Labeling Elections ‘Good Enough’ Lets African Leaders Get Away With Fraud – Foreign Policy


Madagascar, home to nearly 30 million people—a population larger than Australia’s—rarely makes international news. When it does, the headlines are usually about the island’s endangered lemurs—not its people. And if you can name Madagascar’s capital without consulting Google, you’re in a distinct minority. (It’s Antananarivo.)

Such geopolitical obscurity creates strange political dynamics around elections. On the one hand, Madagascar’s politicians yearn to be internationally recognized, so they run a parallel campaign—one for domestic consumption and another for the international community—that often involves saying the right thing for an international audience while doing the wrong thing for Madagascar. On the other hand, the island’s political elites have also…

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