Monday, July 09, 2007

Sarkozy likes Abdelaziz Bouteflika, Mohammed VI is broken-hearted

France, Morocco's most dedicated patron, might be moving away from its position of uncritical support. France's new president, Nicolas Sarkozy, decided to visit Algeria before Morocco, and Rabat is mad. So mad Mohammed VI refused to even see Sarkozy.

The surprising news comes from Echorouk Online, which seems to be Algeria's answer to MAP. Sarkozy was going on a tour of the Francophone Maghreb, and he had the gall to visit Algeria first. Worse, in the makhzen's eyes, he didn't want to discuss the Western Sahara.

In response, Mohammed VI said he wouldn't meet with Sarkozy. Now, I'm only a sophomore in the School of Foreign Service, but it seems to me that it's unwise to throw a fit at your biggest backer over a bit of protocol. Here's hoping Morocco hears that Sarkozy prefers The Battle of Algiers to Casablanca, or will only drink Moroccan coffee with a lot of sugar.


  1. Now you're being unfair to Ech-Chorouk, even if their Western Sahara coverage might be less than groundbreaking. Algeria's MAP is the APS, which is like MAP in every way except much worse and with a crappier homepage.

  2. You're right, shame on me. It's weird how Ech-Chorouk was punished for criticizing Qaddafi's attempts to undermine Algeria. I guess the Algerian government figures that if its journalists get used to criticizing other governments, it won't be too long before they're--gasp--taking issue with Bouteflika.

  3. Meh, they're slapping Bouteflika around all the time. It's probably that Ech Chorouk stuck its nose in some corruption deal involving the wrong people.

    Or what do I know, it could be anything. That's the charm of Algeria, the randomness of it all.