Morocco (Page 2)

Morocco El Askari,Morocco Green March & Morocco Star of War

Morocco Zaire Commemorative
& Morrocco Sports Merit

Military Merit & Medine's Bug an Unofficial
French Garrison Decoration

Military Merit 3rd class
and Order of Intellectuals 2nd class

Medal for Customs Officials

Morocco has been largely occupied by one group people for as long as recorded history can recall. The Berbers settled in the area thousands of years ago and at one time controlled all of the land between Morocco and Egypt. Divided into clans and tribes, they have always jealously guarded their independence.

After a number of short-lived dynasties rose and fell, the Alawite family secured a stranglehold in the 1630s that remains firm to this day. Although it was rarely a smooth ride, this pragmatic dynasty managed to keep Morocco independent for more than three centuries.

European traders entered the scene in the late 19th century, and a long era of colonial renovations. Suddenly France, Spain and Germany were all keen on hijacking the country for its strategic position and rich trade resources. France won out and occupied virtually the entire country by 1912. Spain clung to a small coastal protectorate and Tangier was declared an international zone.

The sultan remained during the French "occupation", but as little more than a figurehead. After WW II, Sultan Mohammed V inspired an independence party which finally secured Moroccan freedom in 1956. Tangier was reclaimed in the process, but Spain refused to hand over the northern towns of Ceuta and Melilla.

Mohammed V crowned himself to king in 1957 and was succeeded four years later by his son, Hassan II. This popular leader cemented his place in Moroccan hearts and minds by staging the Green March into the Western Sahara, an area formerly held by Spain. With a force of 350,000 volunteers, Hassan's followers overcame the indigenous Sahrawis to claim the mineral-rich region as their own.

But by the 1960s it had become clear that the inhabitants of Western Sahara wanted independence. Western Sahara's Popular Front for the Liberation of Saguia al-Hamra and Rio de Oro (Polisario) embarked on a long war of independence against Morocco. In 1991, the United Nations brokered a ceasefire, but Western Sahara's official status remains in question.

In July 1999 King Hassan II, who had served as absolute monarch (despite recent, semi-democratic changes to the constitution) for 38 years, was succeeded by his son, Crown Prince sidi Mohammed.

The medals of Morocco remain an often confusing and inaccurately described subject. Perhaps part of the confusion stems from the issuance of medals by the French, the Spanish, the Moroccans and even Western Sahara. Add to this equation, the often poorly translated Arabic characters on the medals and you have a very, very confusing issue at hand.

The following list may also suffer from such confusion. I have done my best to separate it by the issuing power and to group the medals as such. In some cases, medals have been previously described as separate issues, but are indeed the very same medal.

Orders of the Alawite (Alawaidis) Dynasty

  • Order of Mohammadi (a neck chain only)
  • Order of Hafidien (1910-1913)
  • Order of the Sovereign
  • Order of the Combat for Independence
  • Order of Fidelity
  • Order of the Throne
  • Order of Zeal
  • Order of Lifesaving
  • Order of Prosperity
  • Order of the Sharifien Alawaidis (AKA, Ouissam Alaouite or Order of the Alaouite Dynasty)
  • Order of Military Merit/Service
  • Order of Civil Merit
  • Order of Labor
  • Order of the Interior (Dakhla Medal)
  • Sherifien Order of Military Merit (updated in 1963)
  • Order of the Star of War
Medals of the Alawite (Alawaidis) Dynasty
  • Medal of the Citiation of the National Order (possibly refers to Order of the Sherifien Alawaidis above also possibly known as the Dahir Medal)
  • Sherifien Civil Merit Medal (obsolete)
  • Sherifien Police Medal of Honor (two distinct ribbons)
  • Medal of Green March
  • Medal for Volunteers
  • Algerian-Moroccan war Commemorative Medal
  • Medal for the Algerian-Moroccan War (possibly the same as the medal above)
  • Egypt-Syria Commemorative Medal (sometimes described as two different medals)
  • Military Medal
  • Wound Medal
  • Congo Valor Medal
  • Medal for Lebanon
  • POLISARIO Commemorative Medal (issued by Western Sahara)
  • Postal Merit Medal
  • Medal for Customs Officials
  • Medal of Honor for Prison Service
  • Olympic Medal (?)
Spanish Issued Medals of Morocco
  • Order of Africa 1950
  • Order of Hasania 1949
  • Order of Perseverance (Long Service) 1946
  • Order of Mehdauia 1926
  • Melilla Medal 1910
  • Africa Medal 1915
  • Morocco Medal 1916
  • Peace Medal 1927
  • Melilla Medal 1941
  • Melilla Medal 1957
  • Medals of the IFNI-Sahara (1958)
  • Medal of the Sahara (1977)

Orders of Africa (1950), La Hasania (1949), Perseverance (1946) and Mehdauia (1926)

Medals of Melilla (1910), Africa (1915), Morocco (1916), Peace (1927) and Melilla (1941)

Medal of Melilla (1957), Medals of the Ifni-Sahara (1958) Officer and Enlisted, Medal of the Sahara (1977) Zone of Combat

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