Order of Ouissam Alaouite

Order of Ouissam Alaouite
Order of Ouissam Alaouite / Royal Order of Al-Alaoui
Order of Ouissam Alaouite Grand Cross.jpg
Order of Ouissam Alaouite Grand Order
Awarded by The King of  Morocco
Type Five-grade award. The five grades are:
Grand Croix
Grand Officier
Awarded for Displaying heroism in combat or contributing meritorious service to the Moroccan state
Status Currently awarded
Established January 11, 1913
Ordre de l'Ouissam Alaouite Chevalier ribbon (Maroc).svg
the ribbon of the Order of Ouissam Alaouite

The Order of Ouissam Alaouite or the Royal Order of Al-Alaoui is a military decoration of Morocco which is bestowed by the King of Morocco upon those civilians and military officers who have displayed heroism in combat or have contributed meritorious service to the Moroccan state. The decoration was established on January 11, 1913 and is awarded in five classes: Grand Cross (Grand Croix), Grand Officer (Grand Officier), Commander (Commandeur), Officer (Officier) and Knight (Chevalier).[1]

The Order of Ouissam Alaouite is similar to the Legion of Merit, awarded by the United States military.



The 1913 to 1956 Knight of the Order of Ouissan Alaouite Medal.

The order of Ouissam Alaouite was created during the colonial period. The French authorities in Morocco considered it necessary to have the power to bestow an official honour or decoration in response to loyal service; and they wanted to avoid over-burdening the bureaucracy of the Légion d'Honneur Order in Paris.[1] The ribbon of the order during this period was a shade of orange[2] or pumpkin-coloured.[3]

During the Second World War, the Order of Ouissam Alaouite was bestowed frequently on United States military personnel who had participated in the planning and execution of Operation Torch, the invasion of French Morocco. Morocco was a protectorate of France from 1912 to 1956, and the decoration was bestowed frequently on French military officers during that period.

After Moroccan independence in 1956, the Alawid Order became a prerogative of the Alawid King and his heirs; and the Order continues through the present day, the ribbon changed to the present look after Morocco gained independence.

Ribbons (1913–1956)
MAR Order of the Ouissam Alaouite - Knight (1913-1956) BAR.png
MAR Order of the Ouissam Alaouite - Officer (1913-1956) BAR.png
MAR Order of the Ouissam Alaouite - Commander (1913-1956) BAR.png
MAR Order of the Ouissam Alaouite - Grand Officer (1913-1956) BAR.png
Grand Officer
MAR Order of the Ouissam Alaouite - Grand Cross (1913-1956) BAR.png
Grand Cross
Ordre de l'Ouissam Alaouite Chevalier ribbon (Maroc).svg
Ordre de l'Ouissam Alaouite Officier ribbon (Maroc).svg
Ordre de l'Ouissam Alaouite Commandeur ribbon (Maroc).svg
Ordre de l'Ouissam Alaouite GO ribbon (Maroc).svg
Grand Officer
Ordre de l'Ouissam Alaouite GC ribbon (Maroc).svg
Grand Cross

Selected recipients

  • Albert I - King of Belgium from 1909 to 1934 [2]
  • Henry H. "Hap" Arnold - commanding general of the US Army Air Force during World War II
  • Mark W. Clark, Commanding general of the Fifth Army in North Africa and Italy in World War II
  • Andrew Cunningham - British admiral, Commander-in-Chief, Mediterranean and later First Sea Lord during the Second World War.[4]
  • Dwight D. Eisenhower - U.S. general and later President of the United States
  • Jürgen Tönsmann German entrepreneur
  • Henri Honoré d'Estienne d'Orves - French resistance fighter
  • Alphonse Juin - - French general (later Marshal of France)
  • Jean JOSEPH - French Lieutenant-Colonel (Commander, 19-08-1952)
  • Marie Pierre Koenig - French general (later Marshal of France)
  • Jean de Lattre de Tassigny - French general (later Marshal of France)
  • André Malraux - French author, adventurer and statesman
  • George Marshall - U.S. general and later Secretary of State
  • Raoul Monclar - French general who took a reduction in rank so as to command the French battalion in the Korean War
  • George S. Patton - U.S. general[5]
  • Saint-Just Pequart - French archaeologist
  • René Pleven - French politician
  • Arthur Tedder - RAF officer and Deputy Supreme Commander under Eisenhower in World War II, later a Marshal of the Royal Air Force
  • Anthony J Bailey, Inter-faith campaigner and Chairman of Painting & Patronage
  • Wesley Clark - U.S. general
  • Ernesto Burzagli, Italian admiral
  • Francisco Pérez Pérez, Spanish infantry captain
  • John Edwin Bircher III, US Army Colonel and Government Relations Consultant who is the only person to receive two separate awards. The first was Officer Grade by King Hassan II and the second was Commander by King Mohammed VI.
  • Georges Journois, French general
  • Michel Raingeard - French politician
  • Thomas T. Riley - U.S. Ambassador
  • Dominique Strauss-Kahn - French politician, Managing Director of the International Monetary Fund
  • Louis Vannier French air military
  • Rachida Dati - French politician, Member of the European Parliament. ex-Minister of Justice
  • Jagatjit Singh of Kapurthala - Maharaja of Khapurthala
  • Gustave Daladier - French professional soldier and flying ace
  • Mohamed El Mansour - Moroccan Professor and Researcher at the University of Mohamed V in Rabat
Moroccan decree (dahir) which proclaims and confirms that the Order of Oissam Alaouite is conferred on Ernesto Burzagli in 1922.

1943 ceremony

In the opening scene of the film Patton, George C. Scott, portraying then-Major General Patton, is shown receiving the Grand Cross of the Order of Ouissam Alaouite. This was no mere Hollywood contrivance. Under Patton's command, Allied forces took Casablanca after only four days of fighting. So impressed was the Sultan of Morocco that he presented Patton with the special Order of Ouissam Alaouite, with the citation: "Les Lions dans leurs tanières tremblent en le voyant approcher" (The lions in their dens tremble at his approach).[5] Patton wryly described the ceremony as a "non-military activity,"[6] but in his memoirs, he does not fail to note the Operation Torch staff officers who were similarly honored on that occasion.[3]



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