Foreign Policy Blogs

Forbes – "A Counterterrorism Ally In North Africa"

Present Dangers
A Counterterrorism Ally In North Africa
 Morocco’s remarkable soft-power strategy
By Ilan Berman 

forbes_logoMorocco can trace its contemporary approach back to the end of the Cold War. While many in the region saw the Soviet Union’s collapse as a destabilizing development–and consequently tightened domestic control–Morocco’s monarch did the opposite. The previously authoritarian Hassan II began a gradual process of social liberalization that included the release of political prisoners (chiefly leftist dissidents from the country’s north and minority opposition figures from Morocco’s contested south), an expansion of civil society and a dialogue with the country’s various political factions.

     These early efforts kicked into high gear in 1999, when Mohammed VI ascended to the Moroccan throne following the death of his father. In the years since the young monarch (still only in his mid-40s) has set in motion a sweeping series of social and religious reforms that are equal parts idealistic and pragmatic. [Click here for the full article]



Calvin Dark

Calvin Dark is an international policy and strategic communications professional based in Washington, DC. For more than 10 years, he has advised US and international bodies and organizations, primarily focusing on political, economic and cultural relations with Latin America, Western Europe and the Middle East and North Africa. Calvin is also a social media enthusiast trying to connect the world one tweet, post and #hashtag at a time.

Calvin was a Fulbright Scholar to Morocco where he conducted research on civil society’s role in increasing transparency and public confidence in Morocco’s government institutions and services. Calvin received his Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and French from Duke University and has studied abroad in Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Paris, France. He speaks French, Spanish, Arabic and English (North Carolina’s special dialect.)

Calvin is also passionate about Southern storytelling and oral histories and is the author of Tales From My Dark Side [], a collection of stories about the Darks, a central North Carolina family and their unique ways of reconciling the complex notions of race, community and family.

Anything else? Oh yea, he loves to spin and is a spin instructor.

Contact Calvin at [email protected]