By Ouassima Boujrad
By Ouassima Boujrad
Fez – Last Saturday evening, Rabbi Moshe Ohayon and his wife welcomed members of Moroccan civil society who wanted to come and express their moral support after the violent assault he suffered on Friday, July 11, in Casablanca.
The event, co-hosted by the Mimouna Club and Moroccans Plural Juniors, brought together a number of leading Moroccan thinkers and activists, including Rabbi Sebbag Jacky, Fatna Elbouih, writer Valerie Morales-Attias, Dr. Patrice Attias, artist Jauk Elmaleh, Faisal Ziza from the association Freedom of the City, Redouane Bouwiziri Aghane from the Association of Ouarzazate, and the writer Abdellah Anjar Ahmed Ghayat from the Moroccans Plural Association.
Rabbi Ohayon insisted that all Moroccans are equal. They were “weaned on the same milk, He noted.” Being a staunch supporter of the Moroccan King, he expressed his dislike of anti-monarchy movements.
He explained that, in spite of the attack, he would never give up on his Moroccan identity: “Jews and Muslims are brothers forever. Since our parents, our grandparents told us that when a Jewish mother would, for example, go to the market, a Muslim mother would breastfeed her children, and vice versa. Nothing has ever distinguished us from each other. And we pray to God that everything goes for the best in this Morocco we share.”
Moshe Ohayon, the president of the Jewish Committee in Casablanca, was attacked in Casablanca at 6, near the Windsor Hotel on his way to synagogue. A young Moroccan man kicked the elderly Rabbi over and over again, shouting, “this is for what Israel is doing in Palestine.”
“He did not stop hitting me until the blood flowed. What shocked me the most is that nobody in the street tried to help me,” said Rabbi Ohayon. After returning home, Mr. Ohayon called the police and the attacker was arrested.
The attacker, who had a history of violence against Jews, was apprehended the next day. The police declared that the suspect suffers from a mental disorder.
However, even in the face of anger and pain, Rabbi Ohayon remained positive about Morocco. He explained: “we are Moroccans, and no one has ever disrespected us. Wherever I go, everyone knows me. This incident was fate, Kudrat Allah … the key is that Morocco remains the Morocco as we know it, a country open to people of all faiths.”
Edited by Ilona Alexandra