A Visit to the Kasbah

We visited the kasbah at Zagora, constructed over 700 years ago. The dwellings were built of wood, mud and straw and surrounded by a thick wall. There was one entrance and one exit gate, closed at night. Jews and Muslims had lived there together for hundred of years and inside the kasbah was a synagogue as well as a mosque. Today the kasbah was home to twenty five families and was gradually being restored.

Zagora was like many of the larger towns in Morocco, its main street was a modern boulevard with a dual carriageway, wide pavements with roadside trees and fancy street lighting with parks and impressive municipal buildings. But if you walked down any side street things looked much less salubrious and a few streets back there were just narrow unpaved roads.

The Western Sahara: On the inside of the door of our truck we had stickers representing the flags of all the countries we had visited. At Ali Nassir’s our door was open and someone spotted the Western Sahara flag and advised us to remove it. He explained if the police saw it we could get into trouble. Western Sahara was a territory south of Morocco, rich in mineral resources; control of the land was disputed between Morocco and the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic. The sight of that flag could be offensive to people in Morocco. Of course, we removed the flag from our door immediately. Later we noticed that the Western Sahara area of our world map on the side of the truck had been altered using Tippex (children, we assumed). We we able to removed the marks easily.