August 20 - The Revolution of the King and the People in Morocco

Posted on August 20, 2018

For years, Morocco had avoided colonization when much of the rest of Africa had been carved up by the European colonizers. Morocco even avoided being swallowed up by the Ottoman Empire. But, in the early 1900s, things were looking dicey for Morocco. France and Spain were making their power felt in various areas; the U.K. formally recognized France's "sphere of influence," and the German Empire was most unhappy about that.

I gather that Morocco was feeling in need of protection from all the tensions between European powers. At any rate, Spain and France created protectorates, and Morocco was no longer independent for the first time in centuries.

The people of Morocco apparently didn't feel protected by the French forces. Instead, they felt oppressed. The Moroccans agitated for independence for years - and even when they fought by France's side in two world wars, they let it be known that they wanted and expected independence.

But France was all, "Thanks for your help in these awful wars. But, no, I don't think we'll give you self-rule. Not yet..."

Morocco's sultan / king, Mohammed V, insisted that the "protectorate" agreement between his nation and France be eliminated, and that Morocco be given its independence. In response, the French forced Mohammed V and his family into exile.

The exiling of Morocco's beloved king on this date in 1953 only spurred even more resistance on the part of the Moroccan people. 

Finally, in 1955, Mohammed V was allowed to come back to Morocco, and he ascended the throne once again. In March, 1956, the protectorate was finally ended, and Morocco became an independent nation once more.

Check out some interesting things about Morocco:

Blue is an important color in the beautiful Moroccan
scenery - the color of the sea, the sky, some boats..

But when you Google Morocco and blue, you
usually come up with Morocco's "blue city,"
Chefchaouen - famous for its blue-washed buildings.
Morocco isn't blue all over. It features deserts
and mountains (and crazy mountain roads)
as well as seashore!

Morocco's culture is mostly Berber and Arab,
with influences from Western Africa (the sub-
Saharan part and Europe.

What's weirder: the fossil remains of a lobster the
size of an adult human?
Or goats in trees?
Morocco has both!

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