The King and the people in Morocco, 1950-1959
Reproduction of the originals from the U.S. National Archives (42,291 images). For more detail click on the blue circle my the title.
Morocco's strategic location has shaped its history. Its location and resources led to early competition among European powers in Africa, culminating in the establishment of a French protectorate over Morocco. Nationalist political parties, which took shape under the French protectorate, began a strong campaign for independence after World War II. Declarations such as the Atlantic Charter, served as a basis for the independence movement. A manifesto of the Istiqlal (Independence) Party in 1944 was one of the earliest public demands for independence. That party subsequently provided most of the leadership for the nationalist movement and remains a strong political party. In 1953, France exiled the highly respected Sultan Mohammed V and replaced him with the unpopular Mohammed Ben Aarafa. Ben Aarafa's reign was widely perceived as illegitimate, and sparked active opposition, particularly a reign of terrorism, followed by an armed uprising in 1955. France allowed Mohammed V to return in 1955, and by 1956, Morocco regained its independence. After gaining independence, Morocco made great strides toward economic and political liberalization. The sultan Muhammad V, ruling his newly independent nation, proclaimed his intention of turning it into a constitutional monarchy. His first act was to transform himself into a monarch and assume the title of king. The Moroccan government undertook a number of economic, social, and political reforms, including the drafting of a constitution. Economically, Morocco has faced the problems typical of developing countries - restraining government spending, reducing constraints on private financial activity and foreign trade, and achieving sustainable economic growth
Drawn from the U.S. State Department Central Classified Files, the content of this collection provide essential and unique documentation on a wide variety of topics relating to Moroccan internal affairs from 1950 to 1959. These topics include: U.S. support for nationalists, Istiqlal Party terrorism, the Arab League's anti-French attitude, French exchange controls in Morocco, French settler concerns of spread of Algerian civil war, Pan-Arabism Berber support of French administration and army, the installation of French-puppet Sultan, economic and financial reforms, the exodus of Moroccan Jewry, Islamic society and Berberism, decolonization, development of the agricultural sector, industrial development, immigration and emigration, development of the textile industry, foreign trade and investment, and Marshall aid to Morocco