chapter  26
The North African Bourgeoisie
Pages 8

General embarrassment of Maghreb neighbor states The hour of truth has come in Morocco.1 Is not the Moroccan bourgeoisie publicly accusing its proletariat of being “the cause of the morass in which it flounders?”: “Remember, dear compatriots, that we needed all our courage and all our faith in our future, as well as all our love for our venerable sovereign, in order to accept cheerfully the month-long strikes that had such profound repercussions on commerce and industry.” And President Bekkai, author of these pious words, added with a realist despair, “Billions of unpaid drafts block our bank tellers’ windows, tens of billions have fled our country.” With a spontaneity that deserves admiration, the young Moroccan bourgeoisie has been able to adopt the paternal and vaguely ogrelike tone of the ruling classes in the face of worker agitation. At the same time, it has thrown aside the mask of national unity at the moment when it was most needed; the Moroccan workers are in no hurry to take up their role in the nationalist drama once more, to judge from the number of exhortations to “calm” and the appeals to “maturity” with which they are graced daily. Even if President Bekkai no longer accepts the strikes “cheerfully,” it is by no means certain that the tenderness that the workers have for him will preserve him from further woes.