'Divided they stand, divided they fail': opposition politics in Morocco
Cavatorta, Francesco (2009) 'Divided they stand, divided they fail': opposition politics in Morocco. Democratization, 16 (1). pp. 137-156. ISSN 1743-890X
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The literature on democratization emphasises how authoritarian constraints usually lead genuine opposition parties and movements to form alliances in order to make demands for reform to the authoritarian regime. There is significant empirical evidence to support this theoretical point. While this trend is partly visible in the Middle East and North Africa, such coalitions are usually short-lived and limited to a single issue, never reaching the stage of formal and organic alliances. This article, using the case of Morocco, seeks to explain this puzzle by focusing on ideological and strategic differences that exist between the Islamist and the secular/liberal sectors of civil society, where significant opposition politics occurs. In addition, this article also aims to explain how pro-democracy strategies of the European Union further widen this divide, functioning as a key obstacle to democratic reforms.
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