Details of Zionist founder plan to declare southern Morocco “Jewish state”

According to the Moroccan newspaper Hespers, the document reaffirms the historical ties between the Jews and Morocco after the resumption of official contacts between Rabat and Tel Aviv.

The newspaper wrote that the idea had been raised. But then came the idea of ​​the world’s Jews migrating to Palestine.

In this regard, the Yedioth Ahronoth newspaper wrote that Theodore Herzl, the founder of Zionism, promoted a secret and vague document of the “Moroccan plan”, which was less famous than the Ugandan plan, according to which Russian Jews were settled in the Wadi al-Hassan region in southwestern Morocco. .

The “Uganda Plan for the Settlement of Jews in East Africa” ​​is taught in Israeli schools within the framework of history lessons, but there is not much information about the alternative Herzl plan, which was named after the Moroccan plan and aimed at settling Russian Jews in Morocco. This was the proposal he made in his vague message in 1903.

According to this account, in April 1903, Joseph Chamberlain, the British Minister of Colonies, made an offer to Herzl to settle Jews in East Africa, specifically in Kenya, a proposal known in the Zionist discourse as the Uganda Plan. But Herzl strongly opposed the proposal, arguing that “Jews are only interested in Israeli territory.”

According to the Hebrew press, Herzl later considered introducing another place as a Jewish state, the Wadi al-Hassan area in southwestern Morocco on July 20, 1903, a month before the conference. But Herzl’s sudden death on July 3, 1904 caused the project to be archived and halted.

“There were a lot of Jews there, whether in Morocco or in North Africa,” said Yaqub Hajouil, head of the World Zionist Organization, in an interview with Yedioth Ahronoth. It should be noted that Herzl was a very pragmatic man. On the one hand, he witnessed the plight of oppressed Jews suffering from the unrest in Eastern Europe, and on the other, he believed that Morocco was a thriving Jewish community with active Jewish centers.

Professor Youssef Shitrit, of the Hebrew Department at the University of Haifa, said the Moroccan option was first offered by two brothers, two well-known Zionist activists named Baruch and Jacob Moshe Telidano, sons of parents who immigrated from Morocco. Was.

The professor says Baruch spoke to Herzl on behalf of himself and his brother a few months before his death, then sent a message to Fidel Menfas, a French rabbi close to the monarchy and the Moroccan government, to establish an independent Jewish area in Wadi al-Hassan.

The researcher, who works at the University of Haifa, noted that the French rabbi, who was involved in the country’s domestic politics, knew that this illusory plan did not take into account the internal situation in Morocco, so he put it in a drawer. Later, his grandson in Israel, who bears the same name, found the document and revealed it for the first time.