissatisfaction by shoring up some hardcore social conservatives; a bit like the Republican Party indeed. Attajdid -whose former editor-in-chief was Mr Al Khalfi- did not refrain from carrying vicious attacks against the perceived alienation of an already effete, secular and Western-minded elite. Now he is burnishing his party’s image abroad, he is willing to engage in drawing parallels between PJD and the Republicans in the United States; if anyone thought PJD are not two-faced, mendacious hypocritical Islamists, now is the time to reconsider. If any other politician was to compare its party to, say the UK Labour Party, or the French Front de Gauche, they would have been mauled by the PJD press. El Khalfi gets away with this, both at home and abroad.

Lest we forget, Mr El Khalfi has been a legislative aide to the Representative Jim McDermott from Washington, and there is no way someone who has spent some time at the heart of the United States’ legislative branch, not to be fully aware of the finer details of the GOP identity. El Khalfi says:

We must learn how to defend our values and faith values while embracing globalization from the Republican Party. […] The GOP knows how to reflect its ideas in a legislative framework”

Are we to expect some legislation akin to DOMA (Defence Of Marriage Act) the Bush tax cuts to the wealthy and the like?

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