Morocco: Referee with a Whistle

When Morocco's beloved King Mohammed V died last year, no one Seemed less likely to hold the nation together than his eldest son, slender, dark-eyed King Hassan II. Hassan knew his way around the royal court, but his interest in the serious business of government seemed equally matched with a taste for racing sports cars, riding horses, and romping with starlets. The political pundits figured Hassan might last six months.

The predictions were wrong. During 22 months in power, Hassan, 33, has deftly played off squabbling left-wing groups against one another, at the same time raising...

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