To welcome Guessous, Buchman asked Campbell to chair the first meeting. Campbell gave an enthusiastic account of their stay in Morocco and a glowing description of Moroccan hospitality, taking as an example the way they had been received at a Glaoua castle. He described El Glaoui as 'a powerful leader of South Morocco'.

At the end of the meeting, Guessous, pale with anger, tackled Campbell: 'I regard Caux as a holy place; but by speaking here of our worst enemy, El Glaoui, you have spoken of the devil incarnate. I shall not stay at Caux if his name is mentioned again.' Campbell invited Guessous, Chavanne and Lobstein to lunch. Chavanne declined. 'We told Campbell he hadn't a clue about the situation in Morocco or he would never have made such a gaffe, and Guessous poured out his hatred of El Glaoui as the traitor who had sold out to the French,' recalls Lobstein. Campbell listened quietly. Then, at the end of the meal, he said, 'I too have known hatred of people. My own experience is that I am as close to God as to the person I am most divided from.' There was silence. 'I'm a good Muslim,' said Guessous, 'but if I'm as close to God as I am to El Glaoui, I have a long way to go.'

Soon afterwards Guessous departed to take a cure at Plombière. 'Everywhere Campbell's phrase kept pursuing me,' he said later. 'Being a Muslim, the thought that I was not really submitted to God was terrible. I decided that I couldn't rest till I had got it straight.'

Back in Morocco Guessous got in touch with Abdessadeq, El Glaoui's son, whom he already knew. They discussed the critical situation in the country, and Guessous suggested that he should meet El Glaoui to try and find some common ground.

Abdessadeq had earlier asked Guessous to meet his father, but had always received a polite refusal. By now he was sceptical about such a meeting, as he thought his father was locked into an irreversible position.3

Abdessadeq was facing a real dilemma. On the one hand he had a certain sympathy for the nationalist movement, and on the other he retained considerable respect for the personality and opinions of his father - and the political positions of the Istiqlal and El Glaoui were diametrically opposed. In spite of his doubts, however, he felt it valuable to continue seeing Guessous and to try to prepare his father to meet him.

The French, meanwhile, faced with Ben Arafa's non-acceptance by the population and his chronic desire to abdicate, had on 15 October set up a four-man Council of the Throne as an interim solution which they hoped would calm the situation. The Istiqlal had refused to accept its members as representative of the country. 'By now', writes Gavin Maxwell in his history of the Glaoua family, 'the Berber Tribes of the Middle Atlas and the Rif mountains were in a state of open rebellion,'4 and there was danger of guerrilla war breaking out between the growing nationalist forces and the French army of occupation and its supporters.