Intervention and Colonization in Africa

By Norman Dwight Harris | Go to book overview

CHAPTER XI
THE REOCCUPATION OF NORTHERN AFRICA

MOROCCO

"THE devil ships of the Nazarene nations came again and again to the bay of Tanjah to see if the Prince of the Faithful were indeed dead, as rumor so often stated."

A Moorish tradition relates that Allah, when He created the world, called all the nations of the earth together and gave unto each the choice of one good thing for its kingdom. Some selected fertile lands; some delightful climate; others beautiful scenery; but the English alone asked for good government. The failure of Mohammedan states to solve the problem of self-rule has become a proverb; and Morocco is no exception to the rule. Indeed, the misgovernment, the corruption, and the lack of security and public order in this African state, extending through a long period of years, not only involved her sultans in frequent disputes with their European neighbors, but also made the "Morocco question" one of the chief sources of European diplomatic activity during the past quarter of a century.

Morocco, or Moghreb-el-Aksa, -- the Key of the West, -- is, by reason of its fertility, its natural resources, and its geographical position, the most desirable of the North African countries. It is slightly larger than France, being equal in area to the State of Pennsylvania plus Cuba, and has a population of about 5,000,000. The country is protected by the Atlas ranges from the winds, storms, and heat of the desert. The climate is delightful and the soil of the valleys and plains exceedingly rich. Agriculture is

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