Moroccan Royal Guard

The Moroccan Royal Guard (Arabic: الحرس الملكي المغربي‎, French: Garde royale marocaine, Spanish: Guardia Real Marroquí) is officially part of the Royal Moroccan Army. However it is under the direct operational control of the Royal Military Household of His Majesty the King. The sole duty of the guard is to provide for the security and safety of the King and royal family of Morocco.

Moroccan Royal Guard
الحرس الملكي المغربي
Flag of the Moroccan Royal Guard.svg
Active1088 [1]
Country Morocco
AllegianceKing of Morocco
TypeArmy
Size6,000
Part ofRoyal Moroccan Armed Forces
Commanders
CommanderGeneral Mimoun Mansouri

HistoryEdit

The Royal Guard traces its origins to the prestigious Black Guard that was created in 1088 by the Almoravid ruler Yusuf ibn Tashfin as his personal guard. This recruitment tradition was continued by the Almohads through the 15th century. The Alaouite Sultan Moulay Ismail reorganized the Black Guard into permanent infantry and cavalry units at the beginning of the 18th century. He called upon Bambara men who had just converted to Islam, making them take an oath of service on the collection of hadith of the Imam Bukhari. For this reason they were also known as the "Army of Bukhara" or the Boukharis.

The Guard was formerly known as the Cherifian (because the King is a descendant of the Prophet Mohammad ) Guard, the name was changed to Royal Guard after Morocco gained its independence in 1956. The Guard was also unofficially referred to as the Black Guard because its members were formerly recruited from the Harratines, a black people from the southern part of the Sharifian Empire (as Morocco was called before the French colonial period). The Harratines are no longer part of the Royal Guard today.

OrganizationEdit

 
A member of the Moroccan Royal Guard at the Mausoleum of Mohammed V.
 
Mounted members of the Moroccan Royal Guard at the Mausoleum of Mohammed V.
 
A pair of the Royal Moroccan Guards
 
A Royal Moroccan Guard mounted on a horse
 
A white uniformed Royal Guardsman before the Mausoleum of Mohammed V, Rabat, Morocco.

The Guard is currently organized as a Brigade of 6,000 troops as follows;

  • 4 Infantry Battalions, each of 25 officers and 1,000 troops.
  • 2 Cavalry Squadrons.

Other Guard unitsEdit

The King is always accompanied by units of the Royal Guard whenever he is on Moroccan soil. All members of the Royal Guard wear a red beret. Red full dress uniforms of traditional style (white in summer) are worn by both cavalry and infantry on ceremonial occasions.

The King is also protected by two other units of the Royal Moroccan Army. They are, however, not an official part of the Royal Guard. These are:

  • The elite Parachute Brigade headquartered in Rabat (number of troops unknown).
  • The Light Security Brigade of 2,000 troops.

WeaponsEdit

RiflesEdit

Submachine gunsEdit

PistolsEdit

Machine GunsEdit

Heavy machine gun

Rocket launchersEdit

Anti-tank missilesEdit

MortarsEdit

Self-propelled artilleryEdit

Combat vehiclesEdit

Former commandersEdit

See alsoEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ http://www.maghreb-observateur.qc.ca/archives98/juillet99/la_garde_royale_marocaine.html
  2. ^ Dalle, Ignace (2011-03-09). Hassan II:Entre tradition et absolutisme.
  3. ^ Mahjoub Tobji (2006-09-13). Les officiers de Sa Majesté:Les dérives des généraux marocains 1956-2006.

Much of the content of this article comes from the equivalent French-language Wikipedia article, accessed December 19, 2006.