Flamboyant statements made by Algerian Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdelkader Mehassel have some Algerians feeling very discouraged.
“Each and every Algerian recognizes that their country has been taken hostage by leaders who are in pivotal positions based solely on their devotion to the military regime, which is currently attempting to take control over a section of Moroccan land,” Majid Morceli wrote in a Moroccan World News editorial, responding to recent reports of Mehassel’s words.
By suggesting that the Moroccan national airline may be smuggling drugs internationally, and that Moroccan banks are laundering drug money, Mehassel has inflamed resentment between the two nations, and put a lot more attention on this North African rivalry.
It's the kind of thing that more cosmopolitan or globalized Algerians find jarring.
Morceli called Mehassel “unfit” for the position and questioned whether he will remain in his seat for the long-term.
“Fortunately for Algeria, those who hate Morocco are plenty; there is no doubt in my mind that the regime will find someone who is even more hateful to replace this incompetent minister,” Morceli wrote.
How do Islamic citizens deal with government corruption and extreme acts by leaders? What do they do when they feel like their government is completely unresponsive? Is there an Islamic principle that tackles the issue of government corruption?
“The prophet spoke a lot about corruption,” Yasir Mohamed, a mental health clinician in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, told Maghreb News Wire on Oct. 27.
Some of the first caliphs, he said, were very sensitive to the idea of corruption on any level.
“The main thing is to have a system that will hold the leader accountable,” Mohamed said, adding that the leader must be of good morals and character. “People should approve of him as a leader.”
Otherwise, Mohamed said, corruption and extremism grow.
“When they rule by force and by might – anything goes,” Mohamed said. “That's the root of the problem.”
Unfortunately, he said, many modern governments are not reflective of the true Islamic ideals.
“It’s systemic,” Mohamed said of corruption. “It's part of the system -- people have learned to adjust.”