VIVERE ULTRAS PER VIVERE LIBERI is a famous Ultras Eagles motto which was written on its first scarf and is considered as a lifestyle by its members. It means that we live ultras so as to live in liberty. Everyone is seeking freedom, this big iceberg hiding the most of it underwater. So, what kind of freedom are we talking about? How can living Ultras style grant us living the way we want to?
Ultras movement first appeared as a group of teenagers gathering in the stadium to support their team. As every new activity, Ultras attracted more and more people thanks to its new living way of cheering. It had been for years supported by every side of the puzzle until it had a base to stand on. It is said that an idea can grow wiser through time, and it is exactly what happened to the Ultras in our country. It has gone from cheering and supporting teams by different means, to expressing opinions freely through ” tifos “, banners, …. Because of the doubtful situation in this country, being able to talk about anything makes you a threat to society; this is where the repression battle had begun. Since the 09-09 law had been reveled, Ultras groups were no more seen as faithful supporters, but started to be considered as a band of outlaws trying to disturb the security of the country. Every Ultras group was accused of brainwashing its members and using them for political purposes. Therefore, these groups’ freedom became limited. Repression aspects began to appear, and stadiums turned to battlefields witnessing clashes with the police officials.
However, freedom of expression was, and still is, one of the most important rights for humanity. As long as this right isn’t violated, you’re considered to live in a hypothetical high democratic and transparent society. In fact, the need to express freely everything you feel or think is what makes people chose to be somewhere, to belong somewhere, and it is what made us chose to be ULTRAS.
Being an ULTRAS member gives you the utter freedom to make your word heard, to express whatever idea is in your mind as long as you’re able to defend it with strong arguments. It’s a small equal society where neither money, nor age makes you superior. In fact, it is your ability to criticize, analyze and defend your idea that matters the most. It is where every member learns to be brave and to dare to speak freely about anything harmful, to dare cross the red line, to dare being unrestricted.
Moreover, having such non-codified organisms with this much marge of freedom can be considered as a rebellious movement, for the law could never know what can be expressed one day and which repercussions it can create. Higher powers in this country feel the urge to limit this Butterfly effect, mostly by censuring it. Censure was always the quickest and easiest response to any divergent opinion. Freedom of speech fears each and every corrupted soul, and that’s the reason why the ULTRAS are always in conflict with different administration representatives.
The story of the Ultras Eagles group presents a strange pattern that can be tracked back to this urge to censure. The group had many of its works confiscated by the cops. None of us could forget the “Fakher m’a tuer” tifo in the last league match against DHJ, when we were on the verge of winning the eleventh league of our club. We took the opportunity to express our sorrow about the way our team was playing during the season. Neglecting the club’s identity sounds the alarm for us as the reason why the club gained its fame and popularity was the “deqa deqa” style and not the titles. However, basic were our demands, this tifo was forbidden to be exposed because the team’s manager at that time was Fakher himself, and he refused to assist to the game if the tifo had been raised. So, at the team’s demand, the police intervened and canceled the tifo, while we, in full belief in our right to express freely, wrote the idea in another way and had it shared on social media.
This pattern was also present during the” Lilah ya jazayir ” tifo, in ESS match against RCA. What should have been an open letter to express our brotherhood with our Algerian neighbors, was withdrawn due to political excuses. Despite being banned by Moroccan authorities, the idea found its way to the other side of the border, and Algerians accepted it as a gift which was used as a welcoming message during the away game. This confirms that ideas can never be killed, and the more you censure them, the more visible they get.
Finally, to follow the pattern process, everyone witnessed the strange case with the ” Futbol democracia ” tifo. First, it was programed to take place in RCA and EST match in Casablanca, but our principles weren’t respected by the police: while we were at the stadium, ready to make the tifo, we were shocked by a new stadium security law which popped out of nowhere. We were asked to hand in the mock-up days before the due match to be discussed by the higher authorities, who will decide if the tifo can be raised or not. This is definitely not acceptable as we seek privacy in all our work, and for the simpler reason that we believe it’s our right to express freely our ideas with no other facts influencing our thoughts. So in response to their censure, we’ve decided to abort the work, because our principles are the red line that can never be crossed, and the work we do comes underneath our dignity and rights. In the meantime, we have expressed our sorrow and anger by stopping “tifos” and wearing black in all of our team’s games until our demands were met. Weeks later, we created a website for Moroccan nationals to upload their “tifo” ideas, which are automatically sent to the Minister of Sports’ office in total “respect” the new law. This sarcastic way was always an option the Ultras Eagles group used to express how childish the government’s decisions might sometimes be. As a penultimate action, we’ve decided to maintain the tifo idea, and have it done in Tunis in the away game. This was a way to say out loud that we will never back down, and that we will always get back our freedom, our right to express freely and do the things the way we want to, in a significant act denying our carnality, and clarifying that we only seek transparence and integrity.
In addition to restricted tifos, many messages have had their part of oppression too, “Jose Romao, the special guest in Rachid Show” was a message to express the chaos in our club’s managing office, and was confiscated by the cops in the stadium’s entry. Even so, we took a picture of it and had it shared on social media in order to show that we’ll always find the solution to send the message and make our voice heard.
All these repression aspects were accompanied by fierce and violent attacks on the supporters inside and outside of the stadium. We witnessed arbitrary detentions and more despicable acts expressing grudge towards Ultras members and breaking every sort of simple human rights.
Obviously, when talking about freedom of expression, the freedom to make your own choices comes to mind because decisions are just another method reflecting what you think and want to express. Our way of thinking can and is influenced by a lot of factors, by our childhood, our education, and the experiences we ran through in our life. But as a group, we keep for ourselves the duty to make our own decisions without any external influence. As we always stressed on not serving any political agenda, our decisions, no matter how complicated the situation is, are coming purely from our own organism. Political parties are nowadays diving their hands deeply into football clubs and influencing the beautiful game of football by making it a remarkable tool to promote their electoral campaign. We are committed to keep the integer goal of this beautiful game, and so our last tifo in the last season reflects exactly what we want, and how things should get going: an octopus of corruption holding a microphone that pierces the ball, illustrating how bad an external influence can be; preferring a side over another to serve personal interests is making the game dirtier than it has already become.
Football is our game, our life, and our only getaway tool from life’s stress. Our sadness, happiness and all of our feelings are utterly pure when a game is taking place. So, in full belief in our right to make our own pure choices, we would stand in the way of every corrupted tyrant trying to infect our delusional hideout, no matter what part he could be serving. We took upon us the burden to defend this game and keep it pure, so as to let its democracy decide its fate, so as to see our eagle free from the frail chains of corruption and flying higher than ever before without any bounds.
Nevertheless, despite all this oversteering, utter contempt, and assumptions, we never lowered and will never lower our hands. This repression makes us more united than ever, stronger than before. Being Ultras means resistance, so with no abdications, we will seize the opportunity, in due course, to defend our ideas and rights, to fight for freedom, and to embody THE VOICE OF PEOPLE.
VIVREMO ULTRAS PER VIVER LIBERI.