Moroccan Goumier soldier photographed while sharpening his bayonet sometime during 1944 in the Italian hills.
Goumiers were indigenous Moroccan soldiers recruited from various tribes in the Atlas Mountains, and serving as an extension to the French Army of Africa between 1908 and 1956 (although officially they were under the rule of the Sultan of Morocco). Troops were deployed in North Africa, France and Italy.
Goumiers came to be known during World War II not just for their excellent military prowess, but also for atrocities some of them committed, including rapes, murders and thievery. Many Goumiers were executed or imprisoned in labor camps for their crimes.
Morocco operated as a French protectorate between and during World War II. After the German invasion and occupation of France, Moroccans stayed under the control of the Vichy government, a rump state which had a policy of collaboration with Nazi Germany.
After the North African Campaign, which ended on May 13th 1943, Morocco returned under Allied control until the end of the war.
Book suggestions ⤵️
📖 The Moroccan Goums: Tribal Warriors in a Modern War (Edward L. Bimberg, 1999)
📖 Destination Casablanca: Exile, Espionage, and the Battle for North Africa in World War II (Meredith Hindley, 2017)
Movie suggestion ⤵️
🎥 Days of Glory [Indigenes] (2006)