February 8, 2023

Former minister Abd al-Karim ibn Atik said: “The course of the late Muhammad al-Sharqawi, a fighter in the ranks of the national movement, deserves our pause to read it in a guest manner so that current generations can learn about the main stages of Moroccan history, especially at the political level “.

Ibnu Atik, in his article entitled “The Departure of a Statesman with Different Paths”, touched on the individual stages of the life of the late Muhammad al-Sharqawi during the period of struggle during the colonial period, his participation in political and social work after the independence of Morocco, and how he was carried away by higher interests country, either during the illness of the late King Hassan II, or at his funeral, or during a smooth transfer of power.

This is the text of the article:

With the departure of Professor Muhammad Al-Sharqawi, Morocco will say goodbye to almost an entire generation of national leaders who have figured prominently in the Moroccan political arena.

Professor Muhammad al-Sharqawi was not only a fighter who joined the ranks of the national movement from his youth, but also a real intellectual, distinguished by intellectual depth, which helped him in this, in addition to knowing Arabic, his complete command of French, which surprised at that time the most senior French journalists in Paris.

The path of this man deserves that we stop to read it so that the current generations can become familiar with the main stages of the history of Morocco, especially at the political level. Professor El-Sy Mohamed El-Sharkaoui, like the rest of his generation, received a legal and epistemological education , closely associated with the source of spiritual Sufism, which surrounded the Sharkavi corner in the city of Abi. Al Jaad, this historical fold has produced scientists, jurists, politicians and scientists, you will find them in great means and many duties, always distinguished by good manners and humility. Thus, after our deceased completed his primary and preparatory education, he entered Moulay Youssef High School in Rabat.

He lived with a group of names who clung to love of the motherland and devotion to its institutions, especially at a time when the colonialist felt a kind of apprehension about the relationship between King Mohammed V and his son Hassan that had begun to strengthen. II with what would later be known as a generation of true patriots who, even if they were separated by affiliation and choice, were united in that period by love of the motherland and attachment to the throne. After receiving a bachelor’s degree, Muhammad al-Sharqawi will be deported to France. There, his relationship with a group of Moroccan and French names was strengthened, and he contributed to the discussions of the forties. He was associated with French media circles not involved in the colonial project, and believed that opposition to the French occupation occurs through resistance, but the latter can remain limited if it is not accompanied by processes of sensitization, clarification and interpretation among French politicians. actors, trade unionists, intellectuals and writers. From here, the late Cherkaoui developed relationships with opinion-makers, especially among high-ranking journalists in France, to the extent that the Parisian intelligence service, which followed the Moroccan patriots on French soil, was disturbed by his peaceful and radiant presence and wished him to be impulsive and used a different, more extreme method so that it was possible to get rid of it. He wrote many articles in excellent French and sometimes under pseudonyms or signed his French colleagues for fear of the French police. His network of strong connections was not limited to the political and media class, but he was able to infiltrate the trade union field, especially the General Confederation of Labour, a striking force whose voice was spread throughout France and all its colonies, including Morocco.

When he decided to take up political work, he chose a different project for most of his generation when he joined Shura and the Independence Party in defending democracy, which he saw as the only answer capable of strengthening Morocco after independence. He quickly imposed his presence due to his intellectual composition, political knowledge and good reading of the international situation. He was elected to the National Assembly and to the second conference, and became a leader in the politburo headed by Hassan El Wazzani, along with names that would carry weight in Morocco after independence, such as Abdel Hadi Boutaleb, Ahmed Bensouda and others. He participated in the Ex-Liban negotiations where he was part of a delegation that included many names such as the martyr Mahdi Benbarka, Abdel Rahim Bouabid and Mohamed Busetta.

The post-independence period was not an easy one for El-Si Muhammad al-Sharqawi, as he witnessed difficult and complex debates that revealed fundamental divisions between a generation united in opposition to the colonialists and the return of the sultan from exile, but differed in the social project after gaining independence. independence. As always, our deceased chose a quiet conversation with yesterday’s comrades, away from offensive classification. May God have mercy on him, he was true to his Sufi affiliation, chose good words well, was humble with everyone who discussed and sat with him, his favorite method was to listen well and respect the other, regardless of his political and social position. He was not arrogant, a man who moved easily between Western and Eastern cultures. His strength was that he lived in Paris and was a patriot who defended his country. In Cairo, he was an Arab nationalist associated with leader Abd al-Karim al-Khattabi who visited him regularly, and was a supporter of Gamal Abdel Nasser, a symbol of opposition to colonialism at the time. Elsie Muhammad al-Sharqawi did not give up his democratic convictions, which were based on a constant for our departed that the priority is to serve the country. From this perspective, when he took charge at the Moroccan embassy in Paris, he sought to tell the truth to decision makers in the French Republic, without courtesy but with great tact. He was in constant contact with General de Gaulle and his associates. The latter was going through a difficult transition in France, where conflict between political factions raged.

El-Sie Mohamed El-Sharqawi was convinced that serving Morocco and its interests required a presence in this elite across its entire spectrum, and this is how the debate lived until the Fifth Republic, that is, during the period of the 1958 constitution. Indeed, some of his comrades almost sure that his indirect contribution was evident due to the close relationship with the Elysee Palace, our testimony In that message, in which General de Gaulle Sy Mohamed Cherkaoui and his wife, Princess Lalla Malika, say goodbye, leaving Paris after completing their mission as ambassador.

He was also a friend of the French writer and former Minister of Culture André Malraux, as well as then Prime Minister Michel Dupré, the first Prime Minister of the Fifth Republic, and his house in Paris was a Franco-French discussion. board under the Moroccan tent.

He returned to Morocco and assumed many ministerial responsibilities, including the ministry of finance and foreign affairs at a difficult, critical and delicate juncture. Here we are referring to the 1963 Sand War with Algeria. He led the Moroccan delegation in negotiations with the eastern neighbor, mediated by African countries, and defended the legitimacy of the Moroccan position in nine rounds. The Algerian delegation at that time was headed by Abdelaziz Bouteflika. He held other positions such as national defense and design, and the deceased, like some of his colleagues, had a different vision for managing relations with Algeria.

He was not enthusiastic about the Ifrane agreement, despite understanding its context at a difficult and complex stage in Morocco’s history, after two military coups. Although he did not agree with his Shura comrades who later joined the National Union of Popular Forces, such as the late Abd al-Hadi Boutaleb and Ahmed Bensouda, he remained in a relationship of mutual respect and appreciation with al-Mahdi Benbarka and was constantly in conversation and fellowship. with Abd al-Rahim Buabid at every meeting, who regularly inquired about his classmate, Professor Abd ar-Rahman al-Yusifi, during his exile. It also brought him closer to the visual lawyer, brotherhood relationship, as he embraced him after the latter returned to Morocco, in a way that surprised many who do not know the mutual respect between the two sides, the reasons for which are related to their belonging to the same region. , which extends from Abi Al Jaad to the Azilal region. His connection with the social sphere was also strong through his relationship with the trade union leaders of the Moroccan Workers’ Union, led by Al-Mahjoub bin Al-Siddiq and Al-Si Muhammad bin Abdel-Razzaq.

Despite his remoteness from the political field, he continued to monitor the state of his country in close connection with global transformations. What concerns us in this mention is his sincere patriotic initiative, the knowledge of which remains limited to a few people. After the illness of the late King Hassan II began to increase, our deceased began to contact some of his friends, especially among the opposition, especially the Socialist Union the People’s Forces and the Istiklal Party, and his words were clear and, as usual, linked to the highest interests of the country; He urged the opposition at that time to cling to the mass mobilization, but at the same time, one should also prepare to serve the country, especially in the delicate transitional stages. pieces of historical or psychological barriers. To pave the way for consensus rotation, and everyone remembers how his house in Rabat became a space that accommodated everyone, regardless of their intellectual or political affiliation. May God have mercy on him, he constantly repeated that the funeral of King Hassan II was an automatic popular response through which he expressed his cohesion and unity, and that the smooth transfer of power in Morocco from one king to another is a sign of the maturity of the Moroccan people and the rooting of their institutions in history, as well as the fact that this people is always able to withstand all differences.

In all stages and paths, his companion, the late Princess Lalla Malika, daughter of Sultan Mohammed V, sister of Hassan II and aunt of King Mohammed VI, was a strong support and support for our deceased, and these two were known for their unparalleled humility. For those who know the dead, it is enough to lead their humble and ascetic life. On the other hand, think tank-like councils live with them for in-depth exchanges and empowerment.

May God have mercy on the late Si Mohamed Sherkawi and before him Princess Lalla Malika and our condolences to their children Moulay Omar, Moulay Suleiman, Moulay El Mahdi and Lalla Rabia.

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