Morocco: On Hope

Moroccans were no exception to celebration to the reverie that exploded around the world last night following Obama's victory. Although the Moroccan blogosphere (Blogoma) is somewhat critical of Senator Barack Obama, as results poured in, so did the posts, which were overwhelmingly supportive.

Members of the Moroccan American Community Board celebrated in Washington, D.C. The group shared photos and congratulations on their blog:

Frenzied celebration broke out throughout the country, following the historic win by Barak Obama, the first African American President of the country.
in one swoop, America became the country where everything is possible, an example to the world and it made possible a chance to repair the damage done by President Bush two terms in office.

Barak Obama and the wave of victorious democrats candidates that won will try to revise, correct or repeal some of the most egregious laws that have been passed under the Bush Administration and Republican Congress, such as Patriot Act and others.
The New administration will hopefully usher in a new, and warmer relations with Morocco, Africa and the rest of the third world…

The group also posted a video:

Myrtus, a Moroccan based in the U.S., advised President-Elect Obama:

Congratulations Mr Obama! I'm looking forward to the CHANGE you promised, so hold on tight……I'll be watching you.

Australian writer Suzanna Clarke, who normally resides in Fez, reported from Times Square as Obama's victory was announced:

When Barack Obama's victory was announced, the crowd in Times Square, New York, released the pent up energy that had been held in for eight long years. They shrieked and danced in the street, high-fived and hugged one another. Cars drove past honking, passengers hanging out of windows. A chant began that continued for hours, “Obama, Obama, Yes We Can.”

“We've shown the world that we can elect a black man,” a black man said as he shook my hand. “Unity has prevailed. Next time it's a woman's turn.”

Also in The View from Fez, the story of a Fassi Obama supporter:

Driss, a twenty-five year old woodworker from the Fez Medina, said he and his friends had waited up late at night to hear the results of the election and were extremely pleased. “The curse of Bush will soon be over. This is a good thing for the whole world,” he said. When asked what he thought of the President Elect, he responded with a broad grin and said, in English, “He's so cool”.

Writer Laila Lalami, not one to mince words, was honest in sharing her relief:

At last, at long fucking last, a new leadership.

lovefrom1stbite, a Moroccan who moved recently to the U.S., acknowledges that these are the first steps toward change, and says:

Thanks to the tough to win states of Ohio, Virginia, & Florida. Obama has made it to the white house as the first black president. Obama was successful in convincing those major Republican states to vote for Change. It is a big historical day for this nation. Obama’s Electoral College landslide & the long awaited for victory, mean a lot to the Americans who are craving “Change”. The change that will bring a reconciliation with the major issues of this nation, the change that promise a better & secure future for the next generations.

CitoyenHmida [fr] celebrates Obama's election, saying:

Il est 5 heures du matin ici. Une nuit blanche pour voir BARAK H. OBAMA consacré premier homme de couleur président des Etats Unis! Un nouveau président qui représente l'espoir et le changement! J'ai beau ne pas être un admirateur fanatique des USA, de leur culture, de leur façon de vivre et de concevoir le monde, il faut bien le reconnaitre: c'est le pays où tout est possible!

Bravo, Barak H. Obama et courage! Tellement de boulot t'attend, man!

It's five o'clock in the morning here. I spent a sleepless night to watch Barak [sic] H. Obama as the first man of color to be elected president of the United States! A new president who represents hope and change! I can't help but be a fanatical admirer of the USA, of their culture, their lifestyle and outlook, you've got to give it to them: [The USA] is a country where anything is possible!

Bravo, Barak H. Obama and good luck! You've got a lot of work ahead of you, man!

Finally, Rachid Jankari, [fr] whose tagline reads “Je partage, donc j’existe” (“I share, therefore I am”) shares his feedback on the elections as “a citizen of the world”:

J’ai assisté pour la première fois à une soirée électorale américaine à Casa. La partie officielle était dans un palace à Casa. Par contre, une autre ambiance règne dans le resto Ricks Cafe (qui est d’ailleurs supporter d’Obama).

En discutant avec plusieurs américains, dont les yeux étaient rivés sur CNN et les sites web des candidats, je me suis rappelé mes cours de droit, et plus particulièrement les notes de lecture de Tocqueville sur la démocratie et le rêve américain « de la démocratie américaine » .

I participated in an American electoral soiree for the first time in Casa[blanca.] The official group was in a palace in Casa. In contrast, another ambiance reigns over in the restaurant Rick’s Café (which happened to be an Obama supporter).

After discussing with several Americans, whose eyes were riveted on CNN and the candidates’ websites, I began to think of my law classes, and more particularly my lectures notes on [Alexandre] de Tocqueville’s [writings] on democracy and the American dream in “On American Democracy”.

Jankari continued, expressing his hopes for his own country:

J’ai eu un sentiment de malaise et de jalousie. Et pour cause, dans les pays arabes, y compris le Maroc, l’accès au pouvoir est héréditaire. C’est un indicateur sur le degré de notre retard politique.

D’ailleurs, je n’ai jamais voté à une élection dans mon pays, parce que j’avais et je continue d’avoir la conviction, que tout le processus du choix n’est qu’une chimère dans un régime marqué par une prédominance de la monarchie sur les rouages du pouvoir.

Ce n’est pas un discours alarmiste. Mais, c’est la réalité. Un modèle de pouvoir basé sur une légitimité héréditaire intègre dans ses genèses l’archaïsme et l’arbitraire quelque soit les bonnes intentions.

En tout cas, Mabrouk pour les américains, et à Obama. Au moins, le peuple a le droit de choisir et de punir ses dirigeants.
En attendant, le rêve « .ma » pour un monde de gouvernance meilleur continue….

I had a feeling of malaise and of jealousy. And the reason why is because, in Arab countries, including Morocco, access to power is hereditary. This is an indicator of the degree of our political backwardness.

Furthermore, I’ve never voted in one of my country’s elections, because I had and continue to have the conviction that the entire electoral process is nothing more than a chimera in a regime marked by the monarchy’s dominance of the machinery of power.

This isn’t intended to be an alarmist speech; but, it is reality. A model of power based upon hereditary legitimacy integrates archaism and the arbitrary into its genesis, no matter its good intentions.

In any case, mabrouk [congratulations] for the Americans and for Obama. At least the people have the right to choose and punish its leaders.

We’ll keep waiting for the <<.ma>>* [“Moroccan.” “.ma” is the internet code to indicate websites hosted in Morocco –LB] dream of a better world of governance.

*Editor's note: This very likely refers to the blogoma, or the Moroccan web presence in general.

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