I will answer this question by a few quotations from various origins.

  • His Majesty Hassan II said: "Everything can be changed, everything can be shifted, barring geography".
  • Mr. Bouteflika followed the King's footsteps when he asserted: "Geography and proximity condemn Moroccans and Algerians to get on".
  • Mr. Henry Isnard - a quotation taken from his book The Sahara, Human Relations and Contacts - underlined: "The resources of the Sahara are such that they could help the Maghreb achieve a unity that would transcend national divergences".
  • Mr. Henry Kissinger concluded in one of his conferences by using the following terms: "Universal conduct doctrines are short-lived if they are not backed by a sound setting up of regional or even continental economic and political groupings".
  • Mr. Mehdi El Manjra, Moroccan writer and futurologist asserted: "The only possible alternative for survival consists in economic grouping. No economic group of less than 100 million people could enter the XXIth century with dignity."

It is from the wisdom of these quotations/evidences that highlight neighbourhood and proximity that human efforts derive their entire value. It is also from this point of view that the Moroccan-Algerian dawn will display for the Maghreb a day that is altogether magnificent, beneficial, remarkable and engaging. Therefore, let us continue to construct a common and sound history that the irreversibility of geography imposes on us.

AMU is not a choice, nor is it a luxury. Indeed, it is not but a geostrategic necessity within the framework of a new era where isolated countries do not have currency. The 21st century calls for the building up of regional groupings that are reliable and democratic. To achieve this objective, it is advisable to integrate national interests within the scope of regional interests. This myth of Grand Maghreb should not remain an unfinished dream. If united, we will constitute a power that will be a major factor in the African and Mediterranean context. If scattered, we will be lagging behind and will remain fragile. Didn't HM Hassan II advocate the setting up of a Maghrebian parliament and the creation of a Maghrebian national card? Why didn't he find responding parties? Why did the other heads of state hesitate and are still hesitating? It is because of this conflict indeed, of which they don't perceive the end and which signs away the entire future of the Maghreb.

The five AMU country members have successfully achieved a harmonious mixture between a jealously maintained tradition and a modernism that is fervently hoped for. The age-old Arab-Imazighen2 civilisation and culture do peacefully mix with galloping modernity and advanced technology. AMU, once put into place, will stand out in history and will be an appealing model to follow for a great many African states. We will then have done the continent a great favour. Our leaders in the Maghreb have no longer the right to procrastination, and much less to error or prevarication.

No, my wish is not an utopia when one thinks of the French-German success story.
No, my wish is not a dream when one knows that Moroccans and Algerians form the same people that are united by the same origins, the same history, by their Mauro-Imazighity, by Islam, the language, the Berber-Arab culture and the same feelings. Where would one find a regional group worldwide that enjoys such assets? If Europe was able to assemble so many similar advantages, it would have existed a long time ago.

Algeria and Morocco have the duty to extend a hand of friendship to each other over a frontier whose dismantling is called for by everything. AMU cannot be achieved without the Moroccan-Algerian pair, nor can it be built on foundations that are undermined by the POLISARIO.

This understanding has been naturally displayed during the catastrophic inundation in Morocco (November 2002) as well as in the wake of the recent Al Hoceima earthquake. This praiseworthy humanitarian gesture has been beneficial to the morale of the Moroccan people who thus moved to the depths of their souls. Why would this altruistic action not be extended to other North-African problems?

Moroccan-Algerian entente and dialogue will be more the triumph of wisdom and much morel than a mere humanitarian gesture that would be displayed on the occasions of natural disasters. Leaders and nations capable of taking such a path towards union are also capable of standing up to all future challenges (and there are a great many of them). Nations' reminiscences often register the encounter of great men with history. This rendezvous is the exclusive contribution of illustrious builders who are gifted enough to give birth to great works and edifices which forever mark the memory of their peoples.

Such a symbiosis will direct the five countries towards a strategic epic that will create a new dynamic, foundation of any conception of Maghrebian union.

Mohamed Boughdadi 
 

02/10/2012