A Visit to the Moroccan Liberation Army Museum

I had heard about the High Commissariat of the Veteran Resistance Fighters and Members of the Moroccan Liberation Army from a number of friends and colleagues. My interest in visiting this institution had more to do with my research than anything else. I was surprised to find the massive building tucked away not far from the Rabat-Agdal train station. As I wandered inside, the empty reception desk and absent signs definitely gave the impression that this place received few outside visitors. Upstairs, I was kindly welcomed by the in-house historian who offered me a literature guide of all the texts housed in the library. The librarian opened up the library for me and handed me a stack of books to get lost in as I sat outside the library taking makeshift copies with my phone and notes.

I heard some commotion in the lower level, where I saw the sign for a museum, which the curator opened for me. After a brief conversation about my research and as I wandered around the first floor, he tells me, “If you’re working on the Moroccan Liberation Army, the upper levels will be of more interest for you.” And so I went up…five whole floors of relics, artistic odes, artifacts, and framed glorifications of resistance carried out by one of the most historically-overlooked anti-colonial mobilizations: the Moroccan Liberation Army. Here are some pictures.

Food break—featuring khli’i (خليع) and argan oil

I thought it might be healthy to take a brief break from the more somber issues that never seem to fade away from Morocco’s news cycles. I had the chance to write a couple of fun pieces for Brownbook Magazineone on khli’i (aged meat delicacy) and argan oil (both cosmetic and edible). Check out the feature covers below and visit their website if you’re interested in grabbing a print copy.

Argan Oil-page-001Khlii-page-001

Commemorating World Refugee Day 2014: Western Saharan Refugees

In commemoration of World Refugee Day this year, here’s a collection of images I took during my visit to the Dakhla Sahrawi refugee camp in southern Algeria. For a bigger view with the caption, just click on any image, and you’ll be directed to the fullscreen view.

[For more information, here’s a link to the UNCRH’s page on the situation of Western Saharan refugees.]