Morocco: Bloggers React to Failed Meknes Suicide Bombing

It has been an eventful week in Morocco. First a minor earthquake rocked the country on Sunday night, then an attempted suicide bombing rocked the city of Meknes on Monday morning (the last such attempt was in April). The bomber, identified in Jordan's Al Bawaba news site as Hisham Dokkali, is a 30- year-old engineer. No one was killed in the incident, not even Dokkali, who did lose an arm as a result, however. He is thought to have been targeting a tour bus parked near Place Hedim in the center of Meknes’ old city, or medina.


The attempt gave way to a variety of reactions – blogger Myrtus asked, “Dannnng where the hell do they find these stupid people?” while The Morocco Report was a bit cynical:

Great, I’m gone from Morocco for less than two weeks and someone tries to blow himself up in Place Hedim (the center of Meknes) – and yet, he failed and didn’t even manage to kill himself. Just like a Moroccan suicide bomber

The latter post garnered interesting comments – Adilski was shocked:

Everything is shaking in Morocco. The soil, Political scene, media and people. I’d love to know what went on in this guy’s mind carrying a butane container to detonate himself. Good thing everything is safe but the suicidal ideology amongst Moroccan youth is just shocking.

Xoussef thanked God for the incompetence of the bomber, which Elle took further, saying:

They are so incompetent that they could not even get the message that Allah is not helping them to do harm to innocent people!

Ange Bleu was outraged as well:

Un autre imbécile parmis tant d'autres qui croit que la violence va régler tout.

Another imbecile, among many, who thinks that violence will solve everything..

Samuel Gunter of Life Called…, who is a Peace Corps volunteer in Morocco, sent a missive via his blog:

There was yet another bombing in Morocco. This time it wasn't in the far off coastal city of Casablanca, it was in Meknes, one of the Imperial Cities. To set your mind at ease… Meknes, although considerably closer to me than Casablanca, is still about 140km away from me. So don't worry about me, worry about Morocco and worry about our world, and if you pray, pray for us all.

We, all of us, are in the fight of our lives. You and I are warring against indifference in our own lives, and the objectifying influence hatred and ignorance have on all of our hearts. As long as we live in a world with and “us and a them” we will be at war. Until we finally discover that there is nothing but “we” we will always be fighting. Those of here attempt to stand in that gap and are struggle against both ourselves and other forces to bring two wayward families together, or at least to remind all of us that we are family.

There are always times of doubt here because sometimes because the immediacy doesn't always seem that evident.

It is.

Photo of Place Hedim (Meknes, Morocco) by Jillian York.


  • punchman

    “Is it the extremist, or the media, that blow things up”

  • John Turturro

    The exact name is Place Lahdim, not place Hedim, I think

  • I feel these bombers are a threat to innocent ppl it is who see it from Iraq that others tries it from this point
    getting so every one has to be watched for the safety of other people its too bad we have bad ppl find a way to hurt others

  • Actually, John, the proper name in Arabic would be closer to Al-Hadim, often pronounced and transliterated “Lahdim,” however in French, it is most commonly spelled “Place Hedim” (the name being “Hedim” and the “l” or “al” representing the definite article), which is why I spelled it that way.

  • GEM


  • Alistair, London

    what a load of crap, the guy’s probably an innocent civilian, on his way home after buying a gas cylinder, who happened to be near a tourism bus. if you didn’t know people buy gas cylinders in Morocco everyday, all over the country their known as ‘bota gas’, and these type of accidents are commonplace (along with car accidents). Most people in Morocco do not have a fixed gas supply so they have to buy it in gas cylinders. (remember Morocco is still a developing country)

  • mlionel

    Morocco has never had such incidence when you look back to the king Hassan 2nd‘s era.
    Nowadays, with the all the freedom and the democracy Moroccan government are trying to work on gradually, some few people came up with a new interpretation of Islam.
    With the high rate of unemployment, poverty, desperation, lack of the facilities to practice any activities or hobbies and extreme anxiety has made a lot of Moroccan youngster lost their faith to any better changes, they’re fed up with their lives, they lost their sense of what’s wrong and what’s right, they become full of bitterness to the whole system they even lost their hope for life.
    They turned into easy target to be misled, promise them a heaven in the second life and they believe that’s worth to kill their selves.
    They became blind about the fact that’s they are just killing themselves and other innocent people. More than that they’re making all Moroccans lives more difficult than what it is.
    The education in Morocco is not helping at all. We have always been taught that we’re better than the rest of the humans because we’re Muslims. We’re higher & cleaner and the others are dirty & sinner.
    I remember few years ago in my parents home, I said “Good morning” to my seven years old sister, she replied to me it’s a sin to say so. She insisted that we have to great each other now on in the house with only “Salaam” at any time of the day. She said her teacher at school said only none believer & sinner who great otherwise.

    Islam has been always with life not against it, encouraging Muslims to smile and enjoy the gift of life and made it clear taking other lives is the worst sin you can ever commit. No way, you can dream about getting to heaven afterwards.

  • Alistair – I AM aware of butagaz, having lived in Morocco for quite some time, and yet have never seen anyone carry a canister of it through Place Hedim. In fact, if this man lived in that general neighborhood, he would hardly have to walk a meter to find a shop which carries it, so I see no reason for him to take such a long journey just for gas.

    Stop apologizing for this man’s actions and get a clue.

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