In this short interview with Al Jazeera, Moroccan journalist Ahmed Benchemsi reacts to Moroccan king’s speech. Benchemsi considers that the outlines of the new Constitution as announced by the king tonight, show little progress in the way of insuring a real separation of powers. He also says the pro-democracy camp will probably boycott the poll, praising the role played by Moroccan activists on the Internet, especially a group called Mamfakinch (We Won’t Give up!) which has called for an equal share of airtime on public TV and radio during the referendum campaign between those who agree and those who disagree with the process.
Ahmed Benchemsi is a celebrated Moroccan journalist, former editor, publisher and founder of popular weekly magazines TelQuel and–the now-disappeared–Nichane (Straight Forward). Mr. Benchemsi has now moved to the US where he works as a researcher at Stanford University. Here he speaks at the Oslo Freedom Forum about what he calls “the subtleties” of both the Moroccan dictatorship and that of the pro-democracy youth movement. He dissects, then entertainingly demystifies some of the major arguments the Moroccan regime usually uses to sell its image abroad as an “Arab exception.” A must watch presentation!